Moving Medium.com Posts to Self-Hosted WordPress

Recently, WordPress announced the ability a new import tool to move Medium.com posts to WordPress.com. And, of course, the #1 request was to have a self-hosted tool to do the same thing.

There is a plan for it but there’s no official ETA on a self-hosted plugin or the integration with JetPack… so for now we’ll just have to wait… right? Eh… well, you don’t have to.

A “quick” solution is to simply just migrate your Medium.com posts to your WordPress.com site and then export those posts to self-hosted.

Yes, this is about double the amount of work but it’s not that bad. I did it this morning. Watch:

0 – Make Sure You Have a Clean WordPress.com Site

No posts…!

What I mean by this is that you should have a fresh WordPress.com site with no posts. I think this makes it easy to manage and then when you have to export again it’s just easier to do “All Posts” instead of manually choosing one via a category, etc.

But, you don’t have to do this of course. Continue…

1 – Request Export from Medium.com

Click that button. Or here.

That part is easy. Just click the “Download .zip” file and you’ll get an email that looks like this:

Download that junk.

2 – Head to WordPress.com to Import

Import Medium.com Posts

You can then just upload your zip file. Easy, right? Well, kinda.

I’ll admit that I was uploading a huge batch of files:

993 posts…

My import failed initially:

WordPress.com Failed Import…

And this made me incredibly sad. But, I hit up their support and they told me that they can do up to 15GB zip file. But, they weren’t able to help. So, what I needed to do was to manually reduce the # of posts per zip file.

So, I just deleted all the posts that I really didn’t want to export / import into the WordPress.com system making 993 posts to… 41:

41 posts… more manageable.

And you should then be able to move forward:

Now we wait…

Then you just have to wait for that process to finish.

3 – Check Imported Posts, Sanitize, Export Again

Of course, you should now check to see if the posts were successfully imported into your WordPress.com site. Sanitize and fix anything you need.

Oh, wow. There they are…!

And then, you go ahead and export your WordPress.com posts for your self-hosted WordPress site:

Export! Again!

You’ll get a direct link in an email as well. Yay.

4 – Import to Self-Hosted WordPress Site

And then we head to your own self-hosted WordPress site and import! If you have to install the WordPress.com importer plugin you should, of course, do that.

Don’t forget… WXR File, NOT the .zip file…

Hit that import! Then, of course, you have to wait. Hopefully it doesn’t tank your site. Boom:

Assign those authors! Download those attachments!

You should see success very soon.

5 – Profit

I felt like I should have a #5 on this list… although, if I consider that I had a #0, I already got there… kinda.

So, here’s a good question. Why did I move 40+ posts from Medium.com to my self-hosted blog here? That’s simple. I answer that question here: WordPress is the Smart and Sustainable Solution.

I do love Medium! Remember, I’m building a native macOS app for it. Does this seem contradictory? Damn straight. And I live with that tension every day and that’s okay.

A refreshing UI and UX. Coming soon.

I can like both at the exact same time for very different reasons. I want to plan for a future where both can live together and the potential upside! But, I also want to plan for any potential downside as well. Naturally.

The short story is that I had a project that I was trying to get off the ground and I, for the first time ever, published content exclusively on Medium and their publication system. I now see that that was a bit foolish and I just never had the time to migrate all of it back to my self-hosted WordPress.

I finally did it this morning and I feel good about that. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


Also published on Medium.