Web Design Blog

How To Move WordPress To A New Domain

Moving WordPress while changing domain names

When developing a new WordPress CMS / Blog website for yourself or a client it’s often typical to install it on a temporary development location. I use a demonstration domain and install new WordPress installs under sub folders for preview by clients. One problem with installing WordPress in this type of setup is having to move it to it’s final location on a new domain name. WordPress stores information about posts, image paths and other resources using absolute URLs, eg: http://www.devdomain.com/wpdev/wp-content/uploads/myimage.jpg.

Once the site is done and you are ready to move it to your clients domain you are faced with the annoying and somewhat time consuming task of updating all URL paths so that the sites resources will load from the new domain and you can safely remove your development site.

This process can be simple with a little find/replace “massaging” of the mysql database file between export and import from the dev server to the new server.

Here’s the process I go through when moving a WordPress Website installation from one server to another when the domain name is changing:

1. Install the “Simple WordPress Backup” plugin by Bannerweb GmbH. - This allows you to quickly dump the WordPress database into a backup archive. This is not absolutely necessary, but it’s a good idea to have this available for backing up the WP database and also allows you to avoid logging into the hosting account to access phpmyadmin, which can be a timely process if you don’t have the login details handy.

2. Backup the database using the WordPress backup plugin and download the file locally.

3. Download all the website files from the development URL using either FTP or shell. I personally like to use shell access and archive the entire folder so I can directly transfer from one server to another which allows you to skip downloading local and uploading to the target server. Instructions for moving a folder from one server to another using shell can be found here.

4. Fire up your favorite text editor --(I use Coda for OS X)-- any editor will do, but be sure it has find / replace and and will preserve the character set of the mysql file. Open the .sql file wordpress database, make sure you decompress it if it’s saved as an archive. Immediately save it as a copy, just in case you goof it up and need to start over.

5. Search for your development domain / wordpress path and replace with the target domain, be sure to observe the use of the trailing / to ensure the paths are correct, eg:

Find:

www.cmsdevelopmentdemo.com/wpdev01

Replace with:

www.clientdomain.com

I usually leave off the trailing slash because the wp-config tables that define the website path do not use a trailing slash. This will replace all the URL’s in the database for images, resources, and other paths that refer to the old domain and make sure they correspond to the new location.

Once you’re done, save the file.

6. Import the database on the new server and take note of the database server, username, database name and password.

7. Edit wp-config.php to reflect the access details for the new database server.

8. Upload all WP files to the new server.

9. If all goes well your WordPress installation will now load and will be pulling all resources from the new domain, not your old development server.

10. You may want to browse through the site and look for broken images and other resources that may be missing. I will right click on theme images and background image to ensure they are being loaded from the new domain, just right-click and click view image. Look at the URL and make sure the domain is correct.

11. You may run into issues with your theme paths being incorrect if you did not use the correct wp tags to load the template path. If this is the case, your content will load without theme images and you’ll need to edit the header file and any other files and correct the theme resources URL’s.

5 Ways To "Hook" Your Visitors

5 Ways To Hook Your VisitorsHey I'm a visitor, just got to your site, I'm part of the MTV generation and have an extremely short attention span... want to go ride bikes?  Just kidding... I'm here, so what you got for me?

Answer: You've got about 7 seconds to "hook" me... get me interested... get me to take action and go from a unique visitor statistic to a conversion.

This worked on you, didn't it?  I mean, if you're reading this blog post you've either landed directly on this page and are reading, or clicked through from another page on my site.

What now?  Well you really should sign-up for my newsletter, or subscribe to my RSS feed, or call me!  Too fast?  OK, we'll start slower, how about I offer more valuable information, establish credibility in myself and my company, and continue to work on earning your trust and business.  The important thing is that I offer you a way to give me another chance, right?  If you like someone, and you go out for the first "coffee date," don't you try and line up another opportunity to see that person?  It's the same with your website visitors.

Read more...

Developing a super on-line presence that works

Spencer Thornock of MPS Phoenix at lecture speaks to improving on-line effectiveness

by Ted Vollmuth on Examiner.com
Photo: photo by Express Media

No, it's not enough to develop a website for your small business then sit back and watch the money roll in. Like anything in life, you have to plan and work at keeping the website relevant to your long range business goals.

