No one likes having to move. The packing, the transportation of belongings, the fretting over ensuring you don’t lose anything in the move—to say nothing of the unpacking and reorganizing once you finally arrive at your new place. Moving to a new location can be a big decision, but in the end, it’s all about what’s best for you and your family.
The same is true for your website.
Understanding how to migrate a website can seem like a daunting process, perhaps even more so than actually creating your website. That’s why we’re here. Not only do we at WP Super Host offer insight into the value of website migration and the reasons why you should do it, but we also provide you with experienced know-how for when migrating your WordPress website. Most importantly, we help you do it while minimalizing the chances of lost data and eliminating website downtime. Read on to learn everything you need to know about WordPress migrations or use our handy table of contents to jump to where you want to be.
Table of Contents
What Does Migrating Hosts Mean?
Though the answer to “What is site migration?” may sound like a lengthy seminar in computer jargon, it’s a lot less complicated than that. In the simplest terms, website migration involves moving your website’s content from one server to another. In a more detailed explanation, site migration is the nuanced process of setting up the basic framework of a new website on a different web host’s server for specific value adds, transferring (migrating) your old site’s content over to this new location, and redirecting any old URLs and content links to the new web pages.
We’ll go into the nitty-gritty of the process a bit later, but for the moment, think of website migration as moving your lemonade stand from one block to another. Before you move, you need to ask permission of the neighbors before setting up shop in their front yard (contacting your new host/creating new site environment), load everything up in the back of your parents’ car or truck and set the stand up at the new location (website migration), and ensure no lemonade was spilled in transport and that it still tastes the same as before (link and URL checks).
The Value of WordPress Migration
In an ideal world, you’d never have to worry about website migration because your current web host would always provide you with the best setup and support needed for optimal website performance. More often, however, this isn’t the case. As your website grows, so will its needs in terms of features and support. Without properly addressing those needs, you can stunt the growth and success of your business. After all, not all web hosts are created equal, and your website is only as good as the server it resides on.
Knowing when to start the search for a new web host provider can be tricky, so here are the six most common signs it’s time to switch hosts:
- High hosting costs
- Increased downtime
- Lack of reliable technical support
- Outgrowing available hosting space
- Upgrade in server security
- Slow website loading speeds
Each of these issues alone is reason enough to consider migrating a website, but a couple stand out above the rest. Webpage loading speed, in particular, is a major contributing factor to a site’s success, and every second counts.
Don’t believe us?
Research shows that nearly half of online consumers expect a webpage to load in less than 2 seconds, with 30% demanding load times be less than 1 second. One second. The fallout: 40% of eCommerce shoppers abandon a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, and a majority (79%) won’t return if they experience sluggish performance. That means if you share a server or have a server not ideally located to serve your site’s end users equally, you’re likely losing out on revenue opportunities to the tune of 7% of your earnings!
Similarly, outgrowing your server’s space, although a positive sign of your business’s growth, can also lead to increased downtime as available server resources are stretched too thin. At the cost of sounding cliché, time is money, and a crashed site means you aren’t making any. In fact, you can lose$100,000 or more per hour of downtime, depending on the size of your business. Upgrading to a new server with additional bandwidth, then, will allow your site to grow without fear of crashing during influxes of high traffic.
High costs are another factor to consider. Web hosting is expensive, so you expect you’re getting premium service for the cost. Unfortunately, “top of the line” does not always mean “best for you.” For instance, if you’re a small business with a premium host plan, you may be overpaying for space and features you aren’t using. Conversely, a large online retailer saving on hosting costs is likely doing a disservice to their customers and bottom line by shortchanging website performance and security. Optimizing deliverables for dollars is the only way to ensure you’re getting the best bang for your buck.
As they say in real estate…
Regardless of the reasons for switching, though, in the end the value of WordPress migration comes down to three words: location, location, location.
