A guide to manually migrating your WordPress Site to Pressable

This knowledge base article is for users who wish to manually move a WordPress website from their existing host to Pressable. Pressable also offers an automated method of migrating your site using the Pressable Migration plugin. Click here to read more.

Before you begin your migration, you will want to have a site added to your Pressable account that you will be importing your site into. This site should be a base/default/blank install that you do not mind overwriting the contents of.

Migrating an existing WordPress site to our platform can be broken down into four primary steps:

1. Get a copy of your existing WordPress website’s database.

2. Get a copy of your existing WordPress website’s set of files.

3. Import your database into a Pressable hosted staging site.

4. Upload your files to Pressable servers.

This knowledgebase article discusses each of these items in relative detail and will link to related knowledgebase articles where necessary.

There are quite a few ways to get a copy of your website’s database, but PHPMyAdmin is a widely available tool that is available on most web hosts. You will want to login to your host’s control panel and find your host’s PHPMyAdmin area. Once navigating into PHPMyAdmin, you will want to select the appropriate database from the left hand side and then click into the “Export” tab in the navigation menu near the top. Once you have done this, you will be presented with “Quick” and “Custom” options. In this case, you will want to use “Custom” options and ensure that “Add Create Database / Use statement” is unchecked and “Add Drop Tables / View / Procedure / Function / Event / Trigger Statement” is checked.


Selecting and using these custom options has two very important implications:

  1. Your database export will not try to create a new database upon importing. Pressable will not allow this and unchecking this will ensure the process goes smoothly.
  2. Your database export will overwrite existing tables that share the same name in your Pressable hosted site’s database. This database will erase currently existing data before it imports the data you exported from your previous host. Please use this option with caution and only if you are sure that the site you are importing this data into is the correct one.

Once you have selected these options, you can click the “Go” button to export the database to a file on your computer.

This part will require that you obtain FTP (or SFTP) information for the host your site is currently at. Each host handles these credentials/accounts slightly differently, but once you have your FTP/SFTP information, you can use an FTP/SFTP client like Cyberduck or FileZilla to connect to your host and download a copy of your files.

For the purposes of grabbing your files, you will need to know your FTP/SFTP Host, Port, Protocol, Username, and Password.

The “host” might be a domain like sftp.example.com or an IP address like and can be found in your host’s control panel in the FTP/SFTP section. You can also find the port and protocol in this same area. The protocol can be either FTP (generally on port 21) or SFTP (generally on port 22).

This information, together with your FTP/SFTP username and password can be inserted into an FTP/SFTP client like Cyberduck or Filezilla to connect to your host’s file servers. Here are a few screenshots of where you would enter these credentials in these two clients:

Cyberduck FTP/SFTP Information Entry Fields
Cyberduck FTP/SFTP Information Entry Fields
FileZilla FTP/SFTP Information Entry Fields
FileZilla FTP/SFTP Information Entry Fields

Once connected, you will want to find and download a copy of your wp-content folder to your computer. In most cases, you will only need your wp-content folder in order to successfully migrate a site. You do not need the WordPress core files in order to migrate to Pressable since we already have these files in place for you.

You can import the database file you exported into Pressable servers by following the instructions outlined in our database access knowledge base article.

Take a look at the files from your previous host. If any of the following files are present go ahead and remove before you upload files to Pressable servers.

  1. Remove /wp-content/advanced-cache.php and /wp-content/object-cache.php if they are present.
  2. Remove /wp-content/plugins/jetpack and /wp-content/plugins/akismet if they are present. These plugins come installed on Pressable sites and are managed by Pressable. See Managed Themes & Plugins
  3. Ensure that you are not uploading wp-config.php.

Pressable manages these files for you and these will not be necessary for you to upload.

In order to get your files onto Pressable servers, you will need to obtain your Pressable SFTP information, connect using an SFTP Client like Cyberduck or FileZilla, and upload files to the server.

As it pertains to migrating your site, you will want to copy the contents of the /wp-content/ folder you downloaded from your previous host to the /wp-content/ folder on Pressable servers.

Now that you’ve imported your database and uploaded your files, it’s time to load your migrated site. Try loading the site at the staging URL (or domain if you have assigned one) and ensure everything is functioning correctly.

If you have questions regarding your migration, please feel free to start a chat with us or send us an email at help@pressable.com.