WordPress.com is a superb platform for those who are just starting out for blogging. But once your blog is successful and bringing more traffic, its time to move to your own self hosted WordPress platform to get more advantages. Moving from WordPress.com to WordPress.org is simple and anyone can do it. The process is not as hard as you might think.

For starters or beginners, WordPress.com should be enough to introduce yourself towards blogging. But once you decide to turn into a full time blogger then you’ll want more control over your blog. More control in the sense that you can install any theme of your choice, you can install any plugin of your choice, edit the coding of your files and much more.

There are several reasons why you should consider migrating from WordPress.com to WordPress.org:

  • Install themes and plugins of your choice. Get complete control over the look of your blog.
  • Optimize and improve your blog’s loading time by installing plugins like W3 Total Cache for example.
  • You can also install and use WordPress Multi Site (also known as WordPress Network) .
  • Turn your blog in to a multi-user site where everyone can contribute to your site and earn from advertising revenue.
  • Website address like myblog.com (for WordPress.org) looks far more professional compared to myblog.wordpress.com (for WordPress.com)
  • You can have complete control over your blog/website and no limitations.

Thus, using self hosted WordPress platform has got its own advantages. Before following this tutorial, you’ll need to purchase a domain name and hosting service.

How to Move from WordPress.com to WordPress.org?

  1. Login to your WordPress.com blog and start doing some maintenance steps like deleting spam comments, approve or delete pending comments, clean out draft or pending posts and delete users that you think are not needed anymore. These steps will ensure that you don’t bring the junk to your new installation.
  2. Its time to “export” your old XML file. To do this, login to your WordPress.com account, go to Tools > Export. Ensure that “All content” is selected and then click on “Download XML” button.
    export wordpress
  3. We’re half way done through the process. Now install WordPress self hosted platform on your web host (hosting provider). To do this, you can use Softaculous or Fantastico from cPanel which are one click auto-installer. Once the installation is done, proceed to step 4.
  4. Login to your new installation (WordPress.org self hosted) and go to Tools > Import
    import wordpress
  5. Click on WordPress and then you’ll be prompted to install importer. Click on Install Now button.
    install importer
  6. When this is done, click on “choose file” and locate the XML file that you’ve downloaded earlier. Now click on Upload file and import button.
    import wp
  7. Next, check mark Download and import file attachments and then click on Submit. You may also want to assign the posts to a certain author.
    import wp

That’s all you need to do. Depending on your posts, pages, comments and attachments it will take time to complete the import process. Wait for this process to complete and then you’ll see a screen telling you “All done. Have fun!”. When you see this screen, you can safely assume that the process is complete.

For large blogs, the process may take more time. If the process freezes in between, you can start importing the XML file again. Some of you may face the upload size limitation by your web host. In such a case you need to contact your web host and ask them to increase the upload limit from PHP.ini file. Or you can try doing this yourself by opening PHP.ini file:

; Maximum allowed size for uploaded files.
upload_max_filesize = 10M

Increase the limit from 2MB to 10MB as per above example.

Next, you can start configuring your WordPress blog as per your wish. Install themes and plugins and give your blog the unique look that you’ve desired.

Note: The same process can also be followed for moving from WordPress.org to WordPress.com (which would be in a very rare case).

Guided Transfer: Let WordPress Transfer it for you

If the above process sounds too technical, then the good folks at WordPress can help you. They offer a service named as Guided Transfer using which they’ll do all the hard work to transfer your WordPress.com site to WordPress.org for a $119 fee. Guided transfer include:

  • Installing WordPress at the recommended host of your choice.
  • Transferring over your entire WordPress.com site.
  • Installing and configuring plugins that you’ve been using at WordPress.com.
  • Switching your domain.
  • Providing support on your new WordPress installation for a two week period.

The only condition is that you’ll need to purchase hosting from WordPress partner companies like Bluehost, HostGator, Dreamhost, MediaTemple and GoDaddy.

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