The Blogger SEO Burden

    January 9, 2009
    Chris Crum

There is no question that blogging can help improve your search engine optimization efforts. Stephan Spencer, Founder & President Netconcepts talked about some of the reasons why in the following video, but he also said he favors some platforms over others for SEO purposes. Namely, he recommends WordPress or b2evolution as opposed to Google-owned Blogger.

While Spencer may be right about Blogger not being as good for SEO purposes, it raises the question: Why would a blog platform owned by Google itself carry a greater burden for getting good rankings on the very search engine that everyone strives to rank well in? I contacted Spencer to get his thoughts on just that.

Stephan Spencer Talks Blogger and SEO

"I don’t think it is intentional on Google’s part," says Spencer. "The developers of Blogger designed it for simplicity and usability (the "KISS" principle). They ‘didn’t know what they didn’t know’ — and that unfortunately included SEO."

"Believe it or not, the search engines are not expert at SEO," Spencer continued. "They are expert at search algorithms, which is a very different thing. In fact, several search engines hired us at various times to advise them on SEO, i.e. to help them get their own sites to rank better in Google! The engineers don’t have the deep SEO experience that allows them to make SEO-informed decisions around functionality (like support for tag clouds), site architecture & internal linking structure (e.g. the way they handle pagination), design and layout, etc."

Spencer touched upon on a few of these things that Blogger lacks for SEO purposes in the above video. He also followed up with me:

BTW, this one takes the cake… the tag pages on Blogger (actually referred to as "labels" by Blogger) are disallowed by the robots.txt file! They are within the search directory, which is disallowed:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /search


Spencer also notes in the video, that "it’s really hard to get off of it once you’re on it," and there are many, many people using Blogger. Even if the platform isn’t great for SEO purposes, there are still some things that you can do to help somewhat. People have offered SEO tips for Blogger in the past.

This article is about two and a half years old, but Wayne Hurlbert offers some in it. SEO Kolkata also had some suggestions about a year ago.