Migration path from Classic StoryMaps

03-16-2021 01:11 PM
New Contributor II

I see that eventually I will have to migrate my Classic StoryMaps story to the new ArcGis StoryMaps. By then I suppose that Esri will have implemented all the old features I use into the new product. Come the day, I'll check, but I expect no problems. What DOES worry me is the URL.

At this point, I have thousands of people who have bookmarked the URL of my story. Those bookmarks are the most valuable things I have. The story itself I could always recreate if necessary. But if the URL changes, then years of my work publicizing the site and getting people to link to it will be lost. So:

-->Will Esri provide a migration path that will preserve the URL of my story? Please, please yes.

-Steve Beste


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4 Replies
Esri Frequent Contributor

@SteveBeste -- It is not possible for us to provide redirects from individual classic story maps to updated stories created with ArcGIS StoryMaps. However, your classic story will continue to work for several years.

When and if you choose to recreate the story with the latest ArcGIS StoryMaps, you can easily provide a note on your classic story that will link your readers to the updated version.

Owen Evans
Lead Product Engineer | StoryMaps
New Contributor II


While I appreciate the quick reply, I think your proposed solution will still cost me most of my customers. Consider:

  1. You expect the user to DO something - change their bookmark or a link on their website.
  2. While at the same time you remove most of their incentive to do so. After all, as long as the classic story is up, why would they bother linking through to some other version of the same information? They'll get their answer from the classic site and procrastinate on doing anything else. Wouldn't you? And then one day it'll be gone.

Technically, I'm sure you can do redirects if enough of your customers want it. As a developer, you're in love with the new thing and want to be shut of the old. As a developer myself, I understand that. But please understand that you're proposing to destroy  a chunk of Esri's value to your customers. Putting my business manager's hat on, that seems unwise. Please consider adding redirects to your development list.



Regular Contributor

This issue of managing URLs is a real pain point.  Aside from the use case being discussed here (migration from one generation of app to the next), the ability to easily "swap out" one version of a StoryMap, Dashboard, WAB app, etc. for another updated/re-designed one without inconveniencing the end-user is something we struggle with.  Users are going to bookmark our content and then expect it to be there FOREVER.  At a high level, we need some workable strategy for managing URLs that can handle re-direction.  It doesn't even have to necessarily be an ESRI-built solution, but it is a real issue that we all face.

I've used the "put a note on the old app" approach, but that is not an elegant solution.

Washoe County GIS
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New Contributor II


I'm gld to hear that someone else has this problem. I think that at the end of the day, Esri will have to get involved. I tried to solve this by setting up my own website, NoVaDogParks.com, which does nothing but redirect to the StoryMap on Esri. It's a shell. I then publicized my URL, the idea being that I could keep it constant even if the Esri URL changed. It hasn't worked, though. People bookmark what they see and like, which is the Esri URL. Indeed, since my site immediately redirects, people can't bookmark it. So that kind of shell website is not the solution. 

Regards, Steve

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