S3E9 Manuel Madeddu, How To Approach A Migration

Keira Davidson (00:23):

Hello and welcome to the TechSEO Podcast, which is hosted by myself, Keira Davidson an SEO executive at Salt. This episode guest is Manuel, who is an SEO manager at Honcho. It’s great having you on the podcast today. How are you?

Manuel Madeddu (00:40):

Yeah, I’m okay. And yeah, you pronounce it my name correctly. So you [inaudible 00:00:47] So we got it. Yeah, no, I’m fine. So, given the situation, the pandemic has being quite a hectic period for me, for the SEO and also I’m a father two, and then I’ve got a new baby is three months old.

Keira Davidson (01:02):

Oh, wow.

Manuel Madeddu (01:02):

Yeah. Which made my life a bit more challenging the last months.

Keira Davidson (01:07):

Yeah. So you’ve been working at home while you’ve just got a newborn as well.

Manuel Madeddu (01:13):

Exactly. And trying to fix issues for clients and then improving [inaudible 00:01:18] cuddling my baby the same time.

Keira Davidson (01:21):

Yeah. Wow. Here’s me worrying about my mom and dad getting home from work and making sure that [inaudible 00:01:28] walk in on a call, but you’ve got a baby.

Manuel Madeddu (01:31):

Exactly. And sometime I had some calls with the baby, so making sure maybe he wasn’t screaming and actually he was enjoying the call. So he was looking to my colleagues or client [inaudible 00:01:40]. But yeah.

Keira Davidson (01:44):

Starting them young, getting them listening already.

Manuel Madeddu (01:48):

Exactly. I can [inaudible 00:01:50]

Keira Davidson (01:51):

Exactly. So usually I find that everyone gets into SEO in all different route. So you’ve been at Honcho for a good couple of months now, but how did you start out in the industry?

Manuel Madeddu (02:06):

Yeah. Well, it’s a tricky question because essentially no one made a thing to start an SEO and it just happens sometimes. I studied something completely different. So I study robotics back in Italy. I’m from Italy. Yeah. And essentially when we came here, so I came here with my partner. We are both Italian and we came here something like 12, 14 years ago now. And I mean, we came here when there was a huge crisis and you really struggle to find a very specific job. I was trying to apply for engineering jobs but really struggled. So essentially, I mean, I started doing catering jobs or a bit of everything. And then my partner, she’s a graphic designer and we looked ourselves into the eyes and we said, “Yeah, let, let’s try to work with ourselves.”

Manuel Madeddu (03:00):

And then open our small agency. So digital marketing agency covering everything. So, I mean, again, I invented my career there because I mean, I knew how to code with some specific programming, coding languages, but nothing about websites or pretty much nothing. So yeah. I mean, we started from scratch and for eight successful years we’ve been running our agency. And that’s why essentially from when you develop your first website, you’ve got clients asking you, I mean, “Now I have the website I want to be in first page.” And that’s why that’s where you try to find any trick, any magic for them to rank better. And yeah. So essentially starting 10 years ago, it was maybe easier because Google at that point was more about, you could still try with some hot techniques and link pyramids and link building strategies.

Manuel Madeddu (04:01):

And then, I mean, from there, it’s constantly being updated. But yeah, let’s say, I mean, since I became a father, so I’ve been running my business, my little small agency for eight years, then I become a father and then me and my partner were kind of struggling with clients. And I decided to set aside and focus more on SEO because I mean, among all the things I was covering, I feel SEO is really challenging, but it’s also exciting, when you face the challenge you find the solution and then you engage more with the clients. If you’re successful, they love you. So-

Keira Davidson (04:39):

Exactly. No, that’s so interesting. It’s really good to hear that you had your own agency, because I guess that gives you a completely different insight. The commercial side of it, you will 100% get because you’ve been in that position.

