we have over 2000 client benefit sites that have been built

Hi, we have over 2000 client benefit sites that have been built over the past 15 years. I would like to re-design them and bring their look current (currently they are table-based, ugh!).

We are thinking about starting with our top clients and new top tier clients and putting them on a WP multi-site install. My primary question is, is this the right thing to do?

An example of one of the current sites is http://www.filice.com/benefits/highwirepr
As you can see there is a lot of data the gets mapped back to each site, some of it generic (like required postings, etc.) and the rest is specific to that particular company and the benefits they have chosen. Obviously, every company is different, but what I'm looking for is a nice clean template that we can easily brand to each client, yet make the process of building out their site a bit more seamless than it is now ... well, actually it would be orders of magnitude more seamless.
This is a new project I have been handed from another dept. and I want to be sure I'm moving in the right direction before setting any of this up. Inheriting these old legacy sites, is a pain in some degree, yet it is a great opportunity for me to help bring us into the 21st Century with these sites.
I have built out several WP sites and HTML5 sites myself, so am not a newbie with WP, but I'm not an expert either.

Just looking for some advice and direction.

Thank you in advance for your help! :slight_smile:

  • Michael Bissett

    Hey @sharkpuck, welcome to the WPMU DEV Community, hope you're doing well today! :slight_smile:

    we have over 2000 client benefit sites that have been built over the past 15 years. I would like to re-design them and bring their look current (currently they are table-based, ugh!).

    We are thinking about starting with our top clients and new top tier clients and putting them on a WP multi-site install. My primary question is, is this the right thing to do?

    Are these all HTML sites? Are they all hosted on the same server presently, or are some of them hosted separately?

    How are you managing them presently? And could you elaborate on why a Multisite caught your eye here?

    Given the amount of sites you mentioned, you'll at least want a VPS for a Multisite this big.

    On this:

    Obviously, every company is different, but what I'm looking for is a nice clean template that we can easily brand to each client, yet make the process of building out their site a bit more seamless than it is now ... well, actually it would be orders of magnitude more seamless.

    You may wish to have a look at the themes featured here:

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/free-clean-elegant-wordpress-themes/

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/10-customizable-responsive-free-wordpress-themes/

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/photography-wordpress-themes/

    Kind Regards,
    Michael

    • sharkpuck

      Hi Michael,
      Thanks for your response. I apologize that I wasn't clear on the fact that we will NOT be porting over all 2000 sites. Most likely only the top 20-30 sites. I'm guessing a VPS may or may not be needed at that level, but either way we could certainly do that if needed. We will probably put all the new sites on their own domain at Media Temple, so buying a VPS is certainly an option.

      Regarding the sites, at present, I do not manage them, another person builds and manages them. I believe he uses MS Web Expression.

      My main purpose for thinking of multi-site, was to be able to establish a Master site that I could "clone" for each company. Not sure if that means it pre-populates the data or not. The idea would be to then swap out whatever content, downloads, etc. that needed to be done, and then of course change colors and logos according to each client company.

      So, would multi-site be able to do that for us? Or is it just as much work as me creating an html5 site and then copying the site each time. Obviously, copying an html site is a heck of a lot easier than cloning a WP site and all the database/mysql stuff that has to be right on in order for it to work properly.

      Thanks again for letting me pick your brain.

  • Ash

    Hello @sharkpuck

    I hope you are well today.

    What you want is pretty much possible with a multisite. You can clone a subsite within minutes using our Cloner Plugin. Even you can create several template site using our New Blog Template plugin, and when you create a subsite just use one of those templates.

    BUT, just one think you need to keep in mind that, the super admin, who creates the network, will have access to all sites. If all sites are managed by one person, then it is pretty helpful.

    Cheers
    Ash

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