Websites transfers, or migrations, move your site from one account, server, or host to another. The result is often a change in the physical location of your website files. During a website transfer, your IP address will change, but your domain name will remain the same. If you are creating a new account with a web host, they will often migrate your website to their servers for free. See popular names in hosting with site transfer services below or sort them by cheapest plans with free site transfers.

Basic Plan by Just Host

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: 50 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: 5
Operating System: Linux

Promo Price

$3.95

Regular Price: $9.49

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Plus Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 10

Disk Space: 150 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $6.95
Regular Price: $10.99

Prime Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $6.95
Regular Price: $14.99

Standard Plan (VPS Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 30 GB
Bandwidth: 1 TB

Promo Price: $19.99
Regular Price: $29.99

Starter Plan by DreamHost

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: Contact provider
Operating System: Linux

Promo Price

$2.59

Regular Price: $4.95

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Standard Plan (Builder Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Contact provider
Bandwidth: Contact provider

Today’s Price: $4.95

All Access Plan (Builder Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Contact provider
Bandwidth: Contact provider

Today’s Price: $7.95

Unlimited Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $7.95
Regular Price: $10.95

Personal Plan by AccuWeb Hosting

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: 10 GB
Bandwidth: 500 GB

Websites: Unlimited
Email Accounts: 150
Operating System: Linux

Promo Price

$3.09

Regular Price: $3.64

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Personal Plan (Wordpress Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 10 GB
Bandwidth: 500 GB

Today’s Price: $3.49

Personal Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 1

Disk Space: 10 GB
Bandwidth: 500 GB

Today’s Price: $3.52

Personal Plan (Cloud Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 10 GB
Bandwidth: 500 GB

Promo Price: $4.79
Regular Price: $5.64

Standard Plan by InterServer

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Websites: Unlimited
Email Accounts: Unlimited
Operating System: Linux

Promo Price

$4.00

Regular Price: $5.00

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Standard Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 25

Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $4.00
Regular Price: $5.00

Standard Plan (VPS Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 25 GB
Bandwidth: 1 TB

Today’s Price: $6.00

Standard Plan (VPS Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 25 GB
Bandwidth: 1 TB

Today’s Price: $10.00

Beginner Plan by Liquid Web

Hosting Type: eCommerce
Disk Space: Contact provider
Bandwidth: Contact provider

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: Contact provider
Operating System: Linux

Today’s Price

$39.00

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Standard Plan (VPS Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 40 GB
Bandwidth: 10 TB

Today’s Price: $59.00

Basic Plan (eCommerce Hosting)
Websites: 1

Disk Space: Contact provider
Bandwidth: Contact provider

Today’s Price: $99.00

Professional Plan (Wordpress Hosting)
Websites: 10

Disk Space: 50 GB
Bandwidth: 5 TB

Today’s Price: $99.00

Economy Plan by GoDaddy

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: 100 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: Contact provider
Operating System: Linux

Today’s Price

$7.99

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Economy Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 1

Disk Space: 100 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Today’s Price: $7.99

Basic Plan (Wordpress Hosting)
Websites: 1

Disk Space: 10 GB
Bandwidth: Contact provider

Today’s Price: $8.99

Deluxe Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Today’s Price: $10.99

Starter Plan by Media Temple

Hosting Type: Builder
Disk Space: Contact provider
Bandwidth: Contact provider

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: Contact provider
Operating System: Linux

Today’s Price

$10.00

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Personal Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 100

Disk Space: 20 GB
Bandwidth: 1 TB

Today’s Price: $20.00

Personal Plan (Wordpress Hosting)
Websites: 2

Disk Space: 50 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Today’s Price: $20.00

Pro Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 500

Disk Space: 100 GB
Bandwidth: 2 TB

Today’s Price: $30.00

Basic Plan by FastDomain

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: 50 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: 5
Operating System: Linux

Promo Price

$5.95

Regular Price: $12.49

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Pro Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $19.99
Regular Price: $27.99

Basic Plan by HostMonster

Hosting Type: Shared
Disk Space: 50 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Websites: 1
Email Accounts: 5
Operating System: Linux

Promo Price

$4.95

Regular Price: $9.49

Get This Plan »

