Simplifying Content Management By Migrating To WordPress

Industry

Content Generation & Publication

Services

Website Migration, SEO Retention, Mobile UI Optimization

Technology

WordPress

Client Objective

Migrate Website to Consumer Friendly CMS Without Delay

Introduction

Customer is a digital magazine that features original videos and editorials crafted for the new age generation interested in food, lifestyle, sports, and entertainment. Customer Originals, which was produced in-house at Customer Studios Hollywood, shares stories that inspire millions of like-minded people.

 Their website, had a whopping 30 million page views per month. The editorial team at Customer site were finding it difficult to manage the content. The sheer volume of backend tasks was making their team restless. 

Challenge

Time Constraint For Migration

Customer site is a digital magazine, their advertising model could not allow for a lengthy migration process. It directly affected their revenue.

Interface Not Mobile Friendly

Customer had more than 30 million page views per month. Notably, most of their traffic was organic, but their mobile interface was not optimized for mobile users.

Facing a Challenge?

What We Did?

When a project gets started, there are many areas that need to be discussed with the client before formulating a plan of action. If the client is clear about their needs, we find it easier to create the layout of the change. 

We began by asking the client a series of questions to determine whether they wanted to alter the theme, URL structure, design elements like color scheme, logo, and what all parts we could migrate, for instance domain name, design, site architecture, and/or content, hosting. 

This helps in devising a suitable plan to streamline the process of migration and in case of Customer, the time constraint proved a driving factor in determining the procedural steps.

In addition, during the shift, a lot of content needs sorting, which is done step by step, on a priority basis. Migration is not done overnight, rather it involves careful tracking and renewing of all the content posted on the old site.

SEO preservation is the most crucial part of any migration. We used tools to crawl the website and export URLs to help understand the current site’s architecture. It helps to find the broken links and 401 errors that need a fix, so that bots are able to index the website properly, thus preventing ranking drop.

Our developers rewrote the rules for paths that were moved from one place to another by logically applying 301 redirects. We made sure the node identifiers were kept the same, to retain the existing menu structure.

Project Initiation

Requirement Gathering

Design

Project Planning

Development

With the creation of a report of the most valuable inbound links, we made sure that none of those URLs on the new site were left to error for too long and were handled with caution.

The posts titles and aliases remained the same post-migration keeping the URL format same as before. However, for unique non-post types categories, tags and such, slugs were created manually for different sections and categories in WordPress. 

At last, we got ready to completely migrate the platform, by running scripts, executing queries, and exporting SQL files. We make sure to correctly label all original taxonomies.

For Customer- an online magazine which runs on subscriptions, we also tested the internal users to verify subscriptions set up using expiration dates, to be sure that the users are not being charged incorrectly. We ran this test on the payment gateway in staging and sanitized all external users.

To make sure there were no existing errors in the newly migrated website, our team ran several tests to encounter and erase every flaw and fault, redirecting wherever necessary.

The site was thus launched, at a stipulated time, within the predefined frame, minimizing any loss of visitors that could occur during migration.

Outcome

Migration to WordPress aided their development team to tackle tougher engineering problems and enabled more people across their organization to use and publish content from the site. Due to its popularity and usability, there was little in the way of a learning curve for the team to start using WordPress, enabling them to make the most of their new platform immediately.

The updated and optimized web design, retaining the original theme and look, resulted in greater mobile user engagement. The post and post categories for the articles helped link one article to another, creating a chain of content that enabled the user to peruse the site conveniently.

By moving to WordPress, Customer was able to leverage the WordPress ecosystem benefiting from plugins and add-ons. The editorial team now had access to one of the best content management systems around, and it enabled the content generators more freedom to do their best work.

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