In this blog post, we will show you how to migrate an existing website to WPEngine. WordPress is a popular blogging platform that allows users to create and manage their own blogs with ease. It has become the go-to solution for many people looking for a way to publish content online with relative ease. However, running your own blog on your own server can be tricky and time-consuming; luckily, WPEngine offers reliable hosting solutions for bloggers.

WPEngine provides everything you need to run your blog without any hassle at all: Hosting, security software, automatic backups – the list goes on! In this article, we will cover why you should migrate an existing site over to WPEngine, as well as how it’s done.

Why should I choose WPEngine to host my website?

WPEngine’s hosting is superior to nearly all other web hosts for a few reasons. One of the most important factors when it comes to choosing a host, alongside price, duration, and reliability – is “uptime.” How often does your website go down? With WPEngine, you don’t have to worry about downtime at all!

Additionally, WPEngine’s hosting provides security software to keep your site safe from hackers and DDOS attacks. At the same time, providing a secure backup if anything goes wrong.

The last thing to consider when it comes to hosting is the price. WPEngine’s prices are on par with other hosts but come with more features and tools!

Migrating an Existing Site to WPEngine: How-to Guide

Now that we’ve covered some of the reasons you might want/need a new host let’s talk about migrating your website over! This process is simple and can be done in just a few minutes:

How do I migrate my site?

It can be done easily by following these steps:

  1. If you haven’t already, sign up for WPEngine. Pick the smallest plan; this can always be upgraded if needed.
  2. Add a new site (click on the Add Site button in the top right corner)
  3. Give the site a unique name
  4. Go to Site Migration under the Production Tab
  5. Click on Generate new password
  6. Keeping that browser window open; Login to your current WordPress website.
  7. Install & Activate the WP Engine Automated Migration plugin
  8. Go to the plugin settings, add your email address (any email address will work, accept the terms and conditions. This email is used to notify you of the migration progress.)
  9. Copy and paste the settings from WPEngine’s SFTP credentials page.
  10. Press the Migrate button
  11. Wait for the migration progress to finish. You will receive an email when complete. This could take minutes, or hours, depending on the size and speed of your current website/hosting.
  12. Once migrated, login to your DNS provider (e.g., GoDaddy, Namecheap, Hover, etc…) and add the A Record to your DNS provider found under the domains tab in WPEngine.
  13. Add your domain name to WPEngine.
  14. Select to add a free SSL certificate with LetsEncrypt
  15. Check that the website is up and running smoothly
  16. Install & activate the Better Search Replace plugin and update the installname.wpengine.com to yourdomainname.com
  17. Set your primary domain (non-www, or www URL) & redirect the secondary domains to the primary URL. If you do this step too soon in the process, it can set your site into a permanent redirect state.
  18. Scan your website for errors. I recommend using Screaming Frog or an SEMrush Audit.

In Pictures:

Add a new site in your WPE hosting account. Name it accordingly.

Add a Site button
Add a Site button

Enter the migration settings tab, generate a new password.

Site Migration Tab
Site Migration Tab

Add the WPE automated migration plugin to your old website

WP Engine Automated Migration Plugin
WP Engine Automated Migration Plugin

Add your migration credentials from WPE in the plugin. It will ask you for an email address so they can notify you when the process has completed.

Migration Credentials
Migration Credentials

Press migrate & wait for the migration process to finish

Migration Process
Migration Process

Update your DNS values to point to the new hosting

DNS Values
DNS Settings

This IP information can be found under the Domains tab

Domains Tab: A Record
Domains Tab: A Record

Add your domain name & setup a free LetsEncrypt SSL certificate. Follow the prompts.

Add a Domain
Add a Domain

Using Better Search Replace plugin, update all the URLs on your website to be correct value. This will remove installname.wpengine.com and replace with yourcorrectdomain.com

Better Search and Replace
Better Search and Replace

Redirect all URLs to the primary domain. This can be found under the domains tab.

Domain Redirects
Domain Redirects

Scan your website for migration errors.

Screaming Frog SEO scan
Screaming Frog SEO scan
SEMrush Audit: New client with lots of errors to fix
SEMrush Audit: No Change – New client with lots of errors to fix

WPE to WPE migrations

If you are migrating WPE to WPE, you will need to talk to tech support (Chat) and have:

  1. Have both Support PINs, or
  2. Add wpe-verification=installationNAME as a TXT record in your DNS

This way they can remove the old domain so you can add it to the new account.

I hope you found this useful, if you need any help with migrating your website to WPengine, please contact me.