Blogger to WordPress : The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

October 19, 2013 Bookish chat 48

Now that I have made the move, unpacked most of my boxes and arranged my new home to my liking, I think it’s about time to share how my blogger to wordpress migration went. Moving to a self-hosted blog was on my mind for a while before I moved and I had read a lot of articles about it, however in the end it was a spur of the moment decision for me.

house

Overall it was all a lot easier than I thought and I have no problems using the wordpress interface even though it’s fairly different from blogger. I find I prefer wordpress even after only a few weeks as I find formatting a lot easier here.

There was no need to panic!  Self-hosting is no where near as scary as it sounds.

And I love my new layout and name.  Like a geek, I keep checking my blog and smiling with pride to know I own it!

 

 

The Good:

I hired Ashley from A Creative Whim to do the actual move for me and this took a lot of stress out of the move for me. All I had to do was sit back and wait. I confirmed with Ashley that I wanted to move on Sat 28th Oct and by Wed 2nd Oct, I was up and running. I had a ton of questions, some of them ridiculous but Ashley patiently answered them all and I would have been lost without her.  The migration cost to $50 and it was worth every cent for the peace of mind that it gave me.

I purchased a Tweak Me theme and also the UBB plugin and both of these have made my life so much easier. I can alter the appearance of my blog with the click of a button with Tweak Me and formatting my posts is a breeze with UBB.  And best of all no more updating my review archive, it gets done automatically.

One of my favourite things about being self hosted is the range of plugins. I was scared of plugins as I didn’t know what they were but it turns out they are simple to install and even easier to use. I’m still discovering new ones but so far I love Tweet Old Post (automatic sharing of old posts on Twitter), Shareaholic (allows other so share my posts to social media sites) and Clone Me (allows me to copy memes from week to week with very little effort).

I was scared I would get thrown by something unexpected but it never happened.  There are loads of tutorials and posts that I referenced before, during and after the move.  In particular I found the articles below really helpful.

When all my rearranging was done, I emailed bloglovin to move my followers to my new address and it was done within the hour.  Thanks bloglovin, that really impressed me.

The Bad:

The bad isn’t really that bad and it’s more something that I put myself under pressure with to get done. I had to update my old posts with the UBB sections if I wanted these reviews to show on my new review archives.

I deleted my old review page when I moved as I hated having my reviews split between two pages. And then I hated how empty the new one looked so I set about the task of updating the old ones. It took a bit of work but I’m more than pleased with the result and that’s it forever; no more updating review archives for me!

If you are less OCD about having everything updated immediately then this is less of a problem.

The other bad thing is one we all know about – you lose your GFC followers. Ashley did give me an option where I could keep them but then you wouldn’t be directed automatically to my new address. I decided to just suck it up and wave bye bye. I figure those who actually follow me are already doing so by other means anyway. It is still scary to lose the hard won numbers though.

The Ugly:

I lost my disqus comments on the blog! *cries* Totally my own fault, when I set disqus up, I never turned on comment syncing with blogger. Yes, I messed up. You live and learn. I do hate not having all my comments on the blog as I love the comments and appreciate the time and effort that people took to leave them.

blankie

All is not lost; they are on disqus so I can still see them. And you always misplace something valuable when you move, right?!



My Final Thought is….self hosting rocks!

Overall I’m still learning something new every day about self-hosting but so far I love it. My only regret is not moving sooner.

Bookish Chat about moving from blogger to wordpress :

Is there any specifically you want to ask about the move?  Fire away.  And if you use plugins, what is your favourite?  I’d love to hear your recommendations.

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48 Responses to “Blogger to WordPress : The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”

  1. Nuzaifa @ Say It with Books

    It’s so cool to see that your move was (mostly) hassle-free! 🙂
    Sorry about the comments that you lost though. I love the Shareaholic and commentluv plugin and I’m tempted to make the move just for those two! 😀
    And oh the UBB plugin sounds like a god-send too-I’m so not good at updating my review archive.
    It’s nice to hear that bloglovin helped to move your followers too.
    Nuzaifa @ Say It with Books recently posted…A Bookish Survey, A Bookish Event & A Guest Reviewer!

    • trish

      Thanks Nuz, I was expecting a nightmare of a move but it was fairly smooth sailing! The comments thing is a sickner but they are still on disqus so I still have them. I was upset initially but I’m over it now. I’m just concentrating on getting lots of new ones!
      Updating the archive is a pain, one I often ignored so it’s great to have it automated.

