Emily in Ecuador is moving from Blogger to WordPress
After months of planning, excitement and a lot of work, I am moving Emily in Ecuador from Blogger to WordPress. I have converted all of my content to a new website that I administer (WordPress) instead of using Google’s free blogging software (Blogger).
Why am I moving?
Blogger (owned by Google) has not been updated for years. During the past year, I noticed some things that did not work properly in Blogger. Two in particular pushed me to make the decision to abandon ship:
- People filled out my contact Emily page and I never received the email.
- Comments on my blog stopped being emailed to me.
Thank you to Jz, who found a way to let me know my contact page was not working without using my contact page. If you tried to contact me, I apologize for never getting back to you. I do not know where your message went but I never saw it.
What does this mean for you?
You will have a more robust website on which to read my blog posts.
Thank you for your fabulous support. I am grateful for each and every one of you. You motivate me to provide better content and take more photos. I hope that you follow me on my new website, where I will continue sharing Ecuador with you!
Please let me know if you receive errors
Hopefully all old links will redirect correctly but if you notice any errors, please let me know on my new contact page or comment on any post. Over the next few months, I expect to make slight changes to the new look and feel as I correct issues and learn more about WordPress.
Hi Emily – I want to do the same … and have someone to help me … so I may tap into your knowledge – as I’m techie ‘unrich’!! But well done and good to know that you’ve achieved it … all the best – love the picture as well as the new photo of Puerto Lopez … cheers Hilary
Hi Hilary, I will be happy to share everything with you. Some people seem to be able to migrate in just a few hours or even one day but it took me over a month. I also lost all new comments from the past week. I am working on fixing little things here and there right now. The standard import tool made a mess of my comments so I ended up using a different import tool that caused other oddities but those I could deal with manually.
Hopefully I can help with any questions you have along the way. It did involve changing DNS entries, editing my hosts file, and several other techie type things so you might want some assistance along the way. I am still working out some kinks, too. For the past hour my site has been completely unavailable and I have been troubleshooting. There are still a few changes to make to redirect my blogger posts to WP and I am hoping to make them without bringing the site down again.
Thank you so much for stopping by the new site!
Hi Emily – well I won’t be worrying you re this for a few weeks – as the help I’ll be getting has other projects going on … but I guess is there any pre-preparation I could start doing? … with 900 blogposts+ in Blogger it’s a tricky thought!!! But we might try later in August … anyway I’ll await your answer to this … and see how I go – thanks so much … good luck with ‘tidying up’ the loose ends – cheers Hilary
First of all, do not think you can do the same as the bloggers who boast about moving from Blogger to WP in 2 hours. I have no idea how they did it but I believe they must have had only two posts or something. It took me a ton of work and much frustration but I was too unhappy with Blogger to stay there. In the end, I have it mostly working – the redirect from Blogger still asks users if they really want to be redirected. Other than that, I am pleased with WordPress so far. I still have tons to learn and will do that as I go, just as you will.
Here are some things that might be helpful.
Install WordPress.org in a test / staging area on your domain. You can perform test conversions there. I installed and uninstalled WordPress a few times while figuring out how it worked. You can also find out which plugins you want, like a plugin to perform backups for you, which I was surprised did not just come with the WP software.
One of my problems when importing was with comments. With the standard import tool, either only some comments would load or none or all of them but even with the comments, every post said 0 comments. One of the problems I ran into is all of the converting from Blogger to WP websites with instructions were written several years ago so some of the utilities they recommend no longer work as they once did.
I tried to follow this page but had issues with importing (step 3) and redirecting blogger posts to WP (part of step 6). https://www.wpsitecare.com/import-blogger-to-wordpress/
Here is how I finally got everything to import: 1) I made a copy of my Blogger website including all content. 2) Used the WP plugin called Blogger Importer Extended https://wordpress.org/plugins/blogger-importer-extended/#installation
Even with this import tool, I still had problem a few times. Once everything imported correctly, I decided to go live with that data instead of hoping it might work again later. I spent the next week+ changing the Permalinks and adding Alt text to every photo. You could probably skip the alt text – I only had about 125 posts, not 900+ so the permalinks alone will take some time for you.
Before you do any of that, you’ll need a theme. You can begin searching for a theme you like that has all of your required features. I had a list of must-haves while looking through themes. My must haves included threaded comments, a header photo, responsiveness, and social media integration. It turns out that there are plugins that take care of the social media integration so I needn’t have worried about that. I found a free theme, Ashe, that I like and fit all of my requirements. I am not using all of the features as I am still learning what I’m doing. I can also later pay for a premium version of this theme later if I want additional features.
I have a lot more but those are the highlights. There are folks who will do the conversion for you, too. I only reached out to one after my redirects did not work seamlessly. They wanted my gmail password so I declined to obtain a quote.
Wishing you a seamless conversion, Hilary! I am happy to answer any questions.
Congratulations on your new home! 🙂
It *is* a buttload of work – good for you!
I tinkered with the idea of a move during the recent Blogger comment debacle but once they stabilized their fix and I performed the extremely non-intuititve tweak, comments worked again and my imperative for change receded…
Clearly, you are far more determined and resourceful. 😀
Thanks Jz! You are right – it is a ton of work! I’ve read blogs saying it took one day or so and I am certain they have very little content. The conversion tools still require manual intervention on every post after converting. There are so many “blogger to wordpress” guides out there but most were written in 2010-2015. My mobile redirects are still broken right now (working on them) because Blogger mobile did not have ?m=1 yet when the redirection guides were written. Redirection was one thing I did not test ahead of time so naturally it is not working properly.
Thank you again!