Finally I moved my blog to my own server. And of course, if you’re reading the post, you know the new URL :P. My new blog will be a self hosted WordPress blog, unlike the previous, hosted on WordPress site.
Once I jumped to self hosted WordPress, I figured there were handful of features missing compared to WordPress.com site. This was a bit of surprise to me at first, but then finding all the features of Freemium product in a completely free package is a bit childish.
Thankfully, the WordPress.org is blessed with outstanding community that helps it to build thousands of plugins for almost any needs. So I decided to implement features of WordPress.com through these enhancements. Here’s what I did –
Before the Start -
You need to export the content of existing blog to this new blog. Following steps were easy to understand and simple to use and I was ready to sail on new blog!
- Go to the Dashboard of existing blog, and find Tools section in the bottom of left side pane.
- Select Export option, and then select All Content and press download.
- Now go to Dashboard > Tools of new blog site.
- Select Import here and choose WordPress. You can also import from other blogs if you wish to.
- Now upload the file you’ve just downloaded from previous blog.
- You can select to download all your media from old blog to new blog. Optionally, you can also change the post author. Done!
Once the contents get in place, it;s make for blog makeover. I’ll walk you through WordPress.com features that I’ve implemented in my blog with just 3 plugins.
This is nifty little feature of WordPress.com I missed a lot in my blog. With Publicize, as soon as user Publishes the blog, it gets shared through various social networks. Nice way of promotion, right?
After some searching, I found WP-AutoSharePost that does the same thing as Publicize, but it shares only on Facebook and Twitter. But it’s quite easy to configure. Install the plugin, follow their instructions (you need to create apps for Facebook and Twitter) and you’re ready to share your blog to the world.
Auto link/tag suggestions -
Another cool feature WordPress.com has is the way it suggests tags for the blog post and link suggestions for the terms that appear in the post. This really enhances the blog post and in order to have this great feature on your own blog, you just need Zemanta. This nifty plugin not only does the link and tag suggestions, but it also suggest the related posts and images to be used in our own blog. Pretty neat, ha!
Stats, comments, Sharing, Subscription, Proofreading, WP.me shortlink and Video Shortcode -
Too many features and just one more plugin to go. Unbelievable, right? But you’ll be more surprised to know that the plugin in concern offer much more than what I originally need it for. Welcome, Jetpack. With Jetpack, you can see statistics of your blog, have social sharing options for each blog post, gives the blog ability to add comment by logging-in through social network, etc. It also adds features in posting screen with proofreading, wp.me shortlink, and video shortcodes, all of which i available in WordPress.com site. Jetpack also packs more feature under it’s belt, but I have not tested them yet as I just wanted to get all the WordPress.com features.
Do note that if you’re installing Jetpack for it’s comment features, read this article to get it working properly.
With all these plugins, I mostly done emulating WordPress.com website. Although there are many features are yet to be tested in real world (I still don’t know if the sharing works, for example), I feel I have all the features I need.
I hope you’ll find the post useful, especially if you’re also planning to have self-hosted blog. If you think something else is required in this post, let me know.