If you haven’t manually migrated a WordPress website before you may be thinking it is a daunting and tedious task.
But honestly, it is pretty simple and the WordPress plugins in this list make it a lot easier than you think.
You can choose a new web host that offers free migration and you don’t have to worry about transferring your site.
But, what if you have to choose a host that offers free migrations only for 1 site and you’ve 5 sites or doesn’t offer free migrations at all?
Some web hosts charge up to $150 to migrate a single WordPress website.
In such cases, your best way to migrate your existing site manually with zero downtime is a migration plugin.
Using a migration plugin you can easily migrate your WordPress website from one host another and you don’t need to have any advanced skills.
Here are some of the best WordPress migration plugins for beginners:
Duplicator is the most popular WordPress migration plugin which allows you to migrate your site to any web host. Duplicator works by creating packages for site files and database combined with all the essential files, including WordPress software.
The only thing you need to remember while using Duplicator is it does not create the database automatically. So you’ll have to first create a new database on your new server before you transfer the files.
There’s also a premium version of Duplicator which allows you to ease down the process and also helps you create automatic cloud backups. If you don’t want to take the hassle of creating databases and copying files manually, you would like to use Duplicator pro.
You’ll also get premium support from the developer on premium version and free support is always available on WordPress forum.
UpdraftPlus is the most downloaded backup plugin with over 2 million downloads and 4.8-star ratings.
UpDraftPlus is initially a WordPress backup plugin but It comes with an add-on called migrator which makes it very easy to migrate a WordPress site.
You can use UpDraftPlus migrator to move your site to another server for the same domain or different domain without worrying about any technical side.
It will hardly take 5 minutes to complete the whole migration process with UpDraftPlus migrator. Moreover, you can also use the clone feature to create an exact copy of your WordPress site in the cloud. You can use this clone site to test your website on the new server before completing the migration.
UpDraftPlus is a free plugin, and migrator add comes for a premium price of $30.
BackUpBuddy is one of the easiest to use premium backup plugins. And this is the one I use.
BackUpBuddy is a WordPress backup plugin from iThemes, who develop many famous WordPress plugins like iThemes security. It comes with a migration feature builtin which means you’ll use one plugin to create backups and migrate your site with zero downtimes.
You can use BackUpBuddy to migrate your WordPress site to a new domain or on the same domain.
Migrating your site with BackupBuddy is pretty much the same as creating a backup and restoring it. You create a backup, download it, install ImportBuddy script on the new server and upload the backup file. It’s that easy.
You can check out the whole tutorial here.
All In One WP Migration
It can be very convenient to use All in one WP Migration as it works on upload and restores functionality.
You have to create a file and database backup on your WordPress site and re-upload it to the new WordPress site on the new server. It does support cross-domain migration so you don’t have to worry about that part too.
It is free to download and comes with a premium version that allows you to store backups and site clones from cloud services like Google Drive, Amazon S3 and DropBox
This is the hottest WordPress migration plugin right now. Migrate Guru allows you to move your site to a new host in one click, without copying or uploading and files.
It’s seriously that easy!.
You install Migrate Guru on both servers, i.e. your existing server and the new one. Fill in the site details such as URL and c-panel details and you’re done. You can track the migration process in real time.
The best part is, you are guaranteed a crash-proof migration with zero downtime and free support if something goes wrong.
Migrate Guru is free to use for unlimited sites. This includes multisite WordPress installs as well.
WP Clone is an easy to use alternative to Duplicator. Unlike Duplicator, WP Clone creates a database on its own so you don’t need to manually create a database and handle its passwords.
Simply install the plugin on the new site (on a temporary site URL, ask your new host if you don’t know) and it will pull the data from your host to begin with the migration process.
However, there are a few cons you need to know:
- It doesn’t get updates frequently
- It fails many times
WP Clone supports all the popular hosts, but might not work on some small web hosts and managed web hosts like WP Engine, Kinsta and WPX hosting.
WP Migrate DB
WP Migrate is a little bit different from other migration plugins in this list. WP Migrate DB only allows you to migrate WordPress database. It does not let you transfer files.
So if you are transferring a local site to production for testing and know your way around FTP file transfer, WP Migrate DB may be the safest way for you to transfer MySQL databases on local and production sites.
VaultPress by Jetpack is a cloud backup service. They recently introduced real-time cloud backup that allows you to store a site backup in a remote environment and start a real-time backup restoration on any domain you want.
vaultPress comes with Jetpack pro subscription and it is one of the safest ways to secure your site. It stores routinely backups in the cloud and you can restore or transfer your database and files with one click.
You don’t even have to download and upload files to the new server.
SiteGround Migrator is a new migration plugin developed by popular web host SiteGround.
SiteGround Migrator is a host-specific plugin. This means it only works on SiteGround hosting environment. You can use SiteGround Migrator to transfer your site from any host to SiteGround with zero downtime.
Using this plugin is pretty easy. Install Siteground Migrator, copy/paste your transfer token from your Siteground hosting C-panel and that’s it. It will automatically transfer the site for you.
Cloudways WordPress Migrator
Cloudways WordPress Migrator is another host specific plugin developed by Cloudways hosting. Cloudways is a cloud hosting provider and does offer free migrations for 1 site. But if you have more than one website to transfer, this plugin will ease the work for you.
You can use Cloudways WordPress Migrator to transfer your site from any web host to Cloudways servers in one click. Simply put in your FTP details and you’re done.
It also works for E-commerce sites including WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads.
I’ll remind you one more time: always create a backup and store it offline before you start the migration. Check out these amazing WordPress backup plugins
That’s all. I hope you’ve found your ideal WordPress migration plugin. You should also check out some of the best web hosts that give free migrations for WordPress websites.
Let me know which one plugin you use and why.