Discover 80/20 Digital’s 5 tips for a seamless website migration.

Thinking of switching things up with your website? Whether it’s moving to a new host, upgrading platforms, or a full-blown site redesign, understanding the nuts and bolts of website migration is crucial. A successful website migration is all about keeping things seamless to protect your site’s performance and SEO rankings. At 80/20 Digital, we’re here to guide you through each step, from planning to going live.

What is Website Migration?

Think of website migration as moving house… but on the internet. It’s the process of relocating your site’s essential components—like files, databases, and scripts—from one digital home to another. People migrate their websites for various reasons: maybe you need a better hosting provider that speeds up your site, perhaps you’re upgrading to a more robust content management system (CMS) to enhance functionality, or you could be rebranding your business to make a stronger impact online. Whatever the reason, migration is a critical step for growth and maintaining a fresh, efficient online presence.

How Long Does a Website Migration Take?

Just like moving houses, the time it takes to migrate a website can differ vastly. Sometimes, moving to a new website host might only take a few hours if everything clicks into place quickly. On the other end, if you’re changing your entire platform or going through a full website redesign, brace yourself for a longer haul – it could stretch out over several weeks. In short, the complexity of the migration dictates the timeline.

Common Reasons for Migrating a Website

Website migrations are no small feat, but at some stage in your business life, you will have to conduct a website migration in order to adapt, grow, and stay competitive. Here’s why migrating your website might be a smart move:

  • Platform Enhancements: Maybe it’s time for a CMS upgrade to something sleeker and more user-friendly that makes managing your content a breeze.
  • Performance Improvements: Are slow load times testing your patience? Switching to a faster server or adding a Content Delivery Network (CDN) can turbocharge your website’s speed.
  • Security Upgrades: In an era of increasing cyber threats, beefing up your site’s security measures is never a bad idea.
  • Rebranding/Redesign: If your site feels like a digital dinosaur, a fresh design could revitalise your online presence.
  • Business Expansion: As your traffic grows, so should your infrastructure. Scaling up supports not just more traffic but also your business’s growth.

5 Tips for a Successful Website Migration

Working with a digital strategy expert can make sure your website migration is well-planned and flawlessly executed, reducing any downtime and getting the most out of your site’s capabilities. Here are 5 tips the experts use for a seamless transition:

1. Detailed Planning

Don’t wing it. A comprehensive plan is like GPS for your migration, keeping everything on track and reducing mishaps. At 80/20 Digital, we identify all components requiring migration––from content and images to databases and configurations. From there, we develop a detailed migration checklist and timeline, including key milestones like backup creation, DNS changes, content transfer, and testing phases.

2. Complete Backups

Think of backups as your insurance policy. Before any moving starts, we make sure every piece of your site is backed up, storing backups in multiple secure locations to safeguard against data loss. Should anything go awry during the migration, these backups will be invaluable for restoring your site to its original state.

3. Thorough Testing

Never go live without extensive testing. We set up a staging environment that replicates the live site’s conditions. This allows us to test every aspect of your site before it becomes public––from functionality to user experience. We then check all links, forms, and interactive elements, paying special attention to any features the migration process may impact.

4. SEO Preservation Through Redirects

Changing your site’s structure? Redirects are your best friend. They guide visitors and search engines to the right place, keeping your SEO and user experience intact. To avoid 404 errors, we implement 301 redirects for all changed URLs to ensure that search engines and visitors are directed to the correct pages on your new site.

5. Monitoring and Adjusting Post-Migration

Once your website has gone live, we closely monitor it. From checking that all pages are visible to search engines to monitoring site speed, staying vigilant helps nip any potential issues in the bud. After the migration is complete, we confirm all pages are indexed by using Google Search Console, monitor mobile responsiveness and speed, and regularly adjust your SEO for better rankings.

Ready to Migrate Your Website?

Navigating a website migration is no small task. At 80/20 Digital, we specialise in making transitions flawless with our award-winning expertise in digital strategies and SEO. We harness these essential tips to guarantee that each migration is seamless and optimised to support your ongoing business needs.

Considering a website migration? Contact us on 03 9042 0714 for expert guidance and ensure your site continues to thrive in its new home.

Colm MacGowan has spent over 25 years working in Sales & Marketing and is one of Australia's leading experts in Search Engine Optimisation and lead generation through Google. Colm's passion lies in helping Small to Medium business owners grow their businesses profitably and sustainably through best practice, results-driven marketing. Get in touch today for a free consultation.