If you’re considering moving your blog from a free platform to a self-hosted platform like WordPress, you’re well on your way to achieving more customization and control of your blog..
It’s normal that bloggers begin on platforms like Blogger or Medium because they are user-friendly and free. Many people do this —and it is completely okay! These platforms provide valuable blogging and site-building experience; nonetheless, as your traffic and subscribers increase, you’ll be better off if you upgrade to a WordPress self-hosted blog.
It could be that Blogger doesn’t meet your growth demands any longer or that, simply, you just want to try something new. No matter what the reason may be, WordPress makes a lot more sense to serious bloggers for many reasons:
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Not too shabby, eh? If you really want to take your blog to the next, we’ve put together a full guide to move your blog from a free platform to a self-hosted WordPress site.
Step #1: Choose a Hosting Service and Install WordPress
The most basic service you’ll want to hire is a third-party host. When I say “host”, I mean a web host; these are services that store a site’s files on their servers. A third-party host won’t have owning rights to your content (but a host like Blogger might), Not only this, but by using a third-party hosting service, you’ll also receive a lot of storage space and bandwidth, as well as domain hosting, security features, and many other cool things.
Depending on the type of features you require, web hosting can cost as much as a few bucks/month. Hosting your blog on a shared server will cost around $3 to $7 a month and it will be a great option for small sites and businesses. A dedicated server will cost around $100 to $350 a month, but this is usually only necessary for very big companies and bloggers with ridiculously high traffic and subscribers. Shared hosting will be just fine if you’re moving from a free blogging platform like Blogger, Medium or WordPress.com to a self-hosted one.
While PC Magazine has recommended different web hosts for different needs, I’ve found (after managing many successful blogs) that HostGator takes the prize when it comes to cost and performance.
HostGator will give you a free domain with their hosting service and their fees can go lower than $3 a month. If you ask me, this is a sweet deal for a beginner blogger who’s ready to make that leap from Blogger to WordPress.
After you’ve decided which web host to go with, you’ll need to start a paid plan with them and set up a custom domain name for your site. Once you’ve done that, you need to install and setup WordPress to be your domain’s content management system. Just follow your web host’s instructions to do this, most of them will make it really simple. HostGator, for example, offers one-click WordPress installation. If your web host doesn’t make this step easy for you, just get in touch with them and request personalized assistance to install WordPress on your blog.
#2. Migrate Your Existing Blog to WordPress
WordPress features a very handy and easy-to-use tool to move your blog from Blogger to WordPress.
You’ll want to back-up your Blogger template to stay on the safe side if you make any mistakes along the process. To do this, log in to your Blogger account and select Template from the side menu of your dashboard, then, choose Backup/Restore.
Now for the actual migration:
That’s it! You have now successfully imported your Blogger blog to WordPress. Go ahead and tap yourself on the back! Now, you just need to do a few more things to guarantee that your blog will run smoothly.
#3. Assigning Roles
Once your Blogger site has been successfully imported, WordPress will prompt you to assign a WordPress user to your existing posts on Blogger. Usually, this means you simply have to select your own user from the dropdown; however, if you have created more than one user, you’ll have to decide who you want to attribute your posts to and select that WordPress user from the drop-down menu. Don’t forget to save!
You’ll want to make sure that the links to your posts haven’t been screwed up. To review this, simply navigate to Settings and then Permalinks on the sidebar menu.
If your links were setup in a /year/month/postname format originally, you can click the radial button next to Custom Structure and insert this code in the box: /%year%/%monthnum%/%postname%.html
#5. URL Redirecting
Something that many folks worry about when moving their Blogger blog to a self-hosted WordPress blog is how the move will impact their links, thus, their current search engine rankings.
Well, you won’t lose any link power if you redirect your existing Blogger posts to your new self-hosted WordPress site. This works similarly to call forwarding with phones, meaning that every time a person clicks on a link pointing to any of your posts on Blogger, they will instead be taken to the corresponding post on WordPress. Redirecting your posts will also tell search engines that your blog has moved.
You don’t necessarily have to know HTML code to effectively redirect your posts. The whole process can be very easy with a plugin called Blogger to WordPress Redirection plugin. Here’s how you can do this:
#6. Feed Redirecting
It’s very important to ensure that your subscribers are also taken to your new WordPress blog so that they’re taken to WordPress everytime you add new content. If they’re still subscribed to the Blogger blog, they won’t be aware that you’ve moved it to WordPress.
This step is also quite simple. Log in to your Blogger account and navigate to Settings and then Other from your dashboard. Click Add next to iPost Feed Redirect URL, (under Site Feed), and paste your WordPress blog’s feed address in the space provided. Don’t forget to hit Save to implement the change!
A sweet bonus just for you! We’ve compiled a list of pro tips to help you set things up like a true Blogger-to-WordPress migration expert. Here’s you go:
You made it! You have now successfully migrated your blog from Blogger to WordPress as well as tweaked it to correct any minor migration issues that may have resulted from the process. Did you feel the process was simple? What would you change/add? Does your blog look/perform better than it did on Blogger? We’d love to know how the process went for you.
Also, if you come across any issues during the process, leave us a comment and we’ll do our best to get back to you quickly!