WHY migrate a website to the WordPress platform? In one word functionality, but that is just the top of the list. Support, choice, flexibility, notoriety, and (if done right) a website that grows, evolves, and embraces all the new technologies without a second thought… even the ones we don’t know about yet. In short, how long are you planning on needing your website?
WHEN should you migrate? Some clients have come to me when they were informed that their simple Yahoo site builder would no longer support updates like Windows 8. It is also a good time if your site is not set for all of the continually evolving mobile devices. WordPress functionality, flexibility, and support mean that your website will be accessible for a long time.
HOW do I migrate your current site to WordPress? Believe it or not, some website owners are proficient enough in computer languages like HTML, CSS, and PHP (which is the backbone of WP) to do it themselves. They can find a theme that very closely matches what they have online now, set it up, and transfer the content page by page. One tricky thing here is creating the 2nd site while the first one is live (you can create dummy folders on your host site… they may even be willing to do this for you, then move the DNS to the folder… also sometimes host providers can help). My suggestion is before you start your migration process, create PDF documents of every single page (especially those not on the navigation bar) so you not only have reference to what your site was like (this is especially useful if you have someone else migrating it), but what the actual urls were (these can be very important if you have content that you have linked to all across the web from your old site). If need be, I can help with both. My documentation package is available as well as my success with WordPress migrations (you can see the sites I have migrated above.)
WHAT should you migrate? Recently one of my clients migrated a site that had been up since 1998. The amount of content was massive and yet very informative, but as the owner realized some of it was not current. Yet, the amount of advice and practical steps to succeed in business was still relevant even in articles written years ago. So it was decided to transfer a lot of the old newsletters and place them in an archive available to current, past, and future clients. So what you migrate will depend on a few things: what looks old needs to be designated so, if not deleted; content that needs simple updates needs to be made current; history, subscription lists, and more are things you can’t lose in a migration. Migrations are usually not fast, nor easy, regardless of the platforms you are coming from or going to, but an updated site can help your brand, your analytics, your future.
WHERE do you migrate to? Google each of the platforms available using terms like “CMS” or “e-commerce” and see which ones fit. It is also a good time to consider changing host providers, especially if they haven’t kept up with the times or don’t provide the support you may need with an ever evolving new website.
WHO should migrate your site? Come on, this whole website gives you one experienced choice. Check out my package deals and what they include, compare them to others and please Google me to learn even more. There are a few other things you may want to read before you make your final decision: Be safe with freelancers, Site Compliance, Don’t buy a theme…yet. Regardless of whom does this make sure to back up your old site, in every way you can, BEFORE you sign on any dotted line. I have had to clean up more than a few sites that were migrated without backup (Yes, even when they were told, “Yes, I back them up before I start,” only to find out their freelancer’s backup system only backed up data or part of the site), and there was no way to prove what was missing on the new site for legal actions. If this has already happened to you, check out the Wayback Machine (the Internet archive) to see if EVERY page of your website is there (even though one of the sites I had to create or find missing pages for had multiple snapshots on Wayback, not all pages were there in the 20+ snapshots! ), it may help you.
Contact me for budget friendly help with your website or web presence: Management, Maintenance, or Marketing.