Google Plus Shutdown - Blogger Implications

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Google+ will be shutting down in 2019 and what this means to Blogger
As most of you probably know by now Google is officially shutting down the consumer version  Google+ in April 2019. Unfortunately for Blogger admins, this has some significant impacts for any Blogger blogs tightly integrated with Google+ widgets, comments and profiles. But, for me the real tragedy on this change is just how much Google had pushed Blogger owners to integrate Google+ into their blogs especially back in 2012 to 2014 like these - Socialize and Grow your Blog with Google+ or Automatically Share your Posts to Google+.

I know I was very tempted to convert my comments and add the Google+ widgets in BloggerTipsPro but thankfully I hadn't made the move since I already had so many native Blogger comments which was something I didn't want to lose. If Plus had grown a bit more I might have jumped.

So, what does this mean to you, the Blogger admin of one or more blogs? Well, the news isn't great. First, let's start with the easy change. If you have an About gadget on your blog and it is using the Google+ profile, it will be automatically converted back to the native Blogger profile like mine here. However, it will be blank and you will be prompted to create that profile with a image.

Next, all of the Google+ widgets will be removed from the Layout editor and from your blogs which might cause some layout issues if you have them in strategic positions on your blog layout. These include the +1 Button, Google+ Followers and Google+ Badge. This change is coming in two days from when I'm writing this post. Your options can be to find other social media gadgets to plug into these spots.

Then the Google+ share button will disappear from the navigation bar and from the social sharing buttons in posts and pages. This shouldn't affect you much except if you've added custom social sharing Javascript buttons on your blog. Those are typically provided by third party developers and will hopefully remove the Plus buttons.

Finally, the real kicker is comments. If you used Google+ comments instead of Blogger comments then you don't have many options. It's a bit uncertain just how comments will convert. According to Google any posts done from Blogger will convert whereas Google+ comments will not. So, if you had comments posted in Google+ by other Plus users, those will not convert. It seems there are some options to try and backup any Plus activity using Google Takeout. However, that just creates html pages of your posts and not the activities of other Google+ users.

What does this all mean? Backup, backup, backup!!!! There's no telling what Google will do with Blogger in the future. They've already converted their corporate blogs away from Blogger (except for the official Blogger blog). You should definitely backup your Blogger blogs fully just to be prepared - I really don't know what the Blogger ecosystem will look like in 2019.

You can read more about the shutdown here.
 


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