This is always going to be in issue when using the standard WP export/import system. This is due to the fact that images/media are stored as a post with an ID generated when the post is imported. That the WP export/import for media has always been lacking but ACf stores an image ID and there is nothing in any free export/import that will make sure that the new ID was set in the custom fields.
I honestly can’t see that this is something fixable by the ACF devs, but you can submit a ticket to them. I’m sure it will not be the first on on this topic.
I gave up on exporting/importing a long, long time ago.
I use BackWPup Pro for moving files. This plugin allows me to FTP the .zip file directly to the root of the new location for the site and I can unzip it directly on the server on the hosting I use. If that’s not possible then I just download all the files and upload them to the new location. Then I do an export of the DB using phpMyAdmin and import that to the new DB and I use a tool that is aware of serialized data to do a search and replace on the domain name if necessary. Migrating sites is not usually something I do. When I build a new site 99% of the I build it where it will be hosted using a dev sub domain or an alias domain so I don’t have to move anything. I really hate migrating sites, I find it a huge waste of time. If I can do it using BackWPup it generally very little time, less time than doing an export/import.
Sometimes we outsource work to other devs and it always confuses me why they won’t use our hosting to build a site. I set up the hosting, I give them access, I even set up WP for them, all they need to do is the custom dev right there and let me take care of the rest…. then they go and insist on building it on their own hosting and then migrating it over, which 90% of the time ends with things not working and them needing to fix it.
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