Site Migration Services
A key part of launching a new website is the process of migrating the existing content into the new CMS. From a top level the process of importing the content appears to be straightforward, however there are a number of technical considerations that need to be addressed. These include the steps to ensure that your new website maintains the current rankings achieved in the search engines and the new site does not suffer any temporary or permanent drop in rankings and traffic when launched.
Key objectives of Site Migration:
- Minimise traffic loss
- Minimise search engine ranking drops
- Maintain key rankings
- Referring traffic maintenance.
The goal of a migration plan is to make sure that Google knows that where to find your new pages and prevent 404 errors that can harm the user experience and negatively impact your site’s performance in Google search results. This is done by mapping all of your existing pages and using a 301 Redirect to permanently redirect your old site to your new site. This tells Google that the pages have permanently moved and it’s important that the search engines receive the same quality score signals as the pages shift from old to new.
Another important step is to investigate referring sources and their traffic volume. Sites that contain links to your site that are driving a high volume of traffic should be identified. If the URL page they are currently linking to is changing then they should be contacted and asked to update the URL when the new site goes live.
Having a clear understanding of organic traffic volumes to your website and establishing a benchmark and rankings report will allow for easy comparison and reporting after launch. Any issues or areas that have dropped in rankings can be quickly identified and responded to.
Additionally, there are a number of supporting technical steps including setting up Google Webmasters for a new domain, crawl test, submitting XML sitemap, setting up Robots.txt file and running a broken links test. All these steps ensure a seamless migration from old to new.
Site Migration Process
- Map all existing URLs to the new URLS
- Internal link evaluation (absolute not relative)
- Meta data integrity from old site to new
- Establish benchmark rankings report for key terms
- Identify referring websites driving high traffic
- URL Redirection Map prepared for site launch
- Google Webmasters setup
- New site crawl test
- Prepare XML Sitemap
- Broken link report
Measure New Site Impact
Once a new site is launched it is important to measure the impact and success. After at least 4 to 6 weeks of being live a deep crawl should be undertaken and the following things reviewed:
- Indexation – is the new site being indexed in full?
- Search Engine Rankings – has there been any drop or lift?
- SEOMOZ Stats – Domain Authority review
- Google Cache – check the date stamps in the Google Cache
- Webmaster Tools – review all alerts and crawl stats.
The Content Migration process is critical to ensure a new site builds on the legacy of an existing site and does not suffer any loss in rankings and traffic after launch. PayPerClick will prepare a customised solution and pricing based on website content size and work with the site developers and content managers to ensure all tasks are assigned and actioned.
For more information on how PayPerClick can assist your company with a Site Migration, please call +61 2 9970 8486 or enquire online.