I was faced with the trouble of moving my wordpress blog from one host to another about a year ago, and I needless to say, I read a lot of articles on the best ways to move your blog from one host to another. However, they all involved taking your existing files, and copying/pasting and then editing for changes.
Now, if that suits you then by all means read no further, but I found that myself and many other ran into a plethora of problems when attempting this procedure due to the massive amount of minor lines of code that can trip you up when doing this… if you’re going to try this method, you’d better be sure that you find EVERYTHING, and that is quite a hassle.
So, I decided to go a different route that I found completely by accident. I was aimlessly browsing through my WordPress Dashboard and clicked under the heading “Tools” to see two options, “Import” and “Export” and I thought… what are these? Is the import a good way to get a lot of pictures or other media into wordpress to enter into posts perhaps? But then what is the export? What I found is the key to this process.
Import and Export allow you to save a file of your wordpress site (via export) and then go to any other wordpress site and bring your saved website right on in (import). It’s a breeze, and it doesn’t bother with any database fixes or url changes to all you have to do is deal with one file and not make any changes.
So this is the whole process:
You’ll want to find a good new host, and if you were upgrading from say, a free host without a C-Panel (like I was), then odds are your new host will not be able or willing to transfer your wordpress site for you.
Use your quick tools from your host to create a fresh wordpress installation. Most hosts give you this option, but if yours doesn’t then you might have to install wordpress the old fashioned way.
Once you have a new wordpress site up and running, log in, go to import, and select your saved (exported) file from your old wordpress site.
Once all of your posts, pages, comments, etc. are brought over, you’re still going to be missing some things. You’ll need to also make a copy of your old files located in the wp-content directory. The things you’ll need will be any themes or plugins you want to transfer, and any uploads that you’ve used in your posts or pages. So using your favorite FTP client, go ahead and just copy and paste those files into your new blog (but don’t override any wordpress .php files because that can mess everything up… just bring over the uploads, themes, and plugins.
Activate any plugins, activate your installed theme of choice, and enjoy!
If you have any questions or problems when you try these steps, then go ahead and leave a comment below and I’ll help you out.