Manuel Madeddu (05:01):

Yeah, honestly, exactly. I mean, when I get back to the market, so when I decided to apply as employed, it was a bit, I mean, I really struggled at the beginning because your mindset is kind of different and you are used to see things like on a 360 degrees perspective. I struggle to see how processes were or how you have to approach your manager for example because to me it was more about providing results and answer to the question of the client. So yeah. But I guess I am a kind of outsider and then that’s way maybe why I try to find the best solution for the client and maybe exploring new paths in a way. But yeah. I mean, I love to do it. I love to focus on SEO. I love the agency side of things, so-

Keira Davidson (05:54):

That’s really exciting. So the reason why I’ve got you on this podcast today is to talk about migrations. When I’m thinking back to when I first got into SEO, I didn’t realize how all encompassing migrations could be. So you could have redesign migrations, international migrations, then the standard HTTP to HTTPS. I didn’t realize there were so many different options, but one thing that each migration that I found, it’s always different. So do you use like a bespoke approach when approaching each one or do you have some go-to things that you’d always do?

Manuel Madeddu (06:46):

Yeah. I mean, I do have a go-to things, so I’ve got best practice and a checklist. But as you said, no migration is same. I mean, you don’t find two migration the same. I mean, each immigration is a unique challenge and then that’s why, I mean, you need to discuss with the client, what’s the target and budget. I mean, every time is different. So you have to tailor your strategy, your checklist based on what you discussed with the client, what the platform is, what the scope is, because there are a lot of incognitos and things. I mean, even when you’ve got more time, you can also include more tasks.

Manuel Madeddu (07:31):

For example, you can audit the current side, then you can audit the [inaudible 00:07:35] side. Then you can do a keyword research, for example. When you’ve got a lower budget and then you have to do everything in like two weeks. So that’s no time. So it’s very depends on the targets and budgets. And I usually, yeah, as you said, I mean, I usually start from my checklist, but then discuss with the client and essentially every checklist I do, every roadmap and plan I do for each migration is different.

Keira Davidson (07:59):

Yeah. So I recently came across a migration where they were moving from domains. So it would be like the client site dot [inaudible 00:08:13]. And they were consolidating all of those into like the.com into folders. And apparently they’re so rare. Someone told me I probably won’t come across them like another five years.

Manuel Madeddu (08:27):

Wow. I mean, I find it quite common honestly, because I mean, when you walk. I mean, I work on very big migrations, so I work for a company, which is huge. And I was dealing with like 16 website for 16 different countries. And yeah, I mean, on that, they were trying to consolidate each domain into one unique domain. And they were considering the option of using sub-domains or sub folders. So essentially we discuss it with A/B tested and we found out it was better to use sub folder in the case. So yeah, it was a huge case study. And then essentially we were moving 16 country under one domain.

Keira Davidson (09:11):

Oh God.

Manuel Madeddu (09:12):

Yeah. But each legacy domain used to have, they were going to a sub folder in a different country, different language. Yeah. It was a nice project and yeah-

Keira Davidson (09:30):

I’m sure there was lots of curve balls [inaudible 00:09:30]

Manuel Madeddu (09:30):

Yeah. Also, because with the migration where you are moving a lot of website, you should also plan step by step. You cannot launch every site all in once. Or you have to schedule. So for example, maybe you launch first two sites, which are minor countries, lessons for them and then after a month, so given time to test or whatever, after a month you launch other two and then maybe four and so on. So it’s very interesting.

Keira Davidson (09:58):

Yeah, that’s a good point. I’ve never thought about breaking down it into chunking it to test that everything’s gone okay. And then if it has, you can roll it out to the rest, but that makes perfect sense. And it’s interesting to see that you did some A/B testing around the structuring of the URLs because when I’ve done it, I’ve found that clients have come to me and been like, “Oh, I really want to move from this structure to this structure.” They’ve already decided it. And often there’s no data to back up why they’re choosing it.

Manuel Madeddu (10:32):

Exactly [inaudible 00:10:34]

Keira Davidson (10:33):


Manuel Madeddu (10:34):

Yeah. And it also, I mean, we’ve discussed that because essentially they were using different things for different countries. So for them it was kind of easier using a sub folder structure even for the authority flow. But that depends on you. You can have that discussion with developer team case by case. So sometimes sub domain is better. I do usually suggest and prefer sub folder just for the authority flow. But case by case it’s always different. So you have to check the requirements and specific case.

Keira Davidson (11:07):

That’s interesting.

