A couple of things before I dive into this post about my transition from Blogger to WordPress:
1. THANK YOU for following me to my new site. Not only did I transition from Blogger to WordPress, but I changed my domain name and sought out a new self-hosted website. The fact that I was abandoning my old site scared me but (I hope) most people followed me here and that means the world to me, so thanks 🙂
2. I am by NO means an expert in anything technology including blogging. Yep, I post daily and write a lot, but ask me about coding and theme maintenance and SEO and I will look at you with a blank stare. My Vancouver friend, James, helped me A TON and didn’t kick me out when I asked stupid questions, so if you have people like that in your life… definitely consult them or any expert for help. Also, bake them muffins and cookies and stuff because apparently they like that 😉
I knew I wanted to update both the look and the hosting service and blogging platform for quite a while before I actually pulled the trigger. I did a lot of research so that I knew (almost) exactly what I wanted to do with my blog. In the blogging world, Blogger is great but simple. It doesn’t have very many options for you to change your website to how you want it and most bloggers eventually make the transition from Blogger to a more advanced blogging platform. WordPress.org is fairly popular and gives you the option to self-host, so I decided to use that as my platform and host through BlueHost. So far, I have been very happy with both services and I have web-chatted with BlueHost simply to ask questions before my transition and they were VERY helpful!
One of my major concerns when transitioning my blog to a whole new website was keeping my old posts and having my readers be able to backtrack to older posts from my “previous blog.” That ended up being the simplest part of it all and even my thousands of images transferred from Blogger. Don’t worry everyone, all of my treadmill selfies made it safely here. You are welcome, world.
I won’t go into the details of the transition but I will give some great resources AND some points I had to modify during my experience. There are a ton of websites out there and other bloggers who have done the same thing as me, so simply searching “transition from blogger to wordpress” will get you pretty far. Here are a frew great step-by-step instructions I found:
WordPress makes it really easy to move all of your old content to a new site with a super simple plug-in. By making all of your new WordPress post urls end in year-month-title, it will look identical to Blogger urls and the transition will be ALMOST seamless. The one problem I had was Blogger posts ending in html so linking old posts in my blog would take people to my old blog. James set up a redirect to cut off the url html and now it works perfectly! Honestly, the hardest part was finding a theme that I liked that could be easily maneuvered to fit my specifications. I still haven’t figured out how to move the sidebar from the bottom of the page to the side of the page but hopefully that will happen in the near future. James showed me how to manipulate my theme through the CSS with different colours, font styles, menu placements, and font sizes and I learned A LOT. I used a free WordPress theme (called “chunk”) but there are a million out there and you could even pay to have your own designed. I love the new look of the blog now and it is much cleaner.
Overall the transition was fairly easy and WordPress has made it simple to transition from Blogger. BlueHost has been great so far and they charge a very reasonable monthly fee for their hosting services. Their fees also INCLUDE a blog domain! A few things about transitioning your blog:
- Know what you want your final outcome to be. Are you looking to create space for advertising? Do you need a more user friendly look? Do you simply want a new domain? Having a goal will make the process easier to lay out.
- It will take TIME. The transition itself takes minutes, but the research, the planning, the design, the graphics creation and design, the theme manipulation, the registration process for services, the updating and checking of past posts, and the coffee breaks… it takes many hours.
- If you are leaving Blogger, you probably know it will cost money. Not a lot of money, but it’s not free, especially if you do a redesign as well as a hosting/platform transition.
- Let the world know you are transitioning espcially if you have a totally new domain. Putting a final post on your old blog will get a few followers to change their bookmark but really letting people know about your new blog and especialyl promoting the first few posts under the new domain will work wonders.
- “There’s a plug-in for that”… like ‘there’s an app for that’ but for WordPress. Seriously, there are thousands of plug-ins for basically anything you want to do with your blog. Explore them! (<- I still have yet to do that thoroughly)
I hope this was at least somewhat helpful for anyone looking to make the switch or even anyone looking to start a blog! There are so many options out there it is hard to know what would be best, but the best for you is always different than what is best for someone else. I hope you like my new look and if you have any comments or questions, let me know!