Hi, I have a problem and could use some expertise on the subject. It is a long winded one so here goes..
We used to have an old rickety website (dynamicdraintechnologies.com) and four wordpress.com blogs (sewerliningva.com, trenchlesspipeliningva.com, pipeinspectionva.com, and sewerrepairva.com) with custom domain names purchased via WP.com's website.
We recently paid (too much) for a custom WordPress theme to be built on a sub-domain in our own hosting account. We imported all of the content from the WP.com blogs into this new site. Finished putting all the content from our old site into the new. And then replaced the old site with the new so that our new website contained all the content from our blogs and old website all in one fancy pretty looking place.
Now comes where we need advice on a few different topics.
Since the old blogs are still showing up in search results we don't know what the best thing to do is to not lose any rankings. At the same time this is duplicate content since it is on our new site as well under the blogs tab and Google frowns on this correct?
We are willing to redirect the wp.com blog to our new site but are not sure if:
A: This will not help our new site gain in the rankings
B: Since we installed the Yoast SEO plugin it is telling us to change all of the permalinks which will in turn lead to '404 page not found errors'
C: Our site contains tons of links within the site and I just spent two weeks going through all the posts and updating links, only to find out that I will probably have to do this again after I change permalinks.
Note: I installed the Link Checker and Permalink Finder plug-ins. The broken link finder is not finding any broken links or redirects even though I know there are a few on our site. It has been a whole day and it still says 'searching your blog for links' though so it may not be working correctly.
A: Point all the domain names to our new site and just risk losing all of the rankings we have worked so hard to achieve? (and spend weeks renaming pages and manually fixing all the broken links this creates)
B: Pay the WP.com fee for forwarding domain links and rely on the Permalink Finder plugin to forward clicks to the proper blog posts (since permalinks are going to change)?
C: Hire someone to do this for us and risk wasting money because we are unable to convey exactly what we need to be done in terms a programmer or developer will be able to incorporate?
Basically our two problems are:
1. Is there a better way to change links site wide that I have overlooked?
2. Should we get rid of the blogs and just point the domain names to avoid being penalized for double posting?
Thank You So Much for any help with this. I know it is a lot of ugly and unprofessional questions mashed up together, but I figured I would lay it all out instead of asking a bunch of different questions like I have done in the past that just become more confusing over time! I'm sure there are probably others with these same inquiries as well.