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Clean layout and design
Search engine optimization built-in
Variety of template designs
Customized help and support
Limited free service
No polls feature
With search engine optimization features built-in and a professional, proactive approach, TypePad is for people who want their blogs to work for them. TypePad offers full web hosting for your blog so you can concentrate on blogging (and maybe making money).
TypePad is a paid-for service, although once you’ve paid your monthly fee you’re guaranteed no extra charges for anything. How does TypePad compare with free blogging services? We’ve checked out the offering and here’s our full verdict.
You have the option of a free 14-day blog trial (no obligation, according to TypePad) where you can access the features in TypePad and get support from the TypePad people. If you want to make use of the service after this without paying any money, you’re limited to a TypePad Micro blog. This mini-blog has limited features but may be good for you if you need a simple package. You can post updates and share links and photos but not much else. This Micro blog is registered through your Facebook account with no extra forms to fill in. The paid-for services range from Plus ($8.95 /month) and Unlimited ($14.95 /month) to Premium ($29.95 /month). The Premium account lets you create unlimited blogs. Set-up is simple with email address an credit card details.
With TypePad, the easiest way to set up a blog is to choose from a large number of ready-completed designs rather than set up your own from scratch. Once you have a theme, which can range from a simple, business-like design to a fun and playful concept, you pick a layout and arrange your content how you like it. However, if you want more control over the design of your blog you can continue to tweak your page with a range of built-in design tools. Lovers of code can use the HTML and CSS function.
How many widgets do you need? TypePad offers a wide variety, from widgets for chatting, to paying for goods, buying from other websites and showing off your favorite sites and media. TypePad lets you choose widgets from big players like PayPal, Amazon, Twitter and Pandora. Other features include the ability to add permanent pages such as “About Me” to your blog which look like your blog posts but remain in the same place.
As with other quality blogging services, TypePad lets you blog even when you’re not in front of your computer. TypePad supports the iPhone and many other mobile email devices and you can also blog by email and Facebook. There’s no IM blogging function, however. Once you’ve created your content, create a community of followers by linking to Twitter, YouTube and Photobucket. When other bloggers share your content you know about it via BlogIt, a link-back system. Know your stats with full lists and tracks of visits and reads.
For the widest community possible, TypePad aims to help with its built-in search engine optimization tools. As you publish, TypePad alerts Google, Bing, Technorati, and other search engines through its TypePad Update Stream. If you want to do more to maximize your publicity, work your way through the Knowledge Base tutorials on how to fully optimize your blog. Earn money with your blog by running ads, selling products via PayPal, joining an ad network or an affiliate program, or by adding a tip jar so that eager readers can show their apperception in monetary form.
Ease of use
TypePad has a clean, fresh layout that is simple and easy to navigate, although not the most stylish or ground-breaking in the world. Once you’ve signed up, creating a post is simple and the process of adding links and images is easy to follow. Use drag-and-drop tools to organize your content and change things as often as you want. TypePad is flexible and the instructions on the site are in plain language with video tutorials if needed.
Help & support
TypePad support and help is described as one-on-one and personalized – from real people. There’s an extensive Knowledge Base if you want to discover things for yourself. If you decide to set up a more professional blog you can pay for expert help. A blog review “tune up” gives help on design and layout, how to optimize your traffic and how to drive people to your blog. This service costs $349 – rather expensive, seeing as you could probably get similar advice for free on the Internet. The “Power Launch” service (also $349) is for new bloggers with a need for a more effective blog right from the start.
If you want to get noticed, ramp up your blog and publish on TypePad. You need to pay for it, but the service helps you share your blog with the world. TypePad is backed by a team of experts and offers a professional service for professional bloggers.
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