A website migration is when you decide to move your website (and often emails) from one web hosting provider to another. The process of moving the website files, database(s) and any other data is the migration.
There are often concerns about loss of functionality or data or vast periods of downtime during the migration. However, when done correctly, migrations can be very smooth with next to no impact on service. This is why it’s recommended that website migrations are carried out by trained and experienced professionals.
Why move web hosts? #
There are a number of reasons to move web hosting providers. Below are the most common reasons that we’ve come across:
- Would like a faster and/or more reliable service,
- Cheaper or better value elsewhere,
- Would like a better or more proactive support.
How does a migration work? #
A website migration can be complex with many aspects to consider. Below, we run through the overall process of a migration to give you an idea how it works. However, please note, it is out of the scope of this article to go into technical detail or describe the process at length.
(1) Plan #
Pretty simple, but having a plan makes the process much smoother. Check things like:
- Whether the new provider’s server environment is compatible for your website
- You have backups in place
- You have the right server access.
(2) Test #
Ideally perform a test migration to a staging environment on the new hosting provider’s platform.
(3) Warn customers #
Optional but recommended and especially for e-commerce sites.
This is done to warn customers that scheduled maintenance will be taking place at XYZ time.
(4) Carry out the migration #
There are many ways to carry out the actual website migration. Some examples are:
- Good old fashion manual FTP download & upload,
- Server migration tools or web applications.
(5) Test #
Check everything is in working order and, providing it is, celebrate!
What are the types of web hosting around? #
We cover the main types of web hosting you can find in this article here.