SEO Disaster


Redesigning a website can be an exciting process, but it’s important to keep SEO in mind throughout the process. Failing to consider SEO when redesigning your site can lead to a drop in organic traffic and rankings, so it’s essential to take the necessary steps to avoid any destruction of your SEO. In this article, we’ll explore how not to destroy your SEO when redesigning your website. We’ll look at some practical tips and advice on how to ensure that you don’t damage your SEO efforts during the redesign process. Let’s get started!


Planning Ahead

When it comes to redesigning your website, it’s important to plan ahead to ensure that you don’t destroy your SEO. Consider how the new design will affect the structure and content of your website, as well as any changes in URL paths or page titles.


It’s also important to consider how the new design might affect user experience. Will users be able to easily find what they’re looking for? Will they be able to navigate between pages quickly and efficiently? Additionally, make sure that all content is optimized for search engines by including keywords in meta tags, titles, and headings. Finally, use analytics to measure how changes have affected website traffic and conversion rates.


Preparing An SEO Audit

Now that the planning phase is complete, it’s time to proceed with an SEO audit. An SEO audit will help you identify any areas of your website that may need attention as you begin the redesign process. It’s important to conduct an SEO audit before you begin making changes so that you can see how the changes will affect your website’s rankings in search engine results pages (SERPs).


The audit should include both on-page and off-page factors like page titles, meta tags, content quality, backlinks, and social media presence. You should also take into account any technical issues that could negatively affect your website’s performance such as slow loading times or broken links. Once you have identified the areas that require improvement, create a plan for addressing each issue and make sure to implement it before launching your new website.


Maintaining URL Structures

Maintaining URL structures is an important part of not destroying your SEO when redesigning your website. URLs are essentially the backbone of a website and need to stay consistent in order for search engine crawlers to track them and measure their authority. It’s not just about keeping the same root domain, but also making sure that any subdirectories remain the same from page to page. This helps search engines index and rank every page on the site properly.


In addition, it’s important to maintain the same URL parameters, such as query strings, even when changing content or styling within a page. This ensures that search engines can properly identify each page as having different content from other similar pages. If you change too much at once, you run the risk of confusing search engine crawlers and hurting your SEO rankings as a result. All in all, it’s critical to remain consistent with URLs when redesigning your website in order to protect your SEO efforts.


Ensuring Redirects Are Properly Set Up

Redesigning your website can be a daunting task, but it’s especially nerve-wracking if you’re worried about destroying your SEO efforts. Fortunately, there is one simple step you can take to ensure your SEO stays intact: setting up proper redirects. Redirects are essential when completely restructuring a website and help preserve the link equity of any existing pages that may have been deleted or moved. Without redirects, any existing links pointing to those pages will simply lead to an error page. Not only does this hurt SEO rankings, but it also reflects poorly on your website’s brand.


301 redirect


To ensure redirects are properly set up during the redesign process, start by creating an inventory of all old URLs and mapping them out to their new corresponding URLs. This way, you’ll be able to quickly identify which pages need redirection and where they should be redirected to on the new site. It’s also important that you use the correct type of redirect for each URL—301 redirects are best for preserving link equity and making sure search engines understand that a page has permanently moved. If done right, these simple steps can help keep your SEO safe throughout the redesign process.


Monitoring Your SEO Performance Post-Launch

It’s essential to monitor the performance of your website post-launch, especially when it comes to SEO. This is because a redesign can have unforeseen consequences and can cause certain elements of your site to be overlooked or forgotten. To ensure that your SEO is not affected, you should keep an eye on key metrics such as organic traffic, rankings, keyword performance, and overall visibility. Paying attention to these metrics will help you identify any issues immediately and take action if necessary. Additionally, you should use tools like Google Search Console and Google Analytics to track your website’s performance over time and make sure that everything is running smoothly. By doing so, you’ll be able to ensure that your redesign has been successful in terms of SEO and reap the rewards from increased organic traffic.


gym seo ranking report


Frequently Asked Questions


How Do I Make Sure My Website Is Optimized For SEO?


Optimizing your website for SEO is essential if you want to ensure that your content is easily found by search engines. It’s important to create a website structure and content that is friendly to both users and search engines, as well as making sure all of the technical elements are in place. This includes optimizing page titles, meta descriptions, alt text, and more. Additionally, when redesigning or updating a website, it’s important to keep any existing SEO elements in place so that rankings aren’t negatively impacted.


What Factors Should I Consider When Planning A Website Redesign?


