"Blogger vs. WordPress" (6 Reasons to Switch & How to Transfer to WP)

I have a confession to make — I haven’t always been a WordPress user.

As a young writer roughly 10 or 15 years ago, I found myself looking for an online platform on which to share ideas and write about my day. I don’t remember which now-outdated system I chose back then, but the need to find a simple but powerful blogging program hasn’t gone away.

Today, the debate largely centers around WordPress, the world’s most popular content management system, and Blogger, the free tool owned by Google. As WordPress users ourselves, we clearly favor self-hosted WordPress over free services such as WordPress.com or Blogger. (Don’t know the difference between self-hosted WordPress and WordPress.com? Check out our resource comparing the two.)

We made the case for why you should turn to WordPress for your blogging needs and will even tell you how to move your site if you’ve outgrown your current Blogger setup.

1. WordPress Users Can Actually Own Their Site — With a Free Domain!

When choosing WordPress, you receive the software to do with what you wish. You host the WordPress software, along with all your website content, on your own account. On Blogger, your content lives on Google’s servers — if they decide to shut down Blogger, they don’t have to give you access to your data. That’s not likely, but wouldn’t you rather safeguard your keepsakes at home instead of a stranger’s house?

In addition to one-click installers to get you started with WordPress, many hosting providers include a free custom domain with your plan. That enables you to host your blog at yourname.com instead of the somewhat more tacky yourname.blogspot.com. Blogger lets you buy a custom domain name for $10 per year.

Get started with WordPress today and enjoy a free domain registration from a top-rated WP host:

WORDPRESS RATING
★★★★★ 5.0/5.0
  • WordPress pre-installed
  • FREE SSL certificate and unlimited bandwidth
  • FREE domain, site transfers, and data backups
(read more)
Starting Price/Mo. $2.95
Money Back Guarantee 90 days
Disk Space Unlimited
Domain Name FREE (1 year)
WordPress Hosting Plans www.inmotionhosting.com/wordpress

Our Expert's InMotion Review

InMotion, long known for their shared hosting options, entered the WordPress space with a solid option built upon their reputation for great support and reliability. Costing a small premium over other budget-minded options, they do... read more +

InMotion, long known for their shared hosting options, entered the WordPress space with a solid option built upon their reputation for great support and reliability. Costing a small premium over other budget-minded options, they do include some nice features to help justify that cost difference.

Build on an all-SSD infrastructure, their speeds are very good. We would have loved to see options like integrated staging and caching included in order to help take full advantage of the nice, modern hardware. The choice of datacenters (East or West) is nice however, as it allows you to target your local audience with better load times.

InMotion offers three different levels to their WordPress hosting offerings, which allows you to tailor the hosting to your needs or budget. For those needing eCommerce support, their middle or top offerings have you covered. Their top offering also allows unlimited installs for WordPress, which is great to see.

Each hosting package they offer comes with a free domain, unlimited disk space, unlimited emails, and free data backups for data security. If you need it, each plan also has support for PHP, Ruby, Perl, and Python, and includes SSH access.

InMotion Hosting has made a name for itself on support and reliability. While not the cheapest of the budget WordPress hosts out there, the packages offered are solid in performance and feature sets.

collapse info -

2. WordPress is Open-Sourced and Actively Maintained, Unlike Blogger

With a global community of millions of developers working on WordPress, the CMS is always evolving to meet user needs and online trends. The WordPress platform is shared all the way down to the source code, meaning you can change and extend the service as needed. Blogger, on the other hand, is a proprietary product with no outside influence. While the Google team actively maintains the platform and occasionally releases new themes and updated features, the pace can’t possibly contend with the vibrant WordPress community.

3. WordPress and Blogger Both Tout Themes, but WP has Way More

Again, this is a numbers game. Blogger has a limited team behind its designs and only so many options for users to customize or create their own templates. New templates trickle out to the public here and there, but the platform hasn’t gotten a major facelift in a few years.

WordPress includes thousands of themes in its directory, and many more are available externally.

WordPress, on the other hand, has hundreds of thousands of free and premium themes for seemingly every conceivable website need. Each theme is fully editable, and developers with a touch of experience and patience can create and upload their own custom design.

