Blogger is one of the popular blogging platforms for beginners to start their online journey. Many users start with .blogpost.com free subdomain and connect to a custom domain when the site is grown in size. However, if you have started with Blogger, soon you would experience the limitations that come with the platform. Obviously, WordPress is the best option out there to migrate your blogger site. Here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to migrate your site from blogger to WordPress.
It is worth knowing that WordPress can be self-hosted (WordPress.org) or hosted (WordPress.com). The .com version is managed by a private company called Automattic while .org vision is managed by community of volunteers. We recommend going with .org version to get unlimited features and to build your site the way you want. In this article, we focus on migrating to WordPress.org though the process remains same when you want to move to WordPress.com.
Here are some of the reasons why WordPress.org could be a better option for you:
- WordPress is an open-source software that is available for free. You can purchase a domain, hosting plan and start creating your site right away.
- Blogger sites are hosted on Google servers while you have no such limitations for WordPress.
- Some countries block Blogger or complete Google services (like China) while you can freely use WordPress software anywhere in the world. This is due to the fact that you can purchase hosting from a local service provider to host your WordPress site.
- It is also possible to install WordPress on your local computer and keep a copy of your live site.
- You have huge number of free themes and plugins available to customize the appearance of your site.
- Optimizing WordPress sites for search engines is super easy with SEO plugins like Yoast SEO and Rank Math.
Though it is easy to integrate AdSense with Blogger sites, you do have plenty of options for that. You also have an official Google Site Kit plugin to integrate AdSense, Search Console and Analytics to your WordPress site and monitor the reports right from WordPress administrator dashboard.
Migrate Site from Blogger to WordPress
Since blogger and WordPress are completely different platforms, the process is a lengthy one to follow. However, it will be easy and successfully if you follow all the steps.
1. Export Your Content from Blogger
Go to Blogger site and login with Google account used when creating your site. You will see the dashboard showing multiple options. If you run multiple blogs on that google account, click the drop-down arrow at the top-left of the dashboard (just above the “NEW POST” button). From here you can select a particular blog that you want to move to WordPress.
After selecting the blog, scroll down the page and select the “Settings” from the sidebar menu. Again, scroll through with the right pane till you see the “Manage Blog” section, then click the “Back up content” text link.
A message will appear, showing you what is likely to be backed up (post, images, and comments). Click the “Download” link to get your blog content as an XML file on your computer.
2. Choose Hosting Plan & Install WordPress
There are many cheap web hosting companies offer preinstalled WordPress setup as low as few dollars per month. For example, you can get shared hosting from Bluehost for less than $3 with one-year free domain.
You have the following three domain options when purchasing a WordPress hosting plan.
- Same custom Blogger domain – if you want to use the same domain, you first need to change the DNS records to point to your WordPress hosting server. Otherwise, you will not be able to access WordPress administrator dashboard after setting up WordPress. You can do the DNS change with the registrar from whom you have purchased the domain (for example – GoDaddy). When you change the DNS, your Blogger site will be down immediately before you finish migrating to WordPress.
- Start with a temporary domain name – then change it to your custom domain after completing the migration. We recommend choosing temporary domain option as it can help to keep both WordPress and Blogger setup in parallel before you switch DNS as explained in step #7.
- Different custom domain name – you can make use of the one-year free domain that comes with WordPress hosting plans if you plan to change the Blogger domain name. In this case, there are no DNS changes required as the new domain name will be part of your hosting setup with proper DNS records automatically created. Once you finish the redirection as explained in step #6, your old Blogger domain will be automatically redirected to new WordPress domain.
Most companies offer WordPress preinstalled when you purchase a plan. If not, you can install WordPress from the hosting panel and setup in few minutes. You can learn more on how to setup WordPress using the following links:
- Setup your first blog with Bluehost
- How to setup your blog with HostGator?
- How to create your first blog with SiteGround?
Note: If you are looking for migrating to WordPress.com, go to their site and purchase a plan. The minimum plan is a Pro plan which will cost you $15 with one-year free domain. You can purchase this plan to get a preinstalled WordPress setup and start your migration.
3. Setting Up Permalinks in WordPress Blog
Permalinks is the technical term used in WordPress for URL structure. WordPress offers multiple options to choose the URL structure for your site. The form they have to take must match that of your Blogger blog. To do this setup, login to your WordPress dashboard using the URL “your-temporary-domain.com/wp-admin“. Enter your username or email and password, then click the “Log in” button to enter your site dashboard.
When you are in the dashboard, hover over the “Settings” sidebar menu and click on the “Permalinks” option. Since none of the options matches the structure of the blog URL in blogger, we have to select and use the “Custom Structure”. Copy this “/%year%/%monthnum%/%postname%.html” and paste it into the field beside your selection, then click the “Save Changes” button.
Note that you can select “Month and name” option to match with Blogger’s URL structure. However, Blogger’s URLs end with HTML extension while WordPress URLs do not have any extension. In this case, you can setup redirection at server side by adding code snippet in htaccess file or use regex redirection with WordPress plugins like Redirection.
4. Import Blog Content to WordPress
Next step is to upload your Blogger XML file in WordPress to import the content. On your admin panel, hover over the “Tool” sidebar menu, and click the “Import” submenu. Further, tap the “Install Now” link in the Blogger title row section. And this installs the blogger importer plugin automatically.
