Those of you that have been reading my blog for a while may have noticed that in November I changed my blog name. I used to be ‘Just a Little Bit Ginger’, however I felt it was time for a change, one that better suited me and who I am.
Since then I have seen loads of people asking questions about how to do it, and whether or not it is worth it. As I have seen a real benefit from changing my blog name, I’m going to do my best to answer the questions I see most based on my experience.
Should I change my blog name?
The most common question I see people asking on Twitter is ‘should I change my blog name?’. More recently, I have seen a lot of Twitter polls going around too, which is a great way to find out what your readers would prefer.
Ultimately, the decision comes down to you and what you feel is right. I had out-grown my previous blog name, and the time was right to change it to something else. If you’re unsure about whether or not it’s the right thing to do, here are a few sites to help you:
Is it too late to change my blog name?
This is a question I asked myself so many times when I was considering it, however I decided as I was still in my first year of blogging it was better to do it sooner rather than later and while my domain authority (DA) was still quite low. I do however think that this one is up to personal opinion, I have seen some bigger bloggers change their blog names and URL’s quite far down the line and not had a problem.
Is it a lot of hassle to change your blog name and URL?
I didn’t think it was, after I had organised myself. I set a day to do it (I choose a weekend as I work Monday to Friday and wanted to give myself plenty of time incase it went wrong) and had everything prepared beforehand, including my new blog header and blog design.
How do you change your blog name and URL on Blogger?
First of all you need to purchase your new domain, using a hosting site like GoDaddy or 1and1. Once you’ve bought your domain name log onto blogger account and change your blog name or ‘title’ – this is the easy part. To change your blog title go to settings > basic.
To change the URL click on settings > publishing > add a custom domain. Type the name of the new URL you have purchased and click save. You will see an error and two CNAMES listed at this point, and to fix that you need to:
- Each CNAME is composed of two parts: name, label or host and destination, targets or points to. The first CNAME is the same for absolutely anyone, where name is ‘www’ and destination is ‘ghs.google.com’.
- Go to your domain hosting site and select DNS settings in the control panel.
- Enter both the first and second CNAME so that name is ‘www’ and the destination is ‘ghs.google.com’
- Wait around half an hour or so for your DNS to register and the settings to activate.
- Go back to blogger and click settings > publishing > add a custom domain. Once again, type the name of the new URL you have purchased and click save.
If this doesn’t, there are optional extras you can do, including entering
A-records. This is explained in more detail here
How do you change your blog name and URL on WordPress?
First of all you need to purchase your new domain, using a hosting site like GoDaddy or 1and1. Once you’ve bought your domain name log onto your WordPress account and click settings > general. Enter your new web address and click save. For a more in depth tutorial (as I don’t use WordPress) click here
If I change my blog name, will I lose all of my Bloglovin’ followers?
I thought this at first, but Bloglovin’ has a really handy option where you can ‘move followers’. You need to claim both of your blogs, then go to ‘My Blog’ and click ‘Edit Blog Info’. There will be a dropdown menu that says ‘Move Followers’ where you can select which blog you’d like to move to your followers to. It didn’t happen right away for me, and the website does say it can take up to a few hours.
If I change my blog name, will my DA go down?
Unfortunately yes, it will go back down to zero. Your DA is based mainly on the amount of good quality links you have to your site, so when you change your blog name and URL, you’re losing all of the previous links to your site.
Is there a way to get my DA back to where it was quickly?
There are a number of different things you can do to help build your DA back to where it was, however it will never be an over night process. I am two months into my name change and I have a score 7 points lower than what it was when I began, so it is possible. The things you can do include:
- Ask the people or websites that have already linked to you to change where the link goes. You can find free tools online that show you your most valuable links to help with this.
- Make it your main focus for a few months to build good quality links to your site. This could be done by guest posting, purchasing ad spaces etc
- Redirect your old site (Page A) to your new one (Page B), using a ‘301 Moved Permanently’ redirect. This will allow Google to see that Page B is now the new location for Page A.
How do I redirect my old URL to my new URL?
I did my redirect using my hosting site (GoDaddy), as I found it was the least complicated and most efficient. Depending on the site you use redirecting instructions are a little different, so I have included links to some of the most popular domain hosting sites below.
Do I have to redirect my old URL to my new one?
No, but if you want to change your blog name with the least damage to your SEO it’s recommended. My old domain name has expired now, and I haven’t bought it again. This hasn’t made much difference to me, as I didn’t focus on SEO until the last few months before the move. If you are heavily SEO conscious, I would definitely recommend redirecting though.
Can I change my social media names without losing followers?
Yes, I managed to easily change the handles or links to all of my social media account without losing my followers. I think there is a limit to how many times you can change your Facebook page name though, so be wary of that. Another important thing to mention here is that you need to remember to go through and change your website address on each of your social media platforms, so that it links to your new one.
I really hope I have managed to answer everyone’s questions! If you do have any more please comment with them or Tweet me, and I will do my best to edit the post to include them! I am in no way an expert on this, however I think it helps learning from someone else’s experience!
Kirsty Leanne xx
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