How to Merge Sites (Without Hurting Your SEO)

Sometimes, managing multiple websites can be challenging when you take into consideration the administrative overhead. Plus, having two or more websites connected with your brand may be confusing for your audience.

Luckily, it’s easy to merge sites without the need to understand coding. Here’s how to merge the sites without affecting your SEO.

Why merge sites?

It might be that you’ve built a new, improved site and want to retire the old one. Or maybe you want to consolidate a blog and an e-commerce site. Then again, maybe one site is performing better and you want to capitalize for the benefit of both.

Whatever the reason, you can merge sites easily using the tools that are built into the platform.

How to merge sites

Export from one site

Decide which site will be the main destination for your content. Then, in the My Sites screen, select the site you want port over. Click on tools, then select the Export option.

Select all content, or choose whether to only take posts, pages, or media. Then, click on the download export file button so that can convert your site into a single XML file that contains all your posts, pages, custom post types, categories, tags, and custom taxonomies. Save this file on your computer.

Then, import to the other

Now, still in the My Sites scree, select your destination website and choose the Import option.

It will give you a lot of options to import from various platforms, but as this is a site, we can click Start Import next to the WordPress option.

Select the XML file you exported in the previous step, then click again on Start Import. This will bring you to the Assign Authors page, where you can either make a new author for the imported content or use an existing one; you can always change these later. Check the download and import file attachments box, then hit submit.

Once this is done, you have a merged site. Note that the export function won’t bring any images with it; therefore, you may need to fix these manually.

Don’t forget your SEO!

Working to merge sites can give your digital estate a boost, but the merger needs to be handled carefully to ensure you don’t harm your SEO.

Check your tagging taxonomy’s tagging system not only helps your audience identify relevant content, it also sends signals to search engines that can help your SEO. Carefully check tags pre-merger to ensure there are no duplicates, then post-merger to ensure everything is still looking good.

Check any broken links

Broken links are harmful to SEO; check that all links throughout your merged site are still working by using a tool like Broken Link Check.

Handle redirects

Closing down your old site may hurt your SEO. It pays to leave the site up for a while, at least until search engines have had a chance to identify and index your improved site. But you don’t want people to go to the old site, so set up redirects for those who click on old links to make sure they get to the new site.

With a little careful planning, your merged sites will soon go on to bigger and better things.

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