Weebly is one of the many website builders out there people might look at when they’re considering publishing their website. Why? It provides a free plan. However, what happens when you outgrow a basic setup and don’t want to upgrade your Weebly plans? In that case, one of the best options for you would be to migrate from Weebly to WordPress.
In this step-by-step guide, we are going to walk you through what you need to do to successfully migrate your existing website from Weebly to a new WordPress website.
Before we go through the actual migration steps, let’s take a look at a few things that need to be in place in order for the process to be as smooth and easy as possible. From getting a domain name and hosting to setting up WordPress for the migration process, we have you covered.
From Weebly to WordPress: Migration Prerequisites
We know you are eager and ready to get your site moved from Weebly to WordPress. Before this can happen, let’s go over a few things you should have already taken care of before starting the actual website migration process.
Going from one CMS to another is not always easy. This is especially true with Weebly and WordPress. While we are laying the steps out for you, certain things have to be considered beforehand.
Perhaps the most important thing to remember is the main difference between Weebly and WordPress.
Acquired by Square in 2018, Weebly is not an open-source system. It is a proprietary drag and drop website builder that gives people everything they need to start building a site right away and getting it online.
While this is all fine and good, oftentimes people tend to outgrow a Weebly setup because they want more freedom and control over what they can and can’t do on their websites.
WordPress is built for exactly this. WordPress is an open-source system that gives users a ton of options when it comes to controlling and flexibility.
With WordPress, users can customize (almost) anything, including the underlying source code, themes, and functionality (through plugins) which allows for great freedom.
Now that we’ve highlighted the core differences between the two platforms, let’s take a look at specific actions you’d need to perform to make sure your migration from Weebly to a new WordPress website goes smoothly.
Register a Domain Name
If you are moving from a platform like Weebly and going to WordPress, chances are you will need to register and purchase a domain name. Since Weebly has a free plan, users that build websites there have a URL that looks something like this:
Now, this is not always the case. So if you already have your domain name, feel free to skip ahead to the next section.
There are several good domain registrars to choose from. You want to consider things like pricing and TLD (top-level domain) names that are made available.
Purchasing a domain name is the first step toward getting your site migrated from Weebly to WordPress. Our in-depth guide covering how to select the best domain name registrar can give you a more detailed look into this process.
Now that you have a domain name ready to roll, it is time to purchase hosting so that you can get your new WordPress site up and running properly. Again, you need to have your WordPress site up and running with a fresh WordPress install on your domain name so that you can perform the migration properly.
There are different types of hosting available. However, we suggest managed WordPress hosting for a number of reasons.
Our Kinsta hosting platform is an excellent choice and gives you access to all the WordPress hosting features and tools you need to easily set up a site in WordPress and get ready to perform the migration from Weebly to WordPress.
Install and Set Up WordPress
There are a few different ways that you can install WordPress on your chosen domain name and get it running properly. The way you install it will probably be based on the hosting platform you chose to go with.
If you are on a hosting provider that uses cPanel, then setting up WordPress there is not that difficult. There is a one-click installation process, but there are certain details that need to be filled out and options to consider. Non-tech users might experience some issues.
On the other hand, we have MyKinsta, our custom-designed dashboard where installing a WordPress can happen by adding a few bits of info and using the one-click action that is available.
3 Methods To Migrate a Weebly Website to WordPress
From this point, you are ready to perform the migration. There are three main ways to migrate your site from Weebly to WordPress. These include:
Manual migration (DIY free)
Automated migration (plugin free and paid)
Outsource migration (paid)
Let’s go over all three ways together.
Manually migrating your Weebly website over to WordPress is not really a tough task. In reality, this is probably how you want to do it, as this is the simplest process. All you have to do is copy and paste content from one place to another.
The most attractive part of doing the migration manually is that you are making sure every piece of content is coming over properly, the exact way you want it.
One thing to consider here is the size of your current site on Weebly. Manual migration is a little time-consuming, so if you have a large site, it may be a good idea to use the automated method or the outsourcing method, both of which we cover below.
Step 1: Create Pages and Posts in WordPress
Before you start copying and pasting content from Weebly to WordPress, it will help the process go faster if you create pages and posts to start.
This speeds up that process because you don’t have to create the pages and posts as you go.
