I love Google and all they are doing on the Web, but one of my goals for 2008 is to become a more active blogger, and I need a platform that will grow with me.
All signs seemed to point to WordPress – especially when I realized how simple it was to install.
Don’t get me wrong. I loved Blogger and it was ideal for my situation when I signed up in June, 2006. But as I got more serious about blogging and developed more content, it just made sense to make the move to WordPress.
It’s more robust and has a ton of plugins, and since it’s open source, programmers are constantly coming out with new plug-ins you can use on your blog to enhance it.
What’s a plug-in? It’s basically a script you can install to give your blog an added function. WordPress even has a directory of plug-ins and installing them is very simple if you know how to FTP files to your host.
There’s even a WordPress plug-in directory with a categorical listing of all the free plug-ins.
Need a sitemap created for your blog? Just download and install the plug-in and in seconds your sitemap is ready to go!
Want to make your blog pages more search-engine ready so you can get more traffic? Simply install the plug-in and instantly your blog becomes more SE friendly.
OK, here’s where you see that it doesn’t take much to make me happy. I love how the keyboard smilies turn into graphical emoticons automatically. No more image inserts or using those boring text-based smilies! (Sometimes it’s the little things 🙂 .)
Another big reason I wanted to move away from Blogger was I was having issues with the upload feature. I wanted to move my blog’s content from blogger.com to my own domain, but was having issues with their FTP setup.
Hosting your own blog’s content not only looks more professional but it’s much more comforting to know my content is not sitting on a 3rd party’s server.
Importing my content from Blogger to WordPress was a breeze. WordPress has an Import feature that instantly transfers all you posts and comments in a few seconds. The formatting remained the same and my images and video came over just fine for the most part.
Don’t forget to change your Blogger’s Archive settings to “No Archive” before you import. Otherwise you’ll be scratching your head like I was, wondering why WordPress was only importing my first post from every month. 😉
And if you’re worried about losing your Blogger feed subscribers, worry no more. Of course if you use a service like FeedBurner this is never an issue.
But if you don’t, Blogger allows you to redirect your Blogger feed to another URL. So all your Blogger feed traffic will be directed to your new one.
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Speaking of feeds, the one for this blog is http://feeds.feedburner.com/2createawebsite (hint, hint 😉 )
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What about your existing Blogger traffic? No problem. There are tons of tutorials out there that will show you how to redirect your blog traffic to your new location. Laffers.net has a tutorial that was easy to follow.
So if you’re looking to start a blog or want more options, I highly recommend WordPress. Blogger has made several advancements in the past few months but not enough to entice me to stay.
You don’t have to have your own domain to use WordPress. You can host your blog on their site, but I think it’s best to host your own content on your own domain. Hosting is so cheap these days and why not have the piece of mind and professionalism of sporting your self-hosted blog.
Not to mention if you already have a site on your own domain, adding a blog just gives you more content. And you know how the search engines love that!
WordPress may not be for everyone’s needs and desires, but I’m certainly happy with the switch. My only regret is not doing it sooner. 😉