When planning a website redesign, there are several factors to consider in order to ensure it is optimized for SEO. These include ensuring all content remains the same, avoiding any major changes to the existing URL structure, and creating a sitemap that can be easily crawled by search engines. Additionally, you should also look into implementing HTML tags such as title tags and meta descriptions, as well as making sure your content is relevant and up-to-date. By considering these factors when planning a website redesign, you can help ensure your SEO remains intact.


Is It Better To Use Absolute Or Relative URLs For My Website?


When considering whether to use absolute or relative URLs for your website, it is important to think about what works best for your particular needs. Absolute URLs are those that contain the full domain name, while relative URLs refer to a page’s location relative to the current page. Both have their advantages and disadvantages depending on how they are used. For example, absolute URLs can be more reliable when linking between pages within a website, however, they may be slower than relative URLs as each time the page is accessed, the entire URL must be processed by the browser. On the other hand, relative URLs can save space in HTML documents and also reduce loading times as they’re more lightweight compared to absolute URLs. Ultimately it’s up to you which type of URL you decide to use for your website.


What Tools Can I Use To Track My Website’S SEO Performance?


Tracking your website’s SEO performance is key to ensuring that your website is successful. There are a variety of tools available to help you do this, such as Google Search Console, Moz Pro, and Ahrefs. Each of these tools provides detailed insights into your website’s search engine visibility and overall performance, allowing you to spot any potential issues and take corrective action when necessary.


How Do I Ensure My Website Is Properly Indexed By Search Engines?


To ensure your website is properly indexed by search engines, you should use a sitemap to provide an outline of the pages and content on your website. This will help search engine crawlers to more easily identify and access the content on your site. You can also submit a request to have your website crawled by major search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Additionally, make sure all of the content on your website is crawlable, meaning it can be read and understood by search engine crawlers.



Before starting a website redesign, it’s important to consider how the changes will affect your SEO. You’ll need to use absolute URLs, track your SEO performance with the right tools, and ensure your website is properly indexed by search engines. Taking these steps will help you avoid any unnecessary losses in traffic or rankings when redesigning your website.


If you’re uncertain about how to approach the process, I recommend consulting an SEO expert for assistance. With their expertise and guidance, you’ll be able to make sure that your website remains optimized while also giving it a fresh new look.



Nothing lasts forever, and that’s especially true for a website’s design. Not even fashion falls out of style as quickly as a website’s design. Browsing habits change rapidly, leaving once-cutting-edge websites looking woefully outdated after a handful of years, and sometimes even sooner than that. The biggest challenge is figuring out whether it’s time to redesign or not.


This is a difficult question, as it’s hard to judge for ourselves when we’re extremely familiar with our own sites. Everything seems fine when you’re using a site daily, but that familiarity might hide some fundamental problems that could be fixed with a redesign.


Change is difficult, yet sometimes it’s totally necessary. If you’re on the fence about whether you’re in need of a redesign or not, these five reasons might convince you it’s time.


It’s Too Slow

Speed kills, as the saying goes. For websites, it’s slowness that kills. Loading times are one of the most important — and the most overlooked — aspects of a website.


Users have no patience for slow loading times and will quickly leave a site if its performance is subpar. As this infographic shows:



If your site doesn’t meet the high standards set by web users, then you’re turning off potential customers. An impeccably designed website with relevant content or products means nothing if the loading times are slow.


Does your site load at lightning fast speeds? If not, it’s time to optimize it. Sometimes all it takes is a minor retooling of elements — such as reconfiguring a slider of images. Other times, a full redesign might be needed.


This aspect of design is a challenge, as the need for compelling photos or videos is often at odds with desirable loading times. However, a perfect harmony of visuals and loading time can be achieved with enough work.


The Homepage Isn’t Working Efficiently

Thanks to the rise in search engine traffic and other forms of referral traffic, the home page isn’t what greets many visitors to your site. Social media now makes up about a third of all web traffic referrals, while search engines account for about the same percentage. This means that many users aren’t coming directly to your homepage but rather to another page on the site related to the content that interests them.


Despite the diminished importance, the home page is still a key piece of any website. If that front page isn’t looking too good, or if the design frustrates people looking for a specific thing, then odds are visitors won’t return to your site.


Design can be subjective, which is why you need cold, hard data to decide what your homepage needs. There are a variety of ways to test out what’s working — for example, A/B testing or utilizing a heat map. Implementing such tests will tell you how people are really interacting with your site. What you find might surprise you.


The Website Isn’t Responsive

A curious thing happened back in 2014. For the first time ever, mobile traffic exceeded desktop traffic. Since then, mobile traffic has continued to grow quickly while desktop traffic leveled off.