Manuel Madeddu (11:08):

Yeah. Also, another thing I was thinking, because you mentioned the beginning, when you talk about migrations, it’s true. It’s such a broad term. And I started my career, I said doing websites. So essentially at the beginning I was doing migration all the time because I had client asking me to move a WordPress website to, I don’t know, Magento, for example or the other way around or using, I don’t know, WordPress for the blog and then Magento for the, so I was doing migration all the time. But to me at the beginning, migration was purely when you move a database to another server hosting, whether for SEO. So for professional, when you discuss migration, it involves a bit of everything. So whatever you change on a side that can impact on performance and ranking and visibility, that’s immigration. So even the security protocol. So even if you’re moving to HTTP to HTTPS, that’s a migration which is kind of out at the beginning, but it’s a very broad term.

Keira Davidson (12:15):

Yeah. I don’t think I realized how common they were because I here, I was doing HTTP to HTTPS and that just seemed normal. But then when I was put on, let’s say large scale migrations from one CMS to the other, I was like, “Oh my God, I’ve never done a migration. I don’t know what to do.” Yeah. But you know, because you’ve done it all before you just have to make changes.

Manuel Madeddu (12:42):

Yeah. And then again, it’s always different. So even stuff that maybe went so easy for a client then for another client, because I don’t know, maybe you’ve got two agencies involved in terms of development. It happened to me. I had to work with an agency that were after the front end of the site. And then there was another agency that were after the back end of the site.

Keira Davidson (13:04):


Manuel Madeddu (13:05):

Yeah. And then in between there was a client, but essentially, so one developer agency was doing one thing and no one were [inaudible 00:13:14]. So when you do migration, when you support migration, you should be clear or what was going on. But even internally they didn’t know. So was kind of a mess, but yeah.

Keira Davidson (13:28):

So would you say that’s a common occurrence in the fact that communication can be poor when doing migrations, for example, between the developers, the clients and the SEOs?

Manuel Madeddu (13:41):

Yeah. I mean, I would suggest that’s one of the biggest pitfalls. So you must ensure you have a plan, first of all, because success migration, a lot of thing can go wrong. So you must have a plan. The plan must be as clear as possible and digested by the client. Also, the developers, because I mean, you’re always kind of clashing, that’s our job, but you are always kind of clashing with the developers. So the first thing, I guess you must share is you have a clear communication with the developers, they know your roadmap and timing and you both agree and if they change something, they must let you know. And if you spot something, you must tell them as soon as possible.

Keira Davidson (14:26):

Yeah. You want to work as a team and not against each other to try and make it as successful as possible.

Manuel Madeddu (14:31):

Exactly. In a nice way, because it’s not about flagging or telling them this is wrong. It’s about, “We are working together, so this is bad for the clients. So let’s try to support each other.” Yeah.

Keira Davidson (14:45):

So you mentioned before that [inaudible 00:14:49] on the budget depends on what you would suggest for a client. If given the choice, what would be your ideal scenario? Would you want to do a tech order before, continuous monitoring after? Have you ever thought about like the ideal scenario?

Manuel Madeddu (15:07):

Yeah. I mean, of course all the time, because I mean, I guess when you [inaudible 00:15:11] for migration, you just discuss the ideal scenario first and then you go down to specifying what’s needed for the clients. So I mean, ideal scenario, it’s always, yeah. I mean, ideally, when you face migration, the fewer changes you make to the website, the better, which is kind of odd because now I’m saying something and then I’m going to say the opposite. But literally for example, if you don’t need to change your [inaudible 00:15:39] because you might think you can change structure website in order to better target some keywords for categories, but it’s more, the time that maybe search engine takes [inaudible 00:15:52] the structure and maybe retrieve the ranking for those stages to rank better. So sometimes if you don’t need to change your [inaudible 00:16:00] it’s best not to change it.

Manuel Madeddu (16:01):

So this is one approach. So really you should understand what the client is aiming to, what he’s trying to achieve and suggest the best scenario for them. If they’re planning to make changes because they’re redesigning or maybe, I don’t know, restructuring the blog, for example, then I would always suggest if you have time. So for example, if you’ve got three, four months before immigration, I would always suggest that with an audit. So making sure your current side is spot on not hindering performance. So things like even, I don’t know, H1, H2 [inaudible 00:16:41] so all should be sorted with the new side. So audit on the current side then of course, audit on the staging side and in between you should have that discussion with the developers in order to maybe also improve the structure because you can do keyword research and then a bit of taxonomy to better identify the sections.