This was the message brought to Dave Isaac's Breakthrough Thinking (www.breakradioshow.com) lecture series session Friday afternoon August 27, 2010 at the Rock Bottom restaurant near Scottsdale. The presenters were Tom Hinchey of Northsight Studiosin Scottsdale (www.northsightstudios.comand Spencer Thornock of MPS Phoenix(www.reallyfastwebsites.com).

Read Full Article by Ted Vollmuth on Examiner.com

ABC15 News - "Twittercide" by Christina Boomer

Posted: 07/19/2010

By: Christina Boomer By: Christina Boomer

PHOENIX - Bloggers quickly started branding people who got fired for what they tweet, another case of "Twittercide".

Becky Queen wrote on ABC15's Facebook page, "Don't use Twitter or Facebook while at work. Companies frown on employees using company time to use the social networking sites."

Read more on ABC15.com

In The Media

RFW HOW TO: How to install a Godaddy SSL certificate on a domain hosted on a server running Plesk 9

This is a quick guide I put together for installing a Godaddy.com issued SSL certificate on a server running Plesk Control Panel 9.  The steps may vary slightly depending on your Plesk version and the issuer of the certificate.

Read more...

Busines Innviation Panel invites Spencer Thornock to join the team

Dave Isaac, founder and host of Breakthrough Thinking Radio on AM1010 KXXT has invited Spencer Thornock with MPS, Owner and Director of Design and Development to join the "Business Innovation Panel."  This radio show discusses cutting edge business techniques for small to medium size business owners.  MPS is also very excited to be working closesly with Dave Isaac to develop a network of media sites surrounding the Breakthrough Thinking platform.

Breakthrough Thinking Radio
"Business Innoviation Panel" with:
Spencer Thornock
Director of Design and Development

In The Media

Is your website cheating on you?

It's almost 2010, the Internet is getting to a place where it's ready to settle down and have children, it's ready to commit itself to you and finally give in to a long term relationship. The Internet makes available tools and technologies that make taking advantage of a global audience fast and affordable... but you built your website in 2004, we've come a long way in half a decade, how do you know if you need to give your website a reboot?

Read more...

Generating Website Traffic

Free Traffic Sources

Free Classifieds
Post advertisements on websites that offer free classified ads. Most traffic gained by this method will be highly targeted as users were most likely searching for the product or service you offer. Here’s a list of some popular sites for posting free classified ads:

  1. Craigslist.org – By far the best choice. They have quite a few restrictions on posting ads in multiple cities and linking to commercial sites, but Craigslist is by far the most visited classified ads site on the internet (the 8th most visited site on the web to be exact!).
  2. ClassifiedAds.com – This site has many categories to choose from. I haven’t personally seen much traffic come from this site, but it’s usually worth the minimal effort to post an ad for the chance of increased traffic.
  3. BackPage.com – This site offers free classified ad postings by city. A friend of mine (an online marketing guru) swears by it!
  4. freeadvertisingforum.com – A large forum offering free postings in one of three categories – business opportunities, products & services, and income opportunities.
  5. kijiji.com – Organized by city, this site also offers a wide variety of categories and lets you post a picture in the title.

For additional sites, just do a Google Search for “Free Classified Ads”

Article Marketing
Write articles and have them published on major websites. This works best when the subject of the article relates closely to your website theme. If people like your article, they may be inclined to visit your site. Websites like ezinearticles.com will let you submit articles on any subject and allow you to include your name and a link to your website.

Forum Marketing
Post in community discussion forums. It’s a great way to let people know who you are and establish credibility in your industry. Be sure to post relevant answers to people’s questions, and avoid blatantly posting spam. Also, to generate traffic to your site, make sure you include a signature in your post with your name, title, and website address. To find relevant forums for your industry, search Google for “X Discussion Forums” (replace the X with your industry when you search).

Traffic Exchanges

A traffic exchange program is another method of increasing traffic to your website. However, to be effective, it requires that you visit other people’s sites. Usually, exchanges occur at a ratio of 2 to 1, so you have to visit 2 sites for them to send 1 visitor to yours. While this is a viable option, it can be time consuming and the traffic you receive may not be targeted.

