How To Redirect a Blogspot Blog To Another Site

If you’ve been using blogger as your website, you might have decided it’s time to change your CMS. And that might also mean switching from the standard .blogspot.com address to a custom domain. But how do you ensure that the search authority and visitors from your current site are transferred to your new one as effectively as possible? Well, here’s how to redirect a Blogspot blog to another site.

How To Redirect a Blogspot Blog To Another Site

Before we get into the exact instructions, it’s worth explaining a little about Blogger and how redirects work between different urls. Or if you want to remove pages from your current website, including after a redesign. One of our main services is assisting with this process for business clients ranging from small websites to massive enterprise solutions. We’ve migrated a large number of websites over the years, and ensured traffic and search rankings are kept as high as possible during the transition.

If you’re in a hurry, already know about website redirects, or find it boring, you can skip the next bit!

 

Blogger and Redirects:

Blogger was originally launched in 1999 as a blog-publishing service by Pyra Labs. The company was founded by Meg Hourihan and Evan Williams, who also went on to co-found Twitter and Medium. Blogger itself was acquired by Google back in 2003. And although new features have regularly been added, the service itself hasn’t radically changed for a long time now. So although it’s still a very popular way to start blogging and publishing content online, many people find they want to switch to an alternative like WordPress after a while.

By default, your Blogger site will have an address ending in blogspot.com. If you’ve bought a custom domain for your site, e.g. www.thewayoftheweb.net, then everything will work on your new site as long as the urls of your posts stay the same. But your old site will revert back to blogspot.com and display your old duplicate content unless you either delete or redirect it.

However, when urls are being changed or posts are being removed, that’s when redirects are useful. For any permanent changes or deletions, you would want to use what is called a ‘301 Redirect’. This indicates to search engines that the content has been permently moved to a new address. And redirects your users to the new page automatically. So unless you want to completely ditch your old content and let users see a 404 error page, you’d typically put a 301 Redirect into your .htaccess file for PHP websites and web.config for IIS sites.

But editing .htaccess and web.config require server access. And Blogger doesn’t allow that.

Meanwhile adding redirection plugins and services to your new website and domain won’t have any effect on your old blogspot.com address.

But there is a solution. It uses what’s called a Meta Refresh to perform a client-side redirect (rather than the server-side options described above).

How To Redirect a Blogspot Blog To Another Site – Detailed Steps:

Rather than putting an instruction directly onto your server, we’re going to add a Meta Refresh tag to the header of your old blogspot site. This will refresh the page content, and in the process, send visitors to your new website. It does have some downsides, which we’ll outline later. But the advantages will generally outweight the negatives.

And don’t be scared of the code in the steps below. It really is very simple.

Step 1:

Go to Blogger and log into your website. When you’re viewing the main dashboard, click on ‘Theme’ in the left hand menu. You’ll see a preview of your theme with the option to ‘Edit HTML’ under the ‘Live on Blog’ window.

Click Edit HTML and you’ll see the code for your site:

How To Redirect a Blogspot Blog Theme Editing

This can look intimidating, but adding the Meta Refresh code is very simple. You need to locate the <head> tag in the code, and then add the following code straight after it:

<meta http-equiv=”refresh” content=”0;URL=’http://www.yournewwebsite.com/'” />

Obviously you’ll replace yournewwebsite.com with your new url!

I’ve highlighted the relevant code in the example below with a couple of red stars.

How To Redirect a Blogspot Blog Theme With Redirect Code

Now click on Save Theme, and you’re done!

Visit your blogspot.com address and check the redirect works.

 

Meta Fresh: Options and Downsides?

There’s not a huge amount of options available when you have a client-side redirect with a Meta Refresh Tag. The main one is how long it takes for your redirect to work. If you’ve put a message on your site explaining what’s happening, you may want to give your visitors time to see it before they’re sent to your new website.

Luckily, that’s simple. If you take another look at the code:

<meta http-equiv=”refresh” content=”0;URL=’http://www.yournewwebsite.com/'” />

You can see there’s a 0 value after content. Simple adjust that for the number of seconds you want to allow visitors to stay on your old site and see whatever is left there to explain the redirect.

See, easy!

Now for the Meta Refresh downsides.

Unfortunately, being an easy way to redirect visitors without accessing a server means Meta Refresh Tags have often been used by spammers and other people who might be less than honest.

