Blogger for Business Use?
Yep, that’s right. How? Isn’t this just a craze for writing an online journal? It’s certainly used for this purpose all over the Web, but it can also be used for lots more than this, too. In other words, it can be a pretty good content management tool.
This kind of tool, not just Blogger per se, can be great for writing a newsletter, with Blogger making the archives for you, for example. If you check out the archives for Brainstorms & Raves, for example, you’ll see an archive listing by date. Blogger did all that, giving each entry a number and storing them. On my own I added a listing by title, too.
I’ve been experimenting and playing with it for about two months now to see how some of my clients might be able to utilize this tool, especially since you don’t absolutely have to know HTML to use it. While I’m still relatively new to all this, I’ve been learning a great deal. The most obvious is how easy this tool is to use.
Blogger is hardly the only program of its type, though. Another very popular one is Manila, by UserLand Frontier. This program allows people to build, develop and maintain an entire Web site via your Web browser. Now how easy is that?!
Here are a few snippets from Manila’s main page about how remarkable this program is:
"Manila is an Internet server application that allows groups of writers, designers and graphics people to manage full-featured, high performance Web sites through an easy-to-use browser interface. Manila is included as part of the UserLand Frontier content management system, an $899 commercial product for Windows and Macintosh."
That $899 is an annual subscription fee for UserLand Frontier’s content management system.
If you don’t really need the robustness of Frontier and also prefer something for free, you can get a free Manila site via EditThisPage or Weblogger. EditThisPage and Weblogger both offer free hosting services for Manila in addition to paid services, too. You can open an account and set up a Manila site on their servers for free.
"Manila’s Edit this Page feature is the metaphoric equivalent of WYSIWYG for the Internet age. I believe that it is a benefit to unify your browser navigation and website editing as opposed to distinguishing between what’s on your hard disk and what’s on the Internet."
--- Jakob Nielsen, usability expert.
How do you know if you need a robust content management system like Frontier or a free weblog type of interface program? Or do you need something in between? In coming issues I’ll be examining more programs and possibilities with the goal of putting together a comprehensive article to help you, your company, your family, or your pets figure out what will serve your needs the best.
In the meantime, here are a few possibilities to explore:
Free Weblog Programs
Free Hosting with Manila
Content Management Systems
More Information at Brainstorms & Raves
More Information on the Web
Weblogs: A History and Perspective, by Rebecca Blood