Video Details

In this week’s Whiteboard Friday, Michael King talks us through 8 ways to track down old URL’s.

  1. Wayback Machine – Put in the site, URL or whatever you have and see what it has in that index. Then pull those URLs off the site using Scraper for Chrome or whatever tool you want to use.

  2. XML Sitemap – Download the XML sitemap, then open it in Excel. Take the first column, copy and paste into a text file, open it in Screaming Frog, then crawl and list mode to see if the URLs still exist.

  3. Backlink profile – Use as many tools as possible, and collect as much link data as possible. Crawl all the links, then all the targets of those link and check the pages still exist.

  4. 404’s in Webmaster tools – Check 404’s from Google Webmaster Tools and map those to new pages.

  5. Historic Analytics – Analytics is next, so go back to Screaming Frog and check they’re all 404ing or 202ing. Remap the 404’s.

  6. CMS Change Log – When a change is made to a URL, for example, in WordPress, there is a record. Pull the URL out and use it for mapping.

  7. Log Files – Find out what URL’s were driving traffic before the migration. Similar to the analytics, but from a server side standpoint.

  8. Social media – Redirect from popular URL’s using the Facebook recommendation tools, Topsy, Social Mention, Digg and Delicious.