In this post, I’m going to be showing you step by step how to migrate from Blogger to WordPress (self hosted), without losing search traffic to your posts. Now if you’re reading this, that means you probably have thought about the switch or at least have given it some thought. While Blogger is a great platform for personal blogging, I wouldn’t say that it is the best longterm solution or for those who want that professional look.
Why don’t I think blogger is the best long term blogging solution?
- Google’s Terms of Service – Google clearly states in their TOS, that “by submitting, posting, or display content on or through google services…you grant Google a Wordlwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to reproduce publish and distribute such content” Essentially, Google is telling you that you don’t really own your blog.
- Google Can Delete your Blog – It is a pretty well known fact that Google is notorious for deleting blogger accounts, they even deleted their own once! Luckily, they took the time to get their blog back, however, you may not be so lucky. In their TOS, Google states “no responsibility or liability for deletion of, or the failture to store or to transmit, any content”. In essence, if something bad happens, you’re out of luck.
- Blogger is blacklisted in certain places – Libraries, Schools, and other public institutions readily ban sites like Facebook, Twitter, and even Blogspot domains. That means your audience could be limited, without you even knowing it.
- Difficult to Customize – If you’ve ever tried customizing your website you know Blogger can be a pain.
- Design Restrictions – Each Blogger website is only allowed 10 pages, and with that, you can’t use custom pages for your homepage.
For some, this may be ok, especially because Blogger is free, however, personally this isn’t something I would like.
Blogger to WordPress Migration Tutorial
Now that you have some info why Blogger isn’t the most desirable choice, I can start showing you how to actually do this migration. And it’s actually quite easy! However, if you do need help, we can actually set it up for you, free of charge. Just contact us and we can let you know how.
What Do We Need?
- A Web Hosting Account – Web Hosting costs around $4 a month, and is what is used to power your website. You can read all our reviews here, but we personally recommend SiteGround for new WordPress users, due to their nicely packaged WordPress Hosting accounts.
- A Domain Name – If you purchased a SiteGround account, they give you a free domain name! However, if not, you can easily purchase this for ~$10/year.
Migration – Step by Step
Now in order to ensure that we don’t lose any google rankings, we need to do the following 4 steps:
- Import all content – images, posts, comments
- Set up Permalinks – make sure the permalinks are in the format, with the same name
- Redirection of Permalinks – from Blogger to new WordPress website
- Redirect Feeds – maintain RSS feed subscribers and ensure smooth transition
- Migrating Pages – we’ll have to migrate our Blogger Pages manually
Step 1 – Export/Backup Blogger Content
First things first, before you make ANY changes to your site, be sure to backup your data.
- Find the Blog you want to backup
- In the Left Sidebar find Settings>Other
- Blog Tools>Export Blog – You should have an xml of your blog, which you can hold on to for future reference.
Be sure to hold onto this information. Because we aren’t actually deleting anything, nothing will happen, however it’s always best to have a backup, just to be sure.
Additionally, we should probably also backup our Template as well, because we’re going to be making some changes to that later on. To do this, head on over to Template>Backup/Restore (which is going to be located in the top right)
From here, simply click on Download full template and save this in a safe location.
Step 2 – Import Blogger Content to WordPress
Assuming that you have already successfully installed WordPress, if not watch this short video, you’re going to log in to the Dashboard of your WordPress Website. From here, navigate to Tools>Import.
Here you’ll be able to import content from any of the above networks. However, since we’re migrating our website from Blogger to WordPress, just click on Blogger and click Install Now, and it’ll download a small plugin to help us transfer our content. Also, be sure to click Activate & Install Importer.
Upon installing, a new window will appear in your Blogger account, asking if you would like to grant access to WordPress. Be sure to Click Allow Access
It’ll take some time for the importer tool to find all your posts, pages, and comments, however once it has, you’ll see a message showing the number of posts and comments you have. If everything looks good, click Import. Even though no images were displayed in the summary table, they were still successfully imported.
After content has successfully imported, the boxes will change from white to blue and you can click on Set Author. At this point, you probably will only have a single author, yourself, however if you have more than 1, feel free to select the author of your choice. This will generally displayed above each post as Written By, as well as in determining who is displayed in the About the Author section. Don’t forget to click on Save Changes.
Success! Your content should now be successfully installed. Feel free to browse through your posts, categories, tags, and media library. If all went well, you should see all your content, although some slight changes may need to be made to the format, so everything looks right.
Technically, the migration is over. If you are a new blogger, this may be all you need to do. However, if you have been doing this a while and have been getting consistent traffic from google, chances are you will want to maintain your search engine rankings. So, read on to find out how!
