In a utopian world, you’d never have to change your web hosting provider. Your current hosting company would be amazing. They would offer you near 100% uptime, blazing-fast speed, and excellent overall performance. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case in the real world. From low uptime to bad performance, there are many reasons that’ll force you to change your web hosting provider.
If and when you do make the decision, you’ll have to migrate your website to your new provider. This means that you’ll be fundamentally changing the server where your website is currently residing. It’s like moving your home. While it sounds difficult and cumbersome, if you hire a good ‘movers and packers’ company and streamline the entire process, the move becomes seamless. Similarly, with website migration, the process can be easy and bump-free if you opt for the right web hosting provider.
We take a look at some of the most important things that you’ll need to consider.
Carefully Select a New Hosting Company
One common reason or part of a reason to desert your current hosting company will be that you’re not satisfied with their services. Now that you’re looking at other companies make sure that your needs will entirely be met with a new hosting company. The fact is that there are literally hundreds of companies that offer hosting services and not all of them are the right one for you. So, list out all your must-have requirements and match them against the services that your potential hosting company offers. Basically, create a website migration checklist and tick keep it handy when looking at the list of services offered by the hosting service providers.
When in doubt, contact the company. The idea here is to make sure that you know exactly what it is that you’re getting and if that satisfies all your needs.
Always Have a Backup
It is imperative to create an exhaustive backup plan for your website. Your entire site — every file and photo — should be saved and backed up well before you start the migration process. It’s also advisable to make sure that you have an offline copy of your website.
If you use an automatic backup application for your website, do not rely just on that for the backup. Create a manual backup. This means manually backing up every last file of your website. Obviously, this isn’t a half-hour task. Depending on the size of your website, it might take anywhere between a few hours to a few days. So, make sure that you’ve allotted enough time to create backups.
Irrespective of how big or small your audience is, ensure that you inform them of your temporary hiatus. Inform them of what you’re doing and for how long they’ll have to deal with issues on your website.
Try and give a clear date and time of when the website will be back at full speed, so to say, and to the extent possible, stick to that schedule. Also, inform your visitors about what’s happening with the website. It is a good practice that will be appreciated.
Work with experts
Depending on what platform your website sits on, you may have a number of website migration plugins available to you — free or paid. These plugins are great, in that, they do a lot of the work that needs to be done for smooth website migration.
But, unfortunately, if yours is a complex website that’s been running for years, plugins may not really be of help. The problem is that plugins are great with simple websites with minimal content. However, for complex websites with a huge volume of content, they simply aren’t comprehensive enough.
If you have the expertise to do your website migration manually, then this shouldn’t really matter. But if you don’t, it’s better to hire an expert who can help you or do it all for you.
Evaluate Pros and Cons of Free website migration
There are many companies out there that provide free website migration if you’re moving to their company. However, free migration isn’t everything.
If the company that you choose has free website migration, it’s great. However, you shouldn’t be choosing your web hosting company on the basis of only free website migration. Your hosting company, first and foremost, must be able to satisfy all your hosting requirements.
If you are planning on running the website for a long time, free migration isn’t really a big consideration. What will eventually, in the long run, be important is how great their hosting service is. So, don’t sacrifice hosting service quality for free migration.
Have a website migration checklist
You must identify, check, and verify every single step of the process. The best way to do this is to make a website migration checklist including all the things that need to be done.
There are several things that’ll need your attention. You’ll have to crawl your new website, benchmark all your analytics, update internal links, map all new URLs with their old ones, canonicalize every single new page, take care of duplicate contents, and much more.
Making a detailed website migration checklist will ensure you don’t forget important steps.
Ask for feedback
After you’ve migrated, ask your visitors to share genuine feedback on glitches in performance. At this point, you have transferred all of your website’s assets. Sometimes, assets like graphics get misplaced. When this happens, visitors will start getting 404 errors. Ask your visitors to inform you if something of that sort happens. It’ll help you fix broken links and pages quickly.
Website migration is a vital process to better the hosting environment for your website. You’re changing the fundamental environment on which your website sits. While it may seem daunting at first, proper assessment and detailed planning can effectively streamline the entire process and make it easy. Remember to research the new hosting provider, take a comprehensive backup before migrating, and inform your visitors about the temporary break. Read and inform yourself about the process as much as possible. Follow all these steps, and you’ll see that it’s not so daunting after all. Reach out to experts if you need help and want to make it a glitch-free process. We at ResellerClub are more than happy to help you out. We offer free website migration and seamless cPanel-cPanel migration. Choose from a host of our hosting plans – Cloud Hosting, VPS Hosting, Shared Hosting, Dedicated Hosting, etc. and avail seamless migration.
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