How to Upload a Website Hierarchy File to WordPress

A website hierarchy file or breadcrumb trail is a list of the parent or top-level categories (and their corresponding child or second-level categories) that you want to use to display your website content. The goal is for users to easily understand the structure of your website and where each piece of content belongs. You can think of it as the navigational equivalent to a folder tree on your computer.

There are two ways to upload a website hierarchy file to WordPress. One is through the WordPress dashboard, the other is through an FTP client.

Via the WordPress Dashboard

WordPress makes it very easy to set up a hierarchical website structure; all you need to do is select the menu item 'Organic Groups' from the 'Tools' menu on the left of your WordPress dashboard.

Then click the 'Add Group' button to bring up the grouping modal form.

You can add as many groups as you want (parent and child categories are saved and displayed by default), but you should only add as many as you need. If you have a very large website with a lot of content, you might want to split it up into multiple groups to keep things organized.

Once you’ve added your first group, click the 'Save Changes' button located at the top right of the form to continue to the next step.

Via an FTP Client

If you’ve used WordPress at all, you’re probably familiar with the concept of using an FTP client to upload content to your site. While it’s very easy to do so from within WordPress, having an FTP client on hand makes things a little bit easier. Especially for big projects.

Here’s what you do:

1. In your FTP client, navigate to your website’s directory (usually in the root folder).

2. Inside the website directory, you’ll see a 'wp-content' folder at the root. Depending on the version of WordPress you’re using, this folder might be hidden (concealed). If you click on the root folder in the Files list inside your FTP client, you’ll see the root directory contents including the 'wp-content' folder.

3. Inside 'wp-content', you’ll see a lot of other subfolders and files. Many of these are hidden with a. (dot) at the start of the name, like .svn, .htaccess, and .git. These are the standard subfolders and hidden files associated with WordPress. You’ll want to copy or move all these files to a new location on your computer (if you’re using an FTP client, this is called 'mirroring').

4. When you’ve moved all the files you need from the 'wp-content' folder to a new location on your computer, visit the WordPress dashboard and log in.

5. From the WordPress dashboard, navigate to the 'Tools' menu on the left side of your screen.

6. Select 'Import from the submenu.

7. Click the 'Browse' button to select the directory with the website files you’ve copied or moved to your computer.

8. Click the 'Upload Files' button to begin the upload process.

9. Once the files have uploaded successfully, click the 'Get tools' button located at the top right of the dashboard.

10. From the drop-down menu, you can select the 'Site Import plugin from the installed plugins to take care of the rest.

The Site Import Plugin Will Handle The Rest

The Site Import plugin will take care of the heavy lifting for you. In addition to handling the import process, this plugin provides you with helpful resources like a tool to make it very easy to create a menu from your CSV file. You can also find resources to help you with SEO and automated backups.

As long as you’ve copied or moved all the files from the 'wp-content' folder to a new location on your computer, you can import the files with the click of a button.

WordPress will then take you to a page informing you that it finished the process successfully. You can finally see your newly imported website’s menu on the left side of your screen.

Navigating to the dashboard’s 'Tools' menu will then take you to the area where you can find the resources associated with your newly imported website.

If you’ve followed this guide, you can now easily upload a website hierarchy file to WordPress using the dashboard.

Additional Resources

Once you’ve uploaded your website hierarchy file to WordPress, you can find a variety of resources to help you maintain your site. From the WordPress dashboard, you can access the following links: