Step By Step To Export And Import Navigation Menus In WordPress

Would you like to transfer a navigation menu from one WordPress site to another? You might need to relocate your entire WordPress website to a new site occasionally.

If you want to use the old website’s menus on the new site, you’ll need to import/export them. This will save you time and effort. The process is easy; however, it might be confusing for beginners.

The default WordPress import/export functionality lets you transfer menus as part of a full site transfer, but it doesn’t let you import/export menus by themselves.

In this post, we’ll reveal how to import & export navigation menus in WordPress. But before we start, let us first understand WordPress’s import/export features.


Read The Import/Export Features

Import and export functions are standard in every WordPress website. In your WordPress dashboard, you can access these under Tools > Import and Tools > Export, as shown in the image below.

You can export everything on the Export page or just your posts, pages, Schemas, and media.

The Import page allows you to import posts or comments from other platforms onto your site.

Export WordPress Menus

You can check your menu before exporting it by going to Appearance > Menus from your WordPress dashboard.

To install and activate the WPS Menu Exporter plugin, go to Plugins > Add New on your WordPress dashboard.

Once activated, go to Tools > Export from your WordPress dashboard. With the WPS Menu Exporter plugin installed, you should see a field called Navigation Menu Items.

Any comments or posts related to the menu will be imported/exported along with the menu itself.

The next step is to select the Navigation Menu Items radio button and then click the Download Export File button.

Read: Google’s Helpful Content Update

This will download the menu and any related files to your system. It will be saved as a .xml file.

The file will be titled site.wordpress.yyyy-mm-dd , with the date expressed as yyyy-mm-dd and ‘site’ denoting the website.

Import The WordPress Menu

The .xml file you downloaded can be imported by utilizing the WordPress standard Import feature. The process is simple. You must upload the file containing your navigation menu to your new website.

Note: Ensure that there are no existing pages, even in the trash, with the same name as the pages you’re importing from the menu. Otherwise, the import tool might not be able to import those pages correctly.

Firstly, log in to your WordPress dashboard on the new site where you want to import your menu. Then navigate to Tools > Import as demonstrated below.

Scroll down to the WordPress heading and click the Install Now link as demonstrated below.

After the WordPress importer has been installed, select the Run Importer link. The Import WordPress screen will appear. Click on the Choose File button to select the .xml file that was downloaded earlier. Then click on the Upload file and import button.

You will then need to Assign Authors, as shown in the image below. To do this, you can either assign posts to an existing user or create a new one.

In most situations, it will be more logical to set an existing user as the author instead of creating a new user.

From the drop-down menu, select the user name.

If you want to reuse the pages’ content, check the Download and import file attachments box. With this action, the images will be imported as well. Lastly, click on the Submit button.

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