Step 3 – Set up WordPress Permalinks
First things first, we must set up the Permalinks for our new WordPress website. Put simply, Permalinks are the structure of our link. Generally, we see websites links in the form of websitename.com/post-name, however WordPress allows us to format our links in a variety of ways: websitename.com/date/post-name, websitename.com/post-#, as well as many other combinations.
But for us, we’re going to stick with the Postname option, websitename.com/post-name, for two reasons:
- Best for SEO
- Cleanest design – only has what’s important for users
To change your Permalinks, simply go into Settings>Permalinks in your WordPress Dashboard, and select the Post Name option. As always, don’t forget to save your changes.
Step 4 – Redirect Blogger Links to WordPress Links
Now that we have everything setup on our new site, all we need to do now is tell Blogger where our new site is! Now this is an extremely critical step, and while it may seem somewhat tricky, it’s actually quite easy. To break it down, what we’re going to do is tell Blogger two things:
- Where our site is now hosted at
- Once users are directed to your new site, we will now direct them to the specific post
Redirect Blogger Users to your new WordPress Site
In order to accomplish the first step, all we’re going to do is head on over to Blogger>Our Blog>Template
On this Template Page, scroll all the way down and click on Revert to Classic Template.
Once you have reverted to classic template, you should see a Edit Template HTML area. Go ahead and copy all of this and save it into a separate text file. We’re going to be replacing it with the following code, but it’s always good to have an extra copy of anything we change.
After you saved a copy of the Template HTML, go ahead and replace it with the following code: However be sure to change the websitename.com to your new WordPress URL (there should be 6 of them)
This will take care of the first step of redirecting users to our new WordPress website. Now we have to
Redirect Users to Specific WordPress Post
In order to redirect your users to the specific WordPress Post, we’re going to create a new WordPress Template. To do so, simply copy the following code into a text editor. I use Text Wrangler, but you can use any text editor – Notepad, etc. and save the file as Blogger-redirect.php. Feel free to change the file name, but it must end with .php.
After you’ve saved the file, you’re going to need to upload this file into your themes folder. You can do this either by FTP or using the Filemanager (If you signed up with Siteground, you can use the Filemanager, which is located in your Cpanel).
To navigate to your Themes Directory, it will look something like this: public_html>wp-content>themes >Theme-Name
Once you’ve navigated to the themes folder, simply click on upload, at the top menu, and upload your Blogger-redirect.php file.
If you go back to your FileManager, you should see the Blogger-redirect.php file in your theme directory folder.
The last thing we’re going to do is Create a New Page and assign the Blogger Template to it. To do this, simple go to your WordPress Dashboard, and Add New Page. On the right side, under Page Attributes, change the template to WPforall Blogger Redirect. Be sure to publish the page, once you changed the page template.
That’s it! If everything went well, and you didn’t skip any steps, your website has now been successfully migrated AND search results have been redirected.
If you want to check if everything worked out, simply find the URL of an old Blogger post, and enter it in the Address Bar. If everything went well, you should now be redirected to your new WordPress Blog! If you don’t remember any of your Blogger Post names, another way to check is to go to your old Blogspot URL (website-name.blogspot.com). If all went well, you should be redirected to the home page of your new WordPress website.
***Be sure to NEVER delete your Blogspot Blog. Traffic is being directed from your Blogspot URL to your new WordPress URL. Without the Blogspot Blog up and running, your search rankings acquired from Blogspot will be gone.***
Step 5 – Redirect Blogger RSS Feed to WordPress RSS Feed
It’d be a shame to lose all your Blogger RSS subscribers. So to ensure a smooth delivery, we’re going to redirect our Blogger subscribers to our new WordPress Blog. To do this, simply navigate to Settings>Other>Post Feed Redirect URL. Here, you’ll enter in your WordPress RSS feed, which is always going to be http://websitename.com/feed/. Be sure to save your settings.
Step 6 – Edit your Website + Add Pages
More than likely, your Blogger Pages have not been migrated to your new WordPress site. In the future, the Blogger to WordPress Migration Plugin may create a workaround for this, but for now, you’re going to have to do this manually. And since Blogger only allows up to 10 pages, this won’t take very long. Unfortunately, search engine rankings will be lost. However, hopefully the Migration plugin will fix this.
To do this, simply find a Blogger Page, click on Edit HTML and copy the text. We’re copying the HTML to avoid layout issues in WordPress.
From here, Add a New Page in WordPress, click on Text and paste in your HTML code. Be sure to publish your page once you’ve finished.
Blogger to WordPress Migration – Success!
You have now successfully migrated Blogger to WordPress without losing any search engine traffic. And with that, I would like to welcome you to WordPress! Feel free to browse our video tutorials to customize your WordPress website even further. And if you have any questions, suggestions, or updates, feel free to let me know in the comments below!