Wednesday, 12 January 2011

New Blog Provider for The IT Dept (Blogger vs. Wordpress)

The IT Dept has recently transferred its Blog provider from WordPress to Blogger.com. We have found that Blogger (also known as BlogSpot) is much simpler to configure, with many more features, and a cleaner look.

We were reluctant to do this initially, as we had built up quite a few blogs, all of which add content-rich Search Engine Optimisation to our web site. We were concerned about simply starting again with a blank canvas, as how would we transfer all that old content to the new Blog without copying and pasting everything?

There is a backup facility within WordPress and an import facility in Blogger, which would seem to do just this job. Both Blogs use the .xml file format, so one would assume it is possible to simply export from WordPress and import to Blogger. Sadly the two systems are not compatible. The error message "Sorry, the import failed due to a server error. The error code is bX-tjg9ds" appeared when we tried to import the WordPress backup to Blogger.



However, help is at hand at http://wordpress2blogger.appspot.com/ where a conversion tool is provided which is simple (and free) to use. A couple of minor tweaks were required to the formatting of the imported blogs, but this only took a few minutes.

When using WordPress we did not allow comments on the published Posts as we found these were abused by spammers. The WordPress system does allow for moderation of comments before publishing, but attracted a large number of spam comments which then needed to be deleted. Blogger seems to have a better system for detecting spam comments and automatically disallowing them.

Another possible benefit is that Blogger.com is provided by Google, so I suspect that this will only help with Search Engine Optimisation.

UPDATE: 22 Jan 2011
Another reason we moved from WordPress to Blogger was to add Google AdSense to our Blogger Blog. However, we have since discovered that it is possible to add Google AdSense to a WordPress Blog as well as Blogger (although not so simple).

To do this in WordPress:
1. Log in to your WordPress Blog as an Admin
2. In the left hand side menu find "Appearance" and "Widgets"
3. Look for the Widget called "Text" in the main screen and drag this over to the right hand Sidebar
4. Log in to your Google AdSense account and find your Code. (My Ads, Get Code)
5. Copy and Paste that code into your Text Widget. Save.

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The IT Dept offers computer support services in Lancashire, including Monthly On-Site or Remote Support Contracts; Secure Online Data Backup; Domain Hosting; Server and Desktop Sales; Software Supply & Installation. We cover all of Lancashire, including Chorley, Preston, Blackburn, Darwen, Bolton, Wigan, Blackpool, etc.
© Michael Donkin 2011