Migrating Wordpress Sites

Learn how to migrate wordpress sites with no downtime, and minimal data loss. 

The following is the explanation of the migration service that we will provide for a 1 or 2 hour support fee. The time is spread over several days, depending on how everything progresses. 

The zero down time approach to migrating wordpress 

  1. Copy site files via FTP and download database from old web host  (this could be a gzip, zip, or backupbuddy zip + php)
  2. Create PHP account in our CMS (or request an account via support email), with live/paying status. (There is no free period for php accounts)
  3. Upload DB and FTP site files up to new hosting account (or follow the instructions for backupbuddy to upload the zip+php file)
  4. OPTIONAL: Transfer or register a "secondary domain name" that looks fairly similar to the main one. This is for temporary use.
  5. Test that you are happy with the new site on the new web address. 
  6. OPTIONAL: Do a final DB export / import to "catch up" with any recent transactions etc. 
  7. OPTIONAL: Wind down the TTL on the main domain name, at least 48 hours before a domain transfer)
  8. OPTIONAL: When you are ready to go live, redirect the old website to the new website address (using the base url in old wordpress to set the new web address as the old wordpress home. This has the effect of redirecting users to the new website host). 
  9. Now that the old is redirecting to the new, you can then safely transfer the old domain to the new hosting accout using DNS or UDAI methods. (consider email/gmail when changing DNS)
  10. It takes 1 day for SSL certs to be created  
  11. OPTIONAL: Update the new wordpress site to use the preferred https web address. 
  12. Cancel old hosting provider 48 hours later. 


  • It is hard to get a good backup via Wordpress control panel, so you really need to get access to the FTP and DB behind the website. 
  • Your web host will usually comply with the request for FTP/DB export, so long as you have paid your hosting bills. You may need to pay them an additional support fee, but not usually. 
  • DNS updates can take 48 hours, during which both old or new websites will be live for different people. This delay is not caused by anyone. It is just how DNS works. 
  • Consider any email implications when you change DNS. Do you need to create mailboxes or mail rules on our server? or do you have an office365 or google suite mail service that needs to be retained during the DNS changes. 

Note above, the OPTIONAL steps, are part of our full service migration, and hence a 2 hour fee for supporting the transfer.