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Website Migration

The PrintNow Migrations Team recreates your existing website within the PrintNow platform, transferring content and the look and feel of your entire site while improving design & functionality.

Website Migration Overview

Website migration and its types

Suppose you have decided to move your website to the PrintNow platform or make any changes to the website during the process. In that possibility, this article will help you understand the various types of website migrations and the items to keep in mind when you are contemplating migrating your website.

What is website migration?

Website migration is when a website moves from one environment to another or the domain name of a website changes. A transition is called a migration in SEO jargon whenever a fundamental change occurs to a site’s URL structure. Usually, location, platform, layout, content, architecture, or UX changes comprise site migration.

Types of website migrations

Subdomain or subfolder change
When a company chooses to move from one ccTLDs into subdomains or subfolders. E.g., www.example.com.uk to www.uk.example.com or www.example.com/uk

Domain name change
This usually happens when a company is rebranding and has to swap from one domain to another. E.g., www.example.com to www.sample.com

Top-level domain change
This happens when a business decides to launch the company abroad or limit it to a specific country. E.g., www.example.com to www.example.com.uk or vice versa. 

Site structure changes
These are modifications to the site’s layout, which usually affect the page’s internal relation and URL structure.

Replatforming
This is when a website is moved from one platform to another. Eg. switching from WordPress to PrintNow or a competitor to PrintNow.

Content Migration
Rewriting, consolidation, or modifying content can significantly impact organic search visibility.

Redesigns
This can be anything from minor design changes to a complete website revision with significant changes in code and copy.

The things to keep in mind while you are looking to migrate your website from one domain to another:

    • Calculate the risks and brace for the consequences.
    • Create backups and download them.
    • Pay attention to the URL structure.
    • Consider redirecting the URL as an essential factor for SEO.
    • Use the change of address tool in the search console to communicate the site migration at the domain level.
    • Maintain the same directory and folder structure.
    • Remove broken links and 404 pages.
    • Set up a new directory for robots.txt.
    • Prioritize websites with a higher authority.
    • Plan your rebranding strategies.

Test all the site URLs

It is advisable to run a sample test of the URLs per the website migration checklist. Link the old URLs to the new domain versions for smooth redirection. All the embedded hyperlinks should also redirect to the migrated site. To keep track of all the old and new URLs, use Google Analytics or a similar tool, and check the traffic.

Customize a new Error 404 web page for users

Why is there a customized 404 page when the emphasis is on removing such existing pages? The reason behind that is search traffic. If you want the user to get directed to your new website despite typing the old URL, an engaging “error 404” page with indexed new URLs is critical. The page establishes the brand’s goodwill to the user and makes sure they get redirected to the new site after a website migration.

Remove all duplicate content

Duplicate content issues arise because of identical URL parameters or plagiarised content. After migration, multiple live domains such as both www and non-www versions of the same website can result in a redundant and low-ranked impression in search results. How to solve this problem? Use a search console tool to canonize your URL; that is, designate your site address as most genuine and reliable. You can also redirect to the proper URL using 301 HTTP codes.

Submit sitemap after site migration

After website migration, it is essential to update the sitemap so that the search engine crawling tool can find the relevant pages. Sitemaps are of two types in Google: XML and HTML. Google Search Console is a standard tool used for updating sitemaps. Before uploading, check if your sitemaps are crawled and return 200 common status codes. Should any future change occur in the website structure, the defined sitemap will help Google relocate the web pages.

Monitor Rankings and website traffic

Grow familiar with the Google ranking factors. The quality of your content ranks your website, along with the correct placement of keywords. The site owner’s reputation also impacts the traffic. Users are more likely to use reliable websites designed by professional developers. To track the activity on each page after website migration, make usage of tools like Google Analytics and SERPS.com. Consult an SEO company to work alongside your developer if you have an ongoing budget and want better website migration results.

Website migration is an essential aspect and should be managed with care. It is always helpful to document the key areas to focus on during migration, like content, meta tags, etc., and take required safeguards while migrating them to a new platform. If mismanaged, it can usually lead to significant damage to rankings and vice versa.

Key Details

Price: TBD
Setting: Remote
Duration: TBD
Website Migration

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