How to Change Your WordPress Website Domain Name
Most of us use WordPress to power our websites. In case you’re wondering, WordPress is a free, open-source CMS that supports creating websites, blogs, and online stores.
WordPress was originally designed to power personal websites but has since grown to support many other uses. If you own or manage a WordPress website, you’ll most likely have the option to choose your website’s domain name. That is, the domain name that you’ll use to access your website.
The domain name is a very important piece of the puzzle. It represents where your website is physically located (e.g., example.com versus blogspot.com) and sets the tone and branding for your website. Having a short, sweet, and memorable domain name is important, as visitors will type it in frequently while on your site (hence the importance of a memorable name). Also, picking a.com URL (i.e., the most popular and most common URL Extension) is crucial, as it’s the easiest for people to type in and remember.
Changing your WordPress website’s domain name is pretty easy, as long as you know how to do it. In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps to do just that.
Find Out What Your Current Domain Name Is
The first step in changing your website’s domain name is to find out what it is already. You can do this by going to your WordPress dashboard and looking under the ‘Settings’ section. Here, you’ll see a table with the domains that you have currently enabled for your site. The first and most important step is to update the ‘HTTP Redirect’ to reflect the desired domain.
If you don’t currently have an entry for the domain in your HTTP redirect table, simply click the ‘Add New’ button to add it.
Make sure you keep track of which domains you’ve added to the table, as you’ll need this for the rest of the process. Otherwise, you could end up with multiple domains redirecting to your site, resulting in broken links and redirect loops. A redirect loop happens when a user clicks on a link on your site, which takes them to a different domain — say, example.com, which then redirects them to your site, as it has a matching domain name.
Decide On The New Domain Name
Now that you know what your current domain name is, you can start brainstorming for a new one. Ideally, you want to choose a name that is short and sweet and can be easily remembered. Also, keep in mind that domain names are case-sensitive, so make sure you enter it as stated.
To help you come up with a better domain name than the one you had before, you can use the WordPress tools (i.e., Generate New Post button or shortcode) to generate random word combinations. This way, you’ll be sure to find a name that isn’t already taken.
Once you’ve come up with a decent domain name, add it to your list of possible names and move on to the next step.
Add The New Domain To Your List Of Available Domains
The next step is to add your new domain name to your list of available domains. To do this, simply go to your WordPress dashboard, click on the ‘Settings’ section, and then click on ‘General’.
From here, you can add your desired domains to your list of available domains, which you can download and use to create new posts and navigate to your site. Remember: your list of domains may not be endless, as you have limited space to work with (i.e., you can only add about 500 domains).
Update Your HTTP Redirect Table With The New Domain
After you’ve added your new domain name to your list of available domains, it’s time to update your HTTP redirect table with the new domain. To do this, go back to your WordPress dashboard, click on the ‘Settings’ section, and then click on ‘Redirection’.
Here, you can update the HTTP redirect table with the new domain name you’ve added to your list. Simply enter the domain and update the ‘Target’ field to match. It’s also a good idea to use the ‘Target’ field to add a custom message to your redirect table (e.g., “this is a temporary redirect while we work on our new site!”).
Once you’ve updated your HTTP redirect table with the new domain name, it’s time to test it and make sure everything works as it should. To do this, click on the ‘Save Changes’ button at the top of the table.
Activate The New Domain In Your WordPress Dashboard
When you’ve tested your new domain name and everything is working properly, it’s time to activate the new domain in your WordPress dashboard. To do this, go back to your dashboard and click on the ‘Settings’ tab. At the top of the page, you’ll see a dropdown menu with your available domains. To activate a new domain, click on the ‘Activate’ button next to it.
Once the domain is activated, it will appear in the dropdown menu as you can see above. You can now navigate to your new domain and make sure it works as expected.
Ensure That People Can Find The New Domain Name
Now that you’ve changed your website’s domain name, you need to ensure that people can find your new site easily. To do this, you can use the WordPress tools (i.e., Search Index, Google Analytics, and Live Search) to help you track visitors to your site. In particular, you want to make sure that your new domain is indexed by Google and that people can find it when performing a search.
Search Engine Optimization (or SEO) is the practice of optimizing a website to appear high in search results for a specific keyword or phrase. The better your SEO, the more likely your site will appear near the top of the search results. You can use tools like Google Analytics and Live Search to track the progress of your SEO efforts and determine the success of your domain name change.
Make Sure Your Current Domain Name Is Registered
Even if you’ve changed your website’s domain name, you still have to make sure that the old domain name is registered. Even if you’ve added a new domain name to your list of available domains, you still have to make sure that the old domain is registered. This is important, as you don’t want to get a notification from Google that your old domain name is expiring and need to be updated. Simply go to www.google.com and navigate to the page for your domain name extension (e.g.,.com,.net, or.org).
From here, you can either click on the ‘Get a Domain Name Warning’ or, if you’d like, you can click on the ‘Renew My Domain’ button to get a warning email if your current domain name is about to expire. Alternatively, you can click on the ‘Skip to Main Content’ button to go directly to the main page of your website.
The Final Step: Make Sure Your New Domain Name Works For Your Business
Finally, it’s time to wrap things up. With your new domain name in hand, it’s a good idea to make sure that it’s relevant and useful for your business. To do this, you can use the YoUrLocal.com domain checker to see if the domain is available for purchase and whether or not it is relevant to your business.
For example, say you’re a fashion designer and your current domain name is fashionblog.com. If someone were to type this in while browsing Google Search results, they would most likely be directed to an irrelevant blog post from your website. Using the YoUrLocal.com domain checker, you can easily find a.com or any other extension that is relevant to your business and register it for free. Simply enter your website’s URL and see if the extension is available to purchase. If it is, then great! You can use this domain for your business!