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Website Redesign

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Website redesign, if not done in the proper manner, could spell doom for a site in the search rankings. Soumya Shankar & Vishal, who work as SEO professionals with Convonix, have created a resourceful …

Website redesign, if not done in the proper manner, could spell doom for a site in the search rankings. Soumya Shankar & Vishal, who work as SEO professionals with Convonix, have created a resourceful presentation on the factors that need to be taken care of, while you are redesigning a website. Our website design & usability team follows these processes with the utmost care, and have successfully managed to replace entire websites, without seeing major fluctuations in rankings.

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  • What is a Site Redesign?Revamping, changing the look and feel of a website partially or completely.Giving your website a “facelift”Improving user interface
  • Reasons you would opt for a website redesign:
  • Very old and obsoleteUnprofessional, unsuitable to your businessBusiness goals have changed over time
  • Existing site is just “Pretty rather than functional”Navigation is difficult or complexArchitecture is haphazard
  • If you want to migrate to a new CMS/Technology/Scripting Language maybe because your current one is outdated or doesn’t support certain features or simply is not flexible enough.
  • The common mistakes that companies make is redesign and make the website live and seek to do SEO as the next step.
  • Steps one should take before going for a redesign
  • RESEARCH thoroughly. Analyze current site; its weakness and strengthsYou should research about your current rankings, traffic, conversions. Also research on the keywords, the subsequent landing pages which bring you the major traffic. Use GA and even WMT to gauge impressions.Be clear with your objectives suitable to the business. Have thorough analysis and documentation done before changing anything on the site. Also the content and keywords that can/should be retained on the new site as well. Consult tech team, client and fix a timeline.Understand your constraints –technical, financial and other factors which may crop up.
  • You should research about your current rankings, traffic, conversions. Also research on the keywords, the subsequent landing pages which bring you the major traffic. Have thorough analysis and documentation done before changing anything on the site. Also the content and keywords that can/should be retained on the new site as well.
  • Ask the client for a wireframe for the site. Discuss with your client, design team and give your suggestions for factors like theme building, information architecture etc.Contemplate the possibility of sub-domain architecture if required
  • Discuss with your client about the possibility of new keywords along with new content(if any)If additional pages or sections are added, then carry out an additional keyword analysis
  • Decide how your SEO elements will change along with your new site architecture.Stress on good, authenticcontent. Best time to include the content you always wanted to and the way you wanted to.Also recommend the corresponding elements like title, metas etc for the complete site
  • Go for URL re-writes if you have lot of dynamic URLs on your site. Contemplate the feasibilityHave proper static URLs according to the new pages and incorporate vital keywordsHave 301 redirects if you are planning rewrites
  • Some important details and minor things which needs to be taken care of that are sometimes overlooked or undetermined.
  • Primarily, and most importantly, keep everything about the site, its user interface simple before you start planning and get carried away with extravagant ideas. Do not clutter your site or have too many elements
  • Give consideration about turning off your existing users due to complete revamp. Offer a Help option or “Take a tour Option” to make user the experience better.Take care of the page load time as it is a SEO ranking factor as well as for better user experienceIf your long funnel is the reason you are losing out on conversions go for a shorter funnel and analyze the page/path where you are losing out on conversions
  • Avoid changing domain name as far as possible. If it is inevitable, then have a marketing strategy in place to lure your existing users to your new brand name/site.Domain name could not only affect your organic campaign but also your PPC Campaign drastically.
  • Analyze the incoming links to your site and how some links may change with restructuring of content. Also analyze how internal links will change and to what page should they be linked.Avoid going overboard with Flash and avoid blunders like a JS Navigation structure. Also have a crawlable footer link structureThere should be co-ordination between the marketing, tech and the SEO team for a balanced outcomeThe launch for a seasonal website should be carried out in the off season
  • The Analytics code should be present in the siteHave XML/HTML sitemap of the site ready. The XML sitemap should be included in the robots.txt fileTest the site in all browsers
  • After you have launched the site:Check if your tracking code is working properlySubmit sitemap in WMT, monitor performance, check for crawl errorsStart building links aggressively to the new siteCompare , compile and analyze your statistics before and after you have launched the site.
  • Have a historical sample set of data to compare with, i.e. consider it as your benchmark. You can check/compare the following parameters:Run a ranking report.Check your pages indexed in Google and Bing.Run a page load time test.Note the bounce rate, time on site, pages per visits, and goal completions. Run a site spider crawl of the live site to get a good list of URLs on the current site. You may need this for any clean of missed redirects.

Transcript

  • 1. Website RedesignPrecautions, Next steps &Best Practices By Soumya Shankar & Vishal Shah SEO Team at Convonix
  • 2. Why?
  • 3. • Outdated• Unprofessional• Change in Business Goals Why?
  • 4. Or just change for the better Why?
  • 5. • "Pretty" than functional• Complex Navigation/Disorganized Architecture Why?
  • 6. Simply Bad Why?
  • 7. CMS migration Why?
  • 8. Common MistakeRedesign First, SEO later
  • 9. Pre-LaunchInitial Steps
  • 10. R-E-S-E-A-R-C-H !• Analyze Site• Gather Data/Current Stats• Define Objectives• Decide Timeline• Understand Limitations Pre-Launch
  • 11. Make Use of Analytics Pre-Launch
  • 12. Wireframe & Navigation
  • 13. Keywords Pre-Launch
  • 14. SEO Elements• URL• Content• Title• Meta tags• Heading Tags• Alt/Title Attributes Pre-Launch
  • 15. URL Re-writes?• Dynamic URL• Feasibility• 301 Redirects Pre-Launch
  • 16. Precautions
  • 17. Keep it Simple. Precautions
  • 18. • Putting off existing users• Page Load Time• Shorter Funnels Precautions
  • 19. Changing Domain Name Precautions
  • 20. •Flash and JavaScript•Team Work•Launch when the traffic is low•Analyze Incoming links Precautions
  • 21. Before you go Live!• Analytics Code• Sitemap• Testing• Check for Duplication• Custom 404
  • 22. Post Launch Audit• Check Tracking code• Webmaster Tools• Build Links• Compare with previous stats
  • 23. Benchmarking• Ranking Report• Pages Indexed• Analytics Parameters• Site crawl
  • 24. Tips for Server Shift Shifting from Server A to Server B: 1. Copy site to server B while maintaining a copy on Server A 2. Check the functionality of the site on Server B. Check forms, navigation and other elements
  • 25. 3. Once the functionality is checked,change the DNS to server B. A copyof site on server A needs to bemaintained for 72 hours for the DNSto propagate4. After 72 hours, the site on serverA can be taken down
  • 26. Summary• Do your homework thoroughly• Design a checklist & stick to it at every stage• Balance SEO & Usability• DO NOT expect miracles overnight• Stay Alert!
  • 27. Thank you.