Use the Search and Replace Plugin to change your site content


As I mentioned in this week’s WPCandy Podcast, the Search and Replace Plugin by Frank Bueltge is helpful for replacing phrases and URL on your WordPress website. In this tutorial we’re going to look at how to use it.

Rather than search through your posts and pages to change something like a URL string, or a particular phrase, this Plugin searches through the tables in your WordPress database and does the job quickly.

I used this Plugin most recently to replace certain image URL strings. When I moved Theme Playground posts into WPCandy, a number of the image URLs pointed to the (now) wrong address. So, I was able to use Search and Replace to find this URL string:

And replace it with this URL string:

Using Search and Replace

The Plugin allows you to select particular fields to search through, but for the most part you’ll probably want to select all of them. If you don’t know why you would only want to select a few fields to search, you likely want all of them.

Enter in the text you’d like to search for, and then the text you would like it to replace. Click “Go”, and you should be all done.

Your experience with Search and Replace

Have you used Search and Replace on your WordPress site before? If not, do you think you will use it in the future?

4 thoughts on “Use the Search and Replace Plugin to change your site content

  1. Yeah been using this plugin for a while now and it is one of those that we can’t live with out. Typically we use it once we have migrated a site from our testing servers to our clients servers, we basically just search for our test domain and swap it out for the clients. It is really powerful so you have to be careful that you don’t use a search string that is too general 🙂

    • Absolutely, it’s worth pointing out that the wrong replacement can cause havoc in a database. In short: be very sure that you want to replace something before you hit “Go”. 🙂

  2. HI. I’ve just migrated my blog from a subdomain of another website to its own .com domain. The new URL – – is now working fine; however, it seems that some links are hardcoded, and they still point to the old subdomain address –

    This is the sort of problem that the Search and Replace plugin is designed to address, I think? I’m not very tech-minded, and am terrified of making a mistake, so I wonder if you would mind answering the following questions, which I’ve enumerated to keep things clear:

    1. In the ‘Search For’ I put the old URL:
    In ‘Replaced With’ I put the new URL:

    a) Is this correct?
    b) Is it necessary to include the http:// prefix on one or both addresses? Or should I drop it off both?

    2. ‘All – only search!’ has ‘Field’ ticked by default. I assume I leave this as it is?

    3. When do I tick ‘All – search/replace!’ Field (it is unticked by default)? Or do I not tick it at all?

    4. Should I select all the ‘Search in’ options (eg: Content, GUID, Titles etc)?

    Sorry for these no doubt very basic questions, but if you could illuminate me on the above would be most grateful.


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