How to Move a Website to WordPress
One of the most popular content management systems (CMS) is WordPress. Over the years, it has become extremely popular among bloggers and online journalists, because it is extremely easy to use and allows for a great deal of customization. If you’re looking to migrate your site to this popular blogging platform, it’s a good idea to study up on how to do it right.
In this guide, we will discuss some best practices that will help you move your website to a WordPress website more easily and successfully. Whether you are looking to create a new blog or you’ve already had success in that area, these tips will come in handy.
Migrate WordPress-ready Content
One of the first things you will need to do is to move all the content that is already available on your existing site to the new site. This will involve migrating the original pages, images, videos, and more. If you’re curious, you can use tools like the WP Migrate DB Pro to easily migrate your content to the new site. This will save you a lot of time and prevent many headaches down the line.
If you are using WordPress for your website (which, again, we recommend), using the Yoast SEO plugin is a great way to take care of all the search engine optimization (SEO) for your website. With this plugin, just enter the URL of the existing site in the box provided and you will see all the meta information for your existing site. From there, you can work on migrating the content and taking care of any necessary SEO tweaks. Once that is done, you can work on building out the new site.
Create a Clear Outline
Another important thing to consider when moving a website to a new host is the setup of the new site itself. Even though you will be starting from scratch, you will want to make sure that the new site has all the necessary pieces in place so that it functions the same way your existing site does. To this end, you will need to create an outline for the new site, including its structure, content, and images. You can use tools like the One Sheet for this purpose or you can use a more manual process and create a blank document in WordPress using the Text editor. Either way, make sure that you have all the necessary information about the new site before you start migrating content over.
While creating this outline, you will want to consider what elements need to be present on the site and what pieces can be omitted. For instance, if you’re omitting the blog section from the new site, you don’t need to include the blog folder and all the content inside. By having a clear idea of what is necessary and what is not, you will be able to create a more streamlined site that requires less work when migrated. In most cases, if you’re able to migrate a section of your site without any problems, it’s a good idea to leave it as is and add the necessary content later on.
Make Sure That Your Website Is Mobile-friendly
Another important factor to consider when moving a website to a new host is making sure that the new site is mobile-friendly. Not every website is made equal when it comes to mobile-friendliness and many times, websites are specifically designed to be viewed on a larger screen. However, even older versions of iOS and Android operating systems don’t fully support smaller screen sizes. Fortunately, there are tools like the WP Smush.it plugin that allow you to easily test your site on various devices and see how it looks on different screen sizes. If you’re unsure how mobile-friendly your existing site is, you can use tools like Google’s Mobile-friendly Testor to easily test your site and see how it looks on mobile. In most cases, you will need to make some small adjustments to your existing site to make it mobile-friendly. For example, you might want to remove some of the text on your pages and replace it with images or videos to make the content more engaging.
Use the Right Hosting Provider
One of the most important things to consider when moving a website to a new host is finding a reliable hosting provider. It’s important to look for a host that is dedicated to serving blogs and websites, as opposed to just focusing on standard web hosts with shared hosting. With shared hosting, you will have access to all of the server’s resources, including space, bandwidth, and more. However, because the server is shared, any issues that may arise will also be shared by all the other sites hosted on that server. When you choose a dedicated hosting plan, you are getting access to all of the server’s resources, but the company that you are working with will also be responsible for taking care of all the hosting-related issues. This is a crucial security measure that many companies take and it’s also the reason why dedicated hosting is more expensive than shared hosting. In most cases, you will not need to pay extra for security reasons alone but you will need to consider this as an investment in the long term, because dedicated hosting is usually more expensive than shared hosting but offers a higher level of security. If you are concerned about security, it’s a good idea to choose a host that is explicitly authorized by WordPress itself to offer secure hosting. You can do this by asking the hosting provider to contact WordPress’s technical support for you directly.
Use the Right Tools
To move a WordPress-based website to a new host, you will need to use a few different tools. First off, you will need to generate a dump of your entire WordPress database. This will include all the content that is currently on your website, as well as all the settings and configuration data. To do this, you can use tools like the WP Migrate DB Pro, which will make generating a dump a lot easier. Once the dump is generated, you can use a tool like the WP Clone app to easily migrate your content to the new site. In most cases, you won’t need to do anything else aside from installing the WP Migrate DB Pro on the new site and importing the dump that you previously generated.
Even though this seems fairly straightforward, there are several different ways in which things can go wrong. If you’re new to this, it’s a good idea to read our other detailed guides on migrating a WordPress site or checking out our guide on moving a WooCommerce store to a new host. This will help you avoid any unnecessary headaches down the line.