Living in the digital age, sometimes web developers forget that not all people have the same interests and some terms regularly used in the web world are unfamiliar to folks who have had no occasion to use them.
The first websites that were published demanded the services of a skilled developer who knew how to program and were very basic having a home page, about page, and a contact page. In order to make changes, the owner would contact a web developer who would make changes and upload the code.
It is generally agreed that the first blog was created in 1994 by a Swarthmore College student named Justin Hall. He called it his personal homepage, since until 1997 the term blog was not known.
What is a Website or Blog?
A website is a group of hierarchically connected ‘pages’ with information intended to promote a service or business. The content contains hyperlinks between the pages and other websites. The person, group or business that owns the site determines the arrangement of the pages. Today websites are interactive. User engagement encourages repeat visits.
A blog (condensation of the term ‘web log’) is an informal source of information that is regularly updated, can be interactive and invites user subscriptions. The content is a series of ‘posts’ reflecting opinions of the person or organization, usually organized by date and often have comment forms inviting feedback. The framework is suggestive of a journal with dates. Older entries may be found under “Archives”. Some bloggers are subject matter experts (SME’s) and it is worthwhile to subscribe for their updates.
The entry of blogs into the online universe means that anyone with an opinion is able to write their own articles and post them to the web on their own. This independence comes at a price – the fact that the blog posts are dated pressurizes owners to stay current by posting new information. In some cases, bloggers have a developer set up the blog and post themselves. It can even be done from your smartphone!
What’s the difference?
The way that the information is coded into the site is the same or very similar for posts and pages. There is a small difference, and if you are planning something new, it is a good idea to know what you need before you begin or choose a flexible platform, like WordPress that will enable both.
Today hybrid solutions are popular where a developer (like me), will build the website, and the owner will create the posts. Frequently, the basic website is established first, and the blog page is added later. Blogging is a good way for a business owner to create new content for a website and attract repeat visits from existing customers. For a new potential client, this is a great way of becoming acquainted with a company and the products or services that it sells.
A blog is a type of website, but not every website is a blog.
I hope this clarifies the differences. Do you have a blog or website? I would love to hear from you.