I have officially been a Blogger blogger for one month after switching from blogging with WordPress and it has been quite a process to move. I’ve been recording all the things I did in order to make the switch because I could not find a straight answer all in one place during my move. This made it a very complicated, technical and sometimes stressful experience for me. However, I think I am down to the last steps in the move (tiny details that I am probably the only person who will ever notice), and I am very pleased with my decision to switch.
Why I switched:
- Personal preference was a major factor. I have now used both the WordPress and Blogger platforms for blogging and personally I’m a Blogger girl.
- Part of this preference for Blogger is due to the new design and seamless connection with all Google software such as AdSense and Google+
- I didn’t like that WordPress only allows bloggers who own their domain to add advertisements. I am very new to blogging and I’m not ready to make that kind of commitment (It’s too soon, I’m too young!) I love that Blogger, and the affiliation with Google allows AdSense.
- I am new to Google+ but I really enjoy this mode of social networking. It’s awesome to have it synched so easily to my blog.
- Additionally, I believe Blogger is easier to use, or at least more intuitive, but this is personal preference.
- Finally, a somewhat superficial reason, you can change color, font and background of words with blogger, something that is only available to domain owning bloggers on WordPress.
A list of things to do:
- Research. Make sure it’s really what you want, like I said, this is a complicated process full of headaches, sadness and hair-pulling. Don’t go through it just to find out you prefered the old way better.
- Export old blog. In WordPress go to your Dashboard > Tools > Export > Download export file > Save. If you already have posted in Blogger go to Customize > Settings > Export blog > Dowload File > Save to be sure the new file won’t overwrite these posts (it shouldn’t but better safe than sorry right?). Use this application to translate your WordPress file to a Blogger compatible file. Then go to Blogger and go to Customize > Settings > Import blog > Select file > Import
- Check that all posts are correctly formatted (I had to go through and edit the captions and re-center all images).
- Set-up your new blog before going public with it. You don’t have to be super knit-picky about it but make sure things are generally the way you want them before informing your readers you’ve moved. That way when they arrive at your new home it will look lovely and clean, not like a construction zone with caution tape draping across every wall.
- Post a goodbye post to old platform to redirect followers to new blog. Also post to other social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook your new blog location.
- Use a redirect program to automatically send people to new post when they try to go to old post. Unfortunately you can’t do this without owning the domain. Kind of a Catch-22 if you ask me, nobody ever seems to ask me though.
- Go through old pages on old blog and relink old posts to new posts. This took ages and probably isn’t completely necessary if you are willing to lose some page views. I wasn’t.
- Find link ups in old posts and link to new posts. Another very tedious step which I am still working on. All my posts in my new blog that were imported from the old blog link to posts that are on the old blog instead of to these same posts on the new blog. The links are just a web of lies.
- Only hardcore readers will follow you to your new blog (thanks guys!) so expect a drop in your readership. The return to previous view counts did not take as long as I expected though.
- I’ve said it multiple times throughout this post but you should really understand that this is very time consuming process. Add all of this on top of keeping up with new blog posts and you’re in for a rough couple of weeks.
- Getting used to the new blogging platform takes time but when I go back to WordPress I find that it, while once the only way to blog for me, is now confusing and Blogger makes sense. Brains are weird. Give yours a chance to adjust before throwing in the towel.
On the bright side, if you love blogging and have decided that you need to make the switch it is probably all going to be worth it. Keep your spirits high and remember why you started your blog in the first place.