When you have a website, there may be times when you need to transfer it from one location to another. There can be many reasons for this. Perhaps you just want to move a copy of it to a new location so you can make changes to that cloned site without the main website experiencing any downtime. You may also not be happy with your current website hosts service and wish to transfer your site to another hosting company entirely. Such transfers can be difficult to do manually as there are many things to remember to do to make sure that it is restored at the new location without error or any critical content or features missing.
Fortunately, for those who use the WordPress content management platform to create and manage their website, there are plugins that can automate this process to drastically reduce the chances for any mistakes and make the whole process much easier. There are free and paid WordPress transfer plugins for this task, and we will provide an overview of five of the more popular ones here.
1. WP Backitup
Many WordPress transfer or migration plugins are actually primarily promoted as backup and restoration plugins. When you think about it, this is what is involved in transferring a site. You have to make a complete backup of it and then restore it at another location on the Internet. This handy plugin comes in free and premium versions although the premium version is required to have unlimited restoring capabilities. For people who may want this plugin anyway to keep a backup of their website, its additional restoration and full migration features definitely make the premium version worth it.
2. WP Migrate DB Pro
This plugin comes in free and premium versions. The premium versions offer powerful site migration functionality, which may make it popular with high end users that have sophisticated site transfer needs. Unlike many transfer plugins that are glorified backup and restore programs, WP Migrate DB Pro is a dedicated WordPress website migration tool. It focuses on transferring the current websites WordPress database and then providing flexibility when restoring it to another existing WordPress database. It enables the user to migrate tables selectively, filter post types by preference and push and pull databases. With over 100,000 active installations of this plugin, there is clearly a market for the powerful flexibility that this dedicated transfer tool provides.
3. All-in-One WP Migration
This plugin bills itself as the only tool users will ever need to migrate a WordPress website, and this is probably true for the vast majority of people. This highly rated plugin was one of the first to incorporate full mobile device functionality. All-in-One WP Migration allows unlimited find and replace while transferring a site as well as the ability to exclude data from being transferred, so you can edit and refine the site while moving it. This simple yet functional tool comes in a free version and offers premium extensions to increase its capabilities.
When it comes to selecting a plugin for transferring a WordPress website simply and efficiently, over 600,000 people who have this plugin installed can’t be wrong. It comes in a free version with the most basic features and then a premium version for developers, designers or site administrators who will need a higher level of functionality. It is also highly regarded as a site backup utility. While it is not for someone who is a novice to moving WordPress sites, it does come with full documentation and video tutorials to enable users to fully take advantage of what it can do. This may be the best plugin to use for pulling live sites down to a local host for testing or editing and for going the other way by moving a site from a local machine up to a live host to launch the site.
With over a half a million active installations, UpdraftPlus is one of the most popular migration plugins available today. It is mainly thought of as a backup and restoration plugin that happens to have powerful integrated transfer capabilities as well. Like so many of these plugins, it comes in free and various paid versions. One feature that sets this one apart is its ability to do restores and migrations from backup sets that were created using any one of several other backup or migration plugins. It also has the ability to split large sites up into multiple archives. Unlike Duplicator, which is geared toward more tech savvy users, UpdraftPlus has a simple interface, and its premium version offers one click cloning and migrating of your WordPress site.
The above represent just a few of the WordPress transfer plugins out there for streamlining and automating the process of transferring your website from one location to another. If you find yourself having to do this more often than you’d like, then it will definitely be worth getting one of these plugins to save time during the process. People who develop WordPress sites for clients will definitely find the premium versions worthwhile for the added functionality. Fortunately, some of these tools enable you to knock out two birds with one stone because every WordPress user already needs a good backup utility to keep from losing the data for their website. Many transfer plugins are also backup tools, and in some instances, that may even be their main functionality, with migration tools added on. As long as you need a good backup utility anyway, you may as well get one with good migration tools as well. WP Backitup would be a good example of this dual capability. More advanced users may want a more powerful dedicated migration tool such as WP Migrate DB Pro. As with many decisions, it depends on the end user and what your specific needs are. Whatever your situation, there is an excellent plugin out there that will take the hassle out of having to move your WordPress website to a new home.