The difference between Themes and Templates in Blogger

This article explains the difference between themes and templates in Blogger, Google’s blogging tool.



What is (was) a Blogger template

How a blog that is made with Blogger is displayed to a visitor is controlled by four sets of information:

  • U places that the blogger write (i.e. content)
  • An editable user “config file” which records the general formatting options that the file designer and then the blogger have chosen
  • Another configuration file, called post templatewhich records the choices the blogger made below Layout > Blog posts (edit), but cannot be edited elsewhere.
  • Blogger’s own software, which puts other things together with some internal rules to make “web pages”. Bloggers cannot control the rules in this at all.

Originally, the first “configuration file” was named template. In fact, it was officially called a design model, to distinguish it from the post-template. However, because most people do not know the post template, usually only the word “template” is used to mean the design template.

What is a topic?

Other blogging tools (eg WordPress, Tumblr) call their equivalent file a theme. Most (or even all) of these tools provide less access to change things in the theme file, for example, if you are using a free WordPress blog, then you cannot change any code in your theme, you can just make format changes. which are allowed in the WordPress front-end.

Many of the WordPress themes have had a lot of graphic design work done on them – using them gives a blog-site that looks very attractive (or otherwise fit for purpose) on a wide range of screens. Many great websites have been made with WordPress, and so many professional designers have created WordPress themes. Therefore, many people believe that it is easier to get an excellent looking website from a theme than from a Blogger template.

Blogger templates become themes

Recently – I noticed it in March 2017 – Blogger started calling its templates “themes”.

  • They changed the menu option in their dashboard from “Template” to “Theme”.
  • They changed the action button names in the template/theme editor to say things like “Save Theme”.
  • They have written various help articles that refer to topics.

What hasn’t changed

  • We can also edit our own models themes extensively.
  • The Blogger tools that make changes to our themes have not changed: All the items under the Themes tab in the dashboard are the same as those in the Templates tab.
  • The contents of our existing themes are still the same (I can’t guarantee that they haven’t made changes, but I haven’t seen them)
  • The themes that we can choose from when creating a new blog, or changing the format of an existing one, are the same.
  • There are hundreds of help articles and how-tos written by blogger-helpers like myself, all of which refer to models. (I’m starting to change mine – but it’s going to take a while!)

What else is going to change?

This is the big question: is the renaming a precursor to some other change, for example, restricting how much control we have over our themes? – or is it just a cosmetic change to make Blogger look more modern?

Will there be any new themes released – ones that look better on a range of devices, maybe even some that are optimized for mobile rather than desktop use?

Will there be new theme editing features introduced into the Blogger interface, to allow us to control things we can’t control now?

Conclusion / TL-DR

Only Google’s Blogger product managers know exactly what the future plans are for Blogger – and they are not known to talk about the future direction until they are just about to introduce new features.

But until they do, my conclusion is this There is no difference between templates and themes in Blogger. They are just two different words for exactly the same thing.

NB: Product Blogger an announcements are generally made in the Blogger Buzz blog – and I see that the model was also called models in his most recent post in November 2016:


Related articles

How to Edit Your Theme in Blogger

What types of themes/templates does Blogger have

Editing your blog template: advantages and disadvantages

How to activate a mobile theme for your blog

Blogs, Blogger, bloggers, publication pages and screens – understand the basics of Blogger

How to make a real website, using Blogger

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