What initially emerged as a popular blogging domain in the past is now widely being used as an efficient content management system and a popular website domain, one that has immensely simplified the process of web designing and development. There is no second opinion about the efficacy of WordPress for blogging, template-based website development, and as an efficient content management system. However, when it comes to website hosting and bandwidth capacities, WordPress is often referred to as a ‘memory-hogging host’ among tech-geeks.
If you have a large website or are planning to expand the confined territory of your web portal, it is essential that you move your WordPress site over to a new web hosting domain. A number of popular web hosting domains such as SiteGround, DreamHost, BlueHost and HostGator offer standard and custom cPanels welcome the migrated WordPress websites on their domain and provide full functionality.
However, despite all the features and technical assistance that these hosting domains might provide, this is also a fact that the transition of your site to a new hosting domain can be quite a feat and generally requires your site to be shut down temporarily. However, the good news is that you can move your site over to a new web hosting domain without having to put up that ‘site under maintenance’ sign on your homepage.
Here’s your step-by-step guide to efficiently move your WordPress website over to a host with zero website downtime. Read on.
Select a New Host for your WordPress Site
Now that you have decided to move your WordPress site to a new hosting domain, the first thing you have to do is to sift through your options and identify the most compatible host for your website. The performance of your website will depend a great deal on your choice of host and its compatibility.
To choose an ideal host for your WordPress website, you must evaluate the hosting companies on the following parameters, as per your requirements:
Reliable shared hosting
Cloud-based or remote hosting
Dedicated servers and operational support
Install Duplicator for Convenient Transition
After finalizing and purchasing a new host for your website, do not make a fresh installation of WordPress directly in your new hosting account. This is a redundant task and a new WordPress installation won’t be of any use since you already have a WordPress site ready to be transported.
Install free Duplicators plug-in on the website start the transition to a new host. Activate the plug-in after installation and follow these steps:
Go to the Duplicator plug-in and click on ‘Packages’ in the drop down menu.
Click ‘Create New’ on the top right corner of the screen and then click ‘Next’ to create a new duplicate package for your WordPress site.
Follow the next process as directed below:
The 1st step of the process is about the basic setup requirements.
The 2nd step will scan the entire site, specifically the server, setup, your WordPress, and all files, directories, and databases. Once the scan is complete, check the status of the scan. If it is marked as good, proceed to click ‘Build’.
Upon completion of the building process, click on the Installer and Archive buttons. It is essential to click both; the archive will create a copy for you while the installer will take you to the automated installation process.
Import Your Site to a New Host
This is the actual transition process to your new hosting domain. Connect your WordPress site to the new hosting account using an FTP server. The next step is to upload the installer as well as archival files (the ones you downloaded in the previous step) on your new host account.
While configuring the FTP connection with your new host, remember to change the domain name from the default old domain name to your new host’s IP address. Upload the installer and archival files in the root directories of your site.
This is the defining step that distinguishes a no-downtime transition from other website transportation processes. Follow the proceeding process to access your new website temporarily by using your computer. This access slows or aborts the activity of your old site, and your site will operate in full functionality on the old server in tandem.
Find the IP of your new web host in your cPanel dashboard by clicking on the stats link. From the expanded stats, copy the shared IP address.
Click on the Windows button on the bottom left corner of your desktop. Click on Programs, click All Programs, Click Accessories, right-click on Notepad, and click Run as Administrator. Approve the Windows UAC prompt by clicking Yes to access the Notepad as an administrator.
In the Notepad file, click File, click Open, and click C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc to select and open host file.
Scroll down to the bottom of your host file and replace your default old IP with the new ‘Shared IP Address’ that you copied from your new host. Also, replace oldsitename.com with your new domain name and save your changes.
Your new installer files are now accessible through your web browser.
Type http://www.yourdomainname.com/installer.php in your browser.
Set up a database for the new host in cPanel. Once the database has been created, enter your database username and password and click Test Connection. When the connection is successfully made, scroll down to read the disclaimer, check the box for approval, and click run Deployment. This will proceed to import your database to the new host.
In the next step, verify new and old destination paths (URLs). Click the buttons in order to verify the functionality of the new site and complete the process.
Update Your Domain
By far, a copy of your website at the new host is ready, but the domain will still redirect the visitor to your old hosting domain.
Switch and update your DNS name server. This is essential to direct the global traffic to your new hosting domain.
If your domain name is registered with Namecheap, GoDaddy, or any other server, log into your name server’s account and click on Launch right next to Domain. This will open another window for domain settings; select your domain name and click manage to make essential changes to your name server.
The next step will require you to make Nameserver settings. Enter your custom DNS nameservers and save changes.
Your DNS nameserver changes might take some couple of hours to go fully functional. Your WordPress site has been efficiently transported to the new hosting domain without having to take down the old site. From now on, visitors will be browsing your site on the new hosting domain. However, as a precautionary measure, it is suggested that you keep your old site in working functionality for 8-10 days before taking it down permanently.
We hope this has helped you, If you get stuck at any time feel free to contact us here