If you’re looking to make the switch to a new e-commerce platform, redirecting your old website to your new Shopify store is a crucial step in maintaining your website’s search engine optimization (SEO) and ensuring a seamless transition for your customers. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of redirecting your old website to your new Shopify store step-by-step, so you can minimize any potential disruptions to your online business.
Why Redirect Your Old Website to Your New Shopify Store
Before we dive into the steps of redirecting your website, it’s important to understand why this process is so important. When you change the URL structure of your website, search engines and customers may have trouble finding your new pages. This can lead to a drop in traffic and a decrease in search engine rankings. By redirecting your old website to your new Shopify store, you ensure that any existing links to your website are automatically redirected to the corresponding pages on your new platform, preserving your search engine rankings and providing a smooth experience for your customers.
Step 1: Backup Your Old Website
Before making any changes to your old website, it’s crucial to make a backup of your website files and database. This will allow you to revert back to your original website if anything goes wrong during the redirect process. Most website hosting services offer a way to download a full backup of your website, so be sure to check with your host for specific instructions.
Step 2: Plan Your Redirects
Once you have a backup of your old website, the next step is to plan your redirects. This involves creating a mapping of your old website’s URLs to the corresponding URLs on your new Shopify store. It’s important to redirect each page of your old website to the corresponding page on your new platform, as this will help maintain your search engine rankings and provide a smooth experience for your customers.
One way to create a mapping of your URLs is to use a spreadsheet, where you list the old URL in one column and the corresponding new URL in another column. This will make it easier to keep track of your redirects and ensure that you don’t miss any pages.
Step 3: Implement Your Redirects
With your URL mapping complete, the next step is to implement your redirects. The process for implementing redirects will vary depending on the type of website hosting you’re using, but the most common method is to use a .htaccess file on your old website’s server.
To create a .htaccess file, you’ll need to access your old website’s server using a file transfer protocol (FTP) client. Once you’re logged in, create a new .htaccess file and add the following code to the file:
Redirect 301 /old-url http://www.your-new-shopify-store.com/new-url
Repeat this process for each redirect in your URL mapping, making sure to replace
http://www.your-new-shopify-store.com/new-url with the corresponding URLs from your mapping.
Step 4: Test Your Redirects
After you’ve implemented your redirects, it’s important to test them to make sure they’re working correctly. You can use a website such as Redirect Checker to test each redirect and ensure that it’s directing to the correct page on your new Shopify store.
Step 5: Update Your Sitemap
Once your redirects have been tested and are working correctly, the final step is to update your sitemap. A sitemap is a file that lists all the pages on your website and helps search engines index your website more effectively. Updating your sitemap will inform search engines of the changes to your website’s URL structure, helping to maintain your search engine rankings and ensuring that your customers can find your new Shopify store easily.
To update your sitemap, simply create a new sitemap that includes the URLs of your new Shopify store and submit it to the major search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo. You can use a free sitemap generator tool to help you create a new sitemap.
In conclusion, redirecting your old website to your new Shopify store is a crucial step in maintaining your website’s SEO and ensuring a seamless transition for your customers. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can minimize any potential disruptions to your online business and ensure that your customers can find your new Shopify store with ease.