Can You Import a WordPress Website from the Front End?

I have been asked several times if I could import a WordPress website from the front end, so that users can navigate & use the platform intuitively. While technically possible, I don’t recommend this approach as it can cause major problems down the line, especially if you’re not expecting it.

Here’s a scenario: A company wants to build a store and they choose to use WordPress as their platform. They build their site and publish it. They then export the whole site as a zip file and email it to their customer. In the meantime, they discover that the WordPress theme they picked isn’t customizable enough and decides to switch to a different one.

The end result is that they end up with 2 completely different versions of their website (the old one and the new one) and no idea how to merge them. They’ve also lost all their content because they didn’t back it up beforehand. This can easily happen if you’re not careful enough when exporting a wordpress site.

Why is It a Bad Idea to Import from the Front End?

When you import a WordPress website from the front-end, you are essentially overwriting the entire contents of the file with your own. In the worst case scenario, this could result in a complete disaster, as any changes that took place while the website was being built will be lost.

If you are planning on rebranding the site or changing its overall structure, you will have to start from scratch and do a lot of the work twice. This means finding a designer or developer to help you out, getting the new logo and banner ready, and most importantly, making sure that everything is backed up, in case something goes wrong.

Recommended Approach

In my opinion, the safest and most recommended way to import a blog or website is from the backend. The advantage of this approach is that you can make as many backups as you want without risking anything. If you decide to rebrand or change the overall structure of the site, you can do it in a more seamless manner and minimize the downtime.

When importing from the backend, you are given the ability to modify certain elements of the site’s appearance, such as colors, fonts, and more. With these options, you can ensure that the end result looks more or less the same as the original. You can also choose from a variety of free and premium hosting packages, depending on your needs.

The above scenario is extremely risky and can lead to all sorts of problems. If you have a new customer that buys your old product or service and decides to use it without your permission, you could be in trouble. Not only that, but the content on your site could be exposed to the new customer and they could damage it or use it in a way that you didn’t intend.

Final Takeaway

When it comes to importing a wordpress website from the front end, I recommend creating a new folder in your computer named “backups”. Add all your backups here, making sure to keep track of which one is which. This way, you’ll be able to easily find the original version of the site, in case something goes wrong during the process.