    • trish

      Thanks again for all the help Ashley! Even just thinking about never updating an index again puts a big cheesy smile on my face! Priceless! And apart from that I love the format of my reviews with UBB and the Giveaway sidebar and the upcoming blogtour sidebar. I’ll stop now! Basically UBB is a little gem 🙂

  2. kimbacaffeinate

    Don’t even think about those lost comments. I kept all mine but they don’t all appear on the correct post…which if you go back and look can make you giggle because they don’t match the post making some humerous. I had around 1000 posts to update for UBB and I do a couple each day. Like you I love WP and think it is the best decision I ever made. Awesome post
    kimbacaffeinate recently posted…Deception Cove by Jayne Castle

    • trish

      LOL, that is funny that they are on wrong posts. That might drive me even crazier, I like things in order! I can imagine how funny it must look though and how confused a new reader might get if they are reading on an old post! 1000 posts to add! Yikes! Good luck with that, I’m glad you are being sensible and just doing them in small chunks. I think I only had about 100 and even that took a bit of time.
      I agree, I’m so happy I made the move and feel it was the right decision for me.

  3. Megan @ The Book Babe's Reads

    Haha, *fist bump* for posting your migration story on the same day! LOL. I’m glad that you’re enjoying wordpress so far, and that it was easy to migrate! 😉

    The UBB having to update everything sounds like it sucked, but I’m sure that it looks (and works!) wonderfully now. And OMG, the comments. I know that I can see them and everything… but… I miss them! *cries into her cheerios* Sorry if I’m talking too much.

    Anywho, great post about your move; and I’m so glad that you’re loving it! Toodles! <3
    Megan @ The Book Babe’s Reads recently posted…Everyone’s Doing It: One Girl’s Trials & Errors with WordPress

    • trish

      *fist bump* back at you twin! I’m so glad I didn’t have your experience but the main thing is we are both home now and happy where we are. I miss those comments too! *grits teeth and marches bravely on* At least we can still see them, I’d hate to lose them altogether.
      The UBB plugin is amazing so it was worth the bit of time it took to add in my past posts.

  4. Charleen

    Sounds like it was pretty smooth overall. I’ve toyed with the idea of moving to self-hosted for some of the plugins, but at this point I’m just not willing to put money into my blog. And if I AM going to I’d rather put it toward a giveaway for my readers at some point.
    Charleen recently posted…Review: Eye for an Eye

    • trish

      I get that Charleen. I have been thinking about it for a while and I wasn’t sure about spending money on it either. Once I realised it was the same price as one book a month then I decided that was acceptable for my circumstances at the moment.

        • trish

          Charleen, I really hope I didn’t offend you 🙁 I know that putting money into self hosting was a big decision for me as it’s a big decision to make to put money into what is only a fun hobby at the end of the day. I know you can blog just as successfully (as many do) without ever making the move.

          • Charleen

            No, not at all. We all have our priorities. Right now, for me, blogging isn’t one of them… at least not a financial one. Reading isn’t either, although if I weren’t lucky enough to have a great local library, I’d probably make it one.

            At any rate… like I said, it’s about priorities. And I certainly don’t begrudge those who can and want to make blogging one of theirs. Congrats again on your move.
            Charleen recently posted…Review: Doctor Sleep

          • trish

            Thanks Charleen. I wish my local library was better, it isn’t great at all. I’m lucky enough to have some great second hand book shops nearby though which is great as I never know what treasure I’ll find! I have to admit a huge part of why I blog IS for free books too, I make no bones about that. I’m always honest in my reviews but I love getting arc’s and it a big motivation for me:)

    • trish

      You are already used to wordpress and I know you have done all your own designing so self-hosting will be a breeze for you Michelle.

    • trish

      Thanks Lisa, I was scared stiff! For no real need, it was just the fear of the unknown. Thankfully I had no real need for any of the nerves though.

  5. Sam @ Realm of Fiction

    I’m glad the move was an easy one in the end! Although you had to lose a few things along the way, it sounds like it was ultimately worth it. I tried setting up a wordpress blog just to get a feel of the interface, and I can barely work out how to use it. I’m comfortable on Blogger and haven’t had any problems with it, so I think I’ll stay put for now. But it’s reassuring to know that you don’t actually have to do it all yourself. Thanks for sharing, Trish! I’m glad you’re happy with your new blog. 🙂
    Sam @ Realm of Fiction recently posted…Review: The Iron Traitor by Julie Kagawa

    • trish

      Exactly Sam, if you are happy where you are why move. It’s fantastic how many book bloggers have done blog posts which help with the move though, it’s really part of what I love about our community. We share info and don’t hoard. Have to admit I don’t think I’d have managed so well without Ashley’s help and the bloggers whose posts I referenced.

