The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide to Migrate from Sitecore to WordPress

The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide to Migrate from Sitecore to WordPress Img
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Launched in 2001, Sitecore is an integrated .NET Framework-based CMS platform often chosen by enterprise-level websites for delivering personalized, multi-channel customer experiences.

Sitecore’s latest version, the Sitecore Experience Platform 10.3 Update-1, is based on .NET Core 3.1 and offers prompt security updates, easier platform extensions, and integration with other marketing tech applications. It also delivers new capabilities for unforgettable experiences with increased ease and convenience.

Sounds impressive, yes. But is Sitecore worth the extra expense and hassle, especially when a more cost-effective alternative like WordPress 6.1 is available? 

WordPress not only provides a more affordable and easier-to-install solution but also offers more flexibility and customization options. The active community of developers and users further supports innovation and ensures timely support.

Contrary to conventional opinions, WordPress is an enterprise-competent CMS, and you can get all of Sitecore’s built-in enterprise features on WordPress at a fraction of the cost.

In this guide, let’s look at how you can migrate from Sitecore to WordPress, from the initial strategy phase and content preparation to the final deployment and training.

Table of Contents

Section-1:
High-Level Strategy

Before you proceed with the actual migration from Sitecore to WordPress, it’s essential to lay out a high-level strategy and take a look at the entire process.

So, if you’re leading the Sitecore to WordPress migration as the Director of Technology or CIO, here are a few vital aspects you need to consider when planning to migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress.

Think About the Timeline

Enterprise-grade website migration, especially when you convert a website from Sitecore to WordPress, is a time-consuming process. Depending on the size of your website, the amount of content, and functional complexities, the migration process can take several weeks or more.

So one of the first things you need to think about is the timeline of your migration. Say, your current annual Sitecore license renewal is due in six months; maybe now is the right time to start planning to migrate your Sitecore site to a WordPress site.

Essentially, you want to ensure you are planning and conducting the migration during a non-busy time of the year for your business. Whether you’re looking to export Sitecore posts to WordPress or convert your entire Sitecore website to a WordPress site, your focus should be to avoid last-minute rush and renewal payment. 

If you think you have a critical timeline for your migration, contact us as we are experts in time-sensitive WordPress migrations, especially in moving from Sitecore to WordPress.

Decide on the New CMS

If you’re reading this guide, you’re likely already leaning towards WordPress as your choice. But why WordPress, especially when you wish to migrate from Sitecore?

Launched in 2003, WordPress is an open-source CMS built on PHP and MySQL. Its popularity speaks volumes, powering multi-million dollar enterprise-grade websites like Salesforce, Spotify, Yelp, and many more.

There are plenty of reasons why all these enterprise giants prefer WordPress over Sitecore for their enterprises.

WordPress is fast, flexible, intuitive, cost-effective, secure, SEO-friendly, and scalable. It integrates effortlessly with any external solution, doesn’t require a paid license, and comes with a vast ecosystem, making it an attractive option to convert your Sitecore website to a WordPress site.

FacetWordPressSitecore
Type of softwareOpen-sourceClosed-source
LicensingOwnedLeased
TechnologyPHPC#
CustomizationHighly customizableLimited options
Ease of UseExtremely user-friendlyRequires technical expertise
Advanced FeaturesExternal plugins and extensions availableBuilt-in (analytics, A/B testing, CRM, etc.)
Cost-EffectivenessExtremely cost-effectiveHuge ongoing licensing fees

So if you want to learn all the reasons why moving from Sitecore to WordPress is the best choice for your enterprise-grade website, especially when you need to migrate a large amount of content, check out this page.

Consider a Redesign

One major point of consideration when planning to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress is whether to:

  1. Keep the existing design you have on Sitecore
  2. Opt for a redesign during the migration process

When considering Sitecore to WordPress migration, we often recommend a redesign if your website’s interface is old or not up to modern web design standards. WordPress, being highly flexible, provides more design options for enterprises, offering a wealth of themes and customization possibilities.

Of course, redesigning an enterprise-level website will add more time and cost to the whole migration process. 

But if you’re already investing the time and effort in making the switch to the best, why not go the extra mile to ensure your new website’s design exceeds modern user expectations and delights them?

Know Which Sitecore Features You Need

As you prepare to convert your Sitecore website to a WordPress site, it’s essential to understand the different features of the former that might be essential to your business.

Sitecore provides various features for different plans, custom-tailored to each enterprise. However, it’s likely that some features are going unused on your current subscription. Therefore, it makes sense to discard them during the migration process, as extra features contribute to software bloat.

Here’s a table to help you assess the Sitecore features your enterprise website currently utilizes, and then select which ones you actually need when you migrate from Sitecore to WordPress:

FeatureCheck if Needed
Headless Architecture
Personalization
Multisite
Multilingual and Localization
Automation
eCommerce
Experience Analytics
A/B and Multivariate Testing
Audit Trails and Workflows
User Roles and Permissions
Campaign Creator
Forms
Media Library
Experience Editor
Cortex

Whether you plan to export Sitecore posts to WordPress or convert the entire website from Sitecore to WordPress, evaluating the necessary features is a crucial step in your migration strategy for ensuring that you have everything you need without unnecessary complexity or expense.

