Moving from WordPress.com to WordPress.org will seem overwhelming at first but it really is a straightforward process. You should definitely plan ahead and make sure you are ready before you make the switch.
Always have a backup of your site just incase.
Make sure you have set up your hosting for your site.
I currently use Flywheel and don’t have any complaints. WordPress recommends their own hosting companies and those will work just fine.
Once you have set up your hosting you will need to point your domain to your new hosting account.
Here are WordPress.com exact instructions to point your DNS to someone else.
Change nameservers to point the domain outside of WordPress.com
You can leave your domain registered with WordPress.com and point it to another host by changing its name servers. You’ll keep the domain upgrade you purchased with us, and just stop using our hosting.
To change name servers, you need to insert the name servers provided by your host under Domains — by clicking Edit and then Name Servers.
To get the new Name Servers head over to your hosting company because this varies so much it may be easier to google your hosting name followed by nameservers.
Once your domain is pointing to your new hosting location you will want to create a WordPress site with them. Here are some instructions depending on who you picked.
The details you put will not matter as this will be overridden with the info from your original site.
Now head over to your WordPress.com site and go to Plugins. You will want to search for and install the All-in-One WP Migration. I have the best luck with this plugin & it makes the transfer painless.
Once you have activated it you will see the options menu on the bottom left, under the settings menu.
You will want to hover over the name and then click Export.
Once you have clicked Export click the Export To button.
I recommend exporting to File as this is the quickest and will be saved to your computer.
You will get a pop-up letting you know that the file is being exported, once it has calculated the size it will begin flashing green letting you know its ready to download. While that is exporting you can head over to the new site you just created and install the same plugin.
Once you have installed it you will want to import the file that we just exported.
This time you will want to click import and then import from file. Select the file we just exported.
This will override all the info you gave when creating the second site. So you can still use the same username and password you had for the original site.
And that’s it. Your site should now be moved over and ready to use. If you have any issues need clarification please let me know.