4. WordPress eCommerce Tools Make it Favorable for Making Money

Out of the box, neither Blogger nor WordPress comes with the ability to create an online storefront. WooCommerce, however, is the internet’s most popular eCommerce platform and is owned by the same company as WordPress. In the no-restrictions world of WordPress, however, you can use any number of platforms and plugins — most of which are available for free.

With Blogger, on the other hand, you can only earn money by displaying targeted ads through Google AdSense. To add an online store, you’ll need to reach out to Ecwid or Shopify, third-party eCommerce platforms, to integrate their selling tools.

5. Blogger Boasts Google Security, but No Plugins Means Less Flexibility

Here’s where Blogger might have the slightest of edges over WordPress. Because Google owns and operates the servers hosting your website, along with the blogging software itself, your website will be less susceptible to malicious attacks.

The popularity of WordPress makes the platform a big target, and rookie site owners inadvertently leave themselves vulnerable by not updating themes, plugins, or the WordPress software as a whole. The WordPress Codex provides some great resources to securing, or hardening, your WordPress installation. Recognizing this, however, developers have created hundreds of plugins aimed at securing your site, backing up your information, monitoring for attacks, and automating updates.

6. Moving From Blogger to WordPress is a Pain, so Don’t Start There!

Why do something twice when you can get it right the first time? If you have any aspirations for your blog beyond a private, online journal, you’ll eventually outgrow Blogger’s limited platform. WordPress is the better solution for stability, given the active community behind it. The lack of recent updates to Blogger might indicate that the system isn’t in Google’s long-term plans. Take the time to get started on the right foot.

How to Transfer Blogger to WordPress

Don’t worry, switching to WordPress doesn’t have to be a tedious process. WordPress plugins crop up from time to time that help with this process, but we prefer trusting our websites to the built-in tools both platforms offer. From finding a host to house your WordPress blog to importing your content, we’ll walk you through the process of a seamless transfer.

1. Select a Top Hosting Plan For WordPress

It might seem a little counterintuitive, but your first move for getting started with WordPress should be signing up with a hosting provider, not the CMS. You’ll want a shared hosting plan from a reputable company. In addition to easy WordPress installations, our favorite hosts include tons of extra features you’ll enjoy such as a free domain, unlimited storage space, and extra-fast SSDs for performance.

WORDPRESS RATING
★★★★★ 5.0/5.0
  • WordPress pre-installed
  • FREE SSL certificate and unlimited bandwidth
  • FREE domain, site transfers, and data backups
(read more)
Starting Price/Mo. $2.95
Money Back Guarantee 90 days
Disk Space Unlimited
Domain Name FREE (1 year)
WordPress Hosting Plans www.inmotionhosting.com/wordpress
Our Expert's InMotion Review
InMotion, long known for their shared hosting options, entered the WordPress space with a solid option built upon their reputation for great support and reliability. Costing a small premium over other budget-minded options, they do... read more +

InMotion, long known for their shared hosting options, entered the WordPress space with a solid option built upon their reputation for great support and reliability. Costing a small premium over other budget-minded options, they do include some nice features to help justify that cost difference.

Build on an all-SSD infrastructure, their speeds are very good. We would have loved to see options like integrated staging and caching included in order to help take full advantage of the nice, modern hardware. The choice of datacenters (East or West) is nice however, as it allows you to target your local audience with better load times.

InMotion offers three different levels to their WordPress hosting offerings, which allows you to tailor the hosting to your needs or budget. For those needing eCommerce support, their middle or top offerings have you covered. Their top offering also allows unlimited installs for WordPress, which is great to see.

Each hosting package they offer comes with a free domain, unlimited disk space, unlimited emails, and free data backups for data security. If you need it, each plan also has support for PHP, Ruby, Perl, and Python, and includes SSH access.

InMotion Hosting has made a name for itself on support and reliability. While not the cheapest of the budget WordPress hosts out there, the packages offered are solid in performance and feature sets.

collapse info -
WORDPRESS RATING
★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
  • Formally endorsed by WordPress
  • VPS technology and included CDN
  • ManageWP pre-installed
(read more)
Starting Price/Mo. $2.95
Money Back Guarantee 30 days
Disk Space Unlimited
Domain Name FREE (1 year)
WordPress Hosting Plans www.bluehost.com/wordpress
Our Expert's Bluehost Review
Aimed at personal bloggers and first-time users, Bluehost’s WordPress hosting packages are a great alternative to simple shared hosting. These service come at a premium, compared to Bluehost’s standard shared plans, but the WordPress optimization... read more +

Aimed at personal bloggers and first-time users, Bluehost’s WordPress hosting packages are a great alternative to simple shared hosting. These service come at a premium, compared to Bluehost’s standard shared plans, but the WordPress optimization and platform-specific resources are arguably worth the cost.

