Moving a site is certainly not an easy task. Usually, to clone or migrate WordPress sites, it involves the assistance or work of an expert professional because there are safety issues and the risk of losing all the hard work that you’ve done on your site.
I believe that moving a site to another server is probably more challenging than building a website from scratch.
Therefore, my advice is that nobody should attempt this task of migrating a website without advanced technical knowledge and an experienced web developer or a WordPress migration plugin.
You may already know the two conditions mentioned above, ‘having technical knowledge’ and ‘an experience developer’; however, the third one, which is leveraging a ‘WordPress migration plugin’, is what we’ll be discussing today.
The digital world over the years has evolved, and today we have super-reliable tools that can help us to transfer all of our files safely to a new server while minimizing the risk of website downtime, losing all data, and more.
From ensuring safety to migrating your website safely to another hosting platform, the plugins on this list are providing developers and business owners far more convenience when it comes to shifting your site to a new server.
So, today in this article, I’m going to give you a brief overview of the best WordPress migration plugins that I believe are the best and can help you migrate your site for free.
These solutions are designed to fit your specific requirements so that you can seamlessly migrate your site even if you’re not a WordPress expert.
Let’s start exploring them one by one!
5 Best plugins to clone or migrate WordPress sites:
Now that you’ve got an overview of this technology (plugins) that can come in handy, let’s start discussing the best ones available in the market that are redefining the process to clone or migrate WordPress sites.
Just when migrating a WordPress website was looking pretty difficult, this great plugin stepped in and changed the game.
The All-in-One WP migration plugin has everything you need to move your website to a whole new server. From necessary features to tasks to robust functionality and even to being beginner-friendly – this tool is designed to ensure performance and user experience at the same time.
The process of migrating your site while leveraging All-in-One WP migration is as simple as they come. You just need to export your entire site as a single file. Install this plugin at the new WordPress install at the server that you’ve selected. Upload the site file, and there you go – your converted site is ready to roll.
Moreover, the find and replace option of the plugin ensures that you have completed migrated your site and nothing is remaining.
Other than the details mentioned above, All-in-One WP migration also supports files of any size regardless of the limitations. That’s because the technology is advance, and it divides your website into smaller chunks and then migrates them.
Furthermore, the plugin is also compatible with several hosting providers. However, there’s just one important thing that needs to be cleared out here. For really comprehensive sites, you’ll be needing the premium extension with cloud storage service as the cloud approach is a more reliable option for huge sites.
- Clean UIFiles exporting
- Mobile-friendly experience
- Compatibility with Windows, Linux, and Mac
- Support for all PHP versions
- Cloud integration
The basic version of this option is free for all users; however, as mentioned above, if you’re looking to migrate a bulky site, then you may need the premium plugin. You can get the premium version of this plugin for $69.
Standing on #2 on this list is the Duplicator, and as the name suggests, this plugin is responsible for shifting/duplicating your entire website on a new host/server seamlessly… This is the plugin we usually recommend to customers wanting to clone or migrate WordPress sites.
From copying and moving to clone your website, you can use Duplicator to perform a variety of tasks. You also get the option of storing the data on your computer.
So, how does this tool work? Well, the Duplicator exports your entire website by dividing them into two separate files. Once your files are ready, you can upload them on the new server by using FTP or cPanel file manager.
After uploading your file, you can follow the wizard to complete the migration process.
Through this panel, you can also implement the find and replace approach, change the domain name and fix serialization issues.
So, with the seamless process of migration that you’ll experience with Duplicator out of the way, let’s explore what other things this plugin can do.
The Duplicator can also be used to back up your site automatically or manually, depending on the version of the plugin you have. Additionally, there’s the staging feature available that lets you test your site without interrupting your live site.
Some other features of this tool include the following:
- Convenient WordPress transfers
- Zero downtime while migrating the site.
- Reuse of themes or other files
- Pre-bundled sites
Read our post on using Duplicator Pro.
3. Migrate Guru
Next stop, Migrate Guru, and as the specific word in the name ‘Guru’ suggests, this plugin is one of the leading and best plugins that you can leverage to migrate your website.
The primary advantage that this plugin provides is that it helps you to move larger sites to either a multisite network or new servers.
Because the process of migrating bulky sites is super-difficult, this plugin gives its users the facility to seamlessly migrate websites that weigh up to 200 GB.
Moreover, the lightweight plugin also doesn’t require the help of any third-party storage because it is running on its servers. Also, their reliability on their server enables them to deliver a downtime-free experience while ensuring smooth transfer.
Another great feature of this tool is that it allows the transfer of site with just one click, which is super-fast. This means that even a complex 2 GB site can be transferred to a new server quickly.
The only drawback of this Migrate Guru is that it doesn’t offer a backup feature like its competitors are providing. Due to this reason, you’ll have to install a 3 rd party WordPress backup plugin to safely backup your site if in case anything goes wrong.
Still, however, the plugin is capable of some great things mentioned above, and here are more things that this plugin provides to the users:
- Custom-made ‘search and replace’ feature
- Automatic URL rewrites
- Import-export script bypass
- Email alerts with progress notifications
- Dedicated integrations with many popular WordPress hosts, as well as a generic option that works with any host
Here’s an optimal solution and a complete answer to all your WordPress site migration needs. The reliability and performance of this tool are solid hence the reason why this plugin has a massive following.
The premium plugins ensure high safety and security while migrating your site. So much so that if your site gets hacked to fails to migrate properly, this plugin enables you to restore the latest version of your website that was available before the migration.
By leveraging the latest cloud-based technologies like Google Drive and Dropbox, the plugin gives you the feature of downloading your entire site quickly.
Additionally, there’s a dedicated migration tool integrated into this plugin that enables you to change your web host, adjust domain and replace URLs.
Moreover, features like staging site for testing and cloning site files are also present.
Here are some other features of this tool:
- Scheduled back-ups
- Email notifications
- Serialized data
- Malware scans
- Customer service
- Exclude or restore individual files
- Database repair features
Pricing: BackupBuddy is available for $80 and comes with 1 GB of storage space.
Last but not the least, UpdraftPlus. This feature-rich, quality-oriented, and powerful plugin is integrated with the latest features, functionalities, and more that provide an amazing experience while migrating websites.
The migrating and cloning capabilities of this great plugin surpasses the capabilities of several other plugins available in the market hence, the reason why it has a massive user base.
The primary advantage you get with this tool is that it enables your to back up your WordPress website, which I think every other tool on this list has. However, it does come with some outstanding features which convinced me to put this plugin on this list.
For starters, all it takes is just one click to initiate the migration process of your website.
The plugin leverages Google Drive or Dropbox to deliver cloud storage. You can transfer files to your site while it is running live. This also comes in handy when you’re testing your website.
Besides the features mentioned above, here are some other advantages that UpdraftPlus provides to its users:
- Scheduled and incremental back-ups
- Extensive cloud storage service integrations
- Multisite support
- WP CLI command support
- Security encryption
- ‘Search and replace’ functionality
- Customer support
Pricing: The Plugin is free for backups. However, the premium package starts with $70
with a renewal fee of $42 per year.
We all know that to clone or migrate WordPress sites is not an easy task, and while doing so, one needs to ensure optimal tools that have robust features while having advanced knowledge of migrating a website.
However, even after having all the aspects mentioned above, there are times when unexpected errors occur. Therefore, to safely and securely migrate your WordPress website, I’d recommend you use the plugins mentioned on this list.
These plugins will get the job done for your seamlessly, and you don’t need to have super-technical skills to get started with them; just download the plugin and let them do their job.