JPI Media

Successfully Migrating 140 Websites for a Leading UK Publisher

JPIMedia is one of the largest national, regional and local multimedia organisations in the UK. They distribute news and information to communities through a portfolio of hundreds of publications and websites. 

Services

Ambition

Semetrical were asked to support with the migration to a new website platform for 140 websites in the JPIMedia portfolio over the course of 6 months. JPIMedia wanted to ensure that all 140 websites had a successful migration onto the BrightSites platform, This meant that important articles which delivered the greatest amount of traffic had to be protected and we needed to avoid any traffic disruption overall.

The migration of the 140 websites were to be executed in batches over the course of the 6 months in priority order so that the targets could be achieved successfully, whilst making quality improvements to the platform and site architecture to ensure future portfolio SEO stability.

To summarise, our objectives were:

  • Complete a successful platform migration of 140 websites within the JPIMedia portfolio.
  • Retain organic traffic levels, and make improvements to internal linking, site speed, and the overall platform.

JPIMedia wanted to ensure that all 140 websites had a successful migration onto the BrightSites platform, This meant that important articles which delivered the greatest amount of traffic had to be protected and we needed to avoid any traffic disruption overall.

Strategy

Using our bespoke in-house tools and technology, Semetrical gathered and consolidated all traffic driving priority URL data, quality backlinks data and keyword rankings for each website that was going to be migrated in any given month.

This was completed weeks in advance of the migration date so that data could be benchmarked and monitoring could be set up.

Working with the development team, the consolidated URL data was then mapped to new URLs on the platform, and relevant redirect rules were created. These were then extensively tested on a staging platform to ensure that all priority URLs were protected once made live. This process was repeated for each domain being migrated in batches.

Semetrical were also heavily involved in providing their technical expertise into improving the platform overall. This included internal linking recommendations, site structure changes and user experience improvements that would benefit the ranking potential of all sites in the portfolio following migration.

On the day of the migration, Semetrical were on hand to ensure that each domain had a successfully transition to the new platform.

Site crawls, redirect tests & on-page tests were carried out, reviewed and any issues were swiftly communicated to the relevant development and JPI team so that they could be resolved as quickly as possible. Semetrical conducted regular technical checks on a weekly basis thereafter to ensure site stability, and rankings were monitored on an ongoing basis to assess organic site performance following the platform migration. Key stakeholders were then sent weekly and then monthly reports of performance across the portfolio.

Using our bespoke in-house tools and technology, Semetrical gathered and consolidated all traffic driving priority URL data, quality backlinks data and keyword rankings for each website that was going to be migrated in any given month.

We set the foundation for continued growth for JPI Media that contributed towards a 120% YOY increase in organic sessions across the portfolio by February 2020.

57%Increase in organic sessions to The Scotsman
147%Increase in organic sessions to Edinburgh News

Achievements

Semetrical’s thorough approach to technical SEO helped JPIMedia realise and exceed their digital ambition with the migration by delivering a significant increase in organic sessions across the entire portfolio during the migration period.  By February 2020, organic sessions to:

  • The Scotsman increased by 57% YOY
  • Edinburgh News increased by 147% YOY
  • Yorkshire Evening Post increased by 35% YOY
  • Portsmouth News increased by 24% YOY
  • Lancashire Evening Post increased by 38% YOY

“Semetrical has given us a high-quality service since we first started working with them. They’ve helped us navigate transforming our entire network of 140+ sites in a way that has yielded instant and sustained results from an SEO perspective. As a business, we move rapidly and at scale – the team at Semetrical have worked with these constraints and provided clarity and insight when we’ve needed to make important decisions all along the way.”

Steven Thomas,

Director of Digital Product & Innovation at JPIMedia

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