There are a lot of options when it comes to exporting a WordPress database for a website to import on a new hosting provider.  Here are the three methods to export I’ve used the most with the best success:

#1 Export directly from phpMyAdmin

I find this method to be less messy than using a plugin that has to be installed and then uninstalled.  You simply select your database at then go to the export tab in phpMyAdmin.

The options to select for the export: 

  1. Export Method:  Custom – display all possible options
  2. Table(s): Select All
  3. Output: Save out to a file
    • Character set utf-8
    • Compression: gzipped
  4. Format: SQL
  5. Format-specific options:
    • Check Display comments
    • Database system or older MYSQL server to maximize output compatibility with NONE
    • Dumb table: structure and data
  6. Object creation options
    • Check Add CREATE /PROCEDURE / FUNCTION/ EVENT statement
    • Check CREATE TABLE options:
      • Check IF NOT EXISTS
      • Check AUTO-INCREMENT
    • Enclose table and field names with quotes (Protects field and table names formed with special characters or keywords)
  7. Data dump options:
    • Function to use when dumping data: INSERT
    • Syntax to use when inserting data:
      • both of the above
    • Maximal length of created query 50000
    • Check Dump binary columns in hexadecimal notation (for example, “abc” becomes 0x616263)
    • Check Dump TIMESTAMP columns in UTC (enables TIMESTAMP columns to b dumped and reloaded between servers in different time zones)

The settings for the database export

correct wordpress database export

The settings for the database import

phpMyAdmin database import settings

#2 Use the Duplicator plugin

For those who are intimidated by the phpMyAdmin panel or don’t have access to it for some reason, The Duplicator plugin works well.

#3 Export from InfiniteWP

If you have more than 1 or 2 WordPress sites you can save yourself a lot of time by checking out InfiniteWP.  Once you’re up and running you can simply export the database from your dashboard.

Go to Protect and select backups and create a new backup.  You can choose whether to backup your files and DB or just your database.