Manuel Madeddu (17:02):

And then if you have time, you can do it. Then I would suggest to go and get the best shape for the website. If the structure of the client is kind of, I don’t know, the conversation with the developers is kind of lucky. They don’t have a big budget, then I would suggest technical audit on the staging side, for sure. Just maybe avoid one on the current side. And then keyword research. Maybe you don’t need that because you can do it after, a bit of optimization after. So I would say assessing how good the staging site is and then redirect. So of course, I mean, that’s the thing you always do. So you want to map legacy pages or [inaudible 00:17:50]. So that’s the thing you have to always do.

Manuel Madeddu (17:55):

And then that’s for the pre-migration then of course you have to benchmark performance, making sure all the track is in place. And then yeah, that’s all I guess, from the pre-migration. And on the launch day, you have to make sure, first of all, benchmarking, so you have to see what’s going on. You have to also check site map [inaudible 00:18:19] so other search engines able to crawl the pages and the top priority pages. If you see any issue in the [inaudible 00:18:27] file or any section that are not correctly crawled or indexed, flag it straight away, and then also use specific tools to flag new pages to Google or changes address, for example. If you can control it also change external links referring to the new domain, if it’s a domain change and then back any issue.

Manuel Madeddu (18:51):

So try to quickly crawl on the same day and spot any issues. But then I would suggest maybe wait 24 hours for a proper crawl to find issues. And then after that, wait maybe a week or two, at least to support any issues in Google Search Console, for example. Start monitoring performance. And then after a month, just check everything. Check performance, check the issues and then flag to the client.

Keira Davidson (19:20):

Yeah. One thing that came to my mind though, it’s not something that I’ve personally done, but I was wondering, do you know, once the migrations happened, you’ve checked it after the first week it’s going well and everything sort of has settled. There’s no major fluctuations. There’s nothing horrendous that’s gone on. If you have budget, would you want to have a look at the server logs to see how like search engines are interacting with the site to make sure the new URLs are being discovered, for example?

Manuel Madeddu (19:55):

Yes. I mean, in my roadmap again, I always suggest to do the log file analysis after a month, at least [inaudible 00:20:02] because that’s the best way to double check how physically search genes are assessing and reading your website. So fair enough, you can scroll, you can check Search Console or other tools you’re using. I don’t know, extracts for example, for back links and stuff. But I believe [inaudible 00:20:21] give you a better understanding of how actually and physically search engine are reading your website and also you can score further opportunities to improve.

Manuel Madeddu (20:32):

So maybe as you said, if after a month, the performance is good, ranking is good and they maybe drop 5% or maybe they increase the traffic because it may happen. From the log file analysis, maybe you can suggest some optimization to the site structure. So maybe you see [inaudible 00:20:52] going to the wrong place. You didn’t spot before. So you can tell them, or maybe you can see, I don’t know, a server using too much resources because of an index load or to many pages being old. So you can tell to the client to optimize. So yeah, I always include the log file analysis.

Keira Davidson (21:13):

Awesome. That makes a lot of sense because I’m guessing sometimes you might discover bot tracks where it’s just getting stuck in a loop. So it means that crawl budget is being wasted, especially for super large eCommerce sites that wouldn’t be ideal and you can resolve that, which may help organic performance as well. And that would be obviously at that time, you’re wanting to show results to the client. So that’d be, yeah. It makes a lot of sense as to why you do it. I don’t know why I’ve never thought about it before, but it makes perfect sense.

Manuel Madeddu (21:54):

Yeah. But for example, I mean I work on some clients, so essentially for them, I mean at Honcho to we focus on automotive for example. And when you work for automatic website especially when you deal with used cars, you might not want search engines to crawl all the used car pages because they change so often. So essentially you waste scroll budget for search and engines. So it’s not used really. You might want to index crawl an into some of them, but not all of them. So I mean, after immigration, I mean in general log file analysis can provide you bettering side of which section search engine crawlers are within the website. And maybe you find out a lot of used car pages are being indexed and then you can better optimize the robotics file or maybe place our meta robots non index, for example. But even as you said, I mean even bot traps, so faster navigation [inaudible 00:22:59] sometimes. So in those cases, yeah. The log file analysis is really, really useful.

