Support » Fixing WordPress » Transition a live HTML Website into a live WordPress Website

  • Hi,

    I am trying to understand how to take an active HTML site and convert it into an active WordPress site. On the same domain name. A lot of the content on the site will be changed so I am not concerned about keeping the pages “as is”. The owners of the site simply want to switch it to WordPress now that their business is expanding. They will be transferring the current site to a new hosting provider.

    But I keep finding instructions for installing WP on a subdirectory and building the new WP site there and then pointing the domain name to the subdirectory.

    Is there really no other way?

    I thought I could build the new site in WordPress in a local environment and somehow install it on the domain name when it was time to take it live. But I haven’t found instructions on how to remove the HTML pages that are on the domain and install WordPress and a new theme in its place.

    Could I:
    1. create a WordPress site in a local environment first – and then
    2. Do a fresh install of WordPress onto a brand new database with the same domain name?
    3. And then upload the WordPress site I created locally as a “theme” into the new database?
    4. Then just make sure the wp-config file matches the new database information.

    At this point, I’m thinking that the HTML version of the website would still be live because it is linked to its separate database. But couldn’t I just delete its database and all of its HTML files once the WP version was up and running?

    Would something like that work?

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  • Moderator Steven Stern (sterndata)

    (@sterndata)

    Support Volunteer

    I thought I could build the new site in WordPress in a local environment and somehow install it on the domain name when it was time to take it live

    That’s what I’d do. Local By Flywheel is a great local environment.

    When you get the site done and the client likes it, use FTP to delete the static HTML site (well, after making a backup and putting it someplace save), then migrate your site into the live environment.

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