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Moving your site or migrating to a new platform can often be tricky business for a business owner or marketer. Few people realize it, but done incorrectly the ramifications of a poor site move can be massive. The tools on this page are an excellent way to get started fending off any penalties.
Why Site Move Tools Matter?
Many site owners fail to realize that Google doesn’t create a perfect copy of your site and match it to any versions of your site that may develop in the future. The fact is that if it has one version if your site in its index one day, and suddenly the next that changes then there is going to be a huge mismatch between what is currently lying in its index (and where your rankings lie) and what is actually on your site. Often site owners can also change the structure of their site that customers are used to, checkout behavior, and general site user flow in a manner that can hurt conversions and turn users off. This decline in experience can often force Google’s algorithm to diminish the rankings of your site as users just don’t like it as much (losing you rankings)
All of the tools on this page should help you diagnose, track, and fix any site move issues.
How to Select The Best Site Move Tool for you:
Selecting the best site move tool often depends on experience. No matter what tool you pick you’re going to have to look at Google Search Console. There 404 error page will let you know of any mismatches between your site and Google’s index. Additionally and backlink mismatches can be diagnosed by using a backlink tool. Finally there are a set of tools on this page that can alert you to general SEO issues that you should tackle.
If you’re experienced Screaming Frog and SEMrush will probably be all you need to diagnose the issues you’re currently facing. That said, also be sure to create and save a crawl of your site before you move so that you can understand what’s changed. Secondly you can then redirect any URLs that indexed (and have ranking keywords pointing to them) that you’d see in SEMrush. This should tackle any major losses that you’d see. And in theory if you know your way around SEO tactics the tags and other items on the site should be as good if not better.
Often altering SEO fundamentals can be a huge a problem so I’d focus on a simple SEO tool like MOZ, CognitiveSEO, WebCEO, or DeepCrawl to get a sense of where your site is before and after. Of course if it’s already after the fact than you can use SEMrush and AHREFS to get a sense of where rankings and backlinks used to and should point. (Or just hire an SEO expert, who should be able to get the site back to near it’s former glory)
What are the Best Site Move Tools Available?
Generally you need to accomplish three things with a site move, first you need to make sure Google knows what changes have been made to URL structure and you need to adjust accordingly. Secondly you need to make sure the structure and flow/checkout process of your site is the same. And Three you need to make sure that your SEO is actually equivalent or better than the old site. In theory a tool like AHREFS or SEMrush with there inbuilt keyword and audit tools could accomplish this task but it could also get complicated. Personally between SEMrush (for ranking info), AHREFS (for backlink info) and ScreamingFrog (for a clean crawl should be all you need) This one’s so individual that I’d either hire it out, make sure you dev know SEO basics, or get something like DeepCrawl to identify issues as they arise and aggressively attack anything you see in SearchConsole.
When do you know if you need Site Move?
If you’ve recently moved your site and experienced a drop in performance or are looking to move your site its an excellent idea to get an SEO tool or contact an expert.
Where to get started with Site Move?
If you’re about to get started with a site move the most important things to know are where your site currently ranks, its backlink profile, and the sites structure. If you have no experience getting SEMrush for a few months, and a basic familiarity of Google Analytics and Search Console should help you attack issues as they occur.