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How to Export and Import Content Data in WordPress

How to Export and Import Content Data in WordPress

For those who manage a website, losing data is a taboo phrase and seems to be an obsession. Backing up data will help you avoid unfortunate incidents as results of subjective or even objective factors. This job is essential on every website platform and of course, in which, we also can't fail to mention WordPress. In WordPress, apart from the backup process, there will be a time when you want to transfer your data or import content data from one website to another at a time when you change hosting, domain name or simply the content on the old one is no longer suitable for your current website orientation. 

Those who have just worked on WordPress will not have to worry about this backup job because WordPress itself also includes a built-in default feature that helps the import process become extremely simple as well as easy for beginners. This feature; however, cannot import every setting or plugin and theme of a website. Instead, it only exports or imports content from posts and pages.

This tutorial will show you how to export and import content data on your own WordPress site.

Benefits of exporting and importing content data in WordPress

Except for the obvious benefit of backup, what else should we import data? Try imagining when you want to transfer all the content on a web page instead of simply copying a few parts on it, you will find this work very beneficial.

With this copy process, it is clear to say that you will have a larger database, which attracts more visitors when they click on your WordPress website.

And of course, it cannot but mention the benefits of the backup job. Under any circumstance, you will never want to lose every content from all the work you have enthusiastically spent time on your website, right?

Are all of these things mentioned above convincing enough for you to import content in WordPress? Follow the instructions below to learn how to do it yourself.

How to export / import content data in WordPress?

Export content data from the origin WordPress website

Before importing any content, you also need to learn how to export the data you want. Thus, firstly login to your WordPress Dashboard then click Tools and select Export.

export content data in WordPress?

Once choosing which type you want to export, click Download Export File to receive the exported file. Afterward, follow these steps below to import that file in WordPress.

Import content data to a WordPress website

Step 1: Open your WordPress Dashboard, click Tools and select Import.

 import content data in WordPress?

WordPress allows data entry from many different sources, so you can import any file you want from 8 platforms it supports, from Blogger to WordPress. Since we are learning how to import WordPress data, please click on the WordPress section at the end.

Step 2: Install the Importer plugin

After step 1, there will appear an installation page, and your task is to enable this Importer plugin.

 import content data in WordPress?

Left – click on the Install Now button, and after the installation process, select Activate Plugin & Run Importer. Thus, you have successfully activated the plugin and you can already use the import feature in WordPress.

 import content data in WordPress?

Step 3: Import content data

At this point, everything is easy for you to import any data file that you want to back up. Left – click on Choose File, select an .xml file which you download in the export process and then click Upload file and import.

 import content data in WordPress?

Right then, an installation box will appear when you are transferred to a new page, and here you have to assign the author for the content you have just imported into your WordPress. By default, it is an administrator; however, it is up to you should you want to create a new user or empower another author.

Remember to click on Download and import file attachments so that attached files from the old one can be automatically switched to your site.

Finally, please choose Submit to run the data import process.

 import content data in WordPress?

Please note that WordPress will automatically skip the parts that have already existed on your site and only import new content.

 import content data in WordPress?

So you have done importing content in your own website! Please click Have fun! to go back to the WordPress Dashboard and experience what you've just completed.

 import content data in WordPress?

When to use the Export / Import feature in WordPress?

This feature in WordPress only imports .xml file, not all the theme or plugin; therefore, it is NOT a complete data backup and recovery tool.

Although it can not perform the job of backing up a website to restore everything on that web, import feature is still useful for you.

Because paid themes usually provide an available content package that is compressed in an .xml file, all you just need to do is import this file in your own WordPress and write the content you want from the default base. Additionally, should the website you want to transfer mostly focus on displaying texts, this feature will definitely serve as an amazing tool to handle that work.


Sometimes you will have problems importing data in WordPress from complex websites with different content types. Don't worry and please watch out for the errors below to find a way to fix them:

  • Normally, the maximum size of the file that you are allowed to upload on WordPress will be between 25 and 100 MB. Therefore, please pay attention to the size of your input file to check whether it is appropriate or not.
  • When there is a timeout error (exceeding waiting time) because the input file is large, re-import it a few times and you will be fine.
  • Attached files such as images or media will not be imported to new pages when they are no longer on the source website or the output page has errors.

Final words

As you can see, WordPress has made the job of backing up data no longer too challenging for users. Regardless of subjective or objective factors, this work should still be carried out regularly to maintain data integrity as well as prevent cases that can happen beyond expectation. The built-in content export and import feature on WordPress will help you transfer web pages in an extremely easy and convenient way.

Hopefully, through this tutorial, you can basically understand how to back up, export and import content and apply it on your own website. Good luck!

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