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Migration best practice for SEO


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I'm currently planning the migration of a large-ish forum from vB4 to IPS. Inevitably there is going to be a hit on SEO and a drop in organic traffic. Could anyone give me some advice on how to mitigate the hit as much as possible. For example, is there a redirect script/htaccess that will redirect requests from the old vB4 topic URLs to the new IPS URLs? Obviously, I'll be requesting that Google re-crawl the site via Webmaster Tools but, beyond that is there anything else I should be doing?

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I migrated one of my sites from vbulletin to ips last year and traffic dipped, but now it's back up and a bit higher than it was this time of year on vb. I was using vbseo and some custom integrations and bridges with other scripts.  At the same time, I moved from http to https so some if not most, I attribute to this and not conversion.

  • Test out the conversion before going live and create a test site.
  • Test your url redirects and anything that doesn't redirect, manually create these in htaccess. Look at your analytics and make sure your top 100-200 urls that drive traffic, redirect correctly.
  • Manually copy all your meta tags and manually create any you have in place with vbulletin that are custom.

As long as you have the proper redirects in place, google will slurp up the new content. Look at vbulletin and see how many posts you show per page and make sure this setting is the same in IPS, so you don't loose content on those pages. You want to make it as close as it was with vbulletin. 


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