Plus Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: 10

Disk Space: 150 GB
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $6.95
Regular Price: $12.49

Prime Plan (Shared Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: Unlimited
Bandwidth: Unlimited

Promo Price: $6.95
Regular Price: $14.99

Standard Plan (VPS Hosting)
Websites: Unlimited

Disk Space: 30 GB
Bandwidth: 1 TB

Promo Price: $19.99
Regular Price: $29.99

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Using Free Websites Transfers

Free site migrations are commonly provided by web hosts for shared, VPS, and even cloud hosting. Most site transfers, especially free services, are limited to only one website and do not include transferring your emails. If you host several websites from a single account, the new host may be open to transferring the entire account instead.

When a host is handling your site migration, you’ll need to provide them with a few details from your old host, usually an FTP login and your control panel credentials. During the migration, your files on your old host will not be deleted or altered in anyway. Afterwards, you will need to change your nameservers for your domain (unless your domain registration is bundled with your hosting) and cancel your old hosting.

If the new host also offers free domain registration with your plan, your domain is usually renewed for a year from the time the transfer occurs. Additional time will not be added to your current registration.

Free site transfers are usually provided when you upgrade your hosting plan with the same host as well. If your new host does not provide free site migrations, from my experience they usually will provide free technical support for setting up your website if you have added your site to their account and moved over the files yourself. This can be a decent – but not always reliable – way to move secondary domains.

Moving A Website Between Servers

Moving a site yourself is possible and not too challenging if you understand the basics of web hosting. Before you get started, make sure you have access to the control panel on both hosts and your domain registrar (if your domain registration is separate from your hosting). The following steps assume that you’re using Linux-based hosting and MySQL databases. We’ll be exploring this process in-depth later, but it generally includes:

  1. Turn off any caching you may be using, including plugins and 3rd party services like CloudFlare.
  2. Download all of the files necessary for your site. This typically includes everything in your website’s folder on your current hosting. You can use the control panel’s File Manager to accomplish this, but I would recommend using an FTP client because they make the process faster and easier.
  3. Log into PhpMyAdmin through your old host’s control panel and export any tables that your site uses.
  4. Create an account with your new host and use your site’s domain name to register – no matter if the registration is included with hosting or not.
  5. Through the new host’s control panel, add your domain as an account (if it’s not done already) and create an empty database in PhpMyAdmin, preferably using the same names as your old hosting.
  6. Import your database tables and upload your website files to the new host.
  7. Review your site’s config file to make sure it points to the correct IP address and database in its settings.
  8. Change your nameservers and DNS records to point to the new host. While the change often is pushed live after a couple hours, this can take up to a day or two.
  9. Review your site for potential issues.
  10. Cancel your old hosting account.

I usually add an HTML comment to my site on the new hosting just to verify that I am seeing the new hosting and not the old site. You can also do this using Command Prompt. Finally, it’s advisable to avoid telling your current host that you are leaving them before you’ve transferred your site.

Factors That Can Impact Your Site Migration

Several things can impact, hinder, or completely prevent you or the web host from transferring your site. In my experience from migrating hundreds of sites, these are issues that I have ran into:

  • Moving from Windows hosting (ASP) to Linux Hosting (PHP) – this is the most difficult challenge in site transfers that most of us will face. In most cases, this requires advanced technical knowledge to resolve.
  • WordPress plugins altering the user.ini file – changing or commenting out a setting or variable usually resolves this.
  • CloudFlare pointing to old nameservers – when you sign up for CloudFlare, you are actually routing your site through their servers. You’ll need to log into your CloudFlare account and change their DNS records.
  • Old Hosts not providing a control panel option to back up your account or site – web hosts usually provide free site transfers because they can use your current host’s control panel to easily grab all of your files with an account backup. You may have to reach out to your current host and ask them to create an account backup for you. This is usually free or very low cost.
  • Old hosts using files that cause issues with the new host – Some hosts will add a default.html, default.php, or index.html that only their servers use. Always review the files before doing so, but in many cases, these files can simply be deleted, resolving the issue.
  • wp_config.php is using a different DB_HOST – Web hosts overwhelmingly set this variable to “localhost”, but sometimes it is different. Changing this variable will fix the issue though.

Further Reading