Just like your business’s brick-and-mortar storefront, where your website exists on the internet greatly impacts how successful it is. You wouldn’t keep your business in a sketchy part of town with little foot traffic and lack of security, nor should you with your website either. Migrating your website to a better host ensures you’re getting the best support for your site, whether that’s increased loading speeds and server security, better technical support, or lower hosting costs. A good host will even literally help position you higher in search engine rankings, increasing site visibility and therefore drive greater traffic and revenue to your website.
Of course, be sure to research what type of host suits your short- and long-term website goals before migrating a web site. This will save you from regretting your host selection and having to migrate your website again sooner than expected.
Using WP Super Host for Migrating WordPress Site
There are several options to migrate your WordPress site to a new server, including manually creating backups and editing files or using migration plugins. But those options entail lengthy, complicated processes which make you work harder, not smarter. In our experience, the easiest and safest, sure-fire way to ensure you don’t lose data or experience frustrating downtime during transfer is to use a managed WordPress migration through your new host. That’s where WP Super Host comes in.
Before you begin the migration process, you’ll need to create an account with WP Super Host. If you’re creating your first account with us, awesome! We’re glad to have you. To begin migrating your website, click on “Migrate an existing site.” For returning customers, welcome back! You’ll start by logging into your dashboard and clicking “Migration” at the top of the page.
From there, WP Super Host offers two options for migrating your WordPress website:
- Handled migration—overseen by our trusted engineers; requires minimal time and effort from you
- Self-migration—keeps control in your hands without you having to share your credentials
Regardless of which option you choose, rest assured that both provide the same user-friendly operation, painless guided navigation, and immediate technical support if you run into difficulties along the way.
First, click the “Get Started!” button under “I want WP Super Host to migrate my site for me.” On the next screen, enter your WordPress, SFTP, and hosting provider credentials and click “Submit.” This will allow our team to confirm your credentials have been entered correctly and that we have access to everything we need to handle a WordPress migration for you. This can take up to 30 minutes.
Once verified, our team will copy your site into a subdomain and send it back to you for review. Think of this as a “Print Preview” for your website where you can double-check that your website has been copied correctly and everything works as it should before making it live. We even provide a list of essential functionalities so that you don’t forget anything.
At this point, your DNS settings will need to be changed, which you can allow us to do or handle yourself for added security. Once those changes are made by either of us, your DNS propagation will start and take up to 48 hours to complete. The best part—at no time during this process will your site go down! Finally, you’ll receive an email confirming your website has fully migrated to WP Super Host.
Click the “Get Started!” button under “I want to handle migration myself.” You’ll then be given credentials to log into a subdomain hosted by WP Super Host. Once logged into the subdomain, you’ll receive instructions for copying your site from your old host to the subdomain and ensuring that there are no errors in functionality.
Following proper migration to the subdomain, your next step will be to update your DNS settings, which can take from 24 to 48 hours to complete. Upon completion, you’ll receive an email confirming your website has fully migrated to WP Super Host!
That’s it. No, really. You’ve just successfully moved your WordPress site with WP Super Host! Pretty neat, huh?
The Best WordPress Migration Tool
Alright, if we haven’t convinced you yet, here’s the sales pitch. WP Super Host is the best WordPress migration tool and host out there. “Sure,” you say. “Really,” we answer. Not only do we provide super-fast site setup and no-hassle migration, but we even offer to do the work for you. All you have to do is provide us with a few lines of information, tap a few buttons, and boom! Website migrated. Plus, with 24/7 technical support, a gorgeous user interface, and feature-packed hosting plans starting at $19 a month, you’re guaranteed to get the best bang for your buck.
Not sure you want to trust us with your valuable credentials? That’s fine, too. We’ll still be here to support you through every step of the way during our guided self-migration process. Why? Because our top priority is, always has been, and always will be to save you, our customers, from bad WordPress hosting.
After all, we’re not just the web host you need, we’re the web host you deserve.
Host migration can be one of the most intimidating decisions regarding your website, but we hope this article has shed some light on the process and alleviated any fears you may have. With the right tools—and the right host—website migration can be a stress-free and rewarding endeavor that increases the reliable performance and financial success of all your future WordPress migrations.