Wordpress Multisite Setup

WordPress Multisite Setup : From Scratch and an Existing Installation

  • August 22, 2023
  • in WordPress
  • by AW Bali Digital

What is WordPress Multisite? WordPress Multisite is a powerful feature that allows you to manage multiple websites from a single WordPress installation. Whether you’re starting from scratch or have an existing WordPress site, this guide will walk you through the step-by-step process of setting up a WordPress Multisite network.

Section 1: WordPress Multisite Setup from Scratch

Step 1: Install WordPress

  1. Choose a reliable web hosting provider and install WordPress on your domain.
  2. Set up your database and configure your site by following the WordPress installation prompts.

Step 2: Backup and Preparations

  1. Before proceeding, make sure to backup your WordPress site to ensure you can revert in case of any issues.
  2. Disable all plugins and switch to a default WordPress theme temporarily.

Step 3: Enable Multisite

  1. Open your WordPress installation’s wp-config.php file using a text editor.
  2. Add the following line just above the “That’s all, stop editing!” line: define('WP_ALLOW_MULTISITE', true);
  3. Save the file and refresh your WordPress admin dashboard.

Step 4: Configure Multisite

  1. Go to “Tools” > “Network Setup” in your admin dashboard.
  2. Choose whether you want your sites to be subdomains or subdirectories. Enter the network details and click “Install.”
  3. Follow the provided instructions to update your wp-config.php and .htaccess files.

Step 5: Network Settings

  1. Log in again to your WordPress admin dashboard.
  2. You’ll now see a “My Sites” option. Use it to create new sites, manage existing ones, and configure settings.

Section 2: Adding Multisite to an Existing WordPress Installation

Step 1: Backup and Preparations

  1. Before making any changes, ensure you have a complete backup of your existing site.
  2. Deactivate all plugins and switch to a default WordPress theme.

Step 2: Enable Multisite

  1. Follow steps 3 and 4 from the “Setting Up WordPress Multisite from Scratch” section to enable and configure Multisite.

Step 3: Network Setup

  1. Once you’ve updated your wp-config.php and .htaccess files, log in to your admin dashboard again.
  2. Navigate to “My Sites” and then “Network Admin” to manage your network settings.

Additional Tips and Considerations

  1. Choose the Right Domain Structure: Decide whether you want to use subdomains (e.g., site1.yourdomain.com) or subdirectories (e.g., yourdomain.com/site1) for your multisite setup. This decision should be based on your site’s needs and your hosting provider’s capabilities.
  2. Plugin and Theme Compatibility: Test your existing plugins and themes for compatibility with Multisite. Some may not work as expected, so be prepared to find alternatives if needed.
  3. Scalability and Maintenance: Regularly update plugins, themes, and WordPress core files to ensure security and optimal performance across your network.
  4. User Management: As the network administrator, you can manage users across all sites. Assign roles and permissions as needed for each site.
  5. Content Sharing: Multisite allows you to share content, themes, and plugins across sites. Take advantage of this feature to maintain consistency and reduce redundancy.

Setting up a WordPress Multisite network, whether from scratch or on an existing installation, offers the convenience of managing multiple websites within a unified system. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can establish a powerful network that streamlines website management, optimizes resources, and provides a cohesive online presence for your various projects or brands. Remember to consider compatibility, scalability, and maintenance as you embark on your WordPress Multisite journey.


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