Know Which Third-Party Integrations You Need

As you chart your path for Sitecore to WordPress migration, it’s essential to understand what kind of third-party integrations your current website utilizes and if they’re needed on your new WordPress site.

Both Sitecore and WordPress offer several third-party integrations, but it’s worth noting that WordPress has a much wider variety of third-party integrations than Sitecore. This breadth of options means that when you migrate from Sitecore to WordPress, you’ll have an extensive choice that can align with virtually any external solution you wish to use.

Third-Party IntegrationsSitecoreWordPress
HubSpot
Slack
Salesforce
Parse.ly
Piano
Clicktale
Cloudflare
Getty Images
Google Analytics
Optimizely

Since the options are numerous, use this list as a starting point, considering all the additional integrations your website uses. It will guide you in deciding which ones can be retained or left out in your new WordPress website.

Choose Your Hosting Infrastructure

For enterprise-level websites, managed hosting is the preferred option. With WordPress, you have outstanding managed hosting platforms like WP Engine, Pagely, and WordPress VIP. These are tailor-made for large WordPress websites, designed to handle the complexities that come with handling a large number of content pages, users, and visitors.

You can find more reputed WordPress hosting platforms here.

When you approach a hosting provider, they’ll need details like your anticipated monthly page views, the number of applications, and various other factors. Investing in a high-end managed hosting provider, such as WordPress VIP, can indeed be valuable. They offer superior support, security, automatic backups, the best performance with CDN, and many more premium benefits.

By understanding your integration needs and choosing the right hosting, you’re setting the stage for a successful Sitecore to WordPress migration that caters to your business’s unique requirements.

Pick Your Migration Team

The final step in the journey to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress is selecting the team that will handle the migration. While you might have an in-house development team capable of tackling the task, Sitecore to WordPress migration requires specialized knowledge.

That’s why hiring experts with years of experience in converting Sitecore websites to WordPress sites can be a smart decision. These experts understand the intricate details of WordPress and the precise methods needed to convert a website from Sitecore to WordPress.

Attempting the DIY route? 

It’s often error-prone, often leading to data loss or unexpected inaccuracies. You don’t want these hurdles to slow down or derail the process of migrating content from Sitecore to WordPress.

For a seamless, accurate migration without downtime, you should consider contacting our team. We’re skilled in a hybrid (manual + automated) migration approach, employing the most advanced techniques. Our team can migrate Sitecore to WordPress manually with 100% accuracy, aligning with your enterprise’s goals and needs.

Picking the right migration team is the finishing touch to a carefully planned move from Sitecore to WordPress, putting your business on the path to a more flexible, user-friendly, and robust web presence.

To build your high-level Sitecore to WordPress migration strategy quickly, keep this checklist handy:

  • Timeline Considerations
    • Determine the total time required for the migration.
    • Consider non-busy business periods for migration.
    • Factor in Sitecore license renewal dates.
    • Avoid last-minute rushes and unnecessary renewal payments.
  • Choosing the New CMS
    • Understand why WordPress is a better choice.
    • Compare features and costs between Sitecore and WordPress.
  • Website Redesign
    • Evaluate current Sitecore website design.
    • Decide: retain the current design or redesign during migration.
    • Weigh benefits of updating to modern design standards on WordPress.
  • Audit Sitecore Features
    • List all Sitecore features your website utilizes.
    • Decide which features are essential for your WordPress site.
  • Third-Party Integrations
    • Inventory current Sitecore integrations.
    • Decide which integrations to retain, discard, or replace on WordPress.
    • Consider additional integration options offered by WordPress.
  • Hosting Infrastructure
    • Explore WordPress-managed hosting platforms.
    • Gather required details for chosen hosting provider (page views, applications, etc.).
    • Prioritize providers offering superior support, security, and premium benefits.
  • Selecting Your Migration Team
    • Assess capabilities of the in-house development team.
    • Consider hiring specialists in Sitecore to WordPress migration.
    • Avoid DIY methods that might result in data loss or inaccuracies.

Section-2:
Content Preparation and Pre-Migration Checklist

With a high-level migration strategy in place, you’re ready to tackle the necessary preparations to ensure a smooth process. Below is a checklist to help you navigate the key steps before you migrate from Sitecore to WordPress:

Backup your website

Before diving into the migration, you must take a complete backup of your Sitecore website. Here’s how to back up your Sitecore site’s content:

  1. Log into Sitecore.
  2. Navigate to the Control Panel.
  3. Select the ‘Database Backup’ option.
  4. Choose the database you want to back up.
  5. Click ‘Backup Now’ to start the process.

Skipping this step can be catastrophic, leading to data loss should any issues arise during the convert Sitecore site to WordPress process.

Take inventory of your content

As you prepare to migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress, it’s vital to review your current content. Create a spreadsheet detailing all your current URLs and content, identifying any outdated or duplicate material that can be left behind. This careful auditing will aid in a clean conversion of your Sitecore website to a WordPress site.

