Today’s news that Google+ would be broken down into Photos and Streams wasn’t unexpected and won’t have a significant impact on my “social life”. My real concern is Blogger, Google’s blog platform. Except for setting up hooks into Google+ way back when, the platform has basically been ignored for years.
WordPress continues to innovate as does Yahoo’s Tumblr platform and SquareSpace. Blogger just recently posted to its official blog for the first time in a year.
My concern is for the large number of geneabloggers using Blogger. Many have been blogging for years and have a huge collection of posts. Migrating to a new platform will be a challenge but it can be done.
WordPress.com has step-by-step instructions on how to make the move. Migrating to a self-hosted WordPress site is very similar, but with more manual steps – most related to moving custom domain names. SquareSpace also offers Blogger migration but limits how much can be migrated to a trial account.
One important point. Migration only moves your content and media from one platform to another. You will not be able to bring your theme – and many of your widgets – with you. Yes, it will be an effort to “remodel” your blog at your new digs, but there are advantages that can make it worth that effort. Most of the themes at these blog platforms take advantage of the latest in web technology and the platform’s newest improvements. This means you will have mobile-friendly sites, mobile apps and enjoy the other advantages those technologies support.
Take a look at your current blog to estimate the number of posts you need to migrate and the amount of images included in those posts. This will not only help determine how much effort migrating will be, but also what account level you will need. Next, look at the various blog platforms, their features, migration support and costs.
If you have special needs, contact the support staff to see if they can accommodate them. Most blog platforms will do everything they can to help you move TO their site . . . and make it as painless as possible so you’ll stay. That doesn’t mean every migration is perfect. Be prepared for some cleanup.
Take a look at the other blog platforms available to you. Create an account and experiment to see how things work and how those features fit into your blogging workflow. Once you find a platform you like, learn everything you can about their migration tools. You have time now to experiment. You have time for a do-over if things go south. Your Blogger blog will remain your primary blog until you are happy with the migration.
You have time now. Who knows how long that will last?