Keira Davidson (23:07):

Especially I can imagine for an automotive site, I’m thinking of Autotrader in my head and on the side by you’ve got so many different variables that you can select and I can imagine that would just be a nightmare if it was implemented incorrectly.

Manuel Madeddu (23:21):

Yeah. You’ve got brand, you’ve got price, of course, but you’ve got mileage, you’ve got a lot of things. So-

Keira Davidson (23:30):

So we briefly touched upon if communication isn’t there, it could be an issue. Do you have any other sort of top things that can be problematic, whether it’s on the implementation or things that you really need to think about when it comes to the implementation?

Manuel Madeddu (23:50):

Yeah. I think this is more in general, not only for immigration, but as soon as you approach a new project, new client, so the technical capabilities, so the development capabilities of the client is something you should have clear your mind for migration. I mean, even if you provide, for example, we were discussing about timing and budget. But if the client has very limited capabilities in terms of development.

Manuel Madeddu (24:20):

So maybe you don’t help them. If you perform a very in depth all day taking four days, five days, and then you provide them with a lot of recommendation and actions because they won’t do it simply. They don’t have capability to do that. And even when facing immigrations, so for example, if it’s a huge side, but they don’t have a time or they don’t have resource in the server to upload, I don’t know, 50,000 redirects at once. So I mean, it’s pointless. I mean, you can take a week to work on the redirects, but when you provide them, it’s impossible. They [inaudible 00:24:57]. So I guess as soon as you approach a new project, you have to have that conversation with the client. So making sure, I don’t know, how big is the development team? What’s the budget? What’s the timing? What’s your target and yeah, because every immigration is different.

Keira Davidson (25:20):

I’ve had lots of discussions with other teams when it comes to launch dates. Do you have a preference on days that you’d push migration live?

Manuel Madeddu (25:31):

It depends on the client because usually best recommendation is launching a new side is in quieter time. It depends on the clients. So if you have a business, which is highly seasonal and usually, I don’t know, maybe in the weekend, you’ve got very little traffic. So it’s best to maybe plan the migration, I don’t know, Saturday tonight. I mean, usually we perform migration tonight, but you might have client for which the seasonality is very different. So maybe I used to work with the clients for which the high season was December. So maybe it was a higher risk planning migration in March, for example. So it depends, but you can easily check the traffic and the seasonality and discuss with them. Yeah.

Keira Davidson (26:26):

That’s interesting. Because when I thought about [inaudible 00:26:30] I’ve taken in seasonality. Because I’d hate, for example, if December was their peak. I’d hate to do it in November because in case anything went horrendously wrong. But also when I’ve thought about it as well, I’ve also gone from the standpoint, I’d usually avoid doing a migration, maybe let’s say on a Friday or a Thursday because if Google crawls over the weekend and for whatever reason something’s gone wrong and we don’t get back in the office till Monday, we don’t got to investigate it and try and resolve it. And obviously the sooner you catch things the better.

Manuel Madeddu (27:07):

Yeah, exactly. I mean, when we are planning migration for the client, we go [inaudible 00:27:14] so we walk in the night, we walk in the weekend or we use specific tools to monitor downtime, this kind of things. So we monitor even if it’s out of hours for this kind of [inaudible 00:27:28]. But you’re right. Usually, yeah, and again, I mean it depends on the client because maybe you’ve got a business, which is usually very busy in the weekends, so yeah. And maybe you see a quieter time for them. It’s I don’t know, Wednesday morning. So yeah, it depends. Yeah. Usually you suggest doing this, I don’t know. Usually I suggest Friday night, Saturday night, but because we can monitor, but it depends on the type of business too.

Keira Davidson (28:01):

Yeah. That’s a good point. Yeah. There’s tools like ContentKing, which will like alert you if anything’s gone horrendously wrong and you can make like different dashboards as well to monitor how the pages being indexed or if something’s like, there’s a significant alert that you need looking at or something like that. So that’s a good point. Yeah. There’s always monitoring to pick upon issues.

Manuel Madeddu (28:24):

Yes. Even on analytics, you can set alerts or you can build a data studio dashboard with alerts just to slack. So yeah.

Keira Davidson (28:34):

So have you ever come across any real, have you basically, the client’s done a migration, it’s gone wrong. Have you then been left to deal with it?

