So you have built a great WordPress site, worked tirelessly to gain a following and now, you want to transfer your WordPress domain to another registrar or hosting provider. There is no reason to be intimidated by the prospect of moving your domain name. You can quickly and effortlessly transfer your WordPress domain in just three easy steps. Before you start the transfer, however, you need to perform a few administrative tasks to get ready for the move.
Note that if you have recently purchased the domain name, you may not be able to immediately transfer it. Check with your registrar or hosting provider regarding their policies for transfer. ICANN restricts domain name transfers for domains that have been transferred within 60 days. Registrars and hosting companies may impose additional restrictions.
Update Contact Information
Before submitting a transfer request, first make sure your contact information for the domain registration is correct. Domains are registered to both the administrative and technical contacts. If you are not both the administrative and technical contact, notify the individual in the other role and let them know that you will be transferring the domain. Ask them to update their contact information to ensure it is current. Do the same for your own contact information. You can usually accomplish this task on your account’s domain management page on your registrar’s or web hosting company’s site.
If you use a private domain service, such as Domains by Proxy, you MUST cancel this service prior to the transfer. Services like Domain by Proxy keep your domain registration data private so it is not listed in the WhoIs database. Your contact information, including a valid email address, must be accessible from the WhoIs database in order to complete a domain transfer. Once your contact information is updated, you are ready to get started with the transfer.
Secure New Domain Registrar and Hosting Plan
Before requesting a domain transfer with your current registrar, make sure that you have secured the new registrar and purchased a plan. You will need to log into your new hosting account to transfer the domain.
3 Steps to Complete Your WordPress Domain Transfer
1. Notify your current domain registrar or web host that you wish to transfer the domain name
In most cases, your domain registrar will direct you to a form where you can request a transfer authorization code, also known as a transfer key or an EPP code. Newer domain extensions do not require this code, but .com and .org domains often do. When you request this code, an email containing the key will be sent to the administrative contact’s email address on file. Your registrar will often include further instructions that may be specific to the company regarding the transfer.
2. Initiate the WordPress domain transfer with your new hosting company or registrar
Your new provider or registrar likely has an on-boarding Help section to assist you with the transfer. Explore their help documentation and fill out any necessary forms for completing the transfer. You may need to contact your hosting company’s support staff if the process is not yet automated. During this exchange, whether online or via a support call, you will provide the transfer authorization code given to you by your original registrar.
3. Authorize the transfer
When you notify your new registrar and request the transfer, the process to move and re-register the domain name with ICANN is set in motion. You will receive a notification in your new registrar’s account that the request has been made. You must accept the domain transfer request in order to authorize it. This step ensures that some nefarious actor cannot transfer domain names at random. You must verify that you approve of the request. Log into your account with the new registrar or hosting provider and authorize the transfer.
The ICANN registry notifies your new registrar that you have accepted and authorized the transfer. You will likely receive notifications from both your original and new registrars once the transfer is acknowledged and the process is started. Transferring domain names between registrars or hosting companies usually takes between five and seven days.
Your original registrar may email you with further instructions for closing out the process or moving your site content. Follow any additional instructions to close out your domain name with the original registrar. You can now get your WordPress site ready for the transfer.