Can I Move My WordPress Website From My Own Server to WordPress?
Is there a simpler way to do what most people consider to be “web development”? After all, many people are scared of technology and especially of websites. We want to make lives easier for ourselves and our customers by providing a one-stop-shop for all their web needs. Which is why we have decided to move our existing website from GoDaddy to WordPress. Why did we decide to go with WordPress? It’s the most popular content management system (CMS) out there, and it’s very easy to use. You can also find numerous tutorials and guides online that’ll help you get up and running with WordPress in no time. Before we began our migration, we decided to learn more about the platform and determine whether or not it was the right choice for our needs.
Features We Need
Although our main goal is to make their life easier, we consider a number of features when choosing a CMS for our needs. These include the ability to
- create pages, posts, and galleries quickly
- add users and groups
- set the site’s overall mood and tone
- customize the layout and design
- add new posts and pages without needing to know HTML or CSS
- monetize the content
- integrate with other services (e.g., email marketing, RSS feeds, etc.)
Additionally, we consider the platform’s security to be a vital factor. After all, we don’t want to put our customers’ security at risk by using an insecure web host. So, before we made the move, we did a bit of research into the matter and found out that WordPress is a self-hosted CMS. What does that mean? You serve the content and control the software’s functions yourself. There is no hosting provider getting in the way. You’re in full charge.
Now, you may be wondering what all the hub-bub is about. Let’s dive in.
Where Can I Host My WordPress Website?
The first step in our quest to make moving websites as easy and convenient as possible was figuring out where we could host our WordPress website. After all, we don’t want to run around looking for free web space like most people do. So, we decided to try out a few host providers to see which one suited us best. Here are our top picks:
For those of you looking to host a WordPress website for free, we recommend you check out Bluehost. Not only is it an excellent value for such a high-quality service, but they also provide a wealth of features and value added services that’ll make your life much easier as a website owner. Additionally, you don’t need to have any previous experience to get started using their services. Simply go to their website and click the Get Started button to reach their excellent customer support team.
If you’re ready to move your WordPress website to a more robust environment that provides a greater degree of flexibility and power, you can check out HostGator. Not only do they offer a free domain with every hosting plan (so long as you have at least one email address attached to the account), but you can also purchase a premium account and utilize their excellent team of dedicated support specialists to help you get up and running.
Something else we love about HostGator is they provide 1-click installers for all their managed WordPress hosting plans. So, if you’ve ever installed WordPress locally on your computer, you know how tedious and time-consuming this process can be. Fortunately, HostGator makes this step completely automatic. Simply click the button to have the installer run its course and complete the process for you.
If you’re looking for a highly robust and feature-rich solution, check out Dreamhost. Not only do they provide a free domain with every hosting plan (as long as you have at least one email address attached to the account), but you can also purchase additional features like content delivery networks, SSL certificates, and more.
Additionally, if you’re looking for a one-click installer for WordPress, they have you covered there as well. Just visit their website and click the Get Started button to have their installer run its course.
Now that you have your host chosen, it’s time to move on to the fun part: creating your WordPress website. To get started, visit http://wordpress.com and click the Get Started button to have the platform’s login screen appear. Simply fill in the necessary details (e.g., your email address, username, and password) and click the Create Account button to continue to the next step.
Here, you will be brought to a screen stating “You’ve been given a user account!” Once again, you can opt-in to have email notifications sent to your registered email address regarding blog posts and other relevant information. Additionally, you can also manage your WordPress website through the command line or your mobile device’s web browser.
The above three host providers offer a wealth of features and quality service at an excellent value. If you’re looking for a simple, no-frills service that won’t break the bank, go with Bluehost. If you need more power and flexibility, consider HostGator or Dreamhost. Now that you have a WordPress website set up, it’s time to fill it with content.
WordPress can be downloaded and installed on a computer simply by clicking the Get Started button on their website. After going through the necessary steps, you will be landed on a screen thanking you for installing the software. From here, you can visit your WordPress dashboard to begin setting up your website.
One of the first things you will need to do is pick a theme for your WordPress website. This is the layout and design of your site, and it will heavily influence the overall feel and tone of your website. Since we want to keep things simple, we chose to go with the Twenty Fourteen theme from the outset. You can learn more about this theme and its various incarnations here. Additionally, if you’re looking to monetize your site, you’ll need to install a WordPress plugin (additional software that enhances the functionality of WordPress) in order to do so. We recommend the Revashop plugin for this purpose.
Launch Your Website
Once you’ve installed WordPress on your server and picked a theme, it’s time to launch your site. To do this, visit http://YOUR_URL (replacing YOUR_URL with your actual URL) and click the button to have your site launched.
As you can see from the screen capture below, WordPress has created a quick starter page for us with a number of blog posts already published. This is simply because we launched our site a few minutes ago, so it’s still in the process of building the initial content.
If you’ve been using GoDaddy’s Website Builder, Bluehost’s or HostGator’s dedicated landing pages, or Dreamhost’s control panel, you’ll notice a few things right away. First, WordPress is a lot chunkier than what you’re used to seeing. Second, there are a ton of additional resources available to you through the platform’s various menus. Third, the content is appearing below the fold, which is exactly as it should be.
Now that you have a functioning WordPress website with content, it’s time to enter the next phase of the process: scaling and optimizing the site.