Manuel Madeddu (28:46):

I mean, not personally, but it happened. I mean, once a migration went horribly wrong. So they lost a lot of traffic, but it wasn’t with us. It was with the previous agency. So I’d be quite lucky because you are in a better position to blame them. And then also because you already know what went wrong kind of, and then you can just walk on fixing or be aware of [inaudible 00:29:12]. No, it never happened to me, but I did struggle once with a client because essentially, yeah, I quickly mentioned before, but essentially because there were different agencies involved.

Manuel Madeddu (29:25):

So essentially I was working on my directory, one without map pretty much every day. It was before [inaudible 00:29:32] which was big time with them. But essentially each time me and the agency that was after the backend where kind of fixing issues, the other agency was changing URLs and staff without us knowing. So that’s why, and all of us, on my side, on the backend agency side, and even the client, we were all wondering what’s going on because we are doing the right stuff. But it’s because the other agency was changing stuff.

Keira Davidson (30:03):

So [inaudible 00:30:04] redirect, then you’ve noticed the URL have changed, then you’ve got to redo them and-

Manuel Madeddu (30:08):


Keira Davidson (30:09):


Manuel Madeddu (30:09):

Yeah, it was pretty much a week before Christmas. And even on Christmas Day it was horrible. And then I was working, I was remapping everything likely not manually because I’m using a tool. I’m using [inaudible 00:30:23] which can help you in [inaudible 00:30:26] gap. But yeah, it was [inaudible 00:30:28] because the client was panicking. He was trusting us, but because it was before Christmas and the situation, there was spending a lot of money and we worked very close to the launch date has been [inaudible 00:30:41]. So literally they were calling me because at that time I was working in London, but our headquarters were Leeds. So I was even traveling from London to Leeds, but I was having conversational decline on the train and trying to fix stuff while traveling wasn’t happening.

Keira Davidson (31:05):

Yeah. That would’ve been a least favorable kind of experience I imagine.

Manuel Madeddu (31:06):

Yeah. Back exciting because you kind of gained the trust with the client, are still in contact with the client.

Keira Davidson (31:13):

That’s really good. And I guess you’ll have learned a hell of a lot from that and you’ll have changed things in the way that you work to ensure that is never repeated again.

Manuel Madeddu (31:23):

Exactly. I guess when you face the worst, then you are prepared. You go to the next [inaudible 00:31:28]

Keira Davidson (31:28):

Yeah. They can only get better from there. Had another question. It was, man, it’s just gone from my head. It was, I really can’t remember. As you’ve done the migration, you’ve done the [inaudible 00:31:53] you’ll have checked analytics, Search Console. I’m guessing you’ll have checked keyword rankings. Would you also look at measure visibility to see how the market shares gone? Would you have a look at as well see if there’s been any changes to backlink profile?

Manuel Madeddu (32:16):

Yeah. Again, I mean, it relies on what the target have, but let’s say in the [inaudible 00:32:21] when you’ve got the budget that you’ve got the time in. Yes, I would do that. So essentially for each migration, I would try to have data from each available sources because a lot can happen and a lot can go wrong. And even, so sometimes you’ve got current redirects in place that you don’t even know so best to us, to the developer, have you got something in place already? Have you removed pages in the past? But they might not even know because even the developer agency, essentially, if they changed staff three years ago and [inaudible 00:32:59] one year ago they made the changes before them on board. So they might not even know.

Manuel Madeddu (33:06):

So that’s why I will try to gather, not trust one source, but use as many source as possible. So for example, I personally, even when they tell me, “We discontinue some pages, remove these products.” I kind of never trust. I would always check for example, analytics. I used to receive traffic and then crawl them to see if their response code is okay or broken then double check, for example, external backlinks. So sometimes if have time, if at a budget, but I would export from [inaudible 00:33:43]. So historic backlinks and see if they’re going to discontinue pages. I mean, if you can address it, it’s kind of a quick win because in post migration, if you can retrieve the traffic, even if they’re broken, but if you can retrieve the traffic, it’s a quick win. So you would see a [inaudible 00:34:04] traffic. So, yeah I do.

Keira Davidson (34:08):

That makes sense. Yeah. I guess, to wrap things up, what would you be your five top tips for someone when it comes to migrating of any kind?

