How Did the Move to WordPress.com Go?

Last Monday, I decided to switch over my blog to WordPress.com and I explained my reasons in my post Switching to WordPress.com. This week has flown by and while I have not completely finished the move – I still have about 100 more posts to edit and update, I feel very comfortable and yes – happy with how the move went. There are still some tweaking going on here and there, but most of the major work is done.

Theme

I didn’t stay with the theme that I originally had on Monday it was nice, but not exactly what I was looking for. However, I really believe that my current theme is one of the best themes I have ever used. It is neat, clean and presents my blog in a way that is both personal, yet professional looking and I am very happy with the way it turned out.

Header

Why did I choose this header? I think that it shows me for who I am. An middle-aged older guy, with some (come-on) mostly gray hair. Yes I was in the Coast Guard and am proud of being a Coastie retiree. No I don’t live in my past and I don’t want anyone to think that I still want to be on active duty today – I am happily retired thank you.

In the photo, it was a gorgeous day in January (almost 50 degrees) and I had just gotten through running. My hair was a mess, and I was looking back into a bright sun. Let’s be honest, I am not a male model and I never will be, so if you are looking for a tastefully coiffed hairdo and picture of me in a suit or without my shirt on (yeah right) – ain’t happening, it is not who I am anymore. I still clean up pretty good, but there has to be a really good reason.

To be blunt I am an older guy who loves to run and workout, yes I can be a little cantankerous at times and this picture just looks like me now :-).

Widgets

I do miss not having the Feedjit live widget to see who is visiting “A Veteran Runnah” and seeing where they are coming from, but I will live without it. Maybe I should get one of those map widgets, just to have it at the bottom to give me an idea of where people are coming from – have to think on that one.

I am pretty impressed with myself, because I was able to get the subscription widget to work and even figured out how to add Pinterest to it, without breaking things too badly, too many times. Then I finally learned what a custom menu was and used that to connect my Kontactr email client to my blog. It was the only way that would work for me – not perfect but it works.

Are there any widgets that I am missing or really should have here, if so please let me know.

What I like so far

WordPress is easier for me to use than Blogger was – it just feels more intuitive. I like the ability to choose from a list of links, instead having to manually copy and paste to link back to an old post and other “little” things like that. The themes are easy to change and then change/make your own to a certain extent. Plus they work correctly and when you do something it stays that way. Things just seem to work more smoothly here than Blogger.

A big thing that I noticed is that I seem to get a lot more comments on my WordPress blog than I did on Blogger. I don’t know why, but my comments are a lot higher per post. The like button and follow buttons are easy to for readers to use and people coming from WordPress sites do seem to be more likely to those buttons to either like my post or subscribe to “AVR”.

The biggest this is that I have written more.

What I don’t like so far

I haven’t figured out how to automatically add text when I create a new post. For now I have had to manually add my Copyright notice to the bottom of each post, with this theme.

Yes my stats nose-dived, but I expected that to happen, at the same time starting over is tough. I have had to push my blog a little more than I want to, to try to get the stats back up quickly, because of some other things I am attempting to do here.

Some of my favorite widgets don’t work, but I knew that would happen coming in.

Manually updating and editing the old posts is a pain in the butt and takes time I could be writing or doing something else, but it is something that has to be done, to have a well-done blog.

The biggest thing that I miss is the ease that I was able to put my Picassa/Google+ Pictures into my Blogger blog. It is a bit more round-about system on WordPress.com but it works and of course no Adsense, but I knew that coming in too.

I haven’t had any big surprises about not being able to do something in WordPress.com that I really need or want to do.

The reality is that

moving to WordPress is not without its drawbacks, but the benefits far outweighed the negatives. Looking back with 20/20 hindsight I would have started “A Veteran Runnah” here on WordPress, so I would not have had some of these issues, but I didn’t, so I am just doing what I have to do to make the change.

Finally

If I had to do it over again would I move my blog to WordPress.com? Yes!

I don’t have any doubt that I did the right thing by moving “A Veteran Runnah” to WordPress.com. Will it always stay here, I don’t know – it depends on how successful it becomes, if it does well, I may eventually end up moving to a self-hosted WordPress.org blog. Which has more flexibility, but also other headaches.

Now to get back to editing those old posts, so that I can do what I want to do here – write about running and fitness.

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6 comments on “How Did the Move to WordPress.com Go?

  1. Glad you finished the move! You were jamming my reader there for a while 🙂 j/k

    I think your header is awesome! It reflects you perfectly.

    Finally, the comments are probably higher because commenting on Blogger is difficult! Oftentimes when I visit a blogger site, it won’t save my comment. So sometimes I don’t even bother if I know its a Blogger site. WordPress is definitely more user friendly.

    • Brigid – sorry about that, I still have about 95 left to update :(, will try to get them out the way this week so you don’t have to put up with the “extra” junk posts you have already read. I think you might be right on the comments, now that I am using my W/P sign-in it doesn’t work nearly as well and I get frustrated also. It wasn’t nearly as bad when I signed using my Google account, strange isn’t it.

      Harold

  2. Pingback: AVR Week In Review – 1/29/12 « A Veteran Runnah

  3. Pingback: Welcome to A Veteran Runnah – Again « A Veteran Runnah

  4. Pingback: AVR – January 2012 in Review « A Veteran Runnah

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