How to Leverage Google Analytics for Website Redirect Projects

One great aspect of working at a marketing agency is that you get to oversee a lot of projects, client data and unique development, design and marketing requests.

We ran into a situation where a client had 50,000+ URL’s that needed redirected. Their original eCommerce site was Magento and we were moving them over to WooCommerce.

We wrote a popular blog on “how to redirect thousands of URL’s.” As stated in the prior blog, our development team created a scrape tool that can access each category and product page to parse the necessary data needed to import into your eCommerce platform. In Lehman’s terms, our developers can take all of your existing URL’s and marry them up with future URL’s. If you are building a new site and going WooCommerce to WooCommerce, it would be easier to marry up URL’s, since it’s within the same platform. When you move to a different platform, it can be trickier, which is why we created the scrape tool.

Moving back to the client with 50,000+ URL’s. We determined through Google Analytics, that there were only 1,200 pages on this website that received traffic over the past 12-months. Rather than redirect all 50,000+ URL’s (since it can bog down your apache configuration file (.htaccess), we decided to take the 1,200 URL’s that received traffic and then we married those up with the new URL’s on the new site utilizing our scape tool.

If you are debating whether every URL on your old site needs to be redirected to your new site, Google Analytics is a great place to start to see how many pages received traffic, which is an indicator of how relevant each page is on your website. This can be found in “Behavior –> Site Content –> All Pages.” You’ll then want to export the list of URL’s based on website traffic. You can also use tools like Moz’s Link Explorer to view the top pages based on page authority, linking domains and external links. If you combine the URL’s from both Analytics and a third party SEO tool like Moz, you’ll be in good shape knowing you’re redirecting the proper URL’s.