According to 73.1% of web designers, a non-responsive design is the main reason users quit a website. Other causes include sluggish loading times, poor navigation, and poorly structured material. There comes the point in every business where, in addition to other digital marketing services, one must think about redesigning the complete website to boost marketing.
But even though website redesigns are essential for updating your appearance, boosting your credibility, and adding crucial new functionalities to your site for user experience, search engine optimization (SEO), and other business considerations, they can also have very serious and surprising consequences: ruining your SEO.
During a website makeover, there are numerous strategies that professional SEO services use for optimizing the site. Before diving into the solution let’s understand the problem in depth.
What Effects does a Website Revamp have on SEO?
The idea that SEO only needs to be done once is one of the biggest myths among website owners. This is certainly not the case. And a good digital design and development agency will guide you with all the possibilities before starting with the website revamping process.
During the redesign, websites frequently experience drops in traffic as well as changes to their keyword ranks if changes you do not handle them correctly. Revamping a website, meanwhile, can also strengthen your SEO if done right.
There is nothing to worry about if they drop just a little. It is normal to observe the change in the traffic because search engine bots have not yet crawled your revamped website. Once they are done, they will serve the new version to the audience and you will regain your traffic and ranking.
Some organizations may discover that their web traffic suddenly and permanently drops following a makeover. Often, this change results from severe SEO mistakes made during the redesign.
The consequences of losing your SEO rankings and organic visitors during a site redesign are expensive, time-consuming, and, if not immediately fixed, might potentially put a company out of business. Getting back into your critical search ranking positions is pretty difficult.
Therefore, you must read the following points carefully and consider them vitally before starting the website redesign process for SEO.
Perform an In-Depth Analysis of your Website
You must first evaluate every aspect of the existing performance of your website. Analyze the traffic, the way people engage with your website, the user journey, and much more. You can get a comprehensive and focused overview of performance by analyzing and benchmarking the current state of your website. Every web page is different from others in terms of redesign risk, and some might as well be erased, therefore this is crucial.
Save your King Content
Google loves relevant, informational, and authentic content. And Google crawlers strictly gauge any changes businesses make in the content to ensure the highest quality standards. For this reason, how you alter your content is crucial, especially if it is performing well. For content analysis:
- Determine which of your articles is performing better than the rest by checking your content.
- The number of visits you receive,
- A review of the pertinent keywords,
And a look at how these pages rank on search engines is a good strategy to choose which ones you should keep.
Your website will be preserved if you save these pages and make as few changes as possible. However, deleting one of the pages could seriously harm your SEO. Therefore, it is wise to keep updates to a minimum on these sites.
Set your SEO Goals
After determining the current state of your website, set SEO goals in line with the website revamping aim. You must decide on the main aim, the secondary goals, and the ways you want to advance.
Some SEO objectives can be:
- Gaining better keyword rankings
- Boost organic traffic, lengthen page loads, and boost page visits
- Boost Conversion
Your chances of having a successful SEO makeover increase when your goals are clear. Make sure your objectives are doable and have a reasonable scope.
Optimize Page Speed
Page speed is crucial, take it seriously. Do you know what users do when they have to wait for a page to load for an eternity? They leave and hunt for information elsewhere.
People these days have considerably higher expectations due to technology, and using a website is no exception. When a webpage loads more slowly than four seconds, 25% of visitors leave the site, and customer satisfaction drops by 16% for every additional second.
You can speed up your website by:
- Compressing your files,
- Incorporating a content delivery network,
- Working on your code, and minifying it.
Carefully Manage URL Redirects
Nobody enjoys accessing a website and seeing a 404 error.
It’s time to start redirecting older pages on your website so that visitors are forwarded to the new version of the page when you switch your website over to a new URL format. A 301 redirect is the appropriate redirect syntax for this situation. By selecting this option you inform search engines that you have permanently changed the original URL to the new destination.
The old pages’ entire traffic flow will be instantly diverted to the new one. The search engines advise using this form of redirect to lessen the harm to your SEO. Users will find the redirection to be rather seamless, which enhances their experience.
How to map URL redirects:
Make a list of all the URLs you intend to maintain as well as those you won’t be utilizing anymore.
Make a second list of the stuff you want to keep and give it a new URL.
Compare each outdated URL to its successor.
Match each of the URLs you are getting rid of to fresh material that deals with a related subject.
Provide developers with a list of new content mapping situations so they can implement redirects.
Update Your XML Sitemap
Your SEO rankings will benefit from having an updated XML sitemap. By clearly describing the structure of your website and the order in which your pages should be prioritized, it makes it easier for search engine crawlers to identify and index the content on your site.
However, a sitemap shouldn’t be static. You will have to manually update the site map after a website redesign to reflect the revised design. If not, search engines like Google might not be able to rapidly and thoroughly crawl your website because they don’t always look at your sitemap. In actuality, they only ever crawl your sitemap when they initially come across it or when you actively notify them that it has changed.
Finally, Hire Professional SEO and Website Redesign Services
It’s critical to provide your personnel with the appropriate resources if you want to protect your SEO during a website revamp process.
Hire an SEO specialist or use a member of your staff that has expertise in this field. The likelihood that you will need to make big changes to go back to your original search engine rankings is reduced when you involve them early on in the project.
The SEO expert can also offer advice on how to enhance the design to take into account the most recent developments in this sector. Having an SEO consultant on hand ensures that you don’t miss anything significant that has just been introduced because Google algorithms are always changing.