After that, click the “Run Importer” link that appears to see the option for importing your Blogger content.
Click on the “Choose File” button and select the XML file that you have downloaded from Blogger. Then click the “Upload file and import” button to.
On next step, you have an option to choose the author’s name for your blog posts. You can either keep the same author’s name from Blogger or assign the posts to new author in WordPress site. Remember, for assigning to an existing author, you must have already created a user with author role under “Users > Add New” section. Now hit the “Submit” button to complete the process.
If everything goes correct, your import will be completed successfully. You can proceed to “Posts > All Posts” menu and see the imported blog posts.
Note: If you have a large blog, probably you will receive an error message while importing the XML file saying your file is too large. In this case, you have to increase the file upload limit of your site and retry again.
5. Setup Pages, Widgets & RSS Feeds
The Blogger import is an XML feed of your blog posts including images and comments. However, there could be other sections on your old site that you want to deal with.
- To add the pages to your WordPress blog, since they aren’t part of what we imported, requires doing that manually. Create the same pages in the WordPress dashboard, copy and paste their content from Blogger to their new page. Then, you have to use the redirection plugin to do all forms of page redirection from the former pages to newer pages.
- The same manual creation goes for adding widgets. You can manage widgets in WordPress dashboard by navigating to “Appearance > Widgets” section. While old Classic Widget Editor allows you to drag and drop the widgets, you can use blocks with the latest Gutenberg editor.
- RSS Feeds have to do with those who subscribed to your blog, and to keep updated on your newer content requires doing a redirection. Go to your Blogger dashboard, click on the “Settings” side menu and scroll down till you see the “Site Feed” title. Tap the “Post feed redirect URL” text and enter your new site feed URL, which should be something like this: yoursitename.com/feed and then click the “Save” link.
Note that sometimes the import in WordPress may not include images from your Blogger site. You can go to “Media > Library” in WordPress dashboard and check all your images are imported. In addition, make sure to open and check your posts randomly in browser to see the images and videos are loading properly. This could especially create problems when you migrate from .blogspot.com to a custom WordPress domain. You need to check the URLs of images and replace them if necessary to point correct domain name. You can learn more about this from our article on how to search and replace URLs in WordPress.
6. Setting Up Redirection in Blogs
Redirection ensure your readers can access WordPress content just like they did when it was still in Blogger. If you have the same have custom domain name with same URL structure then this step is not required as URLs will automatically match. As mentioned in step #3, you can use htaccess or Redirection plugin to redirect from Blogger html pages to WordPress URLs. However, this is an essential step when you move from .blogspot.com to a custom domain name in WordPress. Achieving this helps to retain your existing SEO rankings with site traffic.
To move on, you have to install and activate the “Blogger to WordPress” redirection plugin. Upon completion, hover on the “Tool” sidebar menu and click the “Blogger to WordPress Redirection” menu. From the dashboard that appears, click the “Start Configuration” button.
The plugin will detect your Blogger URL and click the “Get Code” button. This will generate a code snippet which will make your redirection possible from Blogger to WordPress.
Copy the code and then head over to your Blogger dashboard. Click on the “Themes” side menu. With the “CUSTOMISE” drop-down menu that displays, click and select the “Edit HTML” option.
The custom HTML of your theme is displayed, and you only have to highlight all the codes there and delete them. Then, paste the copied code snippets from your WordPress. And don’t forget to hit the “Save” icon button at the top-right end of the page.
Now return to your Blogger’s theme page and click that drop-down menu. Click the “Mobile Settings” option.
Now, select the “Desktop” option to apply the theme changes to mobile users as well. Click the “Save” link to finish the redirection process.
You can return to the WordPress dashboard where you copied that code snippet and click on the “Verify Configuration” button. Click on the randomly generated link to verify it is successfully redirecting from your old Blogger post to the new WordPress post
7. Setup DNS and Site Address
This step is not necessary when you migrate from .blogspot.com. However, as mentioned in step #2, DNS change is needed when you created WordPress site with a temporary domain. Once everything is working as expected with your WordPress site, simply go to “Settings > General” section in your WordPress dashboard. Change the site address and WordPress address URLs to your custom Blogger domain name. When you save the changes, you will not be able to access the dashboard since DNS records are still pointing to Blogger.
Now, login to your domain registrar (like Google Domains, GoDaddy, Namecheap or from whom you have purchased the domain). Go to DNS zone editor of your domain and change the nameservers to your WordPress hosting company’s nameserver. Remember, this is not the IP address of your hosting server. This is primary/secondary name servers like ns1.bluehost.com and ns2.bluehost.com for Bluehost. You can get the nameserver details from the hosting company and make sure to use the correct details.
DNS changes will take up to 72 hours to propagate properly, though it happens much earlier in general. Therefore, you need to wait sometime to get the access to WordPress hosting panel. Since your temporary domain name is changed to custom domain, you can use yoursite.com/wp-admin to access the dashboard.
Wrap Up on Migrating Site from Blogger to WordPress
Once the WordPress site is ready, you can change the theme and install additional plugins. You can also do all forms of customization using theme panel or navigating to “Appearance > Customize” section in your dashboard.