I have a WordPress site that is doing well with SEO and but the theme is quite antiquated and will be completely overhauled with a new custom theme, updated plugins and new functionality. I am keeping the same domain of course.
Firstly, I need to know the most effective the workflow with respect to keeping good SEO kudos.
Once the new site has been finished, I would have thought it went something like this:
- Create sitemap for old site
- Create sitemap for new site
- Using 301 redirects, start matching up old pages with new destinations
- Resubmit to search engines for crawling
Assuming this basic workflow is correct, my next question is what is the best way to perform the redirects in Step 3? I am getting mixed results when I search for information as it can be done a myriad of ways. I seem to be coming to the conclusion that modifying the htaccess file is the best way. I am hoping I can come up with some sort of script to facilitate pointing hundreds of pages.
Lastly, I will need to repeat this process with 4 other sites in the near future.
Any feedback on how to do this painlessly as possible would be appreciated.