Are you planning to create a new website for your company? If so, you have to take a lot of elements into consideration. The most important one is content migration. What is content migration, and how can you migrate content from one website to another? That’s what we’re going to discuss today.
Content migration is the process of moving all of your digital assets (graphics, animations, texts, website structure, etc.) from an old website to a new one. The more extensive the old website is, the more complex and time-consuming the content migration process is ahead.
In order to succeed with content migration, we created a short checklist that comprises all the essential elements that need to be considered. Follow it, and you will be able to finish your content migration without hassle or unnecessary delays, or complications.
In theory, it’s all cut and dried – you take all of your previous assets and transfer them to a new website. In real life, it’s much more complicated, though. For starters, you can’t just copy-paste everything. That’s just pointless, as you would simply end up with the same website, correct? So, what should you do instead?
Start by creating a content inventory. It’s a list comprising all of your website assets – from blog posts, through graphics and brand identity materials, to a website structure and list of categories. Divide all these elements into four categories:
Consult an SEO consultant and use Google Analytics to decide what asset should go to which category. For instance, if there are texts that no one reads – they should be removed altogether. Remember, your new website should help you achieve both business and SEO goals, and every element on it should be tailored towards these two types of objectives.
A new website means new links. Here, you need a map of redirections. Gather all of your old links and assign them to new links leading to your new website. To make this process seamless from the users’ perspective, you could use 301 redirects. This way, anyone who has an old link is automatically redirected to a specific section/text on a new website. It’s a useful solution, both from the UX and SEO perspectives, because you don’t lose users due to dead links. Remember: every old link should have a new one. If they didn’t, users would see the 404-error page, and that’s something you want to avoid.
To streamline your work, put everything that’s related to your content migration in a transparent and well-organized plan. It should comprise answers to the following questions:
This way, nothing will escape your attention, and you will be able to finish the whole project with no unpredicted problems or delays. You can also look on Google for a ready-made content migration template, but in general, each process is unique, and it depends on what you have on your website.
Lastly, remember about monitoring. You ought to observe everything you do and change. If, for example, users react negatively to some changes (the number of bounces increases), you know that you should do things differently. Also, keep in mind that the new website should be flawless from a technical perspective, and it should be compliant with the latest Google requirements. That includes core web vitals (a set of rules on how each website should interact with users and what should be its loading speed). If you struggle with that, you can work with a professional partner who understands all content migration's intricacies. They will help you go through this process and avoid all possible mistakes.
In this article, we’ve barely scratched the surface of content migration. If you want to know more, take a look at this extensive guide.