How Does Website Migration Work? A Comprehensive Guide

Website Migration Process
Website Migration Process

Website migration is a crucial process that involves updating and upgrading your website to enhance traffic and revenue. This guide will walk you through the steps of a successful website migration, ensuring you don’t miss any critical aspects.

Before a Website Migration

1. Understand the Scope of the Migration

First and foremost, you must know exactly what the migration entails. This means defining the scope of the migration clearly to ensure a smooth transition. It’s essential to get all relevant team members on the same page and make them aware of the timeline for the entire process.

2. Conduct a Thorough Audit

Before you begin the migration, conduct a comprehensive audit of your current website. Identify all the elements that need to be migrated, including products, customer data, orders, blog posts, and other content. This audit will serve as a blueprint for your migration plan.

3. Develop a Migration Plan

A detailed migration plan is crucial. This plan should outline every step of the migration process, including backing up your current site to prevent data loss. A well-structured plan helps in anticipating potential issues and preparing solutions in advance.

During a Website Migration

1. Migrate Data

Migrating data is a critical part of the process. This includes transferring products, customer information, order history, and blog posts. Use appropriate tools or services to ensure that the data transfer is smooth and accurate.

2. Examine the New Site

Before making your new site live, thoroughly examine it to ensure it functions as well as the old one. Check URLs, metadata, and overall content display. Ensure that interactive links and forms are working properly. This step is crucial to avoid any disruptions for your users.

3. Update DNS Settings

If you are transferring domains, updating the DNS settings is a must. Point the settings to the new server to make the new site live. This step ensures that users can access your site without any issues.

4. Implement URL Redirects

Depending on your hosting platform, you will need to build redirects from the old URLs to the new URLs. Use 301 redirects to inform search engines about the change, helping to maintain your SEO health and ensuring users can still find your content.

Don’t forget to update external links pointing to your website. This includes links on social media profiles, email signatures, and other marketing materials. Keeping these links updated ensures users are directed to the correct pages.

After a Website Migration

1. Update Robots.txt Files

Once the new site is live, update the robots.txt files. These files guide search engine crawlers on which sections of your site can be accessed. Correct configuration of these files helps avoid SEO errors such as broken links or incorrect response codes.

2. Verify Analytics Tags

Ensure that your analytics tags are correctly tracking page visits and other essential metrics. Remove any crawling/indexing restrictions that were in place during the staging phase to allow search engines to properly index the new site.

3. Submit XML Sitemap

Submit your updated XML sitemap, which includes all available URLs on your site, to search engines like Google and Bing. Additionally, create Google Search Console accounts for both the old and new domains, and leverage the Change of Address tool to notify Google of the migration.

4. Monitor Post-Migration

After the migration, continuously monitor the new site for any issues. Check for broken links, verify that redirects are functioning correctly, and ensure all data was transferred accurately. These tasks can be efficiently managed using Google Search Console. Promptly addressing any issues will ensure a smooth transition for your users.


Website migration can be a complex process, but with careful planning and execution, it can significantly enhance your website’s performance and user experience. If you’re not confident in handling each step of this process, the website migration service of Next-Cart can help you go through this process smoothly. Contact our team today!

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