Why I left WordPress.com and how I did it

Goodbye WordPress.com

If you’re interested in having a free blog with basic functionality and a few options, WordPress.com may fit the bill. Your blog will be subjected to their branding and and advertising, especially if you choose a free template for your blog. Your blog will also be found at yourblog.wordpress.com instead of your own domain name.

If you want your blog to be your own identity and not an extension of WordPress.com, it will cost you. WordPress.com lets you choose your own domain name for a price. Same goes for a premium template, and the ability to customize your template. You can disable WordPress’s ads that they impose on your blog, for a price. Several of these paid options are overpriced.

Hello WordPress.ORG and GoDaddy

I like WordPress and if I want to create a WordPress blog that is my own identity it will cost me no matter what I do. So why would I stay with WordPress.com when I can do so much more with WordPress.org?

What is WordPress.org?

WordPress.org is where you find the software behind all WordPress blogs. You can download it for free and host it wherever you want. This means you have choices. You can choose the quality and cost of your host, buy your own domain name from the lowest bidder, and WordPress.com will not force their ads onto your site. Need more reasons? With WordPress.org you can use the plugins of your own choosing, customize your theme (even if you chose a free one), and even advertise on your blog with the ad program of your choice(which you cannot do on WordPress.com).

WordPress blog on GoDaddy

Why GoDaddy? Short answer: $12 per year plus all the benefits mentioned in the previous paragraph. I’ve used GoDaddy in the past and know a lot of people who have also. I’ve never had any real issue with them personally; regardless of what may appear in Google Searches. And if you’re not interested in all the nerdy web host thingy’s like cPanel then GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress options is for you.

How did I switch from WordPress.com to WordPress.org with GoDaddy?

nerd alert!

Some of the information I’m linking to below is very technical and is geared toward nerds and bloggers. It may be boring or hard to understand.

I’m a bullet-point guy. So I will use that format to show you the steps I took.

  1. I started with GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress Hosting page and choosing the Starter Bundle. If you want to start more than 1 blog, simple math will tell you that a separate Starter bundle for each blog is cheaper than any of their other bundles.
  2. Go through some initial prompts and settings
  3. Export your old blog and import that file into the new blog
  4. Make any minor tweaks or corrections to make up for things that didn’t get imported
  5. If you’re concerned about losing followers it’s well worth the $13 for 1 year (you really shouldn’t need it longer than that) to signup for WordPress.com’s site redirect upgrade. This upgrade automatically sends all your old blog’s visitors to your new blog.
  6. Make sure you tell your audience that you’re moving!

That’s it! It really is that simple and it will only cost you approximately $20-30 per year (pus an additional $13 for the first year if you choose to use the WordPress.com site redirect upgrade.

Conclusion

Looking for a free, simple, place to have your own blog? WordPress.com is for you. Want more freedom to choose your own plugins, advertise on your own terms and customize your look? You’re better off with WordPress.org and I would recommend GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress option because it is just as simple as WordPress.com (if not more so) and extremely inexpensive.

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