Google’s Blogger is a very good tool for new bloggers to get started for free. Blogger enables you to start your blog for free and learn some basic things about blogging. But with time you will realize that to customize your blog and have total control of it you will need to move to a self hosted platform. . Today I am going to take you through my experience moving to WordPress and the problems I encountered. So sit tight and let’s go on a merry ride.
First thing you need when you decide to move your blog to WordPress is Hosting. A good web host is very important to your blogs success. Blogger blogs are hosted free by google but when you are moving to WordPress you need to buy your own hosting. I am using QServers for this blog and I recommend it for Nigerians but if you want a foreign host I recommend Bluehost and HostGator, both are very good.
Moving Your Blogger Blog To WordPress – Step By Step
- Sign up with a WordPress Hosting company.
- Export your Blogger blog by visiting Settings » Other
- Import Blogger to WordPress by visiting Tools » Import page in WordPress admin area.
- Setting up permalinks on your new WordPress blog.
- Setting up redirects for Blogger visitors to WordPress posts
- Set up redirects for RSS feeds
I will be taking it step by step and outlining the difficulties I faced in each step. So if you are intending to move your Blogger blog to WordPress anytime soon you will know what to expect.
- Sign up with a WordPress Hosting company – To get started you first need to signup with with a WordPress hosting company. I recommend Bluehost, you get a free custom domain and 50% off their hosting plan. If you want a Bluehost alternative check out HostGator, you can also use our coupon code “9JATECHGURU60” to get to 60% discount on your hosting with HostGator or “9JAONECENT” to get your first month of hosting at just $0.01 on HostGator. When trying to move a custom domain name from blogger to WordPress you will need to change the nameservers on your domain.Your hosting company will give you new name servers, this is very important. If you got the domain name and hosting from the same company it will be done for you automatically else you will have to do it your self. It sometimes take up to 24hours for it to propagate, mine only took about an hour.
- Export your Blogger blog – Next thing you need to do is export your blogger blog’s content. Simply log into your blogger dashboard and go to Settings » Other page. Under the ‘Import & back up’ section, you need to ‘Back up Content’ button.This will bring up a popup where you need to click on the ‘Save to your computer’ button.Your Blogger blog’s content will be downloaded to your computer in an XML file.
Once the download is complete, it is time to import it into your WordPress site.
- Import Blogger Content to WordPress – To start importing your Blogger site into WordPress, you need to go to your WordPress admin and visit Tools » Import. On the Import page, click on Blogger.This will bring up a popup asking you to install the Blogger to WordPress importer. You need to click on the Insall button.WordPress will now download and install the Blogger Importer plugin for you. Once it is finished installing, you would need to click on the Activate Plugin and Run Importer link to continue.
On the Import Blogger screen, WordPress will ask you to upload the XML file. This is the file that you downloaded earlier.
Simply click on the choose file button and upload the XML file you downloaded earlier. Next, click on the Upload file and import button to continue.
Now if you didn’t select one of our recommended hosts or your site is really large, you may get an error that your file size is too large.
WordPress will now import your blogger posts one by one. When it is finished, you will be asked to assign an author to the imported posts. You can assign your blogger posts to an existing author (you) or create a new author account.
Congratulations! you have successfully imported your Blogger content into WordPress. However, you still need to make sure that you don’t loose any search rankings and that visitors from your old blog easily land to the same content on your new WordPress website.
This is one of the places I faced a lot of challenges. It seems the official blogger importer on WordPress isn’t functioning. I tried severally still it didn’t work. I then tried installing another Blogger installer from the plugin store which you will find in the side bar. The plugin is called “Blogger Importer Extended” but still it didn’t work. It seems it isn’t compatible with the latest version of WordPress. So I had to install another plugin to downgrade my WordPress version to 4.3. Then i used the Blogger Importer Extended plugin, it worked this time. This took me a couple of hours to figure out but now that you know it shouldn’t take you more than a couple of minutes. The official plugin might work for you, but incase it doesn’t work you can try my method.
Setting up Permalinks – Next, go to Settings > Permalinks in your WordPress dashboard, and make sure your links are set up the same way they were in Blogger. Chances are your links were set up like this:
Choose the custom permalink option and insert this code into the box.
- Setting Up Redirection – One thing that worries a lot of people is what type of impact migrating their blog will have on the links and search engine ranking they’ve already established. Also Read: Should You Choose A Free or Self Hosted Blogging PlatformThe good news is that you don’t have to give all this up. All you have to do is redirect your Blogger posts to your new site. That means that each time someone clicks on an existing link that points to your Blogger blog, they’ll be taken to your WordPress site and the corresponding pages/posts instead. Your links will still be live, but all your traffic will go to your WordPress site.This also lets search engines know that your blog has moved.If you know nothing about HTML, getting the code to redirect your Blogger blog is actually quite simple. Start by downloading the Blogger to WordPress Redirection plugin.1. Go to Plugins > Add New.
2. At the top of the page, search Blogger to WordPress Redirection.
3. Install the Blogger to WordPress plugin (it works perfectly).
4. On the next page, activate the plugin.
5. Navigate to the plugin’s settings by going to Tools > Blogger to WordPress Redirection.
6. On this page, click Start Configuration.
7. Next, click Get the Code. This will give you the code you need to paste into Blogger to implement the redirection. Highlight and copy the code.
8. Navigate to your Blogger account and click Template from your sidebar menu. Scroll to the bottom of the page, and click Revert to Classic Template.
9. Scroll until you find the Edit Template HTML code box. Paste the code you copied in step 7 into the box to replace the rest of the code. Click Save Template to implement your changes.
10. Check that everything worked by entering one of your Blogger posts URL into your Internet address bar. Even though you’re entering your Blogger domain, it should take you to your WordPress site.
- Redirecting Your Feeds – Your RSS subscribers on the old Blogger site will not be able to notice the switch. That’s why you will need to redirect your Blogger feed to your new WordPress site’s feed.You can do this by logging in to your Blogger account and then visit Settings » Other page under your blog dashboard.Under the Site Feed section, click on Add link next to Post Feed Redirect URL. Here you can enter your new WordPress site’s feed address.Usually it is http://your-awesome-site.com/feed/ (don’t forget to replace your-awesome-site with your own domain name).
That’s it. Hurray!! Your blog is now on WordPress. But before I conclude let me just talk about one other problem I faced. After installing WordPress on my host I had difficulties signing in. The page kept refreshing whenever I submitted. I had to do some editing with FTP(File Transfer Protocol). If you face the same problem, read on how to solve problem logging into WordPress admin dashboard .
That is all on moving your blogger blog to WordPress. If you have any questions or opinions share them in the comment section and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Remember to share this post with others,someone might need it right now.