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I’m not a super tech geek, but I’m not stupid, either. I can usually figure things out on my own, with the help of my trusty BFF Google. This, however, was another story. These instructions are specific to A Small Orange and SiteGround, but should be very similar for most web hosts.
A couple of months ago, SiteGround was having one of their great sales, so I purchased three years of hosting and I hadn’t really had the motivation to start moving everything from my previous host (A Small Orange) until yesterday. It seemed simple enough, or so I thought. Maybe I was just tired or maybe it was the migraine I’d had for five days, but after about an hour of Googling and trying to do this myself, I had to get on Live Chat with ASO and ask for help. Once I figured it all out, I thought I might as well put it all here, in case anyone else gets stuck like I was.
Some of this might help you with other hosts, but this is specific to ASO and SG.
1. Log into your SiteGround account.
SiteGround offers one free professional site transfer with a new hosting account. Take advantage of that, unless you’re the super tech nerd I wish I was and you want to do everything manually. If not, click on the Resources tab, then click “Getting Started Tutorial.”
2. Click “Transfer Your Existing Site.”
Follow the step-by-step instructions in the Account Setup Wizard.
ASO uses cPanel. You’ll need the cPanel URL for your ASO account, along with your login info. Once you put these into SiteGround, just sit back and wait a bit. This will open a ticket for the transfer, which can take up to 24 hours (though it only took about 2 hours for mine). Once you get the update saying that they have successfully transferred your site to their server, you’ll need to go into ASO to point your domain to SiteGround‘s servers. This is where I started getting frustrated. I looked everywhere in ASO’s cPanel. The problem is, that’s the wrong area. Plus, you have to unlock your domain (in ASO) before you can change the nameservers. If you’re not still logged in, log into ASO now.
3. Click “My Domains.”
4. Click the Wrench for the Domain You’re Transferring.
5. Click “Change the Registrar Lock Status for Your Domain.”
6. Click “Disable Registrar Lock.”
I took this screen shot after I’d already disabled mine, so yours should say “Registrar Lock Status: Enabled.” You have to disable the lock before you can change anything, including the nameservers.
7. Go Back and Click “Change the Nameservers Your Domain Points To.”
Nameserver 1 and Nameserver 2 will be ASO’s. Change them to the nameservers for SiteGround and click the “Change Nameservers” button.
This step can also take up to 24 hours, but it didn’t take more than an hour for mine to update. At this point, you can also change your domain hosting to SiteGround, if you’d like. I did, to make it easier for me. I like to have everything in one place, though I know many people prefer to have their domains hosted elsewhere.
That’s it! Here’s the short tl;dr version:
- Log into SiteGround and use the wizard to transfer your existing site.
- Disable the registrar lock status for your domain on your old server.
- Change the nameservers to your new server.
I hope this helps someone avoid some of the aggravation I experienced last night. 🙂 And, don’t forget, most hosts have 24/7 Live Chat to help you figure this stuff out. SiteGround does and so does A Small Orange. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.