Are you experiencing slow response times? Is your website sometimes unavailable? Are you frustrated by incompetent tech support? Is it time to choose a new website hosting company?
Changing Your Website Hosting Company
At one time or another most of us are faced with having to change hosting vendors. Sometimes vendors change their focus from premier customer support with a somewhat limited number of clients to focusing on having the largest number of customers. Sometimes, as your website grows and you incorporate SQL databases and ecommerce functions, your hosting needs are simply no longer being met. If you feel let down by your hosting vendor, it may not be as difficult as you think to move your website/blog to another host.
Depending on the complexity of your website, your skill set and your timeframe, you may be able to move your website yourself. On the other hand, it may be cost-effective for you to hire someone. (After all, time is money. Even if you can do this yourself, how long will it take you and are you confident that you won’t accidentally harm your existing website?)
5 Steps to Moving Your Website:
- Select a new website hosting company.
- Create a fresh website on your new host using your domain name.
- Transfer all of your files and databases to your new host.
- Test and tweak your website
- Change the DNS records on your current host to your new host.
The steps to move your files and data depends on the type of website that you have and the type of backup/restore program that you’re using. Moving a basic website with HTML pages and no SQL databases is naturally the easiest type of site to move. You would use an FTP (File Transfer Protocol) program (such as FileZillza) to transfer a copy of your website to your computer and then transfer your website from your computer to your new host.
If you are transferring a (self-hosted) WordPress blog, you should be able to simply FTP your website the same as an HTML site. If you’ve been hosting your blog on someone else’s website such as WordPress.com or BlogSpot.com, you’ll have to import and export your database. For websites that are built using a CMS (Content Management System) such as Joomla or Drupal, there are backup/restore programs (such as AkeebaBackup for Joomla).
Do It Yourself or Hire a Pro?
If I started to lose you when I referred to FTP, CMS and SQL, hiring a professional may be the best route for you. (Did you install your own CMS and blogging software yourself?) Depending on your technical skills, your budget and your time frame, you may or may not want to attempt moving your website yourself.
No matter what you decide, I hope this article helps alleviate some of the anxiety associated with the task of changing hosting vendors. After all, it is moving your site from point A to point B isn’t it? I recommend thinking of this as an opportunity to make some much needed changes to your website.
Whether it’s time to do a redesign or you’ve recently incorporated (or should incorporate) a blog, this might be the time to do it. Recently, I’ve noticed quite a few people who have a website and a separate blog rather than incorporating their blog into their website. Maybe now is the time to redesign your website to have your blog as your home page.
I’m looking forward to hearing your comments and ideas. What have your experiences been with moving a site? Did you do it with or without professional help? What are your recommendations? What would you do the same and what would you do differently? I look forward to hearing from you.