A site migration takes place when a website is re-vamped from some reason. This could be a new design or adopting a new CMS.
It is sometimes more complicated than it looks depending on the size of the website.
The ‘migration myth’ is the belief that companies are automatically going to lose traffic and revenue in the site migration process.
It seems that the newspaper’s traffic has dipped as a result of the migration, with some tools showing a drop in key metrics which affect its rankings.
We have first hand experience of this issue at Econsultancy, as we migrated our domain back in 2009, with a drop in referral traffic from Google being the consequence.
So, has The Guardian handled this migration correctly, or is there more that Google should have done to help such a massive site with the change?
Google has revamped Webmaster Tools and introduced a neat ‘Change of
Address’ feature, which would have massively reduced our collective
headaches in the first quarter of 2009.
On 14 December 2008
we relaunched the Econsultancy.com site. This involved a subtle name change (“E-consultancy”
became “Econsultancy”), a new logo, a completely new look site with a new
directory structure, a new URL, on servers in a different country. We had to
migrate 10,000s of pages, deleted a load of old ones, and created 10,000s of
The background to all this is explained in my interview
about the new Econsultancy site – and question 9, about the SEO impact of
this large change, is the subject of this post. What has happened to our
previously excellent search rankings since the changeover?