How To Fix Traffic Drops After A Website Redesign
Redesigning the layout of your website is something that could prove to be hugely beneficial. You may have only launched a few years ago, but with creative web design trends consistently changing and user experience becoming an increasingly important factor, redesigning your website can give your brand an edge over any competitors. In fact, it’s almost impossible for an outdated website to deliver the results that you require to reach the very top. When you undergo a website redesign, you’re likely to expect increases in traffic, conversion and most importantly sales. However, this isn’t always the case since certain site can actually lose traffic after a redesign takes place. Here, we’re taking a closer look at the causes of this, and how you can fix traffic drops after a website redesign!
What Are The Causes For Traffic Drops?
There are three main causes for traffic drops after a website redesign, these include:
- Site Structure
- Site Copy
Generally, minor traffic drops on a site are expected for a few days following a redesign, as a result of Google needing to crawl and index all new pages in order to provide the latest version to site visitors. However, the three causes listed above are likely to be the case if you are noticing a significant amount of traffic dropping off, or if the traffic decline has been occurring for longer than a week.
How Can Redirects Help?
If you have not set up appropriate redirects to tell search engines and browsers where the new version of each page is now located, then it is highly likely that you will cause a decline in traffic to your site. Unless all of your URLs remain exactly the same, you will need to recreate any existing pages and then redirect them where necessary. Ensure that you are implementing 301 redirects for all of the old pages, so that traffic returns to normal within an effective time-frame.
What About Site Structure?
Site structure is becoming increasingly important in the world of search. Not only can this help Google to accurately index your site, but it can also help to improve user navigation and experience. If you are drastically changing your site’s structure, then a new sitemap will need to be recreated and submitted to Search Console in order to speed up the indexing rate of the new site.
Revisiting your internal links is also important, particularly if you’ve changed many of your URLs. Crawl issues are likely to occur if your internal links are pointing to broken or outdated URLs. There are several common mistakes to take into consideration when changing the structure of your site, to ensure that you are fully prepared prior for implementation.
Is On Page Content Important?
Generally, as part of a website redesign, you will find that your entire site’s copy will need to be revamped, or in some cases, completely rewritten. The original target keywords that your site may have been looking to promote may now be outdated, or have increased dramatically in competition and therefore require a brand-new content strategy to ensure that you are still competitive within rankings. Perhaps you’re looking to implement content for local SEO purposes in order to narrow down your audience? Ensure that your new site design can provide your visitors with high quality, informative content at all times while ensuring your keyword optimisation is up-to-date.
How You Can Avoid Traffic Drops?
If you are still in the process of redesigning your site, and you’re concerned that your site will be impacted by a significant drop in traffic, then knowing how to avoid this is of paramount importance. Generally, consulting an SEO strategist like ourselves can help to ensure that you can avoid any serious consequences of your brand-new site design. There are other changes that can also be made before, during and after the redesign process that you may want to take into consideration. Making SEO a key part of the process is important to help avoid significant traffic drops where possible.
As previously discussed, site structure and redirects are a key factor in ensuring that your site does not lose traffic when the redesign goes live. Crawling your existing site and using this data to structure your new sitemap prior to the new site being redesigned is exceptionally important. This can allow you to make any necessary changes, and ensure that all of your URLs are logical. If your general structure is remaining the same, then you can check to ensure that all relevant subfolders and page titles are fixed. Setting up 301 (permanent) redirects prior to having your site go live is crucial, and ensuring that you are implementing 301’s instead of 302’s, as well as canonicals is also important.
Last, but certainly not least, you should ensure that your analytics tracking code for your site is in place before it goes live. This common oversight often leads businesses to panic substantially as they believe they have lost all of their traffic. More often than not, it is due to incorrect tracking codes being implemented or forgotten about, as part of the redesign process. This tracking code is vital to ensure that you can accurately track every element of your site redesign. This will help you to ensure that you are aware of how every page of your site is being received and where each conversion is coming from.
Site redesigns can be an extremely beneficial process, whether you’re undergoing a full brand redesign, or just an upgraded site to modernise your brand’s offerings slightly. At Absolute Digital Media, we can provide you with a complete web design and development process in-house, while incorporating all of the important SEO elements which will help to ensure that your traffic levels do not drop significantly after your redesign. To find out more about how to fix traffic drops after a site redesign, get in touch with a member of our expert team on 0800 088 6000 today to find out more information on how to make your site the best it can be.