Did you recently switch from Blogger to WordPress and see a huge drop in stats? Here’s a few reasons why that may have happened (and how to remedy it.)
Not a day goes by that I don’t see someone on Facebook talking about how their traffic plummeted after they were moved from Blogger to WordPress. This can be incredibly frustrating, especially when you are trying to grow your blog and make money!
When I moved from Blogger to WordPress, my traffic increased. I didn’t see the big drop others had warned me about. I think I may have given up if I had. While I’m sure some of that was luck, I also believe it’s because I spent time making sure I did everything right. Since then, I’ve transferred tons of other blogs to WordPress, and fixed botched migrations. So, I thought I’d share a few reasons why your traffic may have dropped when you transferred from Blogger to WordPress
1) Mobile error
Did you have the blogger mobile site enabled? Then this is definitely an error you need to be aware of. It’s something that only started happening recently (as far as I can tell), but it can have a major impact on your traffic! Redirect plugins, such as Blogger 301 Redirect, are supposed to prevent this error from happening, but they haven’t. Basically, if a link ends with the =m?, it won’t redirect to the correct page. Instead, it will result in a 404 error. Fortunately, it’s an easy fix that I describe over here. You will need to access your .htaccess file via cpanel, but it’s not too hard. If you need help with this, I charge $10 to do it!
2) Redirection not set up correctly (or at all)
This is almost always the first thing I look for. Many times, people haven’t set up the redirect correctly, and in several instances, even at all. If you are moving from Blogger to WordPress, you need to make sure you are redirecting your old traffic. There are quite a few different plugins out there, and they aren’t all great. The one that I always use is called Blogger 301 Redirect. It works the best, in my opinion, and seamlessly redirects the traffic. A lot of redirects I’ve seen set up show up with a message on blogger saying, “This site has been redirected, click here to see the new site,” which probably will lose you a lot of pageviews, or it just redirects to the home page.
So, I recommend using Blogger 301 for your redirect. All you have to do is install it, go into the settings, select all the boxes except for the top two, and then copy the code. Then, go to Blogger, select “Template”, scroll to the bottom of the page, and then click on “Revert to Classic Template.” At that point, you’ll remove all the code in the template that is there, and paste the code from the plugin. Press save, and viola!
3) RSS Feed not redirected
This is a big one if you have a lot of subscribers to your email list or just subscribed via a feed reader like BlogLovin’. When you move to WordPress, you MUST go to feeds.feedburner.com, click on the site you are working on, then edit feed details, and make sure the original feed address is http://yoursite.com/feeds. If it is not, it will not pull new posts. This is essential, even if you don’t have any subscribers via Feedburner, because it will help update the many different feed readers that are out there.
If you are sending out your emails through something like MailChimp, you will need to manually go into the newsletter you have setup, and change the feed address. This will ensure there is no drop in your readers via emails!
4) Permalinks not the same
The default Blogger permalink structure and the default WordPress permalink structure is not the same. If you don’t change the WordPress permalink structure to match Blogger, it will cause a lot of 404 errors for your site. So, when you are logged into WordPress, go to Settings — Permalinks, and make sure you have this custom permalink structure:
Then, you’ll need to download Maintain Blogger Permalinks. Go to that site, download the plugin, and then install it on your WordPress site. Then go to “tools” and and “maintain blogger permalinks.” You just have to run this once, and it will change the post name in your permalink to what it was on Blogger. Just delete the plugin once you’re done, because you won’t need it again!
5) GA Double Installed on Blogger
This is usually one of the saddest situations I encounter when it comes to a drop in traffic, but it’s very common. For some reason, people often have Google Analytics double installed on Blogger. Typically, they have it installed in their layout (via a widget) as well as under settings where you can paste the code, or in their template files. This will cause an inflation in your page views.
6) Relied on Blogger Stats
If you only ever used Blogger Stats, you’ll be in for a big surprise when you start using Google Analytics or even WordPress stats via JetPack. Blogger stats are infamously inflated – I’d say close to 3x what your actual stats are. The reason for this is because it tracks bots, crawlers, etc., which really shouldn’t be considered traffic. I always recommend having Google Analytics set up
7) Temporary URL
When you switched to WordPress, did you set it up using a temporary URL, so your site could remain live in Blogger? While this isn’t the best method to switch, it is often the most preferred (editing your host file is the best, but that requires a little more technical knowledge.) If you did use a temporary URL, it is very important that you update all the URLs after your site is live in your domain name. I always recommend using the Velvet Blue Update URL Plugin to do this.
8) Bad Luck
I hate to say this, but it’s true – sometimes, you just get some bad luck. I switched a few people right after the holidays, and while it may have looked like their traffic dropped due to the WordPress migration, it was actually more likely because most everyone sees a drop in traffic. Other people just have a drop in traffic for no apparent reason – and honestly, it may have happened if they had stayed on Blogger! All in all, I think that most people do not regret switching to WordPress (after the initial “ah, what did I do!” period), and I think it’s an important move to make.
What you can do:
If you’ve checked all the above, and everything still seems to check out, here are a few things you can do:
- Submit sitemap to webmaster tools – this will help index your site faster.
- Install WordPress SEO plugin and follow these instructions to set it up
- Promote your content like crazy – social networks, blog directories, link parties!