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Wait! Have You Considered SEO Before You Migrate Your Website?

29 Apr 2016

Trust us, you’re not alone if you haven’t…

We know that creating a stable and profitable search engine presence can take years to achieve, and while launching a new website or changing your domain name can present opportunities, it also carries significant risk.

So, what is Website Migration?

In this context we refer to website migration as any of the following:

  1. Moving from one operating environment to another g. switching your website from one CMS to another such as WordPress to Orbit
  2. Changing the file structure or information architecture of your website, resulting in new file names being created for existing files (URLs)
  3. Changing your domain name e.g. switching from HTTP to HTTPs, or rebranding.

Each scenario requires thoughtful planning from an SEO perspective to make sure you mitigate any ill effects that can follow.

Why is it important?

A well-used analogy in the industry likens making major changes to your website or URLs without letting the search engines know to moving your home address without telling your friends/family and not having your mail redirected.

If you make changes and you want to retain your presence in the Search Engines then you need to tell them exactly what you are doing. Your website and/or domain has online history and it’s a history that should not be undervalued. Failing to carry out a proper transition could result in a significant decline in traffic to your website or worst case scenario your website could fall out of the search engines altogether.

Any investment made in transitioning your website with SEO in mind must be thought of as an insurance policy – better to prevent problems than try and find a cure right?

What should you do if you’re about to make changes?

There are a myriad of SEO checklists available that detail the steps you can take to make sure you retain your online presence and history. But if you are serious about the change having as little negative impact as possible then you should leave it to the experts. We have helped numerous companies to successfully transfer their existing Search Engine footprint from old website/domain to new. Our SEO transition services ensure that we minimise the risk and maximise the potential of your new website by maintaining the foundations of your existing search engine presence.

We hear countless tales of website owners ruing the day that they ever decided to take this process on themselves or who have left the transition to inexperienced designers or developers who haven’t even considered SEO.

And while it is common to experience an interim dip in rankings while the search engines crawl and index a website’s new URLs, the quicker a problem is caught the quicker it can be resolved. That’s why proactive monitoring is critical. It’s normally at the point when traffic takes a plunge that we get the call.

Over the years we’ve written posts on this subject and they still hold true today. Take a look here:

Redesigning Your Website the Right Way
SEO Considerations When Redesigning a Website

If you’re even in the very early phases of a website redesign or considering changing your website address then give us a call and we can help you through the planning, implementation and monitoring process. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by doing it right the first time. 

Written by
As one of two founding directors, Karyn is primarily responsible for the marketing and strategic direction of Limelight Online. With full time experience in the industry since 1998, Karyn’s extensive knowledge sees her deeply involved in product and service development for both the digital marketing and web development sides of the company.

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