Have a clear goal and plan

A clear vision and well-structured plan are essential in your high-level migration strategy. Determine the specific outcomes you aim to achieve through your Sitecore to WordPress migration. Whether it’s a design overhaul or improvements to URL and site structure, outline the details like domain name, design, site architecture, content, hosting, etc.

Having these specifics in place will guide you in a well-organized manner, ensuring a smooth process as you move from Sitecore to WordPress. This checklist serves as a roadmap, aligning your migration process with your business goals, and setting you up for success in the next phase of your digital journey.

Ensure SEO preservation

When undertaking a Sitecore to WordPress migration, maintaining SEO is crucial. While a minor drop in rankings is common during migrations, you should take steps to ensure that your Sitecore website’s SEO remains intact for the long term. Here’s how you can prepare for SEO preservation:

  • Compile a list of all URLs, including their associated titles and meta descriptions.
  • Create a 301 redirects list for old URLs to point to the new ones, ensuring the SEO value carries over.

A tool like Screaming Frog’s SEO Spider can provide insights into your current site’s architecture and SEO data such as broken links, redirects, duplicate content, and more. Exporting this data to a spreadsheet will help as you migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress.

Taxonomies

Transitioning from Sitecore to WordPress requires attention to detail, especially concerning your Sitecore taxonomies. Ensure that they are correctly labeled before proceeding with the convert Sitecore site to WordPress process.

Follow this checklist meticulously before embarking on your Sitecore to WordPress migration journey.

Now, focus on ensuring all content—including pages, posts, links, visuals, sections, categories, tags, users, user groups, comments, custom fields, menu items, taxonomies, SEO metadata, and URLs and redirects—is prepared on the current Sitecore website for correct migration to WordPress. 

Assembling all this data in a spreadsheet will simplify the migration process and post-migration testing.

If you decide to migrate Sitecore to WordPress manually, you’ll need to execute scripts and SQL queries to transfer your Sitecore database to WordPress. Sitecore and WordPress Administrator and FTP access will be necessary.

This meticulous preparation is a cornerstone of a smooth migration, helping you avoid unnecessary challenges as you move from Sitecore to WordPress.

The following pre-migration checklist will help you move things faster:

  • Backup your Sitecore website
    • Log into Sitecore.
    • Navigate to the Control Panel.
    • Select ‘Database Backup’.
    • Choose the desired database.
    • Click ‘Backup Now’.
  • Take inventory of your content
    • Create a spreadsheet with all current URLs.
    • Identify outdated or duplicate content.
  • Set a clear goal and plan
    • Define specific migration outcomes.
    • Detail domain name, design, site architecture, content, and hosting.
  • Ensure SEO preservation
    • Compile a list of all URLs, titles, and meta descriptions.
    • Create a 301 redirects list for old URLs.
    • Use Screaming Frog’s SEO Spider or similar tools for insights.
  • Ensure Sitecore taxonomies are correctly labeled.
  • Content Compilation
    • Assemble all content types (pages, posts, links, visuals, etc.).
    • Prepare categories, tags, user groups, custom fields, and menu items.
    • Ensure SEO metadata is organized.
    • Check URLs and redirects for accuracy.
  • Access Requirements
    • Prepare for scripts and SQL queries for manual migration.
    • Ensure Sitecore and WordPress Administrator and FTP access.

Section-3:
Set Up WordPress Environment and Development

After diligently preparing your content, the next critical step in your Sitecore to WordPress migration is setting up the WordPress environment. This phase is essential as you ready your WordPress structure for the final switch from Sitecore.

For those new to WordPress, you can find a step-by-step guide on how to download and install WordPress, and configure your database in this detailed article by WordPress.

If you’re looking to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress and have chosen a managed hosting provider like WordPress VIP, much of the heavy lifting is done for you. Your WordPress environment will already be configured, so you don’t have to delve into the nitty-gritty of installation and database management.

With your WordPress environment firmly established, it’s time to focus on some important considerations that will ensure a seamless conversion of your Sitecore website to a WordPress site.

Keep in mind that every step you take brings you closer to a successful Sitecore to WordPress migration, fulfilling your goals for a more dynamic and efficient website. Follow the process carefully, and soon, you’ll be able to enjoy all the benefits that come with moving from Sitecore to WordPress.

WordPress Single Site or Multisite

A vital decision in your Sitecore to WordPress migration journey is choosing between a WordPress single site or a multisite.

WordPress multisite is a fantastic feature for those looking to create a network of subsites from one WordPress installation. This allows you to run as many websites as you want under one umbrella, fostering connections between those sites, sharing data and users, and plugins and themes. 

When you convert your Sitecore website to a WordPress site with a multisite setup, the individual sites can have their unique domains or URLs, and they are recognized by search engines as separate, robust websites.

If your goal is to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress and centralize site management, and your subsites need similar functionality, WordPress multisite could be the perfect fit for you.

However, there might be situations where a single-site WordPress installation is more suitable. 

