Give yourself time to preview your upgraded website
When making significant changes to your website you may wish us to set up a ‘staging’ version of your website which is private but runs concurrently with your live website.
What is a staging website?
A ‘staging’ website is usually a duplicate of your website.
It will have identical data at the point of initial delivery but it's completely disconnected from your live website. Content updated on your staging website will not affect your live website and vice-versa.
- Migrate to a new theme or template, to preview any changes before making them public
- Test new bespoke functionality of your website before going live
- Try more radical changes to the structure of your content without affecting the live website
Managing your content
You will need to keep your content up to date in both places if you wish to keep your live website up to date whilst you polish up the new staging website.
Keep us updated with your timeline for making the new website live and make sure we know which migration option you have selected (see below).
Danger: Your live site will not reflect any experimental changes you make on the staging server. Your staging website will not reflect any additions, deletions or updates to your live website. The disparity will become greater and more difficult to correct the longer your site is in development.
Important: From the moment we set up the new site with identical data at the point of initial delivery, any images and information that you add or update or delete on either your staging website or your live website will not automatically synchronise with each other. There is no option to automatically merge or synchronise content between your old and new websites.
Choosing a migration option
Please let us know your choice from the options below, in writing, at the start of the project and contact us if you have any questions or concerns.
Option 1: Replace your entire live website with content from your staging website
If you choose this option, we will copy the entire staging website overwriting everything on the current live website. Any changes made to the content or functionality of your existing live website since the day we first set up your staging website will be lost.
This presupposes that the material on the staging website is accurate and complete, so it is important to check thoroughly to ensure you are satisfied that the content is correct and that all recent changes you may have made to the live site are also reflected before you launch.
Option 2: Enable your new theme and transfer website settings (template websites only)
We will copy over only your selected theme data including all website settings and style options. This assumes that you have been experimenting with the staging server and editing the live site.
No website content (page or record data, images, etc.) will be transferred from your staging to your live website. Any new content added exclusively to your staging website will be lost.
Option 3: No content migration
We will not copy any content or changes from the staging to the live website, any changes to your theme or content will need to be made manually on your live website.
You may wish to use this option if you are using your staging website to simply trial changes to your website but are happy to implement the final changes on the live website manually.