I'm sure that some of you may have noticed that I attempted to switch my blog from Blogger to Wordpress. My attempt was unsuccessful and I really missed the Blogger platform. I'm going to share my troubles with all of you just in case you guys are thinking of doing the same thing or are stuck in the same boat as I was.
5 Reasons Why I Like Blogger Better than Wordpress
1) Customizable Templates - Blogger offers so many more options for customizing your template than wordpress.com blogs do. Wordpress.com blogs have plenty of templates for their users but aside from installing it, there is not much you can do. Blogger, on the other hand, allows you to customize everything on your blog from the header image to the font type. It allows you to really personalize your blog and create a website that truly reflects you.
2) Customizable Posts - I found that when I wrote posts using the wordpress.com platform, every time I would try and insert a line break or center some text, it would stay until I previewed the post or tried to edit any other code in the post. If I tried to do either of these two things, it would undo the like breaks or centering of text that I did. It was very frustrating and I did plenty of "googling" to find a solution and came up pretty much empty handed...
3) Ease of use - When I first created a profile on wordpress.com, I spent some time familiarizing myself with their dashboard. I saw some similarities but I also saw some differences. The place where you read posts from the blogs that you follow is not even in the dashboard so you have to switch away from your home screen. Also, while there are lots of preferences to set up which can be fun, none of them allow you to customize the look and feel of your page (as I stated in #1). In the blogger platform, you can read the blogs that you follow right from your dashboard and you can customize as much as you want. The customization is super easy too!
4) Monetization - Wordpress.com does not allow for affiliate links to be placed on any of their blogs. This can be problematic if you get income on your blog from affiliate links (like I was doing before I switched). Blogger gives you full control of what links you want to place on your site and they also offer Google AdSense which can be another source of income for you.
5) Friendly Community- The community of bloggers that use the blogger platform seem to be so much more helpful and willing to share information with their fellow bloggers. This is not to say that people who blog on wordpress are mean or unwilling to help their fellow bloggers but I have just noticed that my experience with bloggers who use the blogger platform have been much more receptive to me when I try and communicate with them.
5 Mistakes I Made When I Tried to Switch from Blogger to Wordpress
1) Not Enough Research - This one is pretty self explanitory and I will go into a little more detail in the next 4 steps. It takes a lot of effort to move your blogging platform (I knew about that but I just didn't realize how much went into a blog migration)
2) Paid vs Free - Wordpress has a few options for your blog. You can either have your blog hosted by wordpress.com and it will be free, or you can have a self hosted blog through wordpress.org. If you go with the free option, you will run into all the customization problems that I mentioned at the beginning of this post. They really don't let you do anything. If you are willing to have a self hosted blog that you pay for, you will gain access to all the plugins and customization options that wordpress is so well known for. I am not ready to pay to host my own blog so I did not get to explore all the plugins.
3) 301 Redirects - If you have a free wordpress blog, you cannot use 301 Redirects which are what is used to direct your readers from your old site to your new site. This is VERY frustrating!! I had to direct my readers to my new site using a very poorly designed method that cost me to completely lose my daily readership. I'm hoping that I can recover and move on but only time will tell.
4) Reviews - I should have read more reviews on wordpress.com sites. I would have learned most of this if I did and I could have avoided a lot of trouble.
5) Trial Period - I should have started a temporary/test blog to get the feel for wordpress before I completely switched my healthy blog to their platform. I probably would have figured some of this out and decided to stay with blogger.
I hope that this post has been helpful to some of you! What problems have you come across when attempting to migrate your blog?