How to Move a Website – a quick overview [host to new host]

How to Move a Website


This is an overview on Moving a Website. If you can understand this without a lot of extra help then you can probably do this yourself with a little help from a friend here and there.
If you get to the end of the first sentence and you’ve only read Blah blah blah, blah blah – HIRE SOMEONE. Or take a class.

I work mostly with WordPress.ORG Self-Hosted websites.
This overview deals with moving a self hosted wordpress website to new hosting.

* First you will need to download your images from your current website (host), to do this you will need to use an FTP client [filezilla for example]

* Next within WordPress, export all your posts and page (export them as 1 file, not many different files)

* Download your theme via FTP

* Make a list of all your plugins.

* If you know how to backup your database, do that now. If you don’t, ask your current hosting company for directions. [if you are using cPanel it’s as easy as clicking Backup] After the database is backed up, download it to your hard drive along with everything else.

* Then you need to change the ‘Name Servers’. I have done this 100’s of times for 100’s of different clients, most of the time I call the company from which the Domain was purchased and have them walk me through it. Every company is different. If you purchased your domain from GoDaddy, they’ll be happy to walk you through it.

* After the name servers are in place (can take up to 48 hours) you will need to install WordPress or which ever CMS you are using.
Normally I suggest installing WordPress from scratch, but if you just learned what FTP means – either hire someone or do the 1 click WordPress install.

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Ok, so lets say you stumbled through all that and now you’re sitting there a little panicked because your old site is gone and your new site is there.

Now it’s time to setup the new site.

* You start by installing your theme and all the plugins.

* Next upload all the images into the correct folders. Those will be the same folders you downloaded them from, but on the new server – Usually domain/wp-content/uploads/year/month [again that is if you’re using WordPress.ORG]

* Import all your posts and pages. At this point WordPress SHOULD put all your “Featured” images in place, but if it doesn’t, install a plugin called Media Tools and run that.

* Other than setting up widgets you should be done.

I’ve done this so many times I really could do it in my sleep, but if you get lost just reading the instructions, hire someone.

I move sites for around $100.00 [smaller sites $50.00]
I have friends who move sites and create a custom theme for a little more [ – tell her eDee from sent you]

So how do you know if this is something you can do yourself or if you should hire someone?

If you can’t answer the next few questions off the top of your head you should hire someone.

1) What version of Windows you are running?

2) Name 2 types of Browsers?

3) What is a browser used for?

4) When you download an image to your computer, what folder does it go into?

5) If I say “Navigate to the folder” what do I mean?

6) What is your domain?

7) Where did you purchase your hosting?

Get the idea? You can Google “FTP” and figure out how to do it, but if you purchased the computer and can’t tell me which version of Windows you’re running or how to download an image and retrieve it, you should hire someone!

Happy Blogging!

Elements used to create Featured image Artwork provided by Created by Jill.

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