So many SEO specialists will recommend that your refresh time is set to at least 5 seconds to avoid being seen as dubious and incurring a potential problem.

Also due to the spam problem, search engines will generally not pass all of the SEO value of the original site. You’ll still get some benefit, and obviously it’s better than nothing. But using a server-side redirect should generally be seamless for traffic and SEO authority.

 

The Best Solution for Redirecting Blogspot Sites?

Although using a Meta Refresh Tag won’t pass all of the SEO equity of your original blogspot site, it’s still going to pass more than if you didn’t put in any redirect at all. And as long as you keep an eye on your site to ensure you’re not accidentally seen as trying to trick users, then it has the major benefit of ensuring your existing traffic is carried across to your new website.

 

Do you blog?

The start of a new year is almost upon us, and for me it’s a good time to refresh a few things, including my reading list. And I’ve realised that I’ve been awfully rude for a while and not asked what YOU are doing…

So, if you’re reading this and have a blog, leave a link in the comments. It doesn’t have to be specifically about marketing or social media (Some of my absolute favourite bloggers have nothing to do with either subject). Maybe let me know what it’s about and how long you’ve been blogging for? The only rule is that blatant spam blogs harvesting and reposting content from other people will obviously be removed.

So what’s your blog called and where can I find it?

Evan Williams talks Twitter at TED

I’m a big fan of the TED talks, the conferences which started by covering Technology, Entertainment and Design, and now include a huge range of thought-leaders on a variety of topics. (More about TED here)

Somehow I hadn’t got around to watching the talk by Evan Williams from Twitter until I saw a good article about it by Garr Reynolds at Presentation Zen.

One interesting point is how Evan has followed a couple of hunches to build projects – Blogger and Twitter.

Secondly – Twitter was designed as a broadcast medium – one message went out to many.

But users invented the @reply functionality, the API, the use of hashtags, and started using it to raise awareness around issues, raise money for causes, implement marketing and business use, etc.

It’s a pretty quick presentation at just 8 minutes – and worth watching until the end to see what happens when TED Curator Chris Anderson uses Twitter search to look for mentions of Evan Williams.

Google help with changing blog platforms

As someone who moved this blog from Blogger to the current self-hosted WordPress location back in April, I’m keenly aware of the problems you can encounter if you switch blogging platforms.

As a result, I’d defintely advise starting with WordPress, but if you’re not ready to host your own site (It’s really far more simple than it sounds!), then you’re limited to WordPress.com, which has all the functionality, but doesn’t allow you to display any advertising – a pain if you’re trying to see if something might drive some revenue, for example!

And while there are some very well-respected people using Blogger (such as Dave Cushman at Faster Future), and some good resources for some nice templates (such as BloggerBuster), I’m learning far more from the greater flexibility of WP.

Switching from Blogger should be simple in theory, but having exported, I found I had to import into a WordPress.com blog, then export from that into my hosted version – and even then a lot of posts seemed to get lost en route (They’re still on my old Blogger blog awaiting the remote possibility I’ll find the time to finish manually importing them).

Therefore it’s great news that Google (which owns Blogger), has released Google Blog Convert 1.0. It’s from the fantastically named Data Liberation team, and it’s a new Open Source project to allow you to move blog posts and comments from service to service, including Blogger, WordPress, Moveable Type and LiveJournal.

It’s not only great news for anyone considering switching services.

It’s also great news if you want to use the quick and easy implementation of Blogger to get something just up and running with some adverts etc to see if it works, and then switch later.

It certainly means I’m less reluctant about using Blogger to experiment, and I’d be more likely to be enticed back by something suitable.

Moving from Blogger to WordPress – the saga continues

Once more I’ve learned a lesson about doing the appropriate research before jumping into something! My move from Blogger to WordPress ran into problems when I tried the feature to ‘auto-import from blogger’ feature, due to the fact I’m with Godaddy hosting. So I had to export from blogger, import into a WordPress.com blog, then export from there and import into my hosted WordPress blog! And even then 6 months of my blog somehow disappeared, and are still being re-added when I have time.

But on top of that I forgot to put a proper redirect for people visiting my old blog, assuming that a post telling them I’d moved, and the lack of new content would see my old blog gently slip under the waves of the Google search…Wrong!

