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What’s the Difference Between a CMS Migration and a Website Redesign?


Coming off the heels of the Episerver Ascend 2018 conference, we are getting more and more requests from existing and prospective clients for information about migrating to Episerver. There seems to be an uptick in the amount of excitement from Ektron customers toward migrating to the Episerver Digital Experience Cloud Service based several criteria including its simplified PaaS approach.

However, through our conversations with customers who currently utilize the Ektron platform, we've found that there is some confusion surrounding what migrating to Episerver entails. We realize that this is a complicated subject, so we wanted to examine the three areas that site owners need to consider when migrating to the Episerver CMS:

1. Website Design

People often think that a CMS migration is the same thing as a website redesign, but while a migration opens up the opportunity to redesign your website, it is not a requirement. In reality, most CMS platforms are design-agnostic, meaning that the elements specifying how a site “looks” are not affected by the site’s underlying technology.

If we compare a website to a car, the site design is like the car’s paint color. Installing a new engine in the car will not change how the car looks from the outside, much like migrating to a new CMS will not affect a site’s design.

2. Technology

To continue with the car analogy, the CMS platform is the “engine” that powers a website. Migrating to a new CMS is like swapping out a car’s engine. Doing so would not change the car’s paint job, much like a CMS migration will have little to no effect on a site’s design. However, installing a new engine will bring new benefits “under the hood,” much like migrating to Episerver will provide new capabilities for your website.

3. Content

The third aspect to consider in a CMS migration is the site’s content. Content doesn’t have a real equivalent in the car analogy, but it is still a major part of migrating to a new platform, and site owners will need to have a plan in place to import the content from their existing site into the new CMS. Depending on the size of the site and the budget for the migration project, this could include utilizing automated tools or performing manual content migration. Whatever option is chosen, ensuring that content is successfully moved to the new platform is a key part of a CMS migration.

We understand that the details surrounding CMS migration can be confusing, and we’re here to help you understand what you need to know to make the process as easy as possible. If you have any questions about migrating to Episerver, please don’t hesitate to contact us, and we’ll work with you to create a plan for a smooth migration. If you have any other questions, please feel free to leave a comment below. We’d love to hear from you!

About the Author

Chris Osterhout
Chris Osterhout
Chris rose through the ranks of website development, ASP.NET architecture, project management and team leadership, to overall digital solution strategy management. As SVP of Strategy, Chris helps clients understand the entire digital spectrum and guides them toward successful online solutions. Chris is a recognized expert on the Ektron / EPiServer CMS platforms and publishes, speaks and provides general thought leadership to clients and the greater web development community alike.
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