General

Coming from a self-hosted WordPress site?

Welcome to WordPress.com! Nice to see you.

This support doc will walk you through the process of migrating content from a self hosted version of WordPress.org to WordPress.com. Not sure of the difference? Check out this support document.

Table of Contents

Migrate Your Content to Your WordPress.com Site
Connect Your Domain
A Note on Permalinks
Move Your Jetpack Stats and Subscribers
Set Up Your Theme
Connect to Your other Social Networks
Learn About the Block Editor
Engage with the WordPress.com Community

Some of the instructions from this guide are referring to the WP Admin dashboard. You can get to this dashboard by adding /wp-admin to the end of your site’s url (e.g.: example.wordpress.com/wp-admin)


Migrate Your Content to Your WordPress.com Site

The migration process transfers the following content to your WordPress.com site:

  • Posts
  • Pages
  • Comments
  • Tags and Categories
  • Photos and other embedded media

To import your content:

  • Generate an export file from your self-hosted WordPress site. Log into that site’s dashboard, then go to Tools → Export, and follow the instructions to download your export file.
  • Be sure to keep the old site live until your content is completely imported.
  • Log into your WordPress.com account.
  • Go to My Sites Tools Import.
  • Select Start Import next to the WordPress option:
Import from Self Hosted

Your import will not include theme, plugins, custom domain, or personal user settings. You will set those up below.

  • Upload the .xml import file you obtained from the old site.
  • Once the importer has finished processing the uploaded file, click the Start Import button.
  • You’ll be asked to reassign the authors of the imported items to an existing user on the new site before the import process starts.
    • If you’re importing content from a site that has multiple authors, it’s a good idea to create those users’ profiles in your new site first.

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Connect Your Domain

Each of our plans includes the ability to attach a custom domain, either by registering a new domain (included free for a year), or using a domain you already own.

If you want to use the domain you were using with your previous site, you can either:

  • Map the domain (so it stays registered with the current registrar, but is pointed to your new site)
  • Transfer the domain (so WordPress.com is the new registrar and you would pay us for renewal each year)

You can see more information about adding domains here.


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Sites on WordPress.com use the following Permalink structure:

http://example.com/2014/10/21/sample-post/

You may have a custom permalink structure in place on your self-hosted site which is different to the above. In general, the WordPress software will try and match the old URL to the relevant URL on the migrated site.

For example the URLs:

http://example.com/21/10/2014/sample-post/

http://example.com/21/10/sample-post/
http://example.com/2014/sample-post/

will all resolve to the WordPress.com URL:

http://example.com/2014/10/21/sample-post/

Even just using the following will match the correct URL (presuming there is only one post with ‘sample-post’ in the URL on your WordPress.com site)

http://example.com/sample-post

As a result, there’s no need to worry about broken links from other domains due to differing permalink structures!

The one main exception to this is for sites that use a post-id structure, like the following:

http://example.com/?p=1337


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Move Your Jetpack Stats and Subscribers

If you want to move your stats and subscribers from your Jetpack site over to your WordPress.com site, please contact Jetpack with the URLs of the sites you’re moving from and to.


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Set Up Your Theme

We have hundreds of themes at WordPress.com, with new ones added regularly. Explore your options in the Theme Showcase. You can see this support document for more information on selecting, previewing, and customizing a new theme.

Sites on our WordPress.com Business plan or higher have the ability to install custom third party themes and plugins. If you want to use the theme you were utilizing on your old site, you can upload it to a site on our Business plan if it’s not in our Theme Showcase already.


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Connect to Your other Social Networks

WordPress.com includes a tool called Publicize that automatically shares your posts on Facebook,  TwitterTumblr, and LinkedIn — it’s also part of the Jetpack plugin, so you might have used it on your old site.

To enable it, head to My Sites → Marketing → Connections. Click “Connect” and follow the prompts to approve the connection:

Publicize connections

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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Learn About the Block Editor

You may already be familiar with our new Block Editor. If you didn’t use it on your previous self hosted site, you might want to review this support document to check out some of the features.


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Engage with the WordPress.com Community

When you join WordPress.com, you get 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 stuff to read.
  2. Catch up with blogs you follow.
  3. Post to your blog on the fly (as we just reviewed).

Find great reads

For a jump start, check out our hand-picked content at Discover.

To find blogs of interest, 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. Click “Manage” next to “Followed Site,” 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 also decide how you want to view new posts — they’ll all be collected in the “Followed Site” 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. To change or update your email delivery settings globally, head to your Manage Delivery Settings page and choose your settings.

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