There are a couple of ways to do this; you can create the pages and posts manually, 1-by-1, or you can use a plugin called Bulk Page Creator to create pages in bulk much faster.
If you do want to use this plugin, then go ahead and install and activate it on your WordPress website.
Once the plugin is activated, go to Settings and then click on the Bulk Page Creator tab.
Click on the Multiple Pages mode checkbox and from there, type the name of every page you want to create and separate them using commas.
Example: test1,test2,test3,etc. Do not leave any spaces between commas and page titles.
There is also another plugin you may want to use for this process. The Quick Bulk Post & Page Creator plugin allows you to do the exact same thing as Bulk Page Creator, except it expands into posts, media, hierarchies, and much more.
Once you install this plugin, click on Tools and then choose the Quick Post Creator tab.
Once on the plugin options page, you will see that this plugin offers a bit more functionality. However, we want to use it to create bulk posts. You can see that we wrote in some post examples.
Go ahead and create the post titles you need, set the configurations how you prefer using the options, and then click on the Bulk Insert button at the bottom of the page when you are ready to create your posts.
When you do this, you can go to the Posts section of your dashboard and see that the relevant posts have been created.
The Quick Bulk Post & Page Creator plugin has not been updated in quite some time. However, we did test it as you can see above and it still works perfectly to add bulk posts and pages.
Step 2: Copy and Paste Content From Weebly to WordPress
Now that you have all of the relevant pages and posts created in WordPress, it is time to start copying content from your Weebly site and pasting it over to the correct post or page on your new site.
How long will this take? Well, this depends on the amount of content you have to bring over. That’s it! The manual process is very simple but can be time-consuming.
It should also be noted that you will of course want to bring all the relevant images over from Weebly to WordPress.
To do this, you will need to save the images directly from your Weebly site and then upload them manually into the WordPress media library.
Once the images are in your library, you can simply put them in the correct page or post.
Don’t forget to fix any internal links so that they point to the correct places within your new WordPress site.
You can do this manually for each post and page coming from your Weebly site, or provided the old URLs on Weebly and the new URLs on WordPress are set with a specific pattern, you have the choice to use the regex option as well.
Automating the migration from Weebly to a WordPress website can be nice because you get to move away from the more manual copy and paste routine. However, oftentimes using plugins to move content like this can leave you with several things you might need to tidy up after the import has finished.
There is also the issue of finding the right plugin that will give you all the necessary tools in one place.
There are a number of plugin options out there that can get you through this process. The problem is that many of them are very old and have not been updated in a while. It’s true, most of them still work, but for this part of the article, we wanted to find something that was both free and up-to-date.
For this, we are going to use the Feedzy RSS Aggregator plugin. Not only does this plugin provide a solid way to help you automate the Weebly to WordPress migration process, but they also have a premium version of the plugin available as well.
Sign Up For the Newsletter
It should be noted that we are using the free version of this plugin to perform the posts migration process. If you want more functionality when bringing the posts over, then feel free to dig into the premium version and see if it offers something you need.
Let’s transfer your site from Weebly to WordPress using this more automated method.
Step 1: Install and Activate the Feedzy Plugin
While in your WordPress dashboard, head over to the plugin installation area by clicking on Plugins and then Add New. This takes you to where you need to be to search for the Feedzy plugin.
Go ahead and search for Feedzy using the available search field. When you see it, install and activate it right from your dashboard.
Now that the plugin is installed and activated, you are ready to use the functionality it provides. What we are going to do is use it to grab your Weebly website RSS feed and use that feed to create posts on your new WordPress site.
Step 2: Find the “Import Posts” Tab
With Feedzy activated, find the main tab in your WordPress dashboard and click on it. From there, you need to click on the Import Posts tab to create a new import and grab the posts from your Weebly site.
Once in this section, go ahead and click on the New Import button located at the top of the page. This will take you to the main configuration options for Feedzy and allow you to import RSS feeds to your website.
Step 3: Import Posts From Weebly to WordPress
At this point, you have reached the main import feed page for the plugin. You are going to use this page to import feeds from Weebly directly into your new WordPress website.
Go ahead and give your import a name. The name can be whatever is relevant to the feed or whatever you want it to be. Remember, you can bring in multiple feeds one at a time if needed.
