WordPress and FTP: A Guide to Uploading Files
WordPress is a wildly popular content management system that fuels over 30% of all websites online. One of its main selling points is its versatility, thanks to plugins and custom themes. That said, you may find yourself needing to upload files to your WordPress site using FTP.
What is FTP and When Do You Need It?
FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol, a tool that lets you upload, download, and edit files on your website through your computer. FTP comes into play when your website is too large to update via the WordPress dashboard or when you need to tweak otherwise inaccessible files.
Step-by-Step Guide to Uploading Files via FTP
Step 1: Download and Install an FTP Client
To use FTP for your WordPress site, you’ll need to download and install an FTP client. There are various options, with FileZilla and Cyberduck among the most popular.
Which one should you go with? It’s up to you!
Step 2: Connect to Your WordPress Site’s Server
- Open FileZilla and click on the File menu. Select Site Manager.
- Click on the New Site button to set up a new site.
- In the Host field, enter your website’s URL or IP address that you can find in your hosting control panel.
- From the Protocol drop-down menu, select FTP.
- In the Encryption drop-down menu, choose Use explicit FTP over TLS if available.
- In the Login Type drop-down menu, choose Normal.
- Provide your username and password, which you’ll find in your hosting control panel.
- Click on Connect.
Step 3: Upload Files to Your WordPress Site
- Locate the files you want to upload to your WordPress site on your computer.
- In FileZilla, navigate to the folder where those files reside on the left-hand side of the window.
- Select the files you want to transfer.
- Drag and drop the files onto the remote site’s directories on the right-hand side of the FileZilla window.
- Wait for the transfer to conclude, checking in the bottom pane of the window for progress.
- Once upload finishes, verify that the files you uploaded are in the right place in your WordPress dashboard.
Step 4: Verify Your Uploads
- Log in to your WordPress dashboard.
- Navigate to the directory where you uploaded the files via FTP. This could be something like the wp-content/uploads folder in your WordPress dashboard.
- Make sure that your uploaded files are in the right place.
Common FTP Mistakes to Avoid
- Uploading files to the wrong directory
- Not checking file permissions before uploading
- Uploading files that are too large
- Using an insecure connection instead of FTPS or SFTP
Uploading files to WordPress via FTP can seem tricky, but it’s a necessary process when website updates require more control than the WordPress dashboard offers. Follow these steps to upload files via FTP to ensure everything goes smoothly. And remember, always double-check your uploads and file permissions to prevent any mishaps and keep your site up-to-date.