How to Recover SEO Ranking and Traffic After Website Restructure?
SEO and website layout work in sync, so when a new site gets designed, the SEO goal is to enhance your organic traffic and ranking. Similarly, there needs to be careful planning, when your site design gets restructured. Unfortunately, after launching a redesigned website, the organic traffic tanks, which triggers panic. Organic traffic loss shouts loss of sales, but the possible setback can be fixed.
How to identify the errors in website restructuring and fix to recover ranking and traffic?
Gather information and confirm
Use information from Google Analytics, Google Search Console, website URL, launch date, historic keyword ranking, and more. Look for the start of traffic drop – was it on the same day, or week after the redesign. Drop in traffic and ranking may be slow or sudden. For traffic, drop confirmation look at organic traffic and other channels, in order to find out if a redesign is a key cause.
Compare old and recent data to identify the losses
For analysis and repairs understand the most affected old and new pages comparing –
- Landing page traffic
Usual suspects or common problems
When a new site gets launched you will need to keep the same URLs and create 301 WordPress redirect from old to a new page, especially for crucial contents. Check the URLs enjoying the highest traffic before redesigning, and visit these pages after redesigning. If a redirect is ignored it can cause loss of traffic. If pages redirect then use a crawling tool to find out that the 301 redirect points to the right page [and not to 302 redirects or 404 errors].
Content that performed well previously is missing, so this can hurt your ranking. Make sure that every page with high traffic exists, and has the right redirects.
Changes made in the content can affect, so perform a qualitative review of the new content. Is it good? What changed?
Protocol & domain problems
If your site is transferred from HTTP to HTTPs, then there will be changes in your domain and subdomains. Be careful in redirecting your protocol, domain, and subdomain.
Consider several historic redirects associated with protocol, domains, and subdomains, which can lead to traffic fall.
Technical issues include crawl hindrances, indexation, canonical URLs, etc. Many aspects may go wrong! Perform website audits and SEO to make sure there are no technical glitches.
From old to new, basics get ignored at times. Therefore crawl across to ensure all the basics are taken care of. Take backups beforehand. You might even have to reset WordPress if things go out of hand.
Larger the website, the more turbulence it can experience. Be patient and check everything. If traffic is fluctuating for a few weeks, wait! This can be temporary. New pages are getting indexed as old pages fall out, soon traffic can pick up.
If everything is right but still you lose traffic……. Check security, because hacking can impact traffic!