Perhaps you prefer not to share a user database with other sites. Maybe your main site has grown significantly, or you wish for a different hosting environment. In these cases, opting for a single site as part of your Sitecore to WordPress migration makes more sense.

If you’re looking to download and install WordPress, follow these steps:

  1. Download WordPress: Visit the WordPress.org download page and download the WordPress package.
  2. Upload the WordPress Files: Upload the files to your web server using an FTP client.
  3. Create a Database and User: Create a MySQL database and user with full privileges.
  4. Configure WordPress: Visit your domain in a web browser, and you’ll be prompted to fill in your database information. Follow the on-screen instructions.
  5. Complete the Installation: Choose your site name, admin username, password, and email. Click “Install WordPress.”

Remember, the choice between a single site and multisite is crucial to the success of your Sitecore to WordPress migration. Analyze your needs, consult your migration team, and make the decision that best aligns with your specific goals.

User Roles and Permissions

When planning a Sitecore to WordPress migration, it’s essential to understand how user roles and permissions will translate from one platform to the other.

In WordPress, there are five default user roles:

  • Administrators: Control all administration features within a single site.
  • Editors: Publish, manage, and even edit posts from other users.
  • Authors: Manage and publish their own posts.
  • Contributors: Write and manage their posts but can’t publish them.
  • Subscribers: Manage their profiles only.

In a WordPress multisite setup, there’s a Super Admin with even more privileges. Learn more about WordPress user roles and capabilities here.

Contrast this with Sitecore, where you have a wide variety of predefined roles for managing user authorization.

The process of migrating Sitecore to WordPress requires careful planning of user roles and permissions to facilitate user adoption of your new CMS and to ensure data security. Implementing a least privilege protocol, where users have access only to the functions they need, will help in this regard.

Here’s a quick user role mapping table to help you when converting your Sitecore site to WordPress:

Sitecore User roleWordPress User role
SitecoreAuthorAuthor
SitecoreDesignerCustom Role
SitecoreDeveloperCustom Role
Sitecore Client Account ManagingAdministrator OR Custom Role
Sitecore Client AuthoringAuthor OR Custom Role
Sitecore Client ConfiguringCustom Role
Sitecore Client DesigningCustom Role
Sitecore Client DevelopingCustom Role
Sitecore Client MaintainingCustom Role
Sitecore Client PublishingAuthor OR Custom Role
Sitecore Client SecuringCustom Role
Sitecore Client TranslatingCustom Role
Sitecore Client UsersSubscriber OR Custom Role
Sitecore Limited Content EditorEditor OR Custom Role
Sitecore Limited Page EditorEditor OR Custom Role
Sitecore Local AdministratorsAdministrator OR Custom Role
Sitecore Minimal Page EditorEditor OR Custom Role

When you migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress, considering these user roles ensures a smoother transition, a more secure system, and a better alignment with your team’s needs. 

Page Template Creation

Transitioning from Sitecore to WordPress means adapting to different ways of creating page templates.

In Sitecore, the structure might be different, but with WordPress, the focus is on a theme-based architecture. Each theme contains various pages, and each page consists of unique blocks.

After you’ve installed WordPress and are ready to migrate Sitecore to WordPress, you’ll initially see the default theme, Twenty Twenty-One. Installing a new theme is straightforward, and you can easily do so from your dashboard under Appearance → Theme → Add New.

If you’re looking to set up a custom theme quickly, consider using the Underscores theme. You can also customize a theme to match your brand’s design guidelines or even add your custom theme using the Hosting Panel.

Next, widgets, which are content blocks, can be added or removed within various areas like sidebars and footers via the Theme Customizer or Appearance → Widgets on the WordPress Admin screen.

Page templates in WordPress are powerful tools for customizing how your site’s dynamic content is displayed. They can vary from page to page, allowing different looks for various parts of your website.

When you’re converting your Sitecore site to WordPress, these page templates are crucial to ensure that your homepage, featured images, custom navigation, and other elements are presented the way you want.

Creating page templates in WordPress can be done through plugins with easy drag-and-drop features. For those who are moving from Sitecore to WordPress with an expert developer team, manual creation of page templates is also an option. Learn more about both approaches here.

Understanding this difference will help you convert your Sitecore website to a WordPress site with ease, maintaining the integrity of your original design while utilizing the flexibility WordPress offers.

Content Block Creation with Gutenberg

As part of the Sitecore to WordPress migration, it’s vital to understand how to create content blocks in WordPress, which is quite different from Sitecore.

WordPress offers the Gutenberg editor, allowing your team to embrace a modular, flexible “block” based system. This system lets you move away from the locked-down nature of Sitecore fields, offering a dynamic way to manage content, preview it, and migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress with ease.

Every element in the Gutenberg editor, whether a paragraph, an image gallery, or a headline, is its own block. Just like building blocks, these content blocks in WordPress can be added, styled, arranged, and rearranged. It allows your team to create media-rich pages in a visually intuitive manner.

