How to move your posts from one WordPress install to another WITH images

In this step-by-step guide I show you how to drag your images along when you export WordPress posts and move them to another Wordpress website.
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How do you move blog posts from one WordPress website to another?

The built-in WordPress tool is fine if you’re moving EVERYTHING to a new site, but if you only export blog posts with it you’ll notice it might not import the images from the old site into the new site.

This guide shows you how to export a bunch of blog posts (with their images) to another WordPress website using a plugin.

Unfortunately it still requires setting up featured images separately, but it’s already a long way towards getting most of your images moved. It’s a huge help.

I’ll be using two terms in this post when I refer to your WordPress installs: old and new.

This refers to the old destination and the new destination. It’s got nothing to do with the age or freshness of the sites. I’m not discriminating against your websites.

Get the plugin

For this you need the Auto Upload Images plugin, or تصاویر بارگذاری خودکار as it’s known in Persian.

  1. Download Auto Upload Images on the new website.
    1. You won’t need it on the old website.
  2. Install the plugin.
  3. Activate the plugin.

I assume you know how to install a WordPress plugin. If not, view my post on how to install a plugin.

Export the posts

Follow these steps to export your blog posts on the old website:

  1. Inside the old WordPress, head to the export tool.
    1. Tools > Export.
  2. Click the “Posts” radio button.
    1. Here you can refine your export settings. For the purpose of this article I’m exporting all posts, so I’m leaving all settings as they are.
  3. Click the blue download button at the bottom of the page.
    1. This downloads the file to your computer. You’ll need to locate the file later, so make sure you know where it is.
Navigate To The Export Tool's Page Inside WordPress
Navigate To The Export Tool’s Page Inside WordPress.
Click The Posts Radio Button
Click The Posts Radio Button.
Click The Blue Download Button
Click The Blue Download Button.

Import the posts

I’m assuming you’ve activated WordPress’ built-in importer, so follow these steps to import the blog posts to your new WordPress website:

  1. Visit the Import page under Tools in the sidebar.
    1. Tools > Import.
  2. At the bottom, under the WordPress heading, click on “Run Importer”.
    1. If there is no option to run the importer, there should be an option to install the WordPress importer. Click it.
  3. Click the “Choose file” button and find the file you exported from the old site.
  4. Once you’ve located the file and chosen it, click the Upload file and import button.
  5. On the next page, assign the posts to an author or create a new user.
    1. For the purpose of this article I’m assigning the posts to an existing author: me.
  6. Click the “Submit” button.
    1. There’s no point checking the box that says, “Download and import file attachments”. That’s because you’ve not exported the website in its entirety. That means the import tool will ignore that function.
  7. On the next page you should see a success message indicating your posts were imported correctly.
    1. If you don’t see such a message, check under posts to see if the posts weren’t imported despite the lack of a success message.
Visit The Import Page Under Tools
Visit The Import Page Under Tools.
Click On Run Importer Under The WordPress Heading
Click On Run Importer Under The WordPress Heading.
Click The Choose File Button To Upload The File You Exported Earlier
Click The Choose File Button To Upload The File You Exported Earlier.
Once You've Located The File And Chosen It, Click The Upload File And Import Button
Once You’ve Located The File And Chosen It, Click The Upload File And Import Button.
Create A New Author For The Imported Posts Or Assign The Posts To An Existing Author
Create A New Author For The Imported Posts Or Assign The Posts To An Existing Author.
Click The Submit Button
Click The Submit Button.
The Success Message After Importing Posts
The Success Message After Importing Posts.

Check your media library

Thanks to some behind-the-scenes magic (created by the Auto Upload Images plugin) your images should all be present inside your new install’s media library.

To check, follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to your media library.
  2. Click on one of the images inside the library.
  3. Check the URL of the image.
    1. If it’s still showing the old web address something went wrong. If not, you’re good to go.
Navigate To Your Media Library
Navigate To Your Media Library.
Click On An Image Inside The Library
Click On An Image Inside The Library.
The Link Should Contain Your New Url
The Link Should Contain Your New Url.

If it fails

You’ve imported all posts but you don’t see the images in your library.

These steps might work:

  1. Navigate to your posts page.
  2. On the left hand side, select the checkboxes of those posts you imported.
    1. You can click the checkbox next to ‘Title” if all of your posts were imported from the old site.
  3. Click on the “Bulk Actions” dropdown box and choose “Edit”.
  4. Click “Apply”.
    1. This should force fetch the images from the old site and add them to the new site’s media library.
Navigate To Your Posts Page
Navigate To Your Posts Page.
On The Left Hand Side, Check The Posts You Imported From The Old Site
On The Left Hand Side, Check The Posts You Imported From The Old Site.
Click On Bulk Actions And Choose The Edit Option
Click On Bulk Actions And Choose The Edit Option.

Featured images

As mentioned earlier in this article, this procedure doesn’t import featured images.

Maybe the plugin is supposed to and I’m just way too dumb to even know it.

The plugin comes with a settings page but there’s nothing worth changing there. There certainly doesn’t seem to be a setting for featured images.

Conclusion

If you’ve been wondering how to ensure your images go with your posts when you move your posts to a new blog, the Auto Upload Images is a must-have plugin for you.

In a few steps your posts will be up and running on the new site and your only problem will be moving featured images.

Inspiration for this post: https://wordpress.stackexchange.com/questions/257180/how-to-import-wordpress-posts-with-images-from-one-wordpress-site-to-another

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