Fresh install on ssd when I've already used the activation key on hdd?

I just built a new PC. When I booted, my ssd wasn't recognized due to not being formatted yet, so I opted to install Win 8.1 on my hdd first in order to use it to format the ssd, then move or fresh install the OS on there.

According to this guide I cloned my hdd to an external drive for backup and to my ssd. I used easeUS todo free.

Booting from the ssd now however gives me a Win 8.1 light blue error screen that tells me I need to do recovery but neither of the menu options (setup and try again) actually do anything.

At this point I am frustrated. I never thought migrating to the ssd would be so challenging. I would absolutely love to just format and do a fresh install on the ssd, only my win 8.1 activation key no longer works, because I used it installing to the hdd.
Am I screwed out of a fresh install?

I have basically given up the idea of migrating because I really have no clue what I'm doing in terms of cloning and partitions.
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More about fresh install ssd activation key hdd
  1. Best answer
    A fresh install using your existing key will (should) work just fine.
    You 'might' have to call MS and activate via the phone robot, but that pretty painless.
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