Website Redesigns

Website Redesign Recommendations

Golden rule: Keep the URLs of pages in the same structure as they are on the original website. This helps on three fronts;
1) This makes it easy for visitors to find the new pages (if they have bookmarked or have remembered them) and
2) it retains 100% of the authority that flows to the page.
3) it minimizes the number of redirects needed to prevent 404 errors.

Pull a website audit and fix errors identified during the new site build.

Website Migration Checklist

- Audit your existing website to identify issues that should be avoided on the new site.
- Prioritize certain high-performing pages/sections
- Keep a record of current organic keyword rankings for comparison later. 
- Check the Page load Speed of key pages. 
- Crawl the old website and keep a record of URLs to cross-reference later. 
- Ensure the test website doesn't appear in search indexes.
- Crawl the test site to spot errors to fix prior to going live.
- Prepare a Useful and Custom 404 with more than a polite message. (Make it fun and engaging using your brand's tone of voice.)
- Keep the same analytics profile, so pre-launch and post-launch can be compared.

It is important to remember that Google's UA code will be sunsetting on July 1, 2023.

URL Redirecting

- Check that any redirects are working properly
- Crawl URLs from the old site to check 301 redirects are going to the right place.
- Check that the analytics is recording traffic
- Crawl the new website and check for errors
- Keep existing sitemaps available for 2-3 weeks so Google has time to crawl redirects
- Compare the loading time of all key pages.

Activities for Subsequent Weeks After New Site Launch

- Update URLs that have changed
- Check for new crawl errors and changes in Google Search Console
- Monitor changes in page rankings, traffic levels, and conversions.

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