When redesigning your website, the outcome may be both positive and negative. The main goal is often improving the overall page experience, without losing valuable traffic. A better page experience for the visitor can increase engagement and conversion rate. Redesigning your website can also put your visitor traffic at risk. The important part is how you do it. Let’s look at the most important SEO guidelines to follow when giving your website a makeover.
Scan Your Site’s Current Performance
The first thing that needs to be done when looking to redesign your website is to look at every possible metric to get an overview of your site’s performance currently. A heatmap can help you better understand your traffic and how visitors are actually using your site. Analyzing the bounce rate and time spent on site can help you understand the amount of sales each landing page is generating. This will show you which pages to focus on, which to leave be, and which to delete.
Site Goals for SEO
When you’ve scanned your site’s current performance, the next step is to define your SEO goals for the redesign. It’s best to break these goals into the main goal and subgoals. Some examples of thee goals are:
- Longer time on website
- Increase in keyword rankings
- Increase in organic traffic
- More sessions
- More conversions from organic traffic
Be sure you set realistic, achievable, and measurable goals in your redesign.
Do Outreach and Optimize Existing Content
If SEO performance is your primary goal in the redesign, you’ll want to optimize all your existing content (and new content) based on search intent and keyword analysis. Having user friendly content based on the most important keywords is important. Be sure to optimize titles, headings, meta descriptions, URLs, images, and the main body content. While on page SEO is very important, in order to optimize SEO performance, off page optimization is vital as well.
Run an SEO Audit and Set Up Redirects
This is a very important part of keeping or enhancing your website’s SEO value. By running a content audit, you’ll be able to identify the content that has low value and content that drains your crawl budget. There’s a good chance these are not worth updating and should instead be removed or redirected with 301 redirects. When changing the URL structure, making redirects are very important. This ensures that ranking will remain consistent and will help avoid broken links.
Updating Site Structure
Updating Your Sitemap
When your new site is up and running, you’ll need to update and submit your sitemap for Google. This is your website’s floor plan and lists your URLs so that search engines like Google can understand the important pages. This will also allow Google and your users to understand your new site immediately, which you can make sure the redesign works well for everyone.
As we all are aware, SEO is not a one time thing. It’s alive and must be fed daily to keep breathing. Redesigning your website is an excellent way to achieve your SEO goals.
About The Author: Lauren Payne
Lauren is a skilled account manager, social media marketer and content writer. She brings many years of marketing, sales and account management experience to Raincross.
Before joining Raincross, she worked for numerous non profit organizations and taught special education within the Riverside Unified School District (RUSD).
Lauren was born and raised in Riverside, CA where she is currently (and happily!) raising her three daughters. She graduated from University of California, Riverside with a BA in Sociology, and went on to earn her Master's degree in Special Education from Chapman University.
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