How to migrate Blogger to WordPress Part 2 – Setting up Featured images, Tags and Categories
In the first part i told you how to prepare to move your blog, how keep the same URLs in WordPress like you did in Blogger and how to import data from Blogger to WordPress. This part is about fixing whatever you’ve got to fix next, and there could be a lot of things! WordPress and Blogger have a lot of differences, like WordPress posts requiring Featured image that has to be stored locally in the WordPress’ own folder and not on some other hosting. You could have been using MS Live Writer for your Blogger posts, so there could be images used in your blog and stored at Picasa servers because of it, there could be leftover HTML from Blogger that is no longer valid, and images stored at remote servers, and other things.
Fix the Featured images
As i mentioned, WordPress has this thing called Featured images. In Blogger, to display an image on the main page along with a post’s text, people just put that image in a post, and the image could be stored anywhere. In WordPress, an image has to be attached to that post and stored in WordPress’ Media gallery (which is in a local folder) to be available – otherwise, your main page in most themes will only contain text.
Also, upon checking your old posts, you might have found that pictures you were using were stored on some remote (i.e., someone else’s) servers and are no longer available. It would be a good idea to import those images that ARE available, before they’re getting lost.
Using plugins to import remote images to WordPress
The necessity of importing remote images into your blog brings us to a point: you will have somehow to download at least all the first pictures from your posts, and probably other images too, and insert them into WordPress.
And there’s no good fully automated way to go about that. Ouch.
But there are some plugins that can at least do PART of the job, so i’m going to list the ones i used and what they’re good for.
It looks for the first image in your post, saves it to your Media gallery and automatically sets it as the Featured image for that post. It works most of the time, but it might also attempt to download other images in the same post, and if there is a video inserted from YouTube in that post, it will mess the video’s code, so you can’t use it for posts with videos.
I used it for many posts, but some still had to be done manually – you still would have to open the first picture in your Blogger post, save it, attach to your WordPress post and set it as Featured.
Made by some Chinese guy, but don’t be afraid, that’s okay. The plugin is supposed to download remote images and create thumbnails inserted into a post automatically.
This plugin works half of the time. I found that it somehow won’t save pictures stored on Picasa servers. Instead of saving them, it will create empty files in the Media gallery (that you have to delete) and corrupted thumbnails that have no pictures in them. It works for most pictures stored elsewhere, though. It also mixes video and images and will create corrupted entries replacing a video code, so don’t use it on posts with attached video.
In the end, i just gave up and left those images on Picasa servers to be where there are, only downloading the images meant to be Featured and those on remote servers.
Tags and Categories
Now, another difference between WordPress and Blogger is that Blogger only had tags, while WordPress has tags AND categories, and posts could be assigned to the both of them. So, to tidy things up, you would need to convert some of your tags to categories (or, perhaps, the other way around). There is a plugin to do that, too – Categories to Tags Converter. You should use it on your posts, WordPress allows bulk tag editing in posts, just select them and use Quick Edit.
That’s it, we’re halfway through the process now! There will be a part 3, I will post it later.