Moving Your Website to a New Agency



In today's Monkey Monday, while Chris has a lovely snooze, Matt talks us through some of the really important questions you need to ask if you want to transfer your website from one web agency to another. This is a really handy guide for those of you thinking of embarking on this process, which can sometimes be complex and problematic if all parties don't possess the relevant information.

Click here for a pack that you can download and fill in - just give this to your new agency and they'll have everything they need to ensure a smooth handover.

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Transcript

Hi there! Matt here from Rusty Monkey. And welcome to another Monkey Monday. Chris is with me but he’s fallen asleep on the floor, because he finds this topic a little bit dull. I, however, love it! And I’m gonna make it as exciting for you as it is for me. Oh alright, it’s not really exciting, but we’re gonna try and make it really easy for you. And this is about moving your website. So maybe you’re an SME and you sort of have an IT department, and you’re trying to get your website moved from one web agency to another web agency - your company’s grown and now you’ve got the complexity of working out where everything is.

So the first and most important thing you need to make sure you have access to is your domain. So what we’ve got at the bottom of this vlog is a document that asks all of these questions. So there’s a big sheet, so you can skim over this really. Just download it, send it to your web agency, it’ll probably be the best way of doing it!

But if you’re still with me, it details all of these questions that I’m gonna skim through now. And that first bit are these domain questions to ask. So the domain questions are really about yourwebsite.com, for instance, and that needs to be held with a registrar somewhere. So you wanna make sure that registrar account is your account. Or your IT department has access to it. It should be within the company. It’s the keys to the car, it’s your registration document to your car. So with that, it helps with your disaster recovery, if your web agency gets destroyed by a meteor, you’ll be able to go into your registrar and you’ll be able to point the records and at least start again. Without that, you could be in a lot of sort of choppy water, because you’ve got to try and get that domain recovered through some sort of authority that holds it. So even if you’re not moving your website, make sure you’ve got this because, without it, it could be problematic.

So onto the other bits. It’s just broken down into three sections here, really. The first section is around the server. So these questions are really gonna identify a few things for you and for your new agency. So first off, we wanna find out what hardware it’s on - you know, is it a dedicated server? How big is it? Do they provide an email service as well? Some web agencies do that. What is the cost and the term? Is there a security certificate attached to the website? Nowadays there should be. Does it use a CDN? Is there a backup service somewhere that we want to continue using? Do you have FTP access? All of these kind of things, all detailed in the crib sheet below.

After that you kinda wanna ask some questions around the website itself. So once your new agency understands these bits, they’ll be able to determine what piece of hardware your website should go on, but also this bit will help too, because this determines a few things. So what platform is your website built on? Is it WordPress? Is it Magento? Is it something totally bespoke that your existing agency has built from scratch? Are there any logins that you need to know, or that your agency holds that you’re not sure of? Can they provide all of the files and the database? Is it set up in a Git repository somewhere? Have they written any bespoke code for you? So have they written something that connects the eCommerce system to a clever pick ordering system in their warehouse? Something bespoke that couldn’t be fulfilled by a third party plug-in there? Or, equally, is any automation going on? Are you connecting through an automation system, such as Zapier, or something like that? And are there any licenses for any of this third party stuff?

Finally, some of the web agencies who have provided this service may also be providing some online marketing services for you as well. So do they have access to your Google accounts? Your Google Analytics, your Google Search Console, those kind of things? Any other SEM accounts that they might be running? Do they have a Moz account that they’ve set up for you that you want access to? Do they have access to your social media? Who set up your social media originally? Was it these guys? Did you do it? Do you have access? Who’s the owner? Without knowing these you can sometimes get in a position where you don’t have the ownership of some of these bits of digital property. Do they run any email marketing campaigns for you? Do they help maintain a CRM - a customer relationship management system - for you? Or anything else really. What other bits of digital services or software have they set up and are helping you maintain?

All of these things as well, they may all come with a support contract as well. So one of the most important things to ask is what support contract - what SLAs - are in place, when do they end, and are there any costs involved with leaving early, or are there costs involved in helping get all of this transferred over to your new agency of choice?

So hopefully that was very helpful for you. There were a lot of acronyms in there that you may not have understood, but you don’t need to necessarily understand all of it. What is very helpful for web agencies both sides of this is being able to get all these questions answered all in one place. So hopefully the document below is all you’ll need.

So I’m gonna try and wake up Chris, and we’ll be back next week for another Monkey Monday.

Thank you very much. Bye!

Come on, Chris. Wake up.

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