Built on top of their VPS platform, Bluehost's WordPress managed hosting, though not as customizable as others, focuses on simplicity and speed. Their interface is easy to navigate and the instant provisioning allows for speedy setup. Integrated features, such as the MOJO Marketplace and ManageWP, are nice touches as well.

Though simple by design, Bluehost isn’t shorting you on some of the more important technical features. Integrated W3 caching, SiteLock security, and a CDN are standard across all WordPress packages. It’s also important to note that data backups are automated and resources are guaranteed.

Formed in 2003, Bluehost has long been one of the foremost shared hosts on the planet, and they now power more than two million websites. What’s more, Bluehost is on a short list of providers with the official WordPress seal of approval, doled out by the WordPress Core team. With an experienced team, competitive pricing, and always-there support, Bluehost is King when it comes to WordPress hosting services.

collapse info -
WORDPRESS RATING
★★★★★ 4.9/5.0
  • FREE Cloudflare CDN and 1-click installs for WordPress
  • Turbo Server, SSD speed boost, and A2-optimized caching
  • A2-optimized WP plugins for performance and security
(read more)
Starting Price/Mo. $3.92
Money Back Guarantee 30 days
Disk Space Unlimited RAID-10
Domain Name $14.99
WordPress Hosting Plans www.a2hosting.com/wordpress
Our Expert's A2 Hosting Review
If shared web hosting is what you need, A2 Hosting is the perfect host to help launch your site with your choice of CMS, including WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and others. As part of A2's promise... read more +

If shared web hosting is what you need, A2 Hosting is the perfect host to help launch your site with your choice of CMS, including WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and others. As part of A2's promise to emphasize performance, they've concocted several A2-optimized features specifically for WordPress.

Getting Started: cPanel, 1-Click Installs, and Softaculous

A2's shared web hosting plans come with cPanel 11 control panel, where users can access Softaculous auto-installer. Easily install popular web applications, including your choice of CMS, with one click.

"If you land on our WordPress landing page, and order WordPress hosting, we auto-install WordPress and our optimization plugin," Bryan said. "You don’t have to do anything."

A2-Optimized Software and Caching Tools

"We wanted to make these performance enhancements really accessible to people," Andy said, so A2 has come up with several plugins and tools designed to operate in their online environment. These features are available for all users, including VPS and managed services customers.

A prime example of A2's custom performance enhancers would be their exclusive Site Accelerator, which helps A2 users experience page loading up to 20 times faster than that of the average web host.

Auto-Configurations for WordPress, Joomla, & Drupal

A2 has optimized tools to auto-configure popular software, including WordPress, with auto-optimizations like compression and caching. "We're trying to ease all the friction points for the users and make sure we’re solving their problems," Andy told us.

Auto-Configurations for PrestaShop and eCommerce Options

Once you've installed PrestaShop, an A2-optimized cPanel plugin will automatically detect it and allow you to set up all "normal" optimizations. "We'll go in and configure everything the way that we know it will work best on our servers," Andy said.

Other eCommerce features include access to SSL certificates, PayPal merchant accounts, and a Merchant ID with E-onlinedata (with instant activation). When it comes to marketing your site or online store, A2 users can get $50 towards paid ads. Plus, with Attracta, a free SEO tool available in cPanel, sites are listed in Google within 24 hours.

A2-Optimized Enhanced Security

In addition to enhanced speed and performance, A2 Hosting includes "Perpetual Security," which features several custom technologies.

HackScan & KernelCare

All A2 accounts are offered a free hacking detection scan, featuring their own hacker detection mechanism: HackScan. A2 Hosting users also benefit from KernelCare: A2's product for conducting daily, rebootless auto-updates to kernels.

