When an organization is about to get underway with a website re-platform, migration, or URL consolidation project, it’s easy for leaders to underestimate the effort related to managing website content.
After all, it’s tempting to think of the effort as a simple copy-and-paste job. But in reality, successful content migration is never that simple.
The consequences of not managing content well throughout the change can be significant. The impacts can include everything from loss of search rank (SEO) and plummeting traffic, to huge dips in customer satisfaction scores thanks to a poor user experience, and unhappy stakeholders who can no longer find information.
Aligning stakeholders on a content strategy that includes a content inventory, audit, and maintenance plan is crucial.
Key Components of a Content Migration Strategy
Let’s examine each of the aspects of a content migration strategy.
- Content Inventory Cataloging - This encompasses all the available content on website. Before you begin the migration process, you need to inventory all of your existing content, and figure out everything you have.
- Content Audit - Once you’ve organized your content, you need to evaluate it relative to how well each piece supports website goals. Determine actions to take on the content, and ensure completion of those actions on schedule.
- Content Maintenance - Document the maintenance plan for persistent content through the website redesign. This includes documenting content owners, schedules for content updates, and workflow for content approvals, if needed.
The Ideal Workflow
It’s difficult to do an audit without an inventory. Consequently, at Object Edge, we start with inventories.
Even so, they are often successfully done in parallel with audits. This is because some groups value doing the qualitative and more subjective step – the content audit – first.
It’s also helpful to create a technical information architecture diagram showing all the sources of dynamic content. This can help with the efforts of managing the content types, translations, and future changes systematically, or in an automated way where possible.
But without a doubt, the most challenging part of content migration is making decisions about all the content the inventory uncovers. This requires a keen understanding of the organization and its goals for the website.
If your organization needs help with content services, reach out to Object Edge. We have decades of experience helping B2B and B2C organizations migrate content with ease.