  6. Dee @ Dee's Reads

    I have to say I’m one of those ppl who thinks it’s really scary and difficult to move from blogger to WordPress. I don’t even want to necessarily self host, I just am sick of blogger.
    For some reason I thought it costed more too. Was the 50$ including buying the domain? Do you know if it’s around the same for just moving from WordPress to blogger?
    If so that’s totally doable for me and I’d like to work towards that! 🙂
    Dee @ Dee’s Reads recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #20

    • trish

      I didn’t really have huge problems with blogger, I just wanted more control and to be able to use plugins. WordPress.com is free but from all I’ve heard blogger is better and more flexible than free wordpress which is why I went the self hosting route. You can’t use plugins on free wordpress either. I honestly would stick with blogger personally than go to free wordpress.

      The domain cost me $10 for the year and then I pay $6.95 for the monthly hosting fee. If I had paid yearly, the domain name would have been free and there would have been a small discount. I prefer to pay monthly though to spread the cost out. And that’s it! I choose to buy UBB as well and I wouldn’t recommend self hosting without it as it makes formatting book reviews so simple. I also bought a theme Tweak Me but there are tonnes of free ones out there too, just as many as blogger have.

      Hope that helps Dee, shout if you need any more info!

    • trish

      I was overwhelmed as well Chene but it was a lot easier than I had anticipated. So far, so good! If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

  7. Annie

    The Disqus story scares me! I’m on Blogger right now and a move to WordPress might be in my future and the thing is, I didn’t sync my comments with Blogger either! I did it for my older blog but it was SO annoying to get double emails for each comment but now, I’m kind of scared! Ahhh.

    But anyway, as for you, I’m happy you’re liking WordPress!:)
    Annie recently posted…Weekly Recap: October 13-19, 2013

    • trish

      I’d sync the disqus comments and put up with the double emails just in case you do decide to move. At least comments from now will be ok for a potential move then. I didn’t even know I was meant to sych them!

  8. Stormy @ Book.Blog.Bake.

    Yay for a (mostly) good move! I’m going to have to look into the clone me plug-in–I’ve been looking for a plug-in like that, but hadn’t found one I liked!
    Also, my favorite plug-in by far is the WordPress Editorial Calendar. I’ve used Google Calendar to schedule post too, but having the editorial calendar on-site and being able to see a month at a time is SO handy!
    Stormy @ Book.Blog.Bake. recently posted…How to Ensure I Won’t Comment on Blogger Blogs

    • trish

      Thanks Stormy, yes I’m using the WP Editorial Calendar and I love it. I don’t feel the need to use anything else with it and now as soon as I have a review written, I go straight to the calendar to see where it can fit in and post it directly from there. So handy!
      And the clone me plugin is called Duplicate Post, very nifty for memes as it copies tags and categories as well.

  9. Tonyalee @ lilybloombooks

    I have always been on WP but updated to self hosting in July. I STILL have not reformatted all my post! >.< I THINK I got all my reviews updated but it takes a lot of time. ANd honestly, who is going to read something back from January?

    That sucks you lost your comments! I love the tweak me theme though. And yes, plug ins are overwhelming. You know that saysin, "There's an app for that?" well, "There's a plug in for that" is my new saying hahaha ANyway, WELCOME TO WP!

    • trish

      Yeah, I just reformatted the reviews so they would show in my review index, I’m not bothering with anything else!
      And I’m discovering there really is a plugin for everything except one that would actually write the reviews for me! :O

  10. Candace

    I’m really glad to read this right now as I have been planning a move but am terrified so have kind of put it off. A lot of the things I’m scared of you have made me feel better about. I’m just not great with computer stuff so figuring out new things is intimidating. I really like the sound of all the plugins though, and that sounds like something that would make life much easier in the end. Maybe I’ll get on the ball about figuring things out. I’ve already been working with my friend who is going to move me, I just need to decide on some things first.
    Candace recently posted…Tips for a Successful Blog

    • trish

      I think ,it’s like when you go on blogger first, there are so many buttons that you don’t know what they all do! But slowly you learn a few more every day. Starting on blogger on day 1 was a lot harder than adjusting to wordpress. At least here I know what I want to do so it was just a matter of finding where that button was kept on wordpress! Plugins make life a lot easier and I’d say I don’t know the half of it yet.

