Saturday Spotlight: Blogging Tip/Guest post

Today’s blogging tip/guest post comes from Sharon of Good, True and Beautiful.
In February 2009, in a moment of frenzied excitement I started my blog (http://www.goodtrueandbeautiful.com)
In five easy minutes, I had set things up in Blogger, published my first post, and sent an email to my Mom exclaiming “I’M ON THE INTERNET!”
A few months later, after a crash course in all things Blogger, I started to hear this rumbling about WordPress. Blogging friends made the move and they said “it’s so much better.” I would read posts about how “happy” people were that they made the change. I felt defensive about my little Blogger Blog – who were they to say that what I was doing wasn’t good enough?!
Yet, I started to wonder…. should I move to WordPress?
And so I started to research WordPress, and in February 2010 I migrated my blog to self-hosting and I wrote about why I did it ) .
Since that time, I’ve helped over 50 other bloggers transition to self-hosted WordPress platforms and I’m often asked about “making the move.” So I’ve compiled some questions that I think are applicable:
  • Is your blog more than a hobby? If it is, then you should consider the value of owning your own server space. On Blogger, all of your blog content (pictures, posts, comments) are being stored on a server that you don’t control. If you lost that content, would it be a problem?
  • Does your blog generate income? Like it or not, people know that Blogger is free hosting. And if you want to come across as a “professional” self-hosting on WordPress reflects a bigger commitment to your business.
  • Do you aspire to have your blog earn money through ads or affiliates? If you would like your blog to start generating revenue, then you should consider how you can control your content. Blogger is “one size fits all” when it comes to your blog content and Search Engine Optimization. But WordPress grants you a lot more power to bring new readers to your blog.
  • Are you hoping that your blog will grow larger and impact a broader audience? Changing platforms will only get more difficult the bigger your blog gets. So if you are thinking that you might move “one day” sooner is probably better than later.
  • Have you been feeling nervous that Blogger might shut down your blog? This is rare, but it happens enough to make people nervous. Every week you will see comments on Twitter where bloggers have been shut down by Google (and the reactivation process is slow and painful). If this is worrisome to you, you might consider making the move.
If you have answered YES to any of these questions, then I think moving to WordPress might make sense for you to consider. And if you need help with the technical stuff, I’d be glad to hold your hand (http://www.goodtrueandbeautiful.com/tech/thinking-about-moving-to-wordpress/ )
If you said NO to these questions, then I would recommend that you stay with Blogger – it’s a free, reliable platform that will give you more options than Typepad or WordPress.com (the freebie version of WordPress). For the casual, hobby blogger who wants keep up with family and friends Blogger is the perfect solution.
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7 comments

  1. Hooray! I am a loyal WordPress fan, hosting my own (www.pyjammy.com) and designing templates and getting others switched. Its pretty easy to make the switch from blogspot – some people don't know that you won't lose all your posts when you move.

  2. I guess my reservation is that is seems really complicated to learn the new format.. is it?

  3. I've recently switched, and can attest to Sharon's expertise in helping make the transition smooth as silk!

    Lani — there is a learning curve from Blogger to WordPress, but once you play around with it for a while, I find it much easier, more user friendly, and much easier to deal with responding to comments, dealing with spam, etc.

  4. I'm currently switching from blogger to WP. Well, I'm starting a new blog for post my IL's don't neccessarily need/want to see while they are hunting for pick of their grandbabies. It's scary. I have people who read me on blogger. I get comments that I love! So far it's a lonely, slow process since I don't want to point people to an empty site (www.TheSlackerMom.com). I know I'll love it once I'm up and running, but now…not so much.

  5. Just in time! I'm thinking of starting a second (more anonymous) blog an wondered if WordPress would be a good fit. Thanks for the tips!

  6. I made the switch early this summer and am so glad I did! While the transfer of old posts was pretty easy, I DID lose most of the comments on my really old posts, which stinks.

    It took me several days just to figure out how to customize the header and look of my blog, and I'm still not thrilled with it, but I know there's a big learning curve and I just haven't had time to play with it since I got the site at least functional looking.

    Most annoying drawback? Commenting on other blogs (like this one) that don't just give you a name/url option. Instead it points to my blogger account and I'm sure I don't get as many click-throughs now because of it.

    http://threetimesthegiggles.com

  7. Sharon moved me over too! I would have had no idea what to do without her. I had so many questions and she was so patient! Thanks again Sharon!!!

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