A Guide On Fixing & Avoiding Traffic Drops When You Redesign Your Website
The design of your website is one of the things that won’t stand the test of time. No matter how good it looks when you initially design it, there will come a time when it needs to be redesigned. An outdated website can negatively impact your business and once you redesign your site, you will most likely see an uptick in traffic and conversions. However, this doesn’t always happen and sometimes, there is a drop in traffic. We will now look at a few of the reasons why this may have happened and how you can fix them.
You should note that once you redesign your site, you will experience a traffic drop for the first few days. If that drop doesn’t correct itself back to at least original levels after those few days, then you have a problem. One of the first things that you need to look at are your redirects. The most important step when redesigning your website, is to set up redirects. These basically tell search engines the location of your new pages and without them, Google will think that those pages no longer exist. You need to check your crawl errors in Google’s search console and then set up 301 redirects for the old pages to your new ones. Once you do so, your traffic will return in a couple of weeks.
Next, you will have to check your site structure. If a major change was made to the design and structure of the site, you will need to create a new sitemap. You should also check out all the internal links on your site and make sure that they are pointing to the updated pages.
Thirdly, the problem may lay within your new site’s copy. When a redesign is done, the copy on your site is usually rewritten. If your copywriter does this without retaining each page’s targeted and optimized keywords, then this will cause a drop in your traffic. Google’s algorithm relies on specific on-page optimization to rank sites, so make sure that your copywriter is experienced in SEO. If the traffic drop was due to this, simply go back through all your pages and re-optimize for your keywords.
There are a few ways that you can avoid any traffic drops during a redesign. Some of them include making SEO a part of the process from the beginning, properly planning the new site’s architecture, setting up 301 redirects, creating a new sitemap and ensuring that your Google analytics code is in place on the newly redesigned site. Many people forget to place their Google analytics code on the new site and mistakenly think that all of their traffic has gone.
In closing, we have just looked at some of the common reasons why you may experience a traffic drop after doing a redesign of your website. All of these issues are relatively easy to fix, however, you should take steps beforehand to avoid them if possible.