I'm hoping for a referral to an expert, or even better get some clear advice here.
I'd appreciate some feedback on SEO questions - and particularly need specific info on 301 redirects and .htaccess
I need to migrate a large number of domains currently on their own separate WP installations to a multisite network.
Instead of working on resolving all the paths of images and links etc and cleaning up the content/database etc before migrating and then dealing with import/export of the xml files - I want to simply 301 redirect existing URL's to brand new pages/posts.
I want to maximize keeping SEO link juice
In lieu of just a 'move all' redirect pointing all the old URL to the new index page URL I would like to break things out a bit and get SEO link juice for targeted landing pages.
So a couple of 'decision-tree' questions come to mind:
1) How would it be possible to redirect all posts from a 'category' to a singe URL? and would it be possible to point SOME category's posts to specific URL and ALL OTHERS categories/posts to the index page URL or some other URL?
2) will 301 redirects have issues with multisite subdomains getting mapped to domains...? (concerned about too many redirects either not working or getting flagged by search engines)
3) Would doing a 301 redirect from say, 50 post/page URL's to 1 URL deliver link juice from all those pages, making the new page super strong? (realizing that there is some percentage loss for each page) -- this is actually tough to determine reading a gazillion guru blogs
4) Would standard DNS Zone for multisite be enough (*wildcard) or is some other DNS tweaking needed?
I'm thinking I might end up using a spreadsheet to write the htaccess - and if the category solution is overly complicated I am concerned about generating a massive htaccess file without some kind of wildcards (there are close to 100,000 posts on the old sites - so listing URL by URL is not going to work)
my current gameplan is to first create a new multisite installation on a new VPS with good server specs (lots of RAM), dedicated IP, using a brand new domain for the primary site.
primarysite.com (multisite subdomain installation)
I'll park all the domains in cpanel; use the WPMUDEV.org "blog template" and "batch create" plugins to create and format sites and
I then will load these sites with content.
Then will use WPMUDEV.org 'domain mapping' to point
subdomain1.primarysite.com to domain1.com
subdomain2.primarysite.com to domain2.com
edit the htaccess with appropriate 301 redirects of old URL's to new URL's
then update nameservers at the registrar
I think this makes sense if I can get the htaccess updated with the right 301 redirect code - but I have no idea what to put in the htaccess
sorry for long post... but big project.
Any and all advice or referral is appreciated, thanks