If some of you have realized I have recently migrated my WordPress site from HowToEmpowerYourself.com to BloggingSense.com. So, I might have been wondering if you would like to do the same too. Although moving your WordPress website is easy, not doing it properly or in the right order might result in annoying your users and the search engines, which will leave you with lesser traffic. I know a lot of people who dread a dip in their traffic, so here’s an 8 step guide for simple WordPress migration.
1. Get a New Domain Name
The very first step in migrating your WordPress site is of course to get a new domain name. My preferred domain registrar is NameCheap, and you can click here to check out their services.
2. Export Old WordPress Site
Exporting your old WordPress site will enable you to save a backup of all your posts, pages, and almost everything else on you blog. Do note that your theme, widgets, and mainly the things related to appearance will not be in the backup, so you will have to have a personal copy of those items before migrating your wordpress site to a new domain. Here’s a list of what will be exported into the XML backup:
Exported into backup:
Not exported into backup:
So if you have taken care of the items that will not be included in the backup, you can now go on to export your whole WordPress blog. Here’s how:
Go to Tools >> Export in the sidebar of your WordPress blog’s admin panel. Then, export all content from your website and download the XML file.
3. Import the Backup Files Into New Website
Go to Tools >> Import in the sidebar of your WordPress blog’s admin panel. Then, click on WordPress.
Now, install the WordPress Importer Plugin.
4. Setup Themes, Widgets, and Plugins in New Website
Everyone has different themes, widgets, and plugins, so I won’t be able to run you through this step. However, it is quite simple. All you have to do is make sure that you have the same theme, widgets, and plugins in the old website and the new one.
Basically, the new website should now be an EXACT replica of the old website.
5. Check Check Check
This is the most important step so far. You will have to constantly check for any errors. Make sure that all the links in the new website work fine. Other than broken links, you should check if all your plugins, themes, widgets, etc. are all in place. If your new website isn’t an exact replica of the old one, you should fix the issue immediately.
Note: The next step that I am telling you to do cannot be undone.
6. Change Old URLs to New URLs With Search and Replace
Now, you will have to install the Search and Replace plugin on your old website.
Once you have done so, you should navigate to the Search and Replace plugin. Enter your old domain name into the “Search for” box and your new domain name into the “Replace with” box. Note that http:// or www are not required.
7. Permanent 301 Redirect
This might be a little technical, so just bear with me for a while. If you don’t know how to do this step, please leave your questions in the comment box below. To create a permanent 301 redirect, you will need a .htaccess file. First, connect to your server with a FTP client and navigate to public_html. If you see a .htaccess file in there, download it to your computer and open it with Notepad. If you don’t have that file on your server, you will have to create one by opening Notepad and saving the file as .htaccess. Please also enter the following text into the file.
Once you are done, upload the .htaccess file to your server with your FTP client. Note: If you are prompted to overwrite the original file, please do so.
8. Inform Google of The Change of Address
Once you’re done, now it’s time to tell Google of the changes you have made to your website, so that your rankings in the search engines will not be affected. Just login to Google Webmasters Tools and enter the URL of your new domain name.
Congrats, you have successfully migrated your WordPress site in 8 easy steps. Hope you have benefited from this article. Do feel free to ask any questions in the comment box below if you are stuck in the process.This article was written by Keane Kwa+
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