Not only did my old blog continue to rank higher than this one (Google PR4), and still attract visitors, but if they visited an individual post, there was no indication I’d moved. And I suspect all that duplicate content is why this blog still has a Page Rank of 0. Google no like duplicate content.

Tonight, I finally sorted it out, thanks to the excellent ‘How to redirect Blogger Beta to WordPress instructions here. So now my old blog will finally be removed from Google, visitors are automatically redirected, there’s a direct redirect to individual posts where the importing actually worked, and there’s even a public information notice up explaining!

I get there in the end!

Like what you’re reading? Why not subscribe to my RSS feed and never miss a post?

Importing from Blogger to WordPress with Godaddy hosting

There’s going to be some interruption to posting as I manually import about 6 months of blog posts that appear to have gone missing during my transfer from Blogger to WordPress.

The original import failed completely, until I spotted other users had problems importing – specifically when they are hosted by Godaddy. The easy way around this is to export, and then import to a hosted WordPress.com blog, and then import it from there to your hosted blog.

Worked fine for me until the import failed due to a rogue character somewhere that I just can’t find.

So now it’s Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V for a while, whilst also trying to post some new stuff every so often, and rebuild by Page Rank and link equity…Who would ever transfer blogs!

Moving blogs is worse than moving house…

At least when I move house, it’s just a lot of packing, lifting and unpacking again. But moving blogs is traumatic, particularly switching to WordPress after two years with Blogger.

So far I’ve mastered the arts of hosting, domains, adding themes and plug-ins, and adding a widget or two.

But even with the Feedburner plug-in, I can’t seem to redirect the stock RSS feeds, which is a pain in the backside. I don’t want to start really promoting this new location and trying to recover my Google PR and Technorati ranks etc, until I’ve got some way of tracking any and all RSS subscribers.

*sigh*

Having a proper domain seemed like such a good idea at the time. And at least I’m learning some more…

Well, I’m getting there…

OK, so I still need to sort out all the relevant plugins, widgets etc, etc, but at least I’ve settled on a base template. Finally. Although, to be fair, there are a huge range of templates for WordPress that are all pretty good – especially compared with the limitations of Blogger, which I’m far more familiar with!

So, now to install a plugin to start customising this theme, and porting other any relevant widgets which I’ll be keeping. Then I’ll finally be up to date and ready to rock.

At last.

In the meantime, you can still keep up with the old Way of the Web blog, at http://www.thewayoftheweb.blogspot.com.

And I couldn’t resist starting a new blog on Blogger, just to keep with it, and experiment without splashing out on hosting. I would have switched to the hosted version of WordPress, but I wanted to see how advertising would work. It’s ad http://www.nissannxworld.blogspot.com, and it’s dedicated to the Nissan NX car range. The site was prompted by my own purchase of a 1993 Nissan 100 NX, so it’s very much a personal fun project…

Another big change is on the way…

So far the last 12 months have seen me move house, start a new job, and within the next few days, become a father.

So it seemed the perfect time to make another couple of changes. The first is that I’m currently working on a new home for this blog, which will be at www.thewayoftheweb.net. It means I can finally type the url in seconds, rather than minutes.

I’m also switching to a hosted account with Godaddy, and building the new site with WordPress. I’ve got lots of praise for what Blogger has allowed me to do, but although it’s very easy to set up and use, and the free hosting allows advertising (Unlike the free hosting version of WordPress), it’s quite restrictive with regards to templates etc, and so many sites are instantly recognisable as Blogger creations. Plus, switching to three columns has given me enough space for all the widgets I want, but it’s made the main text space a little claustrophobic, so hopefully my new freedom will enable a bit more space… I’ll keep you posted how the new site is coming along, and make sure there’s plenty of warning, in case you’ve subscribed to my RSS feed etc. Rest assured if I do add the .com domain at some point, .net will remain the main place for RSS feeds etc, so no more changing.

I also invested in danthornton.net, and contacted the current owner of the dot.com version. I’m not too much of an egotist, but it’s just handier for anyone wanting background info, and I’m also conscious that one day, I could have been involved in a far more minor version of the current Shel Israel blogodrama.

So that’s my current position. I’ll still be updating here for a bit longer while I get a template etc I’m happy with, and move across my archives, and then it’ll be all systems go!