Configuration

Import »Coming from Tumblr?

Howdy, Tumblrite! We’re glad you’ve decided to bring your blog to WordPress.com. Welcome!

To smooth the transition, we’ve created this guide just for you. In a few minutes, you’ll be up and blogging in the biggest community of creators on the internet. Setup will be a pleasant memory, and you’ll be back to writing poetry, aggregating memes, sharing photography, writing posts, or whatever you use your corner of the web for.

Import your content automagically

We’ve built a handy tool that connects to your Tumblr blog and brings your content right over to WordPress.com — no need to export or import.

Head to your WordPress.com dashboard. There are a few ways to find it:

Go straight to your dashboard by entering http://yourblognamehere.wordpress.com/wp-admin in your browser’s address bar, and nter your WordPress.com login info.

Log in to WordPress.com and click the “My Blogs” tab to access a listing of all the blogs you own or administer. Under the blog’s name, you’ll see “Blog admin.” Click it. Voilà: dashboard.

You’ll see a list of tabs running down the left-hand side of the page. Hover over “Tools,” select “Import” from the menu, and pick Tumblr. Click “Connect to Tumblr to begin:”

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We’ll ask for access to your Tumblr account. We promise to use this power only for good, so click “allow:”

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The importer will fetch a list of your Tumblr blogs. Click “Import this blog” to get going.

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You can watch the progress on this page, and will get a confirmation email when the import is complete.

Note: If you see the red “X” and “Custom Domain” where the “Import this blog” button should be, your Tumblr has a custom domain that you’ll need to temporarily disable. Head to your Tumblr Dashboard, click on “Settings,” and un-check “Use a Custom Domain:”

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Refresh your WordPress.com dashboard, and the “Import this blog” option will appear. Automagic!

We try to make sure that all your Tumblr content is imported. Videos are imported into VideoPress, and other embeds are converted to WordPress.com-friendly formats. If the importer finds something it can’t convert, we’ll let you know in the “import completed” email.

Note: the importing tool transfers all your content — text, photos, videos, other embedded files — but not your theme, custom domain, or personal settings. You’ll set those up yourself (we’ll help).

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If you used a custom domain at Tumblr, use Domain Mapping to connect it to WordPress.com. Domain mapping is a paid upgrade that costs $13.00 per domain, per year, and is a three-step process:

1. Update your nameservers to point to WordPress.com.

Your domain points to Tumblr, so you’ll need to change that by updating your nameservers. We’ve got instructions for doing this with the most popular domain registrars, as well as a general explanation.

Since Tumblr uses A and CNAME records, you’ll also need to delete those settings. If our instructions aren’t enough, your domain registrar can help.

2.  Add the Domain Mapping upgrade to your WordPress.com blog.

Navigate to the Domains page. Click on Map an Existing Domain and follow the instructions to add your domain. Note that the change may take a few hours to go live.

3.  Set your newly mapped domain as your blog’s primary address.

When the purchase is complete, go back to the My Domains page, check the button next to the domain you just mapped to your blog, and click “Update Primary Domain.”

If you use an email address with your custom domain, there are a few more steps. First, you’ll need an email host, like Google Apps or Zoho Mail, and then you’ll need to create some custom DNS records — find detailed instructions here.

Note: the mapping cost is unrelated to the amount you pay your registrar to own the domain itself. You must continue renewing your domain with your registrar even after you map it to WordPress.com.

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Customize your blog

Pick a theme

A theme is a template for your site, like on Blogger. We have over 210, with new options added weekly. Explore your options in the Theme Showcase, where you can sort themes by appearance and feature — minimalist themes, grid-based themes, themes for photographers, themes for wedding sites, three-column themes, you name it.

(Search for “tumblelog” to see themes best suited for Tumblr-style sites; they support different post formats, like links, images, galleries, videos, quotes, statuses, and asides. You can post those on any WordPress.com site, but tumblelog-style themes add enhanced formatting to different post types.)

You can preview  any theme from Appearance → Themes in your dashboard. The preview also opens the Customizer, which lets you experiment with fonts, colors, and other theme options. Custom fonts and colors require the $30 Custom Design upgrade, as does the ability to edit CSS.

(There are lots of things you can customize without an upgrade. Add a header or background, upload your logo, create a static home page — all with free features. Check out what these three bloggers did.)

Add some widgets

Like on Tumblr, widgets add more functions to your blog and let you pull in content from other online hangouts. WordPress.com has dozens of widgets — check out the full list. To add one, go to Appearance → Widgets, and drag and drop a widget to your sidebar; it’ll update on your blog immediately.

Many widgets have configuration options like “number of items to display” (e.g., the Recent Posts widget) while some will need or other information from you (e.g., a link for your Flickr stream). Others, like text and image widgets, are free-for-alls. If you tweak a widget, be sure to click “Save” to cement the changes.

Go mobile

We assume you want your blog to look good on mobile devices, so we’ve taken the liberty of checking off the “Enable Mobile Theme” box, found in Appearance → Mobile. People using a mobile device will see either:

  • A responsive version of your theme, if the theme you’ve chosen is responsive. Every new theme is responsive, and a number of existing themes are, too — see which ones.
  • Minileven, if your theme is not responsive. Minileven is a version of our Twenty Eleven theme designed to be clean and quick on phones. Readers can click the “Full Site” link to see your regular theme.

