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Transferring from Google Sites to WordPress

Google Sites and WordPress are both included in the list of popular web building platforms. This doesn’t mean, however, that they complete the same tasks and provide the same level of functionality, similar tools and integrated features.

Yes, the systems make it possible to set up, customize, manage and promote various types of web projects, but they use diverse approaches to do that. This is mainly explained by the niche specialization, implications and capabilities of these services.

While Google Sites is a free, all-in-one DIY website builder (read our review) provided as a part of Google Suite package, WordPress has distinguished itself as a global Content Management System.

As opposed to Google Sites that are mostly used for small personal, educational or business projects, WordPress works best for large-scale projects (you may read our review here). This is the major distinction between the systems that also affects their integrated functionality, applicability and scalability.

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Switching from Google Sites to WordPress makes sense, if you intend to set up a full-featured website, have sufficient coding skills and are ready to invest much time (and budget) into your project. Whether you run an infoportal or a business resource with Google Sites, there is always room for improvement.

WordPress will provide you with a range of advanced tools, flexible settings and powerful plugins to eventually avail your “dream site”. This is when the transition between these two systems will be a reasonable solution.

The decision to move your Google Sites website to WordPress should be responsible and thought-over. Multiple steps should be completed here before you achieve the desired result and you should be ready to deal with all the intricacies and challenges of this process. This is twice more important, if you are a beginner as you have to be sure that your web design proficiency is enough to do that.

Just like any other website migration process, your Google Sites to WordPress transfer will consist of two major stages – content and domain name migration. Special attention should be devoted to traffic redirection required for proper preservation of SEO positions.

To make it a success, review the following article with handy step-by-step guidelines you will certainly appreciate to the advantage.

1. Moving Website from Google Sites to WordPress – Is it Worth It?

You can have multiple reasons to switch from Google Sites to WordPress, but the list of the most popular causes is provided below:

  • If you need web design software that offers much greater flexibility in terms of design and functionality. WordPress has thousands of themes and plugins that make it possible to fully customize your project look and feel. Google Sites offers limited customization options;
  • If you need a more full-featured project and your web design skills are sufficient to set up, customize and further manage it independently;
  • If you intend to set up a web store to sell products or services. WordPress has many powerful eCommerce plugins (like WooCommerce), while Google Sites does not include an eCommerce engine;
  • If you have launched a personal or a business website with baseline functionality yet your company has grown and you face the need to get a core complex and large-scale project;
  • If you require individual and completely personalized website design, moving to WordPress is a nice idea. The CMS grants powerful plugin integration and template customization opportunities.

Regardless of the reason you have to move from Google Sites to WordPress, you have to make sure you do that correctly. However, the result will be worth your effort, time and budget investment. This is because WordPress grants access to advanced tools, integrations and special design customization features yet it also implies programming awareness for better result.

2. Google Sites versus WordPress – What Is the Difference?

The major distinction between Google Sites and WordPress is defined by the software web design approach, goals, implication as well as customization, integration and budget investment peculiarities. To be able to make the unbiased decision, have a look at a brief overview of the major differences below.

Google Sites Editor

To start with, Google Sites is a free and simple all-in-one website builder that does not require any preliminary web design expertise to work with it. It comes as a part of Google’s Suite of productivity tools and seamlessly integrates with other Google services like Google Drive, Google Docs, and Google Sheets. As opposed to it, WordPress is a powerful CMS used for creating blogs, web stores, and other types of projects. As an open-source software, it requires download and installation.

WordPress Editor

Google Sites offers a collection of templates to choose from, making it easy to quickly create a professional-looking website. However, it is limited in terms of customization options and advanced features. WordPress provides a vast range of customizable themes and plugins (free and paid), letting users set up unique and complex websites with advanced features like eCommerce, social networking, membership etc. However, it requires a bit more technical knowledge and can be more challenging to use for beginners.

Google Sites is a cloud-based platform that is hosted on Google’s servers, while WordPress can be hosted on a variety of different web hosting providers. You have to be ready to look for the best host, buy the required plan and handle other related features. This also implies extra financial investment.

Finally, Google Sites is a completely free platform with no hidden fees. WordPress, in its turn, initially comes as a free software yet it additionally requires extra charges for premium templates and integrations as well as hosting, domain and special maintenance costs.

Thus, both Google Sites and WordPress have their own strong and weak points. The choice will eventually depend on your specific needs and goals, affecting the decision regarding migration between the platforms.

3. How to Switch from Google Sites to WordPress – Step-by-Step Guide

Switching from Google Sites to WordPress may seem quite a daunting and time-taking process. As you dive deep into details, though, you will understand that it basically involves two large stages – content and domain name migration. Each stage correspondingly includes a number of steps, completion of which guarantees smooth and successful result. Let’s review each step in details now:

