How to change domain name in WordPress

siddhant sugan dodrai
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Your domain name is a representation of your business identity online. But what if you need to update your domain name, or you need to use content from your WordPress site on another domain name? Maybe you’re selling a product that’s known by multiple names, and you want to have different domains for each of those names.

How to change domain name in WordPress

There are a few reasons why you might want to change the domain name of your website. One of them is to create a brand new site with a brand new domain name. While this may seem like a good idea, it is not possible due to the amount of time and resources required. Instead of creating a brand new site for every single domain, you might choose to use the existing content on one of your existing domains.

In this tutorial, we will show you how to change domain names in WordPress in 7 simple steps.

Note : Please keep in mind that the steps listed below may or may not be sufficient to change your domain because of the way WordPress interacts with your server. Therefore, we recommend that you make a complete backup of your site using cPanel's Backups button before continuing with the rest of this article.

Once you've backed up your website, it's time to start WordPress domain name changes.

How to change domain name in WordPress

There are many reasons why you might or may not want to rebrand your domain. For instance, your business objectives may have changed and you may need to rebrand your business.

You may also want to reevaluate your domain extensions. For instance, you may want to consider changing domain extension

Another option is to switch from a free domain extension platform with a requirement to have a domain name to a paid platform with only a primary domain name option.

For instance, you may find that it is more professional for your to be your

Before you change your domain name, there are a few things you should do:

Make sure you follow these steps before changing your WordPress domain name.

1. Backup Your Current Site

Make sure to back up your site before making any major changes. This way, you will be able to restore your site in the event of an error. Otherwise, all your data will be lost and you will have to start from the beginning.

Your WordPress website is made up of two main parts – the website files and the databases. Therefore, before moving your site content to your new domain, perform a full backup.

Managed WordPress Hosting users can choose from one of the easy-to-use restore and backup solutions that let them back up their WordPress site directly from the hosting dashboard. These include shared hosting, WordPress hosting, and cloud server hosting services.

Alternatively, you can use one of the popular WordPress plugins that let you perform a backup at the click of a button. Popular plugins include.

2. Access to a Hosting Dashboard or an FTP Client

To update your WordPress domain, you'll need to log into your hosting account dashboard, where you'll add the new domain address. For Managed WordPress Hosting users, log into your CPanel dashboard and navigate to the Domain section, where you can manage your domain.

Upload your site backup using an FTP client. You'll need to configure your FileZilla Client first. After that, you can upload larger files from a local computer and manage them remotely.

3. A New Domain Name

Make sure you do your due diligence before purchasing a new domain. This includes finding a reputable hosting registrar as well as deciding on the appropriate extension for your website address. Most people domains for their site names.

As a general rule of thumb, you should create a list of possible domain names and verify their availability using a domain name search engine.

Alternatively, you may want to explore the free domain name options. This is a great option if you are looking for a cost-effective way to get your online presence up and running.

So, now that you know everything you need to know, it's time to get started. The next section will show you the simple ways to change your WordPress website address.

How to Change Domain Name in WordPress

While most of the WordPress domain changes are straightforward, there are some tasks that require you to modify the PHP code of your site. Changing the PHP code can compromise your site if done incorrectly.

1. Purchase a New Domain Name

First, go to GoDaddy domain checker and select the domain you want to use. You'll be able to see if this is available for you, and you'll get some options for alternative domain names, as well as their prices.

If the domain name you are looking for and its alternatives have already been purchased, contact the domain owner and try to negotiate a reasonable price for that domain name.

If the domain you are looking for has already been purchased, use the domain lookup tool below to find the owner of the domain along with their contact information such as phone numbers and email addresses.

But if the domain address you are looking for is still available, simply add it to your cart and proceed to checkout.

You’ll also need to enter your domain registration period during the checkout process. Domain registrars offer a range of registration periods, from one to 10 years. Most registrars, however, will charge you for a minimum of one year. 

If you buy annual premium or business shared hosting plans through interServer, you’ll get your domain for free the first year.

Next, click on Submit Secure Payment to complete your order.

How to Change a Domain Name in WordPress?
As we mentioned earlier, changing the primary domain name of your WordPress website is not something you want to do lightly. However, if you find yourself in such a situation, there are a few steps you can take:

✔️ Open your WordPress dashboard and modify the URL of your website in the General screen of the WordPress Settings.
✔️ Update the Wp-Config.php or Wp config file accordingly.
✔️ Verify that the Domain Change or Domain Renaming has been applied correctly.

The process itself is pretty straightforward, but there are a few things that require a bit of a technical understanding. We'll go over those in the next couple of paragraphs, but don't worry—we'll walk you through every step.

Changing Your Domain in WordPress

Before you jump in, there are a few things you should keep in mind before changing your website's primary domain name. A little bit of preparation is in order to make the process as easy as possible. A simple mistake could cause your entire site to crash. Knowing what you need before you start can help you avoid that.

For example, you'll want to make sure that you have a complete backup of your website before you even start. This way, if something goes wrong, you can easily roll back the changes to a new configuration and start again.

You’ll also need a proper FTP client. FTP is a method of accessing your server from your desktop. It’s easy to use, but there’s a learning curve. We suggest downloading a good FTP client (we suggest FileZilla).

You will also need your server’s logon credentials. These can be found in the admin dashboard of your hosting provider.

Lastly, we assume that you have already bought your custom domain name and pointed it to the right nameservers to get started. If you haven’t, you should do this before anything else.

Step 1: Change Your URL Within WordPress

Your first step is to change the URL of your site within WordPress. There is one catch, though. After saving your changes, the back end of your site will not be available until you have finished the rest of the process.

Log in to WordPress and go to General > Settings.
Change WordPress Domain through dashboard

This screen shows the global settings of your WordPress website. The fields that we want to see are the WordPress URL and Site URL.
Change WordPress Domain

All you have to do to change the WordPress change URL is enter your new address in both these fields and click Save Changes. Like we said, this will temporarily disable your site.

Step 2: Set Up Permanent Redirects and Notify Search Engines of the Change

The last step is a bit of a cleanup. Even after your domain is changed, you will still have many links in your content and all over the web that go back to your old address. Luckily, you can permanently re-direct these links to your new address.

First, you will need to re-access your site via FTP and search for the file.htaccess. This file is another version of your WordPress configuration file, so copy it to your desktop as backup before you make any changes. Inside the file, add the following code:

#Options +FollowSymLinks RewriteEngine on RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.example.COM/$1 [R=301,L]

Once again, modify the WordPress URL address to match your new domain name.

Finally, the last step is to notify Google that you have changed your domain name. Renaming your domain is easy to do in Google Search Console and only takes a few minutes.


All in all, a domain name change in WordPress is a process that requires a systematic approach to make sure everything goes smoothly.

The first step is to back up your website. Once that’s done, you’ll need to update WordPress and your permalinks settings.

The second step is to carefully update URLs within your database and content.

Use 301 redirects for your old URLs.

Update settings in search consoles.

Finally, test your website’s functionality on your new domain.

Continuous monitoring and fixing any issues as soon as possible will help you move forward with your domain name change.

If you’re still unsure, don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional to help you navigate this process with accuracy and confidence.

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