Feel free to turn the mobile theme off, but be aware that disabling it will make your site slower to load on phones and tablets, and it might not look the same (or very good).

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Connect to other social networks

You’ve got a tool called Publicize that lets you share your posts on sites like FacebookGoogle+TwitterPath, and LinkedIn— even Tumblr, if you want to get  meta. Use the valuable minutes you save to get a head start on your next post, or to bake us some cookies (we like oatmeal raisin).

To enable Publicize, go to Settings → Sharing in the dashboard, and click “Add new connection” next to a service:

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Once you’ve enabled at least one service, you’ll see Publicize information when you write a new post in your dashboard. You can opt out from any of the services for a particular post, or include a custom message (the default is post title). Get all the details here.

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Post some new stuff

On WordPress.com you can publish posts in a few ways — from within the WordPress.com Reader, your dashboard, a mobile app, or by email. (If you want the full monty on posts, pages, and uploading media, head to the tutorial.)

Posting from the Reader

When you’re logged in to your account, click the “New Post” button on the top right of the toolbar. Choose a post format – Text, Photo, Video, Quote, or Link — and start adding your content. (Text also allows a combo of text and images).

Along with your post, add a title and some tags – tags group related posts together on your blog and in the WordPress.com Reader, which makes them easier to find. When you’re ready, click “Publish Post.” You’ll see a confirmation screen in a few seconds.

Note: when you’re posting from the Reader, you won’t see Publicize options. Your post will be shared, but you won’t be able to de-select any connections or put in a custom message. For that, post from the dashboard.

Posting from the Dashboard

Head back to your dashboard, hover over “Posts” tab, and pick “Add new.” This opens the Visual Editor, a robust tool for writing, inserting media, and configuring post-specific settings like Publicize. You’ll also have a Text Editor, if you prefer to write in HTML (here’s more on the difference).

You’ve also got a powerful Media Manager to upload, edit, and manage images, audio, and video files; click “Add Media” to open it. Drag and drop files from your desktop, edit images, collect them into galleries, and more.

Posting from an app

There’s a WordPress app for just about every device. Pick your flavor, learn more, and download:

Install the appropriate app, and log in with your WordPress.com username and password. To post, tap on the “+” sign. You’ll be able to add a title and tags, upload photos from your library or take a new picture, preview, and publish your post.

Posting by email

To post by email, create a unique email address in WordPress.com. When you email it, your subject line becomes the post title and the email text becomes the post content. Create your address in the dashboard: click on “My Blogs.” Next to your blog’s name, click “Enable” to generate your address.

You can also add formatting and images to posts by email:

  • If your email client that supports HTML, your post will have as much of your formatting as possible (the Post by Email system will strip unnecessary HTML tags so that your post is displayed correctly). Most email clients support this.
  • To include photos or other images, attach them to the email. Multiple images will be displayed as a gallery. If you have the VideoPress upgrade, you can also send video clips.

If you post by email frequently, there are a variety of shortcodes you can include to further control your post — change your image gallery to a slideshow, edit your Publicize settings, delay publication, add tags, and more. Learn more about post-by-email shortcodes.

Engage with the WordPress.com community

When you become a part of WordPress.com, you’re getting two awesome services for the price of none: your blog, plus your Reader, which brings every WordPress.com blog together in one easy-to-search place. In the Reader, you can:

  1. Find great reads.
  2. Catch up with blogs you follow (once you’ve found them).
  3. Reblog posts you love.

Find great reads

For a jump start, our friend finder will check out your Google, Facebook, and Twitter contacts and spit out a list of blogs they write on WordPress.com. To explore a bit more, check out our hand-picked content — Freshly Pressed are editors’ picks, while Recommended Blogs collects great blogs by topic.

To head into the unknown, use the topic list in the Reader  – the list of terms running along the right side — to search for whatever you want. We’ve pre-populated it with some of the more popular topics, but you can add and delete topics at will to create a custom listing.

You can also follow non-WordPress.com blogs — Blogger, Tumblr, whatever. Click “EDIT” next to “Blogs I Follow,” and put in the URL of any site you want to keep up with.

Catch up with bloggers you follow

When you follow a blog, you can decide how you want to get new posts — they’ll all be collected in the “Blogs I Follow” tab, or you can get them via instant, daily, or monthly email. You might choose the instant email option for blogs your particularly love, or the daily email for a blog that posts multiple times a day. If you’re committed to inbox zero, you might opt for no email at all.

To change or update your email delivery settings globally, head to Manage Delivery Settings.

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Reblog posts you love

One of the best parts about blogging in a community is interacting and sharing with other bloggers. You can show your appreciate for a post with a Like (although we encourage your to elaborate with a comment), and you can share finds with your readers by reblogging.

Reblogging is a quick way to share posts published by other WordPress.com users while allowing the author to control their content. When you reblog a post, an excerpt shows up on your site along with a link to the original and any commentary you’ve added.

You can reblog from within the Reader or from an individual blog. (When you’re logged in to WordPress.com, you’ll see a reblog option in the toolbar that’s always at the top of your screen.)

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We’ve cherry-picked the bits and pieces of WordPress.com wisdom most important for Tumblrites here — there’s more to learn, but you should be ready to go. To see the full version of this tutorial, visit Learn.WordPress.com. Happy blogging!

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