  11. Margitte

    Your site looks super cool and you have introduced me to a many new ideas!

    My blogs are very new on blogger. I actually just started off from viewing a friend’s site, did not know wordpress at all. I will certainly look into the possibilities. Congratulations on your new site!

  12. Megan

    Hey Trish,

    Long time no talk… So I am breaking back into my love for blogging and I actually merged my book review blog with m author blog and I have some questions. I just purchased my own web domain (www.meganmccooey.com) and I was planning on building a site from scratch, but reading your post about wordpress started me thinking.
    Should I host my web domain on wordpress? Does this make it easier than having to actually create a website and continuously maintain (this is my biggest worry). If you want to email me or private message me in Goodreads, I would love to hear your thoughts.

    Also, on another note… The 2nd Ed. of Harvest Moon is just about to be released and Winter Solstice is still on track for sometime this winter. I wanted to see if you would be interested in doing something with me for both the 2nd ed. and WS before it’s actually released.

    Hope all is well.
    Megan recently posted…The Harvest Series Has Merchandise!!

    • trish

      Thanks Megan, will drop you a mail on Goodreads but may not be for a few days. But yes, of course I’d love to get involved :O Can’t wait to see what happens next!

  13. Rashika

    CONGRATULATIONS.
    One of the reasons me and my co-blogger still haven’t made the move is because of the whole GFC thing 😛 I mean for us we’re still pretty new and don’t have a lot so the whole move would mean starting (kind of) from scratch in some ways. So we’ll wait until we have a ‘larger’ following.
    I am glad the move was easy for you though 🙂
    Rashika recently posted…The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

    • trish

      I was kind of the same, half my following was on GFC but I figured if they read my blog or see me on twitter or Goodreads, they would follow! I hope :O If they never read my blog anyway then they weren’t a really follower anyway just a number. Very scary to lose those kind of numbers but I’m just working now on building them up again.

  14. Reem @ I Read And Tell

    Hey! We can always make up for the lost comments, Trish 😉

    And yaay for moving, and self hosting. I gotta say, it looks awesome. Too bad I’m not brave enough to do it. Aaand being on a student budget sucks. But the main reason I want to move to wordpress is the commenting system. I mean, Disqus is okay and all, but I desperately want to install commentluv.
    Reem @ I Read And Tell recently posted…How To Stop Procrastinating (NaNoWriMo)

    • trish

      I know it was plugins like commentluv and UBB that really made me want to move. I can’t say I had any real complaints with blogger though.
      I’m sorry I comment so rarely on your blog Reem, I do read but my computer won’t let me comment!

  15. John

    Hi! Your post is great! And it is really cool that your moving went well. I also had a blog on Blogger but I decided to switch it to WP. I like WordPress, it gives so many possibilities to customize my blog!!! By the way, I managed to migrate my comments as well as everything else: pages, posts, images etc. I used cms2cms service. But unfortunately I lost my theme, but anyway on WordPress platform I managed to find even better one. So, I’m glad that more and more people join WP community!

  16. Kelley (Another Novel Read)

    Wow, I can’t believe I’m just now seeing this post! Somehow my reader wasn’t properly following you at your new address, so I have corrected that!

    I’m glad that your transition was so smooth for the most part, but it totally sucks that you lost all of your Disqus comments! 🙁 It’s great to hear that Ashley was so helpful. I love seeing people using her services, because she’s so great! And YAY for having the UBB plugin now! I was the same way — I had to update all my reviews as soon as I got the plugin because I hated seeing my Review Archive page so empty, lol.

    And congrats — again — on the new home! 😀
    Kelley (Another Novel Read) recently posted…Oh, Hey, I Went to Ireland!

    • trish

      Thanks Kelley! The comments thing was annoying but I’m over it now! I’m just focusing on getting new ones :O
      And I couldn’t have done it without Ashley, I needed someone to do the technical stuff, reassure me and have someone I could check things with and that is exactly what I got. I LOVE UBB, don’t know how I ever blogged without it. I’m glad you felt the same way about updating your reviews straight away too, I felt so anal doing it but it was driving me crazy knowing they were missing from my archive!

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