A website migration or launch can be complicated. It’s also a job that you want to make sure is done correctly – as your entire platform, and potentially your core business tool, relies on its successful completion. A migration occurs when you are changing the foundation technology that runs your site or its entire structure, content, hosting environment, or design. A launch or migration implies that significant changes, not just updates, are being executed. Relaunching or migrating your website is often a necessity to keep it up-to-date or to solve pressing problems. However, migration also brings many risks such as losing search engine rankings or essential data on your site. That’s why launching or migrating your website “correctly” is vital.
Planning is Key
While you need to be as careful as possible during the launch or migration process, the most important thing to do is to plan and test before making any changes or migrating files and content. Careful planning will ensure that you do not miss any crucial details that could break your site, cause you to lose data, or harm existing organic search performance.
Basic Rules for Website Migration or Launch
Notify Your Visitors
Even if you achieve a very successful migration or new site launch, you may have a short downtime or suffer from some bugs after the fact. Your visitors must know what to expect and when.
Update or Migrate a Little at a Time
If possible, don’t migrate the entire site at one time. After you’ve tested extensively and are sure things will work as expected, move your site one section at a time. This will help you mitigate the risks of a serious outage or issues on a larger scale.
Don’t Complete Different Migration Types at the Same Time
If you are switching hosts but also want to update your site’s layout, complete those tasks separately.
Launch or Migrate During a Period of Low Traffic
Migration will likely go smoother if you choose to do it during a slower part of the day or overnight. You’ll have less impact if something goes wrong and reduced server loads mean your new site will be indexed faster by search engines. In addition, it’s never advisable to migrate during your company’s busy season.
Follow a Checklist
A detailed launch or migration checklist that is adjusted for your specific project will help you facilitate the migration process and avoid skipping important steps.
Because website launches or migration are so important, it can help to have someone with experience on your side who understands the numerous ins and outs of the process. We invite you to connect with us at Workhorse Marketing. We’ve helped clients work through the launch or migration process so that their resulting site is better than ever–with no loss of content, search engine ranking, or marketing buzz. Set up a consultation today to discuss how we can help make your upcoming launch or migration a success.