Being able to easily merge two different site databases is a complex process but luckily Nexcess provides a solid plugin which deals with just that exact issue. The WPMerge plugin is provided on all Managed WordPress and Managed WooCommerce plans.
Using the WPMerge plugin will allow you to push a connected staging site to the production site but it will not replace data that you need on the production site. As an example you might run WooCommerce on your site and when you move from staging to production you don’t want to replace customers and orders.
The WPMerge plugin can be installed using the Nexcess Installer on the production site. Select WPMerge in the Nexcess Installer page on the site then click on the Installed Selected Plugins button.
After the plugin and account have been created for WPMerge you will now need to see if the site is a production or a development site. Since we are setting the WPMerge plugin on a production site we are going to be setting it as such.
You will next be presented with the connection information. Both the production and staging sites will need to be connected in order to merge any data using WPMerge. The WPMerge plugin can be installed by downloading the current zip file from My Account in the WPMerge site or if you installed the WPMerge plugin before creating the staging site then the plugin will already be installed on the staging site.
If you do not know your password for the WPMerge plugin then you can reset the password from the site. You will need to add your WPMerge.io site credentials into the WPMerge plugin settings on the staging site. The connected site will show in the WPMerge.io site.
Next, you will need to copy your production site credentials into the staging site.
WPMerge > Settings
After you have made changes to your staging site now you can test merging the data from the staging site to the production site.
WPMerge > WPMerge
The first will show the changes that have been recorded on the staging site, you can test applying the changes which will clone the production database and then apply the changes to the staging site.
Next, you can test merging in the staging site. It is recommended to test merging in the staging site before pushing the changes to the production site.
The last option is to push the changes made in the staging site and then push those to the production site.
After you have pushed the staging site changes to the production site you will need to make sure that any caching is purged on the production site. The caching to purge would be if using a CDN, Redis object caching, a page caching plugin, or if using a page builder plugin like Elementor or Beaver Builder. The reason for purging all of the caching is to make sure that the changes pushed from staging to production are reflected correctly.
Any file differences between the staging site and the production site can be downloaded in the form of a zip file which will need to be unzipped and then uploaded to the production site.
WPMerge is an easy to use plugin which will make it easy to be able to push staging site changes to the production site. It will just take a short while to get used to the new development workflow process. Also, remember not to use a migration service or plugin to clone the staging site to replace the production site if using WPMerge on the site.
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