With the 1.7 release, I’ve moved the primary home of my Tasks Pro™ product from:
I thought it might be interesting (instructive?) to review the reasons for this, and how I got into the situation in the first place. 🙂
When I launched alexking.org back in 2002, I put up some of my projects here for download. This included the original Tasks™ (now Tasks Jr.). As support for Tasks™ grew, I received a number of requests to create a multi-user version of Tasks™ (which you know as Tasks Pro™).
I’d been using King Design (kingdesign.net) on-again/off-again since 1997, mainly as a web design and hosting storefront. I’d actually taken down the entire site back in 2003 as I wasn’t doing any outside work at the time anyway.
When I was getting ready to launch Tasks Pro™, it was my first commercial product and I hadn’t decided:
- if I was going to continue using the King Design name, and
- if I was going to offer any other commercial products
and I was able to register taskspro.com, which definitely seemed like a good choice to use for the product site. So when I launched Tasks Pro™ (and until this week), its home was at taskspro.com.
Everything seemed to make sense to me at the time:
- Non-commercial software was at alexking.org
- Tasks Pro™ had its own web site and store
But soon after launching Tasks Pro™, I started hearing from my Tasks™ users that wanted some of the new features in Tasks Pro™ but didn’t need the multi-user capabilities. And pretty soon, I had a commercial version of Tasks™ out as well.
At first, I kept both the commercial version and free version of Tasks™ on alexking.org. After all, people were already coming to alexking.org for Tasks™, so offering both versions there made a certain amount of sense. But it was awkward having that lone commercial product on the site. At this time, kingdesign.net was still a landing page.
When I completed the first major update to Tasks Pro™ and Tasks™ (versions 1.5 and 2.5 respectively), I decided to re-launch the King Design web site as my business storefront. In doing so, I moved the Tasks™ home to kingdesign.net. However, I already had a full site for Tasks Pro™ at taskspro.com and already had traffic, etc. there1; so instead of moving Tasks Pro™ to kingdesign.net, I left it at taskspro.com and created a summary page pointing to taskspro.com on kingdesign.net.
While this wasn’t a horrible solution it had some definite drawbacks:
- I had ‘purchase’, ‘download’, ‘contact’ and ‘support’ mechanisms at both sites (I migrated all of the downloads and support to kingdesign.net over time).
- I had documentation at both sites, but only had FAQs on kingdesign.net.
- New visitors would have to switch between two sites to compare the products.
- Visitors hitting taskspro.com would sometimes miss the links to Tasks™ and contact me to ask about a single user version (meaning many more probably didn’t bother).
- My flagship product had a rather weak representation on my business site.
With all of this in mind, I knew I needed to migrate Tasks Pro™ to kingdesign.net. However, there are other factors to consider as well. For one, taskspro.com has a pretty decent Google ranking. In addition, I’ve had customers going to taskspro.com for three years now. I couldn’t just cut it off entirely.
So with the new releases, I finally bit the bullet and moved all of the primary Tasks Pro™ content to kingdesign.net. I didn’t get rid of the taskspro.com site entirely though.
- There are still active trials of Tasks Pro™ on taskspro.com – I didn’t want to mess with moving them.
- I wanted a transition time for folks used to going to taskspro.com to make their way to kingdesign.net.
- As previously mentioned, taskspro.com shows up pretty well in Google, and I didn’t want to give that up right away.
So now taskspro.com is a landing page of sorts, with minimal information and pointers to kingdesign.net. Over time I may deprecate it further, perhaps to the point where it merely directs people to kingdesign.net/tasks-pro/ the way tasks.biz2 points to kingdesign.net/tasks/.
Now that I’ve made the move, I feel good about it and I’m glad I did it. That normally means it was the right decision.
- Plus re-doing something that already “works” when there is so much new work to be done it a tough thing to prioritize. [back]
- I’ll follow-up on this in a future post. [back]
This post is part of the project: Tasks Pro™. View the project timeline for more context on this post.
Why not just redirect taskspro.com to its new home using a 301 response code to indicated it’s moved?
No one would have to read the page to realize it’s moved, and Google should (maybe?) give its good PR juice to the new home when it re-indexes and realizes that’s where it’s moved…
Didn’t he already answer this in his post? He doesn’t want to give that kind of jarring experience to his customers that have been going to taskspro.com for the last 3 years. He even talks about doing a redirect in the future after a transition period at the end, did you read it?
I expect that, assuming you add more commercial products, you’ll find a use for TasksPro.com again.
Obviously not to my satisfaction, no… 😛
I’m not seeing the point here. That’s why we redirect… taskspro.com continues to work like a champ, seamlessly redirecting them back to the new home. Even visually they aren’t that different looking. Seems to me that redirecting them would accomplish everything we want: 1) Users don’t have to give up taskspro.com; 2) Users get to the new home without even noticing it was gone; 3) Google re-indexes and forwards along all the PR juice (uhh, maybe, assuming they do it the way they say they do); 4) Alex can stop maintaining multiple websites for a single product.
I know he talks about doing a redirect later. His footnote (#2) says he’ll talk about it more in a later post. That means I can’t go ahead and ask questions now? Quite obviously I did read it, and apparently with more comprehension…
My ways are often mysterious to you, Meller. 😉
Isn’t that the truth… Still waiting for that follow-up post! 😛
[…] I mentioned previously, I now own the tasks.biz domain. I didn’t go looking for it, I was approached in late 2005 by […]