Proactive Protection & 24/7 Network Monitoring

A2 has built another custom plugin for WordPress users to prevent hacking. The software auto-hardens WordPress sites for proactive protection against hackers. Additionally, A2 offers virus scanning, a dual firewall, and brute-force attack protection — not to mention SPAM filtering for emails, which are also IMAP, POP3, and SMTP supported.

Final Words on A2 Hosting for WordPress

A2 Hosting offers 24/7 customer support and tons of A2-optimized features made with WordPress users in mind. Whether you're an online retailer looking to launch a fresh site with PrestaShop, or a moderately web-savvy WordPress user looking for speed and security excellence, we'd highly recommend A2 Hosting.

collapse info -

See more WordPress hosts »

2. Export Blogger to WordPress in Settings

Prepare your Blogger content for its move by exporting it to an XML file. From your Blogger dashboard, go to your setting page and click on the “Other” link at the bottom of the navigation menu. Find the imports and backups section, and click the button for backing up your information. The system will combine your data into an XML file, which you can save to your computer.

3. Import Blogger to WordPress in the Tools Section of Your Dashboard

To get the content in WordPress, log into your new site. From the WordPress admin interface, navigate to “Tools” and then “Import” in the menu on the left. The import page will list several platforms that commonly get merged into WordPress; click on Blogger to install that specific importing tool. Once added, don’t forget to click the “Activate Plugin & Run Importer” link.

The importer will ask you to upload the XML file you exported from Blogger. Upload the file and watch as WordPress imports each of your Blogger posts. When it is done, WordPress will ask you to assign the posts to an author.

4. Set Up Your Permalinks and Redirects for Your New Site

Now that your content has arrived, you can tweak some WordPress options to make sure your readers and search engines can still find your content. First, go to Settings and then Permalinks in the WordPress dashboard navigation to make your URLs more SEO friendly and close to Blogger’s URL structure; that means selecting the Month and Name option.

Now that the content is labeled correctly, you’ll want to set up redirects to funnel your readers to the right website and posts. To point people to your WordPress blog, log back into the Blogger portal. Navigate to the template page in your settings and revert back to the classic template. From there, you’ll want to edit the template HTML — don’t worry, it’s simple copy and paste. Replace everything in the Blogger text area with this code, making sure to change example.com with your WordPress domain:

Save the template and move to the Site Feed section of the Settings area, which is found under Other. Change your Post Feed Redirect URL to http://example.com/feed, again changing the URL to your domain. Now, log out of Blogger — you’re all done with that platform!

In WordPress, however, you’ve got one more redirect to create. Navigate to your theme editor, which is found under the Appearance menu. On the right, find and click on Theme Functions, which will open your functions.php file. To avoid breaking anything, we recommend you scroll to the bottom of the file and find your closing PHP tag: ?> . Immediately before this tag, paste the following code:

You can hit the enter key to put the closing tag back on its own line, if you’d like. Once you update the file by clicking the bottom under the text area, your WordPress site is ready to go! Visitors clicking on a link to an old Blogger post will instead arrive at the same post on your new website.

5. Move Your Blogger Images to Your New WordPress Library

Occasionally, the WordPress importer might miss a few images from your Blogger site. As with basically every other headache you might encounter on WordPress, there’s an available plugin that will ease the pain. We recommend Auto Upload Images; install and update the plugin, which will scan your posts for links to images that still exist on your Blogger site. The plugin will then add the images to your WordPress media library and update the URL.

WordPress vs. Blogger — Why WordPress Wins with Long-Term Value

We say it all the time — free is great, but “almost free” is usually much better when it comes to websites and hosting. Whether you’re blogging, running an eCommerce store, or hosting your professional portfolio, the number of benefits, tools, and security features with a basic hosting plan makes the spare change you’ll invest in your online presence a bargain.


Continue comparing with similar articles on popular site-building options:


Voice your thoughts on either of these popular platforms — or thoughts on blogging life in general — by commenting below!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Laura Stamey

Laura Stamey is a multi-talented communicator with a master's degree in web design and online communication and extensive experience creating web, print, and multimedia products. As a Contributing Editor for HostingAdvice.com, she combines her communication skills with web design experience, a passionate love for WordPress, and a strong desire to continue learning. When she's not addressing user questions via helpful how-to guides, you'll find her connecting with the folks behind companies that are powering the Web — covering their innovative technologies and the teams that engineer them.