Streamline your WordPress Development with WP Engine

Download a PDF of this process now!

This post on creating a development site on WPEngine in 3 Easy Steps is a just one of MANY business automation and systemization tips I gave in my WordCamp talk entitled: Clone Yourself Through Automation.

Also, if you enjoy this post you might want to check out Business Coaching post From Freelancer to WordPress Agency Owner.

3 Easy Steps with WP Engine sure beats doing a manual install of WordPress, Themes & Plugins each and every time I have a new client build!Click To Tweet

Step 1: Log into your WP Engine Account

Log into with your account credentials.  This will bring you directly to the dashboard.

Step 2: Clone your Seed Site

Once you have your Seed Site configured with your business go to Themes & Plugins you can use this Seed Install as the base of all future WordPress development projects.

1. Click on the teal " + Add Site " button in the upper left corner of your WP Engine dashboard.

2. Name your Development Site and check the "Transferable" box.

3. Click on the "Copy from existing" tab and select the Seed Environment you want to use for this project and name your Development Site.

4. Click the "Create environment" button.

5. Wait for WP Engine to spin up the new WordPress Development area for you!

Step 3: Set Development Passwords

With the Development Site all setup we have just a few passwords to set and you'll be on your way.

1. Set the sitewide development password to prevent Google and the client from seeing the website until you are ready.

Simply click on the pencil icon by the "password". For simplicity I like to use the development site name.

2. Setup SFTP access just in case you need it.

First, click on the teal " + Add SFTP user " button in the upper left. Then create the user name and password.

3. Login into your WordPress Development site and update your administrator password to a new unique one for security.

4. Document your passwords.

It's critical the team knows where to find these logins and any relevant information for each project. I recommend creating a per-project master client file document passwords and other pertinent client details. Below is my template.

Client Development Logins Template

Dev Site URL:
User: demo
WP User:
SFTP Address:
Port Number: 2222


I don't know about you but for me that sure beats doing a WordPress install when I manually install the Themes & Plugins each and every time.

Not only that, but it helps me ensure the quality of WordPress website being built by my agency.

For more on building a Profitable WordPress Agency check out Business Coaching: From Freelancer to WordPress Agency Owner.

And as always ... If I can help in any way please don't hesitate to reach out.

PS: Download a PDF of this process now!