The project was broken down into two phases. The first was to migrate the existing frontend as-is to a new content management platform. We naturally chose Craft for this. The process to perform the migration was straightforward:
- Create a new Craft installation.
- Migrate all HTML from the existing site to suitable Twig templates.
- Migrate the existing CSS and images.
- Create the suitable fields, sections and other attributes in Craft that would make up the manageable areas of the website.
- Integrate these fields into the Twig templates.
- Migrate all existing content into the CMS including articles, games, comics, etc.
A huge SEO benefit of moving to Craft was the improved URL structure which properly uses slugs, whereas the old version of the site used links that pointed directly to a PHP file, with query-strings for every article, category, etc on the website.
After the client was happy with how this looked and behaved on a staging site, we replaced the existing site with the new one immediately. We moved the hosting away from HostGator and onto Digital Ocean, added an SSL certificate and set up a nice deployment process using Git to accommodate ongoing additions and improvements.