Before the transfer begins, I shall have completed a total backup of the site.

Step 1: Transfer of the domain name to the control of the new owner.

Contact your registrar and the site’s old registrar for details. Broadly, this is what you do:

  1. The buyer starts the process with the “gaining” registrar following their instruction.
  2. The gaining registrar sends an email to the administrative contact listed in the WHOIS.
  3. If the contact replies within the time limit, the gaining registrar sends a request to the registry (the controlling body that oversees registrars). The registry sends an email to the losing registrar.
  4. The losing registrar now sends an email to the administrative contact.
  5. Provided the contact approves, the losing registrar releases the domain to the gaining registrar.

Step 2: Get/download all the site’s files and folders in the correct structure.

Getting a copy of the applications (if any), database/s (if any), and non-publicly viewable configuration files such as the “.htaccess”.

Step 3: Upload all the files, databases etc., to the new hosting company’s server. 

These need to be placed in the right location following the instructions provided by the host (and doing all this while the site is still fully operational at the “old” location).

From Hostgator: “The very easiest thing would be if the new owner was a HostGator customer. Then you would email, and once both parties are verified and in agreement to transfer the site, we would do the rest.

If the buyer insists on using another host, then there are a couple of options. If this host is a cPanel host, then we can provide a full cPanel backup that includes databases, files, and everything (passwords too, so change your passwords before providing this). If they aren’t a cPanel host, first see if they have some sort of site transfer option. Failing that, you will want to provide the files and databases. Let us know if you need help creating a .zip or a .tar.gz of your public_html and database dumps. And then of course, the database info in wp-config.php will likely need to be updated when it’s on the new host. Then you’ll have to give the new owner the EPP code for the domain (which you can obtain by mailing and provide this to the buyer as well. “

Step 4: Make the changes to take control, as previously mentioned (

Step 5: Change the DNS settings at the domain registrar to point to the new hosting company thus allowing visitors to reach the new location of the site.


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