You want to put your Weebly site’s feed URL directly into the field labeled “Source.” If you are wondering what exactly your Weebly feed URL is, it is usually one of the following:
From there, fill out the rest of the settings and configurations how you see fit. Remember, not every feed setup will look the same. A lot of how you do this part of the process depends on your configurations.
Here is the layout of what you are going to be looking at. You can see that some options are not available because they are part of the premium version only.
You can continue scrolling down and assign more elements.
When you have all the options filled out how you want, it is time to click on the Save & Activate button on the bottom right of the page.
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This automatically imports the feed and takes you back out to the “Import Posts” section.
From here, you will see what was found and imported from the feed you chose.
Step 4: Import Pages and Images
As is the case for the manual method, exporting pages and images from Weebly to WordPress has to be done differently as pages are not included in the RSS feed.
You have a couple of options here, depending on the number of pages you have. You can use the copy and paste method that we talked about above to get your pages over, or you can use a couple of different plugins to do the trick.
If you need to use the plugin method, head to your Weebly website and export the pages as HTML files. You can also request their support to do this for you, though you may have to wait a few days for a response.
Once you have the pages in an HTML format, you can use a plugin like HTML Import to import those page files into your WordPress site.
Feel free to save those manually and then upload them into your WordPress media library as far as images go.
You can also bulk upload files via FTP or SFTP as well. If you are familiar with this option, it will save some time.
Kinsta exclusively uses SFTP, but some other hosts operate on FTP still. Learn about the main differences here.
Outsource the Weebly to WordPress Migration
There is one more way to easily migrate from Weebly to WordPress with little to no hassle. If you are interested in outsourcing the project, then this is a great way to go.
There are a couple of websites that offer excellent Weebly to WordPress migration services. This allows you to punch in a little information, then sit back and let them take care of it for you.
We have two excellent suggestions for you.
CMS2CMS is an automated service that gives you the ability to migrate from any platform right to WordPress.
They provide an effortless, smooth, and fully automated process. Despite this being a premium service, it provides a free demo migration that transfers a limited content. That way, you can see exactly how it works and how easy the process is
CMS2CMS also offers a free migration calculator that you can fill in fairly quickly and get the migration cost in a few clicks.
If you want to try the limited process for free, then sign up for an account on their website and go through their step-by-step process to see if it fits you.
Another good option available for outsourcing your Weebly to WordPress site migration would be WordHerd.
They provide full-service migration services that allow you to move from any platform right to WordPress.
It doesn’t matter how big or small your site is. WordHerd works with everyone from small business sites to large corporations.
To get started with a free quote for your Weebly to WordPress migration, visit their website and fill out the “free quote” form.
Even though we like to do things ourselves, sometimes (based on the situation) it can be better to outsource the migration simply. Yes, you will pay some, but it is a guaranteed process and can get you set up and running faster than the manual and automated process.
After the Migration
Whatever method you choose, there are a few things to consider after the migration process is complete.
Themes and Plugins
WordPress has themes for any niche, so go pick one out to use on your new site. You can install it and customize it however you want. These themes make design easier and are very user-friendly. Yes, there may be a slight learning curve, but after you go over a few things, you should have no trouble building and designing your new site.
Conversely, WordPress also has a massive plugin library. You can download and install any plugin you want to help extend the functionality of your website. Be sure to include the best WordPress plugins available, as these will help supercharge your site.
It is also important to make sure your permalink structure is what you want it to be. You can access the permalinks in your WordPress dashboard and set them to be exactly what you want.
We understand there is a lot to think about when using WordPress permalinks, so this ultimate guide to WordPress permalinks will help.
Point Your DNS
Last but not least, if you haven’t done it yet, your last order of business is to point the website DNS away from Weebly and over to your hosting platform. Kinsta makes this process simple.
Once this is done, you have the opportunity to push the site live right away, or work on a staging environment to get the site where you want it to be before you push it live.
Migrating a website from Weebly to WordPress does not have to be an overly complicated process. However, it could be a more intense process based on the amount of content and what plugins and tools you have access to.
This is why we provided three ways to perform this process. So, between the manual, automated, and outsourcing options, you should be able to find a way that works for you.
Which way did you prefer to migrate your site from Weebly to WordPress? Let us know in the comments section!
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