Some advantages of using the Gutenberg Editor include:

  • Flexibility: Blocks can be tailored to fit your content needs.
  • Ease of Use: Even without technical knowledge or using shortcodes and custom HTML, media-rich pages can be created.
  • Preview Feature: Ability to see how content will appear on the front end directly within the CMS.
  • Compatibility: Works seamlessly with the latest WordPress themes, aiding in the process of converting your Sitecore website to a WordPress site.

The Block Editor Handbook provides a comprehensive tutorial on content block creation with Gutenberg. This new approach to content editing will be pivotal if you’re considering moving from Sitecore to WordPress, as it empowers your content creators and marketers in a way that aligns well with modern web design practices.

Mapping Features with WordPress Plugins

In the process of migrating from Sitecore to WordPress, one essential step involves aligning the features from your existing Sitecore site to the corresponding WordPress plugins.

Why choose WordPress plugins instead of custom hardwired code? 

The answer is simple: WordPress plugins are user-friendly and designed to accommodate users of all technical levels. 

If you’re considering a Sitecore to WordPress migration, you’ll find that plugins enable your marketing team to work effortlessly with the CMS, reducing the need for constant developer intervention.

Now, let’s explore how you can match your Sitecore features with WordPress plugins. Below is a list of popular WordPress plugins that align with some of the top features you may have on Sitecore:

Sitecore FeatureWordPress Plugin
eCommerceWooCommerce
Multilingual and LocalizationWPGlobus
AnalyticsGoogle Analytics Dashboard
User Roles and PermissionsMembers
Campaign Creator & Marketing AutomationActiveCampaign
Downloads & File ManagementFile Manager
Clients & CommunitiesBuddyPress
FormsWPForms
Media LibraryPhoto Gallery
Events & CalendarsThe Events Calendar
Speed & SecurityJetpack
Search Engine OptimizationYoast SEO
Mobile PerformanceAMP

For other functionalities, you can browse the WordPress plugins directory. Simply search for the features you need, and you’re likely to find corresponding plugins.

In case you’re converting a Sitecore website to a WordPress site and encounter a feature that doesn’t have an exact plugin match, you’ll need to build a custom plugin. But fear not, the vast repository of WordPress plugins will likely cover most of your needs, making your Sitecore to WordPress migration smoother and more efficient.

Mapping Sitecore Integrations with WordPress Plugins

As you plan your move from Sitecore to WordPress, it’s vital to understand that popular Sitecore integrations have equivalent WordPress plugins available. This means that if you’re planning to migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress, you can still enjoy the functionality you’re accustomed to.

Below, we’ve matched some more Sitecore integrations with their WordPress plugin counterparts, expanding on what we previously discussed:

Sitecore IntegrationWordPress Plugin
Microsoft Dynamics 365Dynamics 365 Integration
SiteimproveSiteimprove
CyberSourceStripe, PayPal, Authorize.net
CognigyChatbot with IBM Watson

It’s worth noting that finding an integration that doesn’t have an equivalent WordPress plugin is extremely unlikely. However, should this scenario arise during your Sitecore to WordPress migration, you may need to build a custom WordPress plugin.

You can keep this checklist handy to set up WordPress environment and development quickly:

  • WordPress Environment Setup
    • Prepare content for migration.
    • Decide between manual WordPress installation or using a managed hosting provider.
    • If manual, follow the guide on WordPress to download and install.
    • For managed hosting, ensure the environment is appropriately configured.
  • WordPress Installation Steps
    • Visit WordPress.org to download the WordPress package.
    • Upload the WordPress files to your web server using an FTP client.
    • Create a MySQL database and user with full privileges.
    • Access your domain in a web browser and follow the on-screen instructions for configuration.
    • Complete the installation by setting your site name, admin username, password, and email
  • Evaluate the need for a WordPress Single Site or Multisite.
  • Map User Roles and Permissions
    • Understand the default WordPress user roles.
    • Compare and map Sitecore user roles to their closest WordPress counterparts.
    • Ensure data security and user adoption by implementing a least privilege protocol.
  • Page Template Creation
    • Familiarize yourself with WordPress theme-based architecture.
    • Install a new theme or set up a custom one.
    • Utilize widgets to modify content areas like sidebars and footers.
    • Use or create page templates to dictate the display of your website’s dynamic content.
  • Content Block Creation with Gutenberg
    • Create and customize various elements (e.g., paragraphs, galleries) with blocks.
    • Refer to the Block Editor Handbook for comprehensive content block creation guidance.
  • Mapping Features with WordPress Plugins
    • List down Sitecore features to be migrated.
    • Identify corresponding WordPress plugins for each feature and install them.
    • For unique features without direct plugin matches, consider building a custom plugin.
  • Mapping Sitecore Integrations with WordPress Plugins
    • List essential Sitecore integrations.
    • Match these integrations with available WordPress plugins and install them.
    • For integrations without a WordPress counterpart, consider a custom plugin.

Section-4:
Switch & Deployment

You’re at the final phase of your Sitecore to WordPress migration. Your WordPress structure and environment are now ready, and it’s time to prepare and export your content and configurations from Sitecore.

