So, you’ve made the decision to change CMS (content management system) platforms. Just like buying a new house, packing up and moving can be an exciting, yet frightening experience. With a new strategy, a new admin panel and a fresh new design, it’s easy to lose sight of one critical piece: content. It doesn’t matter if you’re transitioning to WordPress, Magento, BigTree or any other CMS, these tips will prepare you for a successful move! And, more importantly, let you show off to your colleagues.

1 | Media Files 

Begin to “pack up” your belongings. A great place to start is moving your media assets, such as images and files. If you’re entering a redesign, you may be making improvements here. In any case, ensure the assets you’ll be using make it onto the new CMS. If you need to transfer existing assets, many platforms offer some type of bulk export feature. If not, see if your old web host can package them up for you.

2 | Page Copy

Your site could be 10 pages or 2,000. Whatever the number, determine early what migrating your page copy will entail. Consult with your team or digital partner.

  • Is there a migration tool available?
  • Can a developer automate the heavy lifting?
  • Are you simply looking to copy and paste it manually?

Just make a decision and make it early. Overlooking this step can turn the best project into an overwhelming disaster.

3 | Clean Up

Files? Check.

Copy? Check.


Grab the dustpan because you’ve got some cleaning to do. While your new site is beginning to take shape on your development URL, you may find that all of your images and PDF still work! Be warned. These references could still point to your live URL at the previous host!

When you finally flip the switch, your flawless pages start looking like a bird pooped broken images everywhere. Prevent this and avoid a furious email from your boss come launch day. Here’s how:

  • Option 1 | Update your references by selecting files you brought over in the first trip. If you have a large site this can take some time, but it’s worth it in the long run (and very necessary).
  • Option 2 | As a workaround, it might be possible to have a developer recreate the old file structure on the new host. This will save time and headaches for references buried deep in editors.

A Quick Recap

  • Gather your assets and bring them along
  • Figure out how you’re migrating page copy
  • If your site is huge this could pose a challenge, so plan ahead
  • Finally, re-visit each page and check the image and link references

Are you considering switching to a new CMS, but just not sure where to start?  Let us put our experience to work for you by requesting a consultation!