If you’re using Google’s Blogger service as your blog-publishing platform, you should seriously consider dropping the .blogspot.com suffix from your domain name. A recent study suggests that approximately 75% of Blogspot blogs are spam blogs or ‘splogs’ (full study in PDF). Here’s what you can do to prevent being associated with the pre-existing and newly created (because of the study) mistrust towards Blogger blogs.
If you wish to continue using Blogger, but want to drop the blogspot domain name, simply take advantage of the service’s Custom Domain option. Google launched this feature back in January, to allow you to take a domain that you already own and point your Blogger blog towards it. For example if your blog’s domain is currently testblog.blogspot.com and you own the domain www.testblog.com, you can point Blogger to that domain. Consequently, a post that was previously found at testblog.blogspot.com/2006/12/apples.html would now be found at www.testblog.com/2006/12/apples.html.
It’s a seamless transition and Blogger ensures that anyone who types in your old blogspot domain name is automatically redirected to your new domain name. While there is the added cost of purchasing the domain, sites like GoDaddy routinely offer them for less than $10 per year. If you are trying to give your blog a little respectability, it’s a small price to pay.
Blogger has a tutorial on their help site that leads you through the process. Although there are some terms like DNS servers and CNAME records that might be a little confusing at first, it’s a fairly straight forward process. If you have any questions feel free to leave them in the comments and I can answer them or direct you to a place that will be able to.
When this service launched in January I was one of the first to jump on board as I moved my ParisLemon blog over from parislemon.blogspot.com to simply www.parislemon.com. The move is already paying dividends, and I attribute at least some of the success over the past few months to the change.
Blogger no doubt still has other issues that it needs to improve to compete with the standards set by platforms like WordPress and MovableType (such as an overhaul of the comment system so it’s no longer a multiple page process, and the ability to create multiple pages for blogs, and so on), but in terms of quickly and easily setting up a blog from scratch, it’s hard to beat (no wonder spammers love it).
So don’t wait for Google to rise to the occasion and fix the service any time soon. Your reputation is in your hands, distinguish your blog from the millions of other generic blogs by giving it a custom domain name and giving it some credibility in the process.