Prepare and Export Content XML in Sitecore

Exporting content XML in Sitecore is a crucial step in the process of converting your website from Sitecore to WordPress. Follow these steps:

Step 1:  Log into the CMS as admin.

Step 2:  Navigate to Control PanelLocalizationExport Languages to begin the export of Sitecore posts to WordPress.

Sitecore-Control-Panle

Step 3: Select a language and a top-level Sitecore item that will serve as a ‘root’ element for your export. Then click ‘Next’, and once the export completes, you should be able to get the full XML file.

Step 4: Select the Sitecore item Content that you want to export. Follow the same process for exporting your configuration.

Step 5: Select the path in which you want to store the XML database in your server.

Step 6: Click on the ‘Download’ button to store the content database XML in your local system.

Step 7: Here is the Sitecore XML format database. Please see the below screenshot with all details of the item in XML format of Sitecore.

Step 8: Build custom scripts to convert Sitecore .xml file to WordPress compatibility .xml file (contact us if you need any help). If you wish to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress and self-launch a site with WordPress VIP, check out this resource.

With this process, you can move forward with your goal to migrate Sitecore to WordPress manually or seek professional assistance..

Prepare Your Media Assets

As you move ahead in the process to migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress, it’s essential to ensure that all your media assets are also transferred seamlessly. Your website likely uses various media assets like images, videos, audio files, PDF documents, etc. These could be hosted on Sitecore or your CDN.

Here’s how to prepare your media assets for migration:

Step 1: Follow the first three steps from the above section on exporting your content XML in Sitecore. This lays the foundation for exporting both your textual and media content as you migrate from Sitecore to WordPress.

Step 2: Select the Sitecore Media Library which you want to export. The same process applies here as you would use to export your configuration, aligning with the process to convert Sitecore website to WordPress site.

Step 3: Refer to steps five and six from the above section on exporting your content XML in Sitecore. These steps guide you in storing your media assets, readying them for moving from Sitecore to WordPress.

Step 4: Here is the Sitecore XML format database. Please see the below screenshot with all details of the item in XML format of Sitecore.

Step 5: Build custom scripts to convert Sitecore .xml file to WordPress compatibility .xml file (contact us if you need any help). If you’re looking to export Sitecore posts to WordPress and wish to self-launch a site with WordPress VIP, consult this resource.

Important Considerations Before Final Deployment

Now, as you stand on the cusp of converting your website from Sitecore to WordPress, the final deployment stage holds a few critical aspects to keep in mind. Let’s explore these key areas to ensure a smooth Sitecore to WordPress migration:

Prepare Your Sitemap

A well-structured sitemap is paramount to the success of your migrate Sitecore to WordPress project. Think about your sitemap — are there changes you wish to implement in the new sitemap structure? Whether you want to add new pages or remove old ones, now’s the time to finalize those details.

Prepare Your Integrations List

A significant aspect of Sitecore to WordPress migration is aligning your integrations. Are you planning new software integrations for your WordPress website? What about your existing Sitecore ones — will they carry over?

Sitecore’s strong built-in MarTech stack offers a wide array of options, but WordPress’s flexibility and individual MarTech solutions often surpass Sitecore in terms of marketing and CRM prowess. 

These specialized solutions are not only cost-effective but also best-in-class, giving you the flexibility to scale and modify your tech stack as your enterprise grows.

For instance, Pardot or Sailthru for marketing automation, Salesforce as a CRM, Google Optimize for multivariate testing, and several other integrations can be part of your strategy to supercharge your WordPress marketing tech stack. 

Plan the Timeline

Planning your timeline is vital to the process of moving from Sitecore to WordPress. We previously discussed selecting a non-busy time for your migration, perhaps a long weekend when traffic on your website is low, and the team is out of the office.

The proper execution of these essential considerations ensures that you’re well-equipped to convert Sitecore website to WordPress site without any hindrance. Reflect on these aspects as you finalize your strategy for a seamless Sitecore to WordPress migration, and reach out to professionals if you need support in any of these areas.

Freeze Mode During Content Migration

Embarking on the journey to migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress, you or your team are consistently updating your live Sitecore website with fresh, appealing content. But beware! This ongoing activity can throw a spanner in the works of your Sitecore to WordPress migration.

Here’s why: if you exported your content six weeks ago, and the migration process completes with the new website ready after those six weeks, you’ll need to export your content again to ensure the latest content from your Sitecore website is included.

To prevent this hiccup during the convert Sitecore website to WordPress site process, you need to establish the export date and freeze your Sitecore site. Make sure no editorial team is updating or adding new content, so there’s no loss of data during migration. 

Our technical team is here to help you, ensuring that your data is migrated in its entirety and content integrity is maintained.

DNS Switching

Switching DNS is the next vital step in your migrate Sitecore to WordPress journey. You’ll need to point the DNS domain to your new hosting provider.

For instance, if you opt to host your DNS with a provider like WordPress VIP while moving from Sitecore to WordPress, you can contact them, and they will handle the DNS management for you. You can then self-service create DNS entries to replicate your current setup.

