Planning to redesign your website?
I don’t think that it is an easy decision to take. You need to consider so many things while doing the redesign stuff. No matter if you own a blog or an ecommerce website, or a simple website only. You need to take consideration of so many things before initiating the process.
Normally what happens is when we decide to redesign our website, we ignore some very important things and then after redesigning we came to know that there are some issues present on the website or you faces sudden downfall in the organic traffic to your website.
If you are the owner of a blog and run this website just for hobby purpose, then at least you can be able to ignore such mistakes for a few days, but think about an ecommerce websites, and you can easily understand the importance of the downfall of traffic for it.
A few days back one of my known person redesigned their website. Although their business runs on offline mode only, but their website was the prime source of leads for them from last 3-4 yours. Out of sudden they realized that their customers are paying for their services, but the payment was not being credited to their accounts. Similarly within 3-4 days they realized that their organic traffic was on a downfall since the redesign.
The moment I receive their call in this regard I do understand the problems and I rectified the same. The moment I was sitting in the office of that gentleman I thought to share this experience in the form of a blog and hence I decided to write this post.
SEO Tips for Website Redesign
So here are some SEO tips while you decided to redesign your website:
One of the biggest blunders any website owner or website design and development team ever does is to launch the new design without doing all the testing of the website properly.
Normally when you decide to redesign your existing website, never do it in hurry. Take plenty of time to test each and every pages of the new site, so that none of the bugs should remain present while you decided to launch it.
Once you are sure about every aspect of your website, then only it is recommended to launch the new look. While launching the new site, always make sure that it should be tested once again after it is live, so that all the bugs should be rectified immediately if any found on the live server.
Now the mistake of the website which I discussed above was something related to this only. While in beta testing the designing and development company gave their own accounts detail, and since they live the same details without checking the site, so my known person’s account was not credited for the payments made by their visitors. It was actually going to the accounts of the design and development company.
So, while redesigning any website which uses the ecommerce facility, must be rechecked for so many times, unless you will be confirmed that everything is all right on the site.
One of the most common mistakes which happen with in most of the redesigning cases is about ignoring the robots.txt file, which accidently copies to the live server and start indicating search engines to stop indexing your website.
See let me explain this to you all. Robots.txt is a text files which instructs the bots of search engines to index or no-index the areas of your website. Normally through this file we hide some areas like testing folders or some personal files etc. from search engines.
Normally while redesigning process if a new robots.txt file is created on the testing folder, it actually gets copied to the main server as well. Normally it happens accidentally only, and it happened with the gentleman as well. They actually asked their website design and development company to launch their new website which was actually residing on the server of that web design company, and they did uploaded all the files without considering the fact that robots.txt also overwrite the existing file on the main server.
Thus Google stop indexing their new looking website within a few days and their organic traffic went down badly.
Since I already have seen people doing such mistakes, I realized both of the mistakes and rectified them immediately.
If you don’t want any such types of mistake should happen with any of your website, always choose the Website Designing and Development Company wisely.
While robots.txt issue can be ignored if you follow this technique:
Always use the robots.txt file on your main server only to no-index the testing folder of your website. Instead of creating a new robots.txt file on the testing folder, it is always advisable to use the existing robots.txt file of your main server, if it is there, else you can create a new file on the root server only, not on the folder itself. This way you can stop this accidental copy and paste of the robots.txt file from the folder to the root server.
So, you applied the same, but then again there are chances that your website is getting less organic traffic after the redesign. Here are some of the reasons which might happen with your website:
There are chances that each individual pages of your website might have used the term robots noindex and nofollow. These are two tags which designers and developers normally use with test pages. They use to do this to let search engine stop from following this particular page, and by mistake it might remain there on the live server as well.
It is always advisable to test the source code of almost all the files to check if this tag:
<meta name=”robots” content=”noindex, nofollow”>
is present on them or not.
The other reasons which might happen with your redesign are the 301 redirects of your website. This is a process to let search engines know that a particular page of your website has been moved to another one permanently.
It is normally used in the case when a redesign of your website occurs with an address change of your website. In this case you must need to use 301 redirects to let search engines know that you have moved your website to a new destination.
Once the search engine spider reaches to your ord URL, they found a page which does not exist any more on your server; they will stop indexing the same. Thus 301 redirects is the best way to let them know that this particular page has been moved to a new location.
So these were some small-small SEO things (SEO tips for website redesign) which we normally ignore while redesigning a website. If you have chosen your SEO guy wisely, you need not to worry about these things. Like I always say that investing decent amount on quality SEO guys is always better than saving a few bucks. Normally people try to save some bucks by associating with poor SEO guys.
If your new website is having none of these mistakes and still suffering from a loss of organic traffic then I must say you should check if there are any algorithmic updates in between. It might also be another reason of the downfall of the organic traffic of your website.
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