So you are about to launch a new website.
Or maybe you are redesigning your existing one. Or maybe you are just planning out your strategy.
What do you do next?
Consultant with an SEO specialist, that’s what.
When considering, planning or actually migrating & launching a new website you should consult with an SEO specialist before making any decisions.
When it comes to search engines, knowing and understanding how they work in relation to websites is vital, for two main reasons:
Let’s look at some of the reasons you should consult an SEO specialist in more detail, specifically the benefits you will get from doing so:
If you are still not convinced on consulting with an SEO specialist for the benefits you’ll experience, maybe it’s time to flip it around and look at some of the things that can go wrong.
We’ve touched on some of these points already, but let’s look at some of the problems from not knowing what you are doing when launching or re-launching a website:
It is very common to see fluctuations and declines in your rankings and organic traffic after a site migration (even if things go smoothly).
You don’t want these drops to continue for the long term though. Nor do you want a decline to become a steadily increasing decline over time.
Migrating from one domain to another holds a lot of risks: mainly losing any authority the old domain has established and not adequately passing it to the new domain. Similarly, just putting a new design live isn’t without its risks. If key pages are not carried over, your traffic can take a big hit.
A broken internal link is a link on one of your pages that doesn’t work. Typically these will result in a 404 error page.
This often happens with new website launches when pages on the new site haven’t been carried over or maybe the URL has been renamed. Often, internal links will still point to the old versions, leading them to become broken.
Google (and potential customers) use there’s links to navigate your site, so they really need fixing, or not being broken in the first place.
After a site migration, it is not uncommon for your conversion rate to drop. There can be many reasons for this such as: any changes to the platform, form design changes, a drastic change in page elements and many more.
Getting to the root of conversion drops can create additional jobs later down the line, which could have been avoided.
If a website is not in Google’s index, users will not be able to find it, so it’s very important to avoid any indexation issues.
It is important to be aware of URLs being indexed or not. If not, you’ll need to investigate and find out what the issue is.
So, you’ve seen why you should hire an SEO specialist and what can go wrong if you don’t, so the next question is: when should you consult/hire an SEO?
The simple answer is: as soon as possible.
The right time for you to consult with an SEO specialist is before you hire a web designer.
You may have something in mind for how you want your website to look. But how do you know this is SEO friendly without speaking to an expert? It is a lot easier to build a website around a strong SEO foundation than trying to modify something that’s already been built.
Even better, hire an SEO expert and a web designer from the same agency. That way, they can work together to ensure the best results for both the designs and SEO
SEO is complicated. When launching a new website, there are lots of moving parts to check are working correctly.
You want to map out 301 redirects, test for usability, ensure it’s built for mobile-first indexing, make sure every page is optimised, check for broken links and site speed and make sure any tracking codes are in place.
And that’s just a selection of things that should be in your launch checklist.
As you can see, there’s quite a lot of work involved in launching a new website. Maybe you should consider hiring the experts?