How To Transfer Custom Domain Blogger To WordPress With Least Downtime

A lot of people start their blogging career with free Blogspot blog and after receiving a good response, they switch to WordPress.  I have already written a guide on How To Transfer Blog From Blogger To WordPress, which is helpful if you are using Blogspot sub-domain.

However, most of the bloggers use a custom domain with their blogger blogs. The article mentioned above will not work if you are using a custom domain with your blog. So I thought of writing this guide to help people using custom domains to transfer their blog from Blogger to WordPress.

Transfer Custom Domain Blogger To WordPress With Least Downtime

Transferring your blog from Blogger to WordPress is not very difficult when you are using a custom domain for your blog. However, the challenge here is to make sure your blog gets transferred with least downtime.

Below is the summary of the steps to custom domain blogger from WordPress with least downtime.

Following are the steps you need to follow for transferring your blog from Blogger to WordPress with least downtime.

1. Select A Web Host

The first thing that you need to do is choose a web host for your blog. You can either buy hosting from your domain registrar or any other hosting company of your choice. There is no restriction for the same.

If you purchased your domain name from Godaddy, then you can buy hosting from them as they have cheap and decent hosting plans. However, if you purchased your domain name from some other domain registrar, you can also consider buying hosting from Namecheap or Dreamhost depending upon your budget.

GoDaddy's Economy Hosting Plan will cost you $3.99 per month at the website. However, with the Special GoDaddy $1 Hosting Offer, it will cost you just $1 per month.

At Namecheap, it's Value plan will cost you $0.82 per month. Namecheap usually does not offer any discounts as it is already among the cheapest when it comes to reliable hosting companies.

Dreamhost, on the other hand, is a bit costly at $9.95 per month at the website. However, with Special $50 Hosting Discount, the effective rate turns out to be $5.78 per month

2. Modifying Hosts File

In most guides on transferring custom domain Blogger to WordPress, you will not find this step. However, this step is essential to reduce the downtime of your blog.

By modifying the "Hosts" file on your Windows computer, you can force your browser to redirect your domain to your new hosting server while other users continue to see your websites on Blogger as it is. This sort of creates a staging server and allows you to transfer your blog and make any changes to your it without any downtime.

First, find out the IP Address of your hosting server. You can either find the IP Address in your welcome mail or cPanel or get it from customer support of your hosting company.

Next, navigate to C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc and open the hosts file with Notepad+. Make sure your are opening it with Notepad+ and not Notepad. The screenshot below shows an unmodified hosts file opened with Notepad+

Hosts File

Now add the following code at the bottom of the file after replacing the IP Address with your hosting server's IP address and example.com with your domain name and save the file.

102.54.94.97 www.example.com 
102.54.94.97 example.com

That is it. You will now be redirected to your new hosting server when you try to access your domain name.

If you are using hosting with cPanel, open www.example.com/cpanel in your browser after replacing example.com with your domain name. If you followed the steps correctly, it should open your cPanel login page.

3. Install WordPress On Hosting Server

Most of the hosting companies provide you with one-click installation for WordPress. You can refer the WordPress installation guide of your host.

Below are the WordPress installation guides for Dreamhost, GoDaddy, and Namecheap.

  1. Dreamhost WordPress Installation Tutorial
  2. Godaddy WordPress Installation Tutorial
  3. Namecheap WordPress Installation Tutorial

If you followed instructions in step 2 correctly, you can now open your WordPress dashboard by navigating to www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/

4. Fixing Your Permalink Structure

It's very important to change your permalink structure to Blogger's default permalink structure. Failing to do so will throw up 404 error as WordPress default permalink structure is different from Blogger.

For changing your permalink structure, navigate to settings> Permalinks and change your permalink structure to "Day and Name" as shown below and save the settings

For changing your permalink structure, navigate to settings> Permalinks in your WordPress dashboard and change your permalink structure to Day and Name as shown below and save the settings

Blogger To WordPress-Permalink

5. Transferring Blog To WordPress

For transferring the blog, log in to your Blogger account and navigate to Settings>Other. Now click on "Export blog" and save the XML file to an easily accessible location

Blogger To WordPress-Download xml

Now, go to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Tools> Import. The following page will open. Click on Blogger and follow the directions to install the plugin

Blogger To WordPress

After installation, click on "Activate Plugin and Run Importer". This will open the following pop-up. Choose the Blogger XML file which you downloaded earlier and upload it.