Manuel Madeddu (34:21):

I would say always, maybe the top one is hope for the best. But I expect the worst, which is [inaudible 00:34:29]. It is like when you study, I mean, at the university. I always perform better and my maximum when i was expected worst. When I feel too much confident, it’s where the thing go bad. So yeah, I guess my first recommendation is, yeah. I mean, hope for the best, but then work for the worst.

Keira Davidson (34:50):

Be prepared at least so [inaudible 00:34:52] shock.

Manuel Madeddu (34:54):

Exactly. And then never be too confident because try to plan everything, but never be too confident. The client understands, the developer understands. I mean, try to discuss everything and ensure everyone is on the same page and the communication. If they change something, if you change something, if the client is pushing back something. Let’s make sure you know, everyone knows and yeah. And let’s try to stick to the deadlines as much as possible. It never happens because with migration-

Keira Davidson (35:25):

They all get [inaudible 00:35:26]

Manuel Madeddu (35:27):

Yeah. But let’s try please to have a conversation and then try to plan as said in a clever way. So you don’t need to plan like big audit if the developers are struggling. So try to work for the client to improve performance or [inaudible 00:35:46] to avoid issue in migration. And how many I counted? Is like three, four.

Keira Davidson (35:52):

I think we’re at four.

Manuel Madeddu (35:52):

Four. Yeah. So I’d say, yeah, try to gather data from as many sources as possible and never trust one source. So try to always be a bit critic, not really rely or trust the data people give you, but try to double check always and from different sources.

Keira Davidson (36:15):

That’s a really good one because a lot of the time people rely upon one source and that source might not always be correct, or it might be delayed. That is a really good point to make.

Manuel Madeddu (36:28):

Yeah. Especially if the source is coming from the client. So essentially if you are supporting them, but you ask the developer to provide you something which is wrong, then you can’t really blame them because it’s your fault to not double check for example. So it happens with a migration. I was happy I wasn’t working that migration, but it happened that a colleague asked for, for example, discontinued products and the developer provided a list of discontinued products, but it was like one third of the [inaudible 00:37:02]. But you can’t really blame them because you should check.

Keira Davidson (37:08):

Yeah. They would assume what they thought was right.

Manuel Madeddu (37:12):

They don’t know because maybe again, maybe [inaudible 00:37:14] be hired one month ago, two months ago, a year ago. The client himself doesn’t know maybe. Yeah. So-

Keira Davidson (37:23):

No. They’re really good tips and I’ll definitely keep them in mind when I’ll be approaching my next migration. So I really appreciate that. Thank you.

Manuel Madeddu (37:30):

No problem.

Keira Davidson (37:30):

Thank you so much for joining me as a guest on this podcast. It’s been really good to talk about migrations and you’ve left me with lots of different things to think about when it comes to approaching them in future.

Manuel Madeddu (37:47):

Okay. Yeah. Feel free to [inaudible 00:37:48] any more questions.

Keira Davidson (37:53):

[inaudible 00:37:53]

Manuel Madeddu (37:56):

Yeah. We briefly discussed before the recording, but I guess [inaudible 00:38:01] migration are very exciting because they give you the opportunities of test your knowledge on everything on SEO. It’s not just about technical. It’s not just about content or [inaudible 00:38:15] for example, it’s also about backing. So it’s all together. And then-

Keira Davidson (38:21):

Every pillar of SEO is almost covered in every migration.

Manuel Madeddu (38:26):

So it’s really test your knowledge and you face the challenge. If it’s successful, it’s exciting. If it’s not successful, then you have to keep doing it, but you always learn. So it’s nice.

Keira Davidson (38:37):

Yeah. That’s a good point. Yeah. Even if it has gone wrong, there’s so much that you can take away from it that can be turned into positives. So yeah. That’s really good point to make as well. Thank you.

Manuel Madeddu (38:52):

No problem.

Keira Davidson (38:53):

Thanks very much for joining me. I’ll let you know how they go.

Manuel Madeddu (38:58):

Okay. Thank you. Yeah. It’s been nice to have a chat with you and exciting. So I hope it’s helpful.

Keira Davidson (39:05):

Thank you. It has been really helpful.

Manuel Madeddu (39:09):


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