Whenever you make a big change in life you are afraid of what you might lose (even if the potential gains are great), right?
The same holds true with a website redesign. The difference is, you don’t have to fear losing anything really.
The answer lies in backing things up.
You should backup everything from your current site – files, databases, audio, video, and configuration settings before you start your redesign.
Then backup your files at critical junctures along the redesign process. This is important so that as you play and experiment you don’t break everything and lose all your hard work. This will at least give you milestones along the way with “known good code”.
If you are also changing email marketing providers as I did, you’ll need to backup, export, clean, and import your list into your new provider.
If you do these steps thoroughly, you have absolutely nothing to fear.
Just remember at some point you have to freeze additions to your existing site so that you can make the transition. It is impossible to successfully migrate a moving target.
Not sure what to back up or how? The good news is if you are working with a reputable web professional, you won’t have to worry about doing any of these steps. He/she will do it for you and should be more than willing to provide those files to you when you launch.
I personally back up every step of the way whether it is for client work or for my own project.
Note: You might be wondering about that fear of losing your “Google juice” or SEO rankings when you make a change. I will be addressing that in a future lesson in this series.
Too many moving parts to manage as you contemplate a website redesign? Don’t panic. It can be smooth, I promise. Contact me and we’ll explore more about what you need and how I might help.