If you are here, you might be facing some problems with your current web host. In this case, switching your host is crucial for your website to function correctly. Changing a web host is a significant decision, and it is not an overnight game. It would be best to consider some factors before making a significant change because you cannot choose your next web host without knowing your website requirements and the pitfalls of your current host.
It would help if you were careful when choosing a web host. Most businesses choose hosting without thinking much about it, and later they realize it doesn’t meet their website’s requirements. Most business owners think a lot about switching to another hosting provider for fear of losing their business by hurting their ranking and facing downtime.
This post gives you a guide to seamlessly transferring your website to another hosting provider.
Table of Contents
- 1 How Can I Migrate My Website to a New Host?
- 2 Common Issues Encountered in the Migration:
- 3 Essential Tips to Avoid Downtime While Migrating
- 4 Why Is Protecting SEO Important While Migrating?
- 5 Conclusion
How Can I Migrate My Website to a New Host?
There are two options you can transfer your website to a new host. Let’s take a look at them:
Option 1 – Transfer Your Website Manually
First, check if your new host offers a free or reasonable site migration. If yes, you can skip to option number 2.
Manually moving your site is a long process, and you may face many problems during the process. If you are a tech expert, it will be good. Otherwise, you can’t perform migration on your own. You need to hire a technical person to do the job.
If you’re planning to do this manually, look at How to Transfer a Domain to a New Registrar?
Option 2 – Outsource the Migration Process
Many hosting services include a free site migration in their hosting plan. If your new host offers a free site migration, it’s a plus point. It will save you time and effort, especially if you’re not a tech geek or a busy company owner.
The server will transfer your website for you, free of charge. We offer free site migration in every managed hosting plan, i.e. managed wordpress hosting, managed wordpress hosting Dubai, managed Joomla hosting, managed Magento hosting and more.
Common Issues Encountered in the Migration:
Switching hosts is not always smooth. It requires a plan and knowledge of what can go wrong.
Here are a few issues that can appear during the host migration.
It Can Hurt Your SEO
Switching to a new host can hurt your SEO in more than one way. For instance, if your website loads slow on your new host or you face downtime during migration, it will affect your ranking.
Migrating Customer Data Is a Laborious Process
Migrating customer data, passwords and transaction records is a serious issue. For example, in most cases, the hosting provider encrypts customer data and other sensitive information for security purposes. It isn’t easy for the new host to decrypt this information.
Loss of Files
You may lose your site files and database information during the migration process. This issue can be costly and time-consuming. To avoid this issue, you can take a recent backup before starting the transfer process.
You Missed Procuring Necessary Web Access Data
If you forget to acquire administrative access to your website, your transition won’t be smooth.
Get your hands on the following elements before starting the transition.
- FTP hostname, username, and password
- Web host login credentials
- Email client login credentials
- Social media and social media manager credentials
- Domain registration credentials
- Google credentials (if you use google based tools and plugins)
- CMS credentials
If you have an extensive database, the default 2MB import/export limit for phpMyAdmin can stop you from exporting the database through a web interface.
When you face this issue, you can do any of the following options:
- Use a Cpanel built-in import/export feature if available.
- Increase the limit in your server’s php.ini file.
- Use mysqldump to export databases from the command line.
- Use WordPress import/export feature if you use wordpress.
500 Internal Server Error
Even if you transfer all your files, the new host might be missing some files due to transfer or permissions errors. Check your FTP log to ensure no failed transfers and that all the folders on your new hosting have the same folder permissions as your old provider. Also, check your .htaccess file, rename it and reload your website.
Essential Tips to Avoid Downtime While Migrating
When you move your site from one host to another, many things are going behind. Regardless of the speed, updating a DNS server from an old to a new hosting provider can cause your site to go down for several hours.
No one wants their visitors to face extended downtime. Here are a few tips to avoid this situation.
Don’t Cancel Your Current Hosting Plan Until the Process Is Complete
Most hosting providers take down a site the moment they are asked to cancel the plan. Usually, they don’t wait for the expiry of the current month. Although it’s essential to inform your old hosting provider about the transfer, doing it before the transfer process is complete can result in downtime and loss of data.
Obtain a Compressed Backup
Get a backup of your files and database from Cpanel. Make sure both the hosting services have the same administration technology, so your data will be backed up quickly.
When you download backup through the relevant Cpanel administration page, download the files in the compressed form.
Don’t Decompress the Files
Don’t decompress these backup files, as the new server will manage the transfer process. The new host sends an email that includes IP address details and domain name server in most cases. You can view the content of your website using the new IP address.
Check the Database
Ensure that your database backup files don’t contain the username, passwords or permissions associated with the MySQL database. This information needs to be entered using the MySQL database interface in Cpanel.
Switch to the New Domain Name Server
When you complete all the steps above, it’s time to switch to the new domain name server. This is the final step of the transfer process, where you have to notify the domain registrar that you will be using a new domain name server and view data and files on the other server.
Why Is Protecting SEO Important While Migrating?
As you know, if the migration is not managed effectively, it will hurt your SEO. Protecting your SEO while migrating will help you mitigate several risks and ensure a constant traffic flow to your site after migration. Here are the reasons you need to safeguard your SEO.
Your website content is the reason your visitors are attracted to your brand. If you don’t manage the transfer correctly, it will lead to broken links, missing content and other issues that can hurt your SEO. For that reason, It’s essential to keep a list of all existing content, settings and configurations to ensure nothing is missed.
Following are the wrong steps you take while migrating a website that can result in your site’s poor performance.
- You don’t unlock your domain with the previous host.
- You make a domain transfer request outside the lockout span.
- You dont configure the setting with the new host completely.
You can face issues like 404 errors that can be fatal for your website’s ranking. These broken pages block the flow of your site’s link juice and devalue your standing for google.
As can be seen, website migration is quite a complicated process. If you mess it up once, it can damage your reputation, traffic and revenue. Therefore, it’s necessary first to understand the critical aspects of the migration process.
Make sure to follow the instructions mentioned above when changing to a new host. Once you have migrated effectively, your site should be up and running without losing any information.
AEserver migrated thousands of websites for the customers that chose us. You can also get a free site migration by signing up for any of our UAE based managed hosting plans.