Web Directories
Submit your website to directories. There are hundreds of directories on the internet, but in my opinion only two have enough clout to matter: dmoz.org and dir.yahoo.com.
Dmoz is free, but it can take 3-6 months to get listed. Yahoo may be faster, but you’ll pay $299 annually. I highly recommend listing your site in the Dmoz directory, but give careful thought before spending almost $300 a year for any directory. Think of it this way: When was the last time you went to a directory to find a website?

Link Exchange Program
Create a page on your site for links. Then search the internet for related websites willing to participate in a link exchange. This strategy will also help your search engine placement as the number of inbound links plays a part in your ranking. Be sure you are trading links with relevant sites, otherwise the traffic won’t be targeted, and therefore won’t be nearly as beneficial.

Joint Ventures
Find other companies with similar services and partner with them. This is accomplished by placing a page on your site which advertises their services and includes a link to their website. In return they do the same for you. If you partner with a site that enjoys high traffic volume, it can be very beneficial to you. Convincing the other webmaster that your services are equally valuable is often the challenge.

Tell A Friend
Software is available that allows you to strategically place “Tell a Friend” links on different pages of your site. After it’s installed, when users click on the link it opens a pop up window with a form they can complete with the names and e-mail addresses of friends that may be interested in your services. Personal recommendations are valuable and word of mouth advertising can’t be beat. MPS offers a simple “tell a friend” script that can be inserted into your web pages, for more info please e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Yahoo!Answers
Answer queries on Yahoo!Answers and include a link to your website at the bottom of your response. Other users may find this response and visit your website.

Paid Traffic Tactics

Press Releases
Your website can be overloaded with visitors when your website address is included in a formal Press Release. One site, famous for this very thing is prnewswire.com. I’ve never personally used prnewswire.com in this capacity, but they are known for sourcing the latest corporate information and news. Keep in mind that your press release must be “news worthy.” This means that you must have something significant to share. In addition, it must be very well written, which usually involves hiring a copywriter.

Google Adwords
Google Adwords will be covered in detail in another article. In the meantime, I recommend going to the library and checking out a book on Google Adwords (or buying it off of Amazon.com). I’d strongly recommend “Ultimate Guide to Google Adwords” by Perry Marshall and Bryan Todd. You can find it on Amazon by clicking here.

Search Engine Optimization and Placement
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is by far the most important part of your online marketing plan. Search engines are users’ primary choice for finding information on the internet. Your website needs to be ranked in the top 20 listing for keywords related to your website. SEO is a process that involves researching keywords and then hand tailoring your web pages to use these keywords so that when the search engines “spider” your page, they will list your webpage under the search results for that keyword. You can only realistically optimize one page for a maximum of about 5 different keywords (depending on how much content is on the page). Keywords must be used in the page text, headlines, images’ “alt” tags, and must be properly defined in the pages’ META tags.

SEO is a long and drawn out process that can take 12 months or more before any results can be seen. Be leery of companies offering a top 10 ranking in 30-90 days. Oftentimes, they achieve these results by using uncommon keywords. While this strategy may achieve a high rank for the keywords they used, these keywords are not searched for as often, and therefore will not generate the traffic you desire.

To learn more about SEO, I suggest visiting seobook.com. This website has many online resources for learning everything there is to know about SEO.

In Closing
Hopefully this installment of Generating Website Traffic will get you started and on your way. We will be covering more topics next time, so check back soon. Also if you have any suggestions for ways to generate website traffic, feel free to leave a comment.

-MPS Team

Template vs. Custom Design

MPS offers two options for website design. Either choose a template and customize it to suit your needs, or utilize the MPS Design Team to create a completely custom design from start to finish. Once a design is created, it is combined with a website design package of your choosing.

Website Templates

Starting with a website template allows you to save time and money. Templates usually include about 5 pages for content, colors and fonts that match the template’s overall theme, and a dummy logo (which we’ll replace with yours). The template acts as a foundation, which our Design Team builds upon to create a hand tailored site suited to your specific needs. MPS offers a wide variety of templates in many categories, including industry specific designs.

Template Customization

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Connect with Us!

Client Testimonials

  • MPS did an excellent job, they were very professional, and responded to our needs in a prompt and timely manner. They did a complete overhaul of our website, and we are very satisfied with the finished product.

    Charles Johnson
    Reboot Remedy

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