How To Maintain The SEO Ranking When Redesigning A Website.

maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website

People are more curious about the design of their websites. Everyone is taking one step further to redesign the website.

The web design has changed so much that you can’t even look at the websites which were designed in the 90s. People are more aware of what a better design is.

If you’re also thinking about giving a new makeover to your existing website then there are many things which should be taken care of.

Many people make the worst web design mistakes while designing their clients’ website.

People are also concerned about the SEO of their websites. Well, you can maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website with a few precautions.

In this tutorial, you will learn the essential steps for your project.

Things To Do When You Start Redesigning Your Website

Before you jump into the redesigning process, you should learn about some crucial things which are important to retain the SEO.

#1. Never Work On The Live Website.

If you’re about to change the color combination or a few little things then only you can work on your live website.

You can set your website on maintenance mode so that your visitors can come back later.

But if you’re totally changing the structure then never touch that. It’s because you can’t know how much time would it take to do the whole redesigning work.

And you would even lose your visitors. The SEO of your website would get affected.

You can copy a live website to localhost created by XAMPP or WAMP.

#2. Keep Record of Permalinks.

Some people prefer to use a new domain for giving a new brand name to their websites.

During such situation, you should keep the same permalinks as you used on your previous domain. There are many things to do to keep the SEO when you move your website from one domain to another.

Suppose the permalink structures consist the date and you use new permalinks including only the post name, it would cost you.

The SEO of your website get affected.

Recommended :- How To Move WordPress To Another Domain Name Without Losing SEO?

#3. Note Down The 301 Redirects.

Your website may have a few 301 redirects which should be kept in the mind.

It’s because when you finish your website, you have to check all the pages which were redirected to some other pages in the previous theme.

You can check it using some tools on the web.

If you wouldn’t maintain the redirects, you would get 404 errors in the Google Search Console for those pages.

#4. Maintain The Navigation.

redesign website

To maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website, you should never forget about the navigation.

It’s because many SEO plugins provide the breadcrumbs option which somehow affects the SEO. You should create the better navigation.

And even from the perspective of the user experience, the bad navigation stands for the bad design.

#5. Know About Theme Change.

If you’re running a WordPress website then you can use your current theme.

It would be easy to update WordPress theme manually without losing any customization. Many web designers prefer to do the customization with the same theme.

It’s like upgrading. You can match the codes and then replace with the new design you have done on your local server.

To maintain the SEO, it’s important to use the themes which are SEO-optimized. If you shift to any bad theme then it won’t be good for the SEO ranking.

You should about changing your WordPress theme and what happens after that.

#6. Keep Track of The Backlinks.

If you’re going to shift to a new domain then it’s very important to keep track of the backlinks.

You may either ask the famous website owners to change the link address or you can use the 301 redirect to your new domain.

Check the status in your Google Search Console and if something goes wrong, you have to rethink about the redesigning.

#7. Don’t Change The Inbound Links.

One of the most important concepts for keeping the bounce rate of your website as low as possible is the inbound link.

To maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website, you should never change those links. Who knows, your readers won’t like the new design.

You should always keep one option to use.

Maybe you would need to shift back and start again with another web design concept.

#8. Build Better 404 Error Pages.

maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website

Though 404 error message isn’t really a message. Your readers get such message when the page has been shifted to somewhere else or permanently removed.

It’s important to create a better 404 page so that your readers get a well-designed page instead of a default error page.

It will help you to keep your readers attached which would maintain the SEO.

You can solve 404 error from the Google Search Console.

#9. Optimize The Images.

One of the major factors of SEO is keeping your images optimized. Keep the size of the new images light and add the “alt” text for every image.

Many people forget about it. And it’s very important to maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website.

Don’t you read it everytime you read an article about SEO tips and tricks? Tell your web designer to fix every single image.

#10. Check The Sitemap.

After all the designing, you should check the status of the sitemap. Submit again and test whether you get any 404 error or not.

