The 3 Most Important SEO Tasks When Launching a New Site
So you’re unhappy with your current website and you’ve decided it’s time for a new one. You've spent months designing a beautiful site that will amaze your customers and leave all your competitors with chest pains. Surely this fresh start will boost your site traffic and ROI! But now, after a few short weeks, your site has endured an unhealthy drop in traffic. You begin to worry, but hope that your customers are just getting used to the new design. A few weeks become a few months and the next thing you know, traffic has decreased substantially and you're losing revenue.
Why has your website taken such a hit? It seems you've forgotten about the importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
At our Long Island ad agency, we believe that SEO is absolutely crucial for a website's success. The design phase of a new site can take so much out of you that you forgot about the core elements that drive traffic in the first place. Quality content, title tags containing relevant keywords, meta tags with accurate descriptions, trusted backlinks, and all the other SEO essentials will do more for your site than a pretty design. Don’t get me wrong: a fresh, new design can be just the thing your company needs for further success, but along with a new design comes SEO tasks that must be completed to maintain your traffic. Below are a few EGC-recommended SEO tasks that will help you bring in more traffic, rather than lose the traffic you already had.
If you optimized your old site properly and had a dedicated link-building program, you should be concerned about losing any followed backlinks that you gained. Making sure that the proper redirects are put in place prior to launch, will help your website preserve any domain or page authority that you worked hard to acquire. Also, there is a good chance that your new site will have a whole new naming convention and possibly a new domain name. If you do not make sure that your old site's pages redirect to the same or most relevant pages of your new site, then a visitor will be served a 404 error page or “Page Not Found” message. Setting up redirects should be your first task when preparing for a new site to go live. Some followed backlinks may also bring in a substantial amount of traffic.
2. Technical Audit
Analyze your old site to find errors that affected its ranking. Discovering what problems your old site had is the easiest way to prevent your new site from having those same errors. For example, if your old site had a ton of duplicate content, you'll be more cautious when writing content for your new site, which in turn will achieve a higher ranking. Quality content is a beautiful thing.
Your site brings in traffic because it shows up for particular keywords in search engines. You want to make sure that your new site is optimized for similar (if not the same) keywords. If your site stops showing up in search engines for your old site's keywords, then you will lose the traffic that you had already gained.
Never forget that the primary goal of a new site is to bring in new traffic, so be sure not to lose the traffic you already had!
Written by Jeremy Waszak, Search Coordinator