When I moved my old static website to a blog format I was faced with a seemingly unsolvable dilemma: My domain had been up for some 8 years, with a Google PR of 5, and with a considerable numbers of links coming in from Google or other searches and/or websites. How could I retain my links in and not loose readers? I assumed that Google eventually would update its results, but could I be sure? That’s where TypePad’s File Manager came in handy. It allowed me to create directories and files to “mirror” my old site and automatic redirect the old html-file to the new html-file of the posts on TypePad that had been created from my old pages, i.e. creating a “www.mydomain.com/mydirectory/myfile.html” on TypePad, which auto-redirected to “www.mydomain.com/blog/year/month/mynewpost.html”, which was where my old page was now sitting in my new blog. This way no search results or old links in would get lost. Many pages also had links to uploadable files, so instead of re-writing all links in all posts I just re-created the directory the files were sitting in and uploaded the files to there using the File Manager.
Customizing your theme is way better in TypePad than in WordPress. Well, this is a half-truth. In the TypePad “Basic” account at $4.95/month you have pretty much the same options as in WordPress: You can select which content too use, and where to put it, drag and drop. There are slight differences, but basically both TypePad and WordPress offer the same functionality here. WordPress uses “widgets”, TypePad calls it what it is, plus they have something called “Typelists”, where you determine your own content.
Then comes the TypePad “Plus” account at $8.95/month…now we start talking. Here you can design your own template from scratch: colors, number and width of columns, header, sidebar content, fonts and styles. You are not in total control, but almost.
Both TypePad and WordPress have many templates to choose from. As of writing this post, WordPress comes with 67 different templates or design themes. TypePad has about the same, but it looks more, since most themes come ready in different colors; I counted more than 180 different variations based on 65 themes. In WordPress, only some themes come with customizable colors, so it’s difficult to count how many variations there actually are there. That aside, choosing and previewing a theme is much better in WordPress than in TypePad.
As you develop your blog, you may decided to change the overall topic of your blog. Thus, you may want to re-categorize your posts. Or, as the number of posts grow you decide to stremline your topics and cut down on categories (and use tags instead). How easy is that in TypePad versus WordPress?