  1. Download and install WordPress: As mentioned above, WordPress requires download and installation. You can either do that independently or start with the choice of a hosting provider as many of them offer a one-click WP installation along with special hosting packages for WP-powered websites.
  2. Select a web hosting provider: If you haven’t chosen a host on the first stage, it’s high time to do that now. There are many hosting providers out there, each offering specific plans, terms, tools and features. Just take your time to research the available options to find one that meets your needs, goals and budget.
  3. Pick a theme: WordPress offers thousands of free and paid templates you can use to customize the look and feel of your website. Lots of them are available directly in the official catalog of the software, while much more can be found online. Pick a theme that is similar to your Google Sites website, or create a new one from scratch for a brand new look.
  4. Export the content: To transfer your content from Google Sites to WordPress, you will have to access your Google Sites account, reach the dashboard and pick the website you would like to transfer. Click on “More” > “Manage site” > “Export site” tabs and then select the file format you are going to export. Right after that, you can click “Download” and proceed to the next step.
  5. Import the content to WordPress: As soon as the export procedure is complete, access your WordPress dashboard, find the “Tools” > “Import” tabs and select the file format you have previously exported from Google Sites. To prevent potential issues, follow the tips and prompts the systems generate to help with your content import.
  6. Set up your web pages and posts: Once the content is imported, you can set up your website pages and posts in WordPress. You can either upload new content or use that from your previous Google Sites project.
  7. Customize your website: WordPress abounds in design customization options that can give your website excellent look and feel. It’s up to you to add images, videos, media files to improve the content quality and its informational value.
  8. Integrate plugins. Depending on your website specialization and topic, you can select and integrate WordPress plugins to improve its performance and help you reach the goals you have set. Plugins can be either paid or free yet their integration requires patience and baseline coding proficiency.
  9. Test your new website: Before you go live with your new website, take your time to properly test it to make sure everything works great. Check for broken links, test the functionality of online forms and integrated extensions and make sure your website pages load fast.
  10. Publish the website: Are you satisfied with your WP website design and performance? If so, go ahead to publish it now.

The steps listed above are not that difficult yet it definitely takes time to complete each of them. By following each point, you can successfully switch from Google Sites to WordPress and create a new, customized website for personal or business use.

4. How to Transfer Own Domain Name from Google Sites to WordPress

As listed above, WordPress is a CMS and, thus, it doesn’t include hosting by default. The good news is that it allows choosing a suitable host out there as their selection is quite expensive.

Having picked the hosting provider, it is high time to define the domain name your website is going to use after the migration. If already have a website published on Google Site, then you may have a domain bought from https://domains.google/. When switching to WordPress, it is desirable to transfer it to the CMS as well. It is also possible to get a new domain from WordPress. In this case, however, you will need to obligatorily redirect the traffic from the old domain to the new one to preserve SEO positions.

If you decide to pick the first option, this is how the migration process will look like:

  1. Check the transfer restrictions. It is important to find out how old your domain is. Google Domains as well as the majority of other registrars require that your domain should be older than 60 days before you can move it to another registrar. If it is, proceed to the next step.
  2. Start the transfer process. Log in to Google Domains and click the domain you would like to transfer.
  3. Go to the top left corner to find the “Menu” tab and then reach the Registration settings.
  4. Click the “Domain Lock” box and check whether the domain is unlocked.
  5. Access the “Transfer Out” tab and get the Authorization code there.
  6. Select the “To a different domain registrar” box and click the “Continue” section.
  7. Sign in to your WordPress account.
  8. Copy the Authorization (EPP) code you’ve got from Google Sites to initiate the migration procedure.
  9. Find the newly-transferred website on the “My Sites” page, reach the “Manage” section and then pick the “Domains” page.
  10. Click the “Add Domain” button, select the “Use a Domain I Own” field and choose the “Transfer to WordPress” option.
  11. Provide the domain name you’d like to move and select the “Site Transfer” button.
  12. Confirm that you have unlocked the domain and wait until everything is set up.
  13. Enter the Authorization (EPP) code, click the “Check My Authorization Code” button and proceed to the next step.
  14. Confirm your contacts, update them, if required and then complete the checkout procedure.
  15. Make the payment and wait for the confirmation email from the registrar.

Generally, it takes around 5-7 days for the registrar to completely transfer the domain. It makes sense to retain your Google Sites account until you make sure the domain name transfer is completed successfully.

5. Professional Google Sites to WordPress Migration Services

Moving a website from Google Sites to WordPress doesn’t seem to be difficult. You can handle the task independently, but this will obviously require more time, effort and skills. You may need to explore external resources to find answers to your questions. If you lack time or don’t have sufficient web design expertise, it will be reasonable to hire professionals who will complete the entire process for you, ensuring perfect result with no hassle at all.

The service that has distinguished itself due to their professional assistance with website migration is SiteBuilders.PRO. They are knowledgeable in all the aspects and stages of the migration process, no matter what platform you use. Google Sites and WordPress are not an exception.


SiteBuilders.PRO team includes industry pros only, who have worked with Google Sites and WordPress and, thus, are aware of all the nuances,pros and cons of each platform. Prior to moving your project, they will explore it in details to come up with the best individual migration strategy.

They will thoroughly transfer your website entities (media files, posts, graphic and text content, SEO settings, hosting/domain etc.), manually completing each stage. What’s more, they will eagerly offer ongoing project maintenance to help you deal with all types of problems you may encounter when running your website.

Bottom Line

Switching from Google Sites to WordPress may ensure a range of benefits for website owners. WordPress is a flexible and customizable CMS with powerful control over website design, functionality and content. So, if you expect to get a full-featured web project with impressive integrations and advanced customizability, switching to it from Google Sites certainly makes sense.

The question is: will you be able to cope with the task independently or is it better to hire a professional to do that for you? The thing is that switching from Google Sites to WordPress is not a one-time task.

You will need to regularly update your website afterwards to ensure that it is secure, functional, and optimized for search engines. This may require ongoing maintenance, including updates to themes, plugins and other software. Thus, the decision to cooperate with professionals seems more than reasonable and responsible here.

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