And one more thing is to fetch the URL of your website from Google Search Console.

If everything goes right. Congrats, you have successfully redesigned your website and the SEO hasn’t been affected.

Can You Now Maintain The SEO Ranking When Redesigning A Website?

What are the things you have learned so far?

People are really careful with the SEO factor. It’s because everyone knows its importance. How can someone get it ruined during the resigning process?

I have been working in the field of web development and designing for years and always learned the most precious thing.

To keep your hard work safe, you should always take the necessary precautions.

I have faced the problem which was not that easy to forget. It would be great if you discuss everything with your web designer.

Always think to maintain the SEO ranking when redesigning a website. If you face any problem, feel free to contact us.

You can also connect with on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

by Ravi Chahar

A WordPress Professional and the LinkedIn Influencer. A coder by passion and a blogger by choice. WordPress theme development is his forte. He is your WordPress guy who will teach you how to solve WordPress errors, WordPress security issues, design issues and what not.

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  1. Hello Ravi,

    What a post! 🙂 Nice one!

    I have seen this problem when I was working for a firm. Developers used to mess up with the SEO stuff on current site while redesigning. It is very important to keep a note of everything so that later they can be reinstated. Working on local or on a test server is a good choice rather than working on a live site directly.

    Keep up the good work!

    1. Hey Atish,

      I always work on the local server. It’s risky yet idiotic to mess up with the website design on the live server. We have the options to move your live website data to the local server within no time.
      But some designers mess this up and kill the SEO factor.
      Thanks for sharing your thoughts.


  2. Well said, Ravi. It amazing how much time a redesign can take when things don’t go right. We dint want to bed losing out because our sites are on Maintenance mode for days.

    Fabulous tips! Thank you.


    1. Bren,

      Using a plugin to put your website on the maintenance mode is a great idea. But I always prefer to move it on the local server.
      Either you create a child theme or redesign the parent theme accordingly.
      Thanks for stopping by.

  3. Currently I changed my Site URl and it took me two months two overcome the loss in ranking & revenue. Nice article.

    1. Harish,

      It happens with many. You should always do some test before finalizing. Changing the site URL can be done without affecting the SEO.
      I have a written a post about it too.

  4. Redesigning a website is a very tough decision as it requires taking lots of precise steps. In the mean time, If you lose your organic visitors it can affect you traffic graph.

    Well, Yoast SEO is best in keeping your SEO data arranged, so that if further, you need to change your theme or design, it will not affect your SEO data.

    You have mentioned pretty awesome techniques to keep the site optimised and working.

    Planning to redesign 3nions. Will surely follow up these tactics.
    Thanks for sharing.


    1. Prakhar,

      Redesigning a website may be brainstorming and many people make such mistakes and lose their organic traffic. Yeah, Yoast SEO is the plugin to keep the things arranged.
      But you can’t rely on that. A little breakdown can ruin everything.
      Thanks for sharing your views.

  5. Hi Ravi,

    Great post. Many bloggers actually end up losing rankings and engagement after a redesign or a feature update.

    I’m thinking of upgrading to HTTPS soon, what are the things should I take care of?

    Would really appreciate your suggestion.



  6. Ravi,
    I’ve hestitated for years changing mine because of the complications. But I know getting your speed better will surely help with SEO and generating more traffic. Would making HTTPS also be a good benefit?

    1. Lisa,

      Google hasn’t officially announced the concept of having HTTPS yet. It’s required for the website which gathers the sensitive data including the personal details.
      I haven’t come across something authentic about it. I will let you know.

  7. Hey Ravi,

    Everyone should need to know that even a little bit of change without the proper cautions can cost you the SEO ranking of your website. Commonly seen during a website update, it is possible that your page URLs may change even if you aren’t moving to a new domain.

    If not handled properly, this can result in a loss of individual page rankings, culminating in a loss of overall site visibility in search engines. Eventually, thanks for exploring these beneficial facts regarding this topic.

    With best regards,

    Amar kumar

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