Hi! This tutorial is going to show you how to move your blog from Blogspot to a self-hosted WordPress account. If you’re still debating whether you should move, check out my 3 reasons why I think WordPress is better than Blogger.
The actual move is really easy, but the prep and after work takes a little more time. Moving your blog is very similar to moving house (sticking with my renting vs. owning analogy). You pack boxes, clean, and sometimes you paint before you move in (sometimes after). Once that’s done you drive across town to your new place. That was the easy part. Then you unpack and set up your new place!
In blog language, the move from Blogger to WordPress looks like this:
- Purchase a hosting for your blog
- Install WordPress
- Upload a theme
- Clean up your Blogspot Blog
- Adjust settings in WordPress
- Move the content
- Set up the blog
- Redirect links
Purchase hosting for your blog
The first step to moving your blog to WordPress is to purchase a self-hosted server for your blog. For people just starting their blogs, I recommend getting a Blue Host or Just Host starter or plus plan. If you’ve been blogging a while and already have a good amount of traffic I recommend using more advanced hosting: Blue Host WordPress account or SiteGround.
WordPress is very simple to install on your sever. You can go to WordPress.org and download a .zip file and then install that file on your cPanel. Or, you can login to your cPanel by visiting yourblog.com/cPanel and use the WordPress installation button. No coding, no learning curve, just a “one click” install. Once installed, go and adjust your general settings.
Add a theme to your blog
A WordPress theme adds additional structures, functions, and visual display to your WordPress Blog. I recommend Genesis themes because they are beautiful, responsive, HTLM 5 current, cleanly coded, and SEO enhanced. If you need help choosing a theme read my tips for picking out a great theme for your blog. Or, here is a post on my top 5 favorite themes.
To upload your new theme, log in to your WordPress dashboard by going to yourblog.com/wp-admin. Then, navigate to Appearance – Themes – Add New.
Clean up your Blogspot Blog before moving it to WordPress
First, you want to head over to your Blogspot blog and make sure everything is cleaned up. No point in moving garbage. Delete or publish any files in the drafts section of your Posts. That’s about all you need to do.
Adjust settings in WordPress before moving your content from Blogger to WordPress
By now you’ve purchased your self-hosted server and installed WordPress. Log in to your WordPress account by visiting yourblog.com/wp-admin. Before you move your content over, you need to adjust some settings inside WordPress. PLEASE do not skip these steps.
I transferred this example blog over several times, to get this tutorial just right. (You know how food blogs test their recipes a few times before posting them, it’s like that but I didn’t get any yummy treats.) The first time I made the transfer, the images were horrible! They were so blurry. After doing some research, I found this response from the plugin creator:
By default, the Blogger-WordPress plugin we are going to use sets all of your pictures to the Medium size file. In order to keep image quality, here is what I did: from your WordPress dashboard go to Settings – Media and then set the Max Width to something ridiculously high (or, if you know the max width/height of the images now on your blog, set it to that). 1500 is usually good enough. You can always adjust this later with the Thumbnail Re-generator plugin. By making this adjustment your pictures will not be smashed/condensed/blurred when you transfer them from Blogger to WordPress.
Import Blogger to WordPress
Now it is time to move your Blogger content over to WordPress.
Install the Blogger to WordPress plugin
First, you need to install the plugin used to move your content. On your WordPress dashboard go to Tools – Import. Click the top link, Blogger. This will import your tags, posts, images, and comments. It doesn’t import pages, but those are easy to set up after the move is complete.
Click Install Now
Once the installation is complete click Activate Plugin & Run Importer.
To start the import, click Authorize (Google will also ask for your approval).
Now that everything is set up, it is time to click Import.
Depending on the size of your blog, it could take a long time. This blog took about 20 minutes. (You can read our blog, or browse our Pinterest page while you wait.) 😉 This particular Blogger to WordPress transfer froze a few times, so I had to restart. It picked up where it left off from and didn’t have any problems.
Eventually, you’ll get this message:
I told you the actual moving part is easy! Go ahead and review everything to make sure it transferred.
Convert Categories to tags
One of the advantages of WordPress is the ability to have categories and tags. In this post, we talk about the difference and how to use them. To convert some of your Blogspot categories to tags, install the Categories and Tags Converter plugin by following the same process above. Once activated, you can use the plugin by going to Tools – Import – Categories and Tags converter. For this blog, we left anything tagged with Crafts, Recipes, Dinner, Breakfast, Lunch, Family, Holidays, and Decor as categories and then converted everything else to tags.
We then went and made Dinner, Breakfast, and Lunch subcategories of the category Recipes. To create subcategories, go to Posts – Categories and then click on the category you want to make a subcategory.
Add pages, set up menus, and add content to your sidebar.
Now that your content has transferred over from Blogger to WordPress, and all the technical stuff is taking care of, you can finish setting up your blog! First, go add pages and menus, and then add content to your sidebar.
This blog uses the Metro Genesis Theme. Your blog won’t look exactly like the theme demo until you get everything set up nicely.
Once everything is set up how you’d like it is time to redirect your links and traffic to your new site.
Redirect links from you .Blogspot url to your new domain name
Now that your content is on WordPress, you want to make sure that your visitors end up on your new blog and not on your Blogspot blog. To do this, we are going to use a plugin to redirect the traffic. Go to Plugins – Add New and search for “Blogger to WordPress”. Select the plugin called Blogger to WordPress that is by rtCamp. This plugin is different from the first Blogger to WordPress plugin we used, it only redirects traffic from your Blogspot blog to your new blog.
Install the plugin and then activate it.
Once activated, click the Start Configuration button. Once your Blogspot blog appears under List of Blogs, click Get Code.
Copy that code and head over to your Blogspot account for the blog you are transferring. Then, go to the Template page.
Once on the Template page, back up the Blogspot site. To do this click the backup button in the top right corner and follow the instructions.
Now that your site is backed up (just in case!) it is time to edit the HTML.
From the template page on your Blogger dashboard, click Edit HTML.
Now, delete everything in the HTML box. I know it’s scary, but it’s okay: you have your new blog on your own server and you just did a back up, you won’t lose anything. Once deleted, paste the generated code from plugin. Click save.
Head back over to the Blogger Redirection plugin on your WordPress dashboard and click Verify Configuration.
Now, any time someone clicks on a link with your old Blogspot URL it will redirect them to your new blog.
We’d love to see your new blog! Leave a link to the blog your just moved from Blogger to WordPress and we’ll check it out!