Widget Importer & Exporter


Widget Importer & Exporter is useful for moving widgets from one WordPress site to another, backing up widgets and for theme developers to give users sample widgets. See the details on ChurchThemes.com.


Importing is done by uploading an export file created by the plugin. The results of an import are shown in a nicely formatted table with an explanation of what happened with each widget area and widget.

Importation takes into consideration widget areas not existing in the current theme (widgets imported as Inactive), widgets that already exist in the same widget area (widgets not duplicated) and widgets that are not supported by the site (widgets not imported).


Widget Importer & Exporter can create an export file (in JSON format with .wie extension) out of currently active widgets. This file can be imported into other sites using this plugin or used to restore widgets to the same site later.


The wie_before_import action fires after a file is uploaded but before the data is imported. wie_after_import fires after the data is imported. The wie_import_data filter can be used to filter data before it is imported. Other filters are used throughout. Submit an issue on GitHub if you need more hooks (pull requests encouraged).

Please jump on GitHub to report issues and follow development.


  • Main import/export screen
  • Results from an import


Please see Installing Plugins in the WordPress Codex.

After activation, go to Tools > Widget Importer & Exporter


Why does the JSON export file use a .wie extension?

The export file contains JSON data that is not compatible with any other plugin. Therefore it has a proprietary file extension. This keeps people from confusing export files from other widget import/export plugins.


Great time saver!

Works perfectly and ideal for dev testing purposes when cloning sites and testing different layouts. Many thanks for your work!

Not really good under hood

After export, I modify exported file to remove some widgetarea (wich I don't want re-import) - and result, some widget are duplicated, when I remove one of duplicated widget I get some errors... thank you for your job but trying to be faster I just waste my time.

Great plugin, saved me hours

Transfering between sites isn't always a walk in the park, especially when transferring a small part of a site such as the widgets, this plugin just does what it says without any issues. I didn't see any marketing popups promoting plugin author services as claimed by many users - as such, this plugin doesn't have to be activated longer then the few min it takes to export the file and no need to network activate if exporting/importing from one site on the network! Saved me huge time as it took me less than a 5 min to install the plugin on two sites, export from site A and import into site B.
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See releases on GitHub.