Once everything is verified and in place, switch to their nameservers at least a week before launch. Managing DNS for multiple sites within the same WordPress.com DNS management instance streamlines this part of the process.

Sticking to this plan will ensure that you smoothly convert your website from Sitecore to WordPress, keeping your content and connections intact.

Migrating Media Assets

When you’re preparing to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress, it’s crucial not to overlook the various media assets like images, videos, audio files, PDF documents, etc. hosted on your Sitecore CMS or CDN. 

These need to be carefully transferred as part of your Sitecore to WordPress migration plan before moving the textual content. This step ensures that all your valuable media remains intact and accessible as you convert your Sitecore website to WordPress site.

Caching

Speed and performance are pivotal in today’s web landscape and WordPress caching emerges as a fast and efficient way to bolster your site’s performance.

Plugins like W3 Total Cache, WP Super Cache, and Cache Enabler can be easily installed and will cache your WordPress posts and pages as static files, which are then served to users. This reduces the processing load on the server, potentially enhancing performance several hundred times over, especially for fairly static pages.

Should your posts/pages contain a substantial amount of dynamic content, configuring caching might become a tad more complex. A quick search for “WordPress cache plugin” should provide more info, aiding in the smooth transition of migrating content from Sitecore to WordPress.

Testing Your New WordPress Website

Transitioning your website through a Sitecore to WordPress migration is a delicate process that requires meticulous attention. Before going live, it’s essential to thoroughly test your new WordPress website from various angles, including design, SEO, and usability.

Make sure everything on the interface functions smoothly on both desktop and mobile. Check that everything aligns with expectations and that there is no data loss when you convert your Sitecore site to WordPress. 

These checks are critical to ensuring that the move from Sitecore to WordPress goes seamlessly.

Take the time to confirm that all existing SEO points are preserved during deployment. You might need to create a new sitemap and Robots.txt files with a new structure, considering the new changes during the migration process.

After completion, vigilantly monitor the website’s performance. Look out for any significant loss of traffic and rankings. It’s essential to review key SEO aspects such as internal links, broken links, redirects, and more.

As part of converting a website from Sitecore to WordPress, you’ll want to update your permalink structure. Aim for clean and SEO-friendly URLs for each page. Inspect and rectify your internal links as they’re vital for both SEO and on-site user experience. Make sure all the links on the pages are intact.

Additionally, for optimal performance post-Sitecore to WordPress migration, consider undertaking load testing and delving into potential performance bottlenecks. Tools like Application Performance Monitoring can help you alongside WordPress.

Remember, migrating from Sitecore to WordPress involves more than just moving content. It’s a systematic process that requires care at every step, ensuring that your site continues to meet the needs and expectations of your audience. 

Once your migration is complete, the next step in your Sitecore to WordPress migration journey involves careful consideration of specific aspects on your new WordPress website. This is especially important if you’re using WordPress for the first time. Here’s a quick checklist to guide you through the post-migration phase:

Security

When you convert your Sitecore site to WordPress, security must be a top priority. While choosing a secure WordPress host with additional features to protect your site is key, following best practices will further tighten your website’s security. These include:

  • Changing your login URL
  • Creating a strong password
  • Implementing firewall solution such as Cloudflare or Sucuri
  • Enabling multi-factor authentication
  • Limiting login attempts
  • Restricting CMS access with user permissions 
  • Updating all plugins frequently
  • Using an SSL certificate

SEO

As part of your migrate Sitecore to WordPress process, don’t forget that WordPress is already a fantastic platform for SEO. However, to maintain and improve its rankings, you need to take care of some aspects, such as:

  • Picking a tried and tested SEO plugin like Yoast
  • Creating a sitemap file and submitting it to Google
  • Double-checking your robots.txt file
  • Ensuring all onsite SEO (titles, URLs, links, images, etc.) is done correctly after moving from Sitecore to WordPress

Third-Party Analytics Tools

After completing the process to migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress, make sure to link your preferred third-party analytics tool to your new WordPress site. This allows you to keep track of your site’s statistics (such as traffic, sources, and conversions), gauge online performance, and analyze visitor behavior.

You can keep this checklist handy to make your switch and deployment process faster:

  • Prepare and Export Content XML in Sitecore
    • Log into the CMS as admin.
    • Navigate to Control Panel → Localization → Export Languages.
    • Choose language and top-level Sitecore item for export.
    • Export desired Sitecore item Content.
    • Determine XML database storage path.
    • Download the content database XML locally.
    • Review Sitecore XML database format.
    • Build or acquire custom scripts for Sitecore-to-WordPress XML conversion.
  • Prepare Your Media Assets
    • Begin media asset export with the same first three steps as content XML.
    • Select Sitecore Media Library for export.
    • Store media assets for migration.
    • Review Sitecore XML format for media.
    • Develop or get custom scripts to convert media Sitecore XML for WordPress.
  • Important Considerations Before Final Deployment
    • Finalize your sitemap structure.
    • Prepare your integration list.
    • Schedule the timeline for migration.
    • Freeze content updates on your Sitecore website.
    • Facilitate DNS switching.
    • Ensure media assets are migrated.
    • Implement caching for WordPress performance.
    • Thoroughly test your new WordPress website.
    • Review SEO components and structure.
    • Monitor post-migration website performance.
  • Post-Migration Considerations
    • Address security:
      • Change login URL
      • Craft a strong password
      • Use firewall solutions
      • Enable multi-factor authentication
      • Limit login attempts
      • Restrict CMS access
      • Regularly update plugins
      • Install an SSL certificate
    • Boost SEO:
      • Install a reliable SEO plugin
      • Create and submit a sitemap to search engines
      • Review your robots.txt file
      • Conduct on-site SEO adjustments
    • Link to third-party analytics tools.

