I am planning to switch my Blogger blog to a custom domain. But before doing that I would like to know all the benefits and drawbacks of switching to a custom domain name.
To put it bluntly, a custom domain gives you just 3 things.
- The ability to access your blog using an additional, non BlogSpot URL.
- The ability to integrate your blog with Google Apps, which used to provide accessories such as a domain based email address - a feature that may not be available, using the new limited function "bloggeradmin" Google Apps accounts.
- The ability to integrate a custom domain published blog with any non Blogger / Google web based service that interests you.
And, for drawbacks, there is a well known and long ongoing chronic problem with photos, uploaded through the post editor, in custom domain published blogs.
The process of moving to a custom domain will have its challenges. Just as any time you change the URL of your blog, you'll face changes in external relationships, such as with your readers, and with search engines and other services. Don't do this without careful planning, and methodical execution!
Other than those 2 benefits, the challenges, and the 1 drawback - and given a proper setup - a custom domain is just a plain old Blogger blog, published to a standard, publicly registered domain. No more, and no less.
- The Blogger blog will still be hosted by Blogger / Google.
- The blog will be served subject to Auto Pagination.
- The blog will be subject to content restrictions - both porn labeling, and malware / spam deletion, will be consequences of any infractions.
- The blog will be subject to the same deletion recovery restrictions.
The blog will have a non BlogSpot URL, and that's all.
If you see a benefit, to your blogs specifically, the sooner that you move ahead, the better. But, like any change in the blog's address, you need to plan the change, to use your new address, properly.
Note that custom domain publishing is deceptively simple to setup, and it's reliable when you set it up properly. For the few times when it fails, see my troubleshooting check list - but prevent problems best, by first setting it up properly, and by observing your own limitations.