What this means is your site has to be designed with both mobile and desktop users in mind. Responsive design — a type of design that intuitively conforms to phones, tablets and the desktop — is a must for websites these days. With mobile traffic growing, you don’t want to be left behind with a site that only looks good on desktops.


The Branding Is Lacking

With all the behind-the-scenes stuff required to keep a website strong, from creating content to fulfilling orders, sometimes the branding falls to the wayside. If your marketing materials have changed, make sure that the site reflects these changes.


Having inconsistent materials is off-putting and looks unprofessional. Unifying your website to the rest of your branding makes for a much better user experience. It also helps build trust with users.


You’re Tired of the Look

Sometimes there doesn’t have to be any big underlying problem with your site to usher in a redesign. After a while, it’s normal to just be sick of the site and ready for a new look. If you’re tired of the way your site looks, then you should definitely consider a redesign. Your site is something you want to be proud of, and feeling bored with the design might make you less likely to put in the effort needed to make the website grow.


A fresh design is like a fresh start. You can restart your efforts and work on something that you’re truly proud of. Just make sure you go about the redesign smartly and listen to input. Too radical of a redesign might turn off your existing customers.


Putting in the Effort

Undertaking a redesign isn’t an easy process. If you’re doing the work yourself, then you can expect to spend a lot of time design and testing. If you outsource the work, then you might be spending a considerable amount of money to get it right. It’s an arduous process either way, so before a full redesign, you can experiment with some new elements on your existing site.


However, the end result can definitely be worth the effort. Attracting new customers and readers will be easier if you have a freshly designed site that gets everything right. Your job becomes a whole lot easier when all the elements of a great website are in place.



Lexie Lu is a designer and writer. She loves researching trends in the web and graphic design industry. She writes weekly on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner.

Balancing Redesign & SEO

It is necessary for companies to go for a website redesign every now and then. Websites and their designs have a habit of going obsolete in a rapidly changing technological environment. However, companies also put in a lot of effort into optimizing their sites. The last thing they want is to lose their high rankings because they inadvertently ruined the SEO work on their site during the redesigning process. That is why it is essential that they follow certain steps to safeguard their website.

1. One of the first steps to take is what many experts in the SEO industry refer to as a site audit. When the format of a site is being altered, a golden opportunity presents itself to the webmasters to review their site from the point of view of SEO. In fact on many occasions new ideas were developed during the redevelopment process for improving the quality of SEO on the site. Some of the queries that can be examined by the auditors are, if the Meta tags are being used effectively, whether the inbound links have the right anchor text and whether each page has been optimized for search engines. The auditors can also use Google to create a list of all the pages it has indexed. Evaluations can be done if the number of indexed pages is enough or if measures should be taken to get more pages indexed.

2. When a site is being redeveloped it stands to reason that some pages will be discarded and some pages will be rewritten. This naturally means that certain keywords will either no longer have any value, or care needs to be taken to see that they find their way into the new content. It is commonly noticed that some web pages are rendered obsolete. However, it will be a mistake to simply remove them. Outdated pages have their own worth. Prudence demands that Google Analytics is used by the webmaster to establish the amount of traffic that these pages generate. There will be times that it is simply not possible to accommodate a certain page within the new design. On the other hand it might be generating a lot of traffic, which no webmaster wants to lose. Using a 301 Redirect is a good way of solving this problem. This is also a good time to write new content keeping in mind all the algorithm updates.

301 Redirect Video

Additional Videos

3. One of the major problems that webmasters have to deal with is the change in URLs. The search engines have to be informed where the old URLs have been shifted. Webmasters have put a lot of effort into optimizing their URLs. The last thing they want is for all that good work to be undone. It is a good idea for developers to crawl their own site and understand the nature of the URLs that they are currently using. The results of the crawl should be documented in the form of reports and shared with the entire team so that they understand which links need to be migrated and where. It is also essential to perform an inbound link analysis, and understand the nature of the links and the websites they are connected to.

4. One of the best parts about website redesign is the opportunity that it offers to developers to actually improve their rankings by using new SEO techniques. Google is now looking at many new factors when it comes to ranking websites. Many of the old websites are not optimized using these latest requirements and consequently suffer from low rankings. Page speed is something that is being looked at quite keenly by Google. Websites with slow page speeds are prone to low rankings. When websites are being reformatted initiatives can be taken to speed up the pages on the site. Some pages also have too much unnecessary clutter on them. This can be removed to make the site more browser-friendly. If the site is not compatible across browsers then it can be rectified to make it so. Often it has been discovered that sites get higher rankings after a clever combination of old SEO work and new SEO techniques.

Author Bio:

This article has been written by Gops. Gops is the head of his own SEO Company. He is also a passionate writer having many publications and columns to his name.