Section-5:
Train Your Team

Congratulations on completing your Sitecore to WordPress migration! Your content has been transferred, and your new WordPress website is ready to make waves.

Now that you’re ready to say goodbye to your expensive Sitecore license subscription, your teams can log into WordPress and begin exploring and learning all about their new CMS. 

But there’s something vital to consider: your workforce has been using Sitecore, and suddenly switching to WordPress for all their routine work means adjusting to a whole new platform. 

Although migrating from Sitecore to WordPress brings them to a super intuitive CMS with a clean and simple user interface, there’s a huge difference in how they update and create content.

To ensure that your staff continues working at peak efficiency after moving from Sitecore to WordPress, it’s wise to provide initial training once the migration is complete. This is an essential step as you convert your Sitecore website to a WordPress site.

For instance:

  • Your editorial team can benefit from understanding the WordPress publishing workflow.
  • Your webmasters can learn how multisite and user roles and permissions work in WordPress.

WordPress offers a rich repository of learning material, including workshops, courses, and lesson plans. Here are a few workshops to help your team quickly get up to speed with the basics:

These fundamental topics enable your staff to quickly adapt as they migrate content from Sitecore to WordPress. For training on more advanced topics, the WordPress learning center is at your disposal.

Whether you choose to migrate Sitecore to WordPress manually or with professional assistance, training is key to harnessing the full potential of your new WordPress site.

Keep the following checklist handy to simplify your WordPress adoption process:

  • Log into WordPress to familiarize yourself with the dashboard.
  • Identify the Differences between Sitecore and WordPress to set clear expectations.
  • Explore WordPress Publishing Workflow including creating and updating content on WordPress.
  • Dive into Multisite and User Management to understand functionalities and the nuances of user roles and permissions.
  • Join Workshops and Courses
  • Visit the WordPress learning center for deeper insights and advanced topic training.
  • Regularly check for updates and new features to keep the team informed.
  • Encourage Questions to foster an environment of learning.
  • Monitor how the team is adapting and offer additional training if needed.

Summary

The journey of migrating from Sitecore to WordPress might seem like a complex maze, but it’s a path well-traveled and worth every step. Considering your individual website’s complexity, functionality, and content volume, it’s essential to carefully plan your Sitecore to WordPress migration.

The reward for your time and monetary investment is immense. Not only will you gain greater control over your data and save significantly on licensing, but you’ll also enjoy the freedom to scale your site as you see fit.

Whether you aim to convert your Sitecore site to WordPress or export Sitecore posts to WordPress, we hope this comprehensive migration guide helps you understand not only the how but also the why behind making the switch. 

Moving from Sitecore to WordPress opens doors to new possibilities and puts you in command of your web presence.

PS: Looking to migrate from Sitecore to WordPress but need expert hands to manage the transition? Then you’re at the right place. You can trust us with the enterprise-scale Sitecore to WordPress migration from start to finish. Let’s take things off your plate and make your transition smooth and seamless!

FAQs

  • Migrating Sitecore to WordPress requires a carefully planned process. Analyzing content, choosing the right tools, testing, and proper SEO setup are key. Consider hiring experts in Sitecore to WordPress migration for a seamless transition.

  • Migrating an outdated Sitecore site to WordPress involves analyzing the old content, selecting what to convert, setting up a WordPress environment, and then migrating manually or with specialized tools.

  • Migrate a Sitecore site to WordPress by exporting content, converting Sitecore templates to WordPress themes, and ensuring SEO settings are correctly transferred. Specialized migration services can help with this process.

  • If you’re looking for a more cost-effective and user-friendly solution, then migrating from Sitecore to WordPress could be beneficial. However, you need to assess your specific needs and goals before making a decision.

  • Yes, you can migrate from Sitecore to WordPress. It requires careful planning and execution or professional help to ensure a smooth transition.

  • WordPress offers a more user-friendly interface, and extensive plugins, and is often more cost-effective than Sitecore. It might be the right choice if you’re aiming for flexibility and scalability.

  • Exporting all content from Sitecore to WordPress involves using specific tools or manual processes to move data, followed by thorough testing to ensure everything is intact.

  • The speed can depend on various factors such as hosting, optimization, and configuration. Both have their advantages, but WordPress often provides easier options for performance optimization.

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