Do you want to move your website from Joomla to WordPress? While Joomla is a good content management system, it is NOT as powerful, flexible, and user-friendly as WordPress. Often users might start with Joomla, but they eventually switch to WordPress. In this article, we will show you how to easily migrate your website from Joomla to WordPress.
When it comes to moving from one CMS to another, there are usually three ways to do it:
- Via a tool or service (plugin, extension, or outside software)
- Hire a professional
How to Migrate Your Website from Joomla to WordPress
Differences Between Joomla and WordPress
First let’s have a look at a couple challenges you might run into before we dig into how to move your website from Joomla to WordPress. Perhaps the biggest concern most people have while moving from one CMS to another, especially if using a service, is that while Joomla and WordPress are both “content management systems” they started out with different target markets in mind. Because of this they have ended up becoming quite different.
Joomla was originally intended to be a CMS, whereas WordPress started out simply as a clear-cut, easy to use blogging platform. This means that not only are the admin interfaces different, the way that each CMS structures website content is actually different as well.
Components vs Widgets
Joomla components deal with all forms of content outside of the article, including things like Menus, header images and the like, which are handled quite differently by WordPress.
In WordPress, widgets usually are given one or more designated area in which you can choose to display them, so far, pretty much the same.
Themes vs Templates
Here, there’s not really much of a difference. Templates and Themes both deal with how the content in the database is output and arranged for visitors.
Banners, Contact Forms Etc
These are features that are included in standard Joomla and don’t have a direct counterpart in core WordPress. But rest assured, there are plugins that can be installed that handle this kind of thing.
Within the FG Joomla to WordPress plugin’s major features, a lot of them actually deal with converting these things into their appropriate WordPress counterparts (but in the case of the free version of plugin, contact form information isn’t exported – however, it’s easy enough to create a contact form with plugin).
So with the concerns addressed, let’s get moving!
Step 1. Install and Set up WordPress
WordPress is famous for its 5-minute install. Many good WordPress hosting companies will automatically install WordPress for you. You will also find 1-click WordPress installers inside your hosting account dashboard.
Need more instructions? Follow our complete WordPress installation tutorial for step by step instructions.
Once you have installed WordPress, you will be able to login to your WordPress dashboard which would look like this:
Step 2. Import Your Joomla Website to WordPress
Now that you have installed WordPress, you are ready to import content from your Joomla website.
First, you need to install and activate the FG Joomla to WordPress plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.
Upon activation, go to Tools » Import page. You will see a list of import tools available for your WordPress installation. Click on ‘Run Importer’ link below the Joomla (FG) importer tool.
This will launch the Joomla (FG) importer script, and you will be asked to provide your Joomla website information. First, you need to enter your Joomla website URL and then its database settings.
You can find your database information from your Joomla website’s admin area. Simply go to System » Global Configuration page and click on the server tab.
This page will show you all the database information you will need except for the database password. If you don’t remember your Joomla database password, then you can find it inside the configuration.php file in your Joomla website’s root folder. You can access this file by connecting to your website using an FTP client and opening it in a text editor like notepad.
After entering your database information in the Joomla importer, click on the ‘Test database connection’ button. If everything is entered correctly, then you will see a success message.
Below that you will find some additional options to control what you want to import. If you are unsure, then leave these options as they are.
Go ahead and click on the ‘Start / Resume Importer’ button to continue.
The importer will now start fetching content from your Joomla website. This may take a while depending on how much content you have.
Once done, you will see a success message.
Now that you have imported content to your WordPress site, the next step is to check for internal links that might be pointing to your old website. The Joomla FG importer will also fix that for you.
You need to scroll down to the bottom and click on the ‘Modify Internal Links’ button.
You can now visit your WordPress site to see the imported content in action.
Things to Do After Moving Joomla to WordPress
After moving your website from Joomla to WordPress, you will need to perform a few tweaks to finish the migration and setting up your new platform.
Step 3. Setting up Redirects and Permalinks
Your old Joomla website may have a different URL structure than your WordPress site. This means that people finding your articles in search engines will now see a 404 error.
To fix this, you need to set up permalinks and properly redirect users and search engines to the new URLs.
First, you need to visit Settings » Permalinks page in WordPress. Under common settings click on the post name option and then click on the save changes button.
Upon activation, you need to visit Tools » Redirection page. In the source URL field you will enter http://example.com/index.php/(.*) and in the target URL field http://example.com/$1 as shown in the screenshot below.
Click on the ‘Add redirect’ button to save your changes.
WordPress will now redirect old Joomla website URLs to your new WordPress permalink structure.
Step 4. Setting up WordPress Theme
WordPress gives you access to an enormous collection of themes that you can use. Themes control the appearance and design of your WordPress website.
There are thousands of free and paid WordPress themes available that you can install on your website. However, not all themes are suitable for all kinds of websites and this abundance of choices can make beginners feel a bit confused.
We have made this easy by doing the research and hand-picking the best WordPress themes. Need help installing your new theme? See our beginner’s guide on how to install a WordPress theme.
Step 5. Install Essential WordPress Plugins
Plugins are the best part of using WordPress. WordPress plugins allow you to add new features to your website.
You can use WordPress plugins for backup, improving security, set up caching, start an online store, and more. If you can think of a feature, chances are that there is already a WordPress plugin for that.
There are thousands of free and paid WordPress plugins that you can use. Since it’s easy to get overwhelmed with choices, we have created an ultimate guide on how to pick the best plugins for your website.
We have also hand-picked the essential WordPress plugins that you should install on all your WordPress websites.
Source @ wpbeginner.com