New Website? Consider the impact it has on Google and your sitemap.

by | Jan 12, 2021 | Uncategorized, Web Design | 0 comments

You’re tired of your current website, and you want to start off fresh with a new site and content. However, your current site still has strong rankings on Google. How do you make sure that you don’t affect those rankings and continue to receive organic traffic?

What content do you have, and is Google indexing it?

Lots of website owners don’t really know what content they have on their websites. As an example, a simple page describing a recipe on how to make cookies might not be front and center in your mind or even on your site. But Google knows about it, and it’s providing over 50% of your organic traffic. This is important, even if it’s not generating leads or keeping users on the site (which could be related to something else)

So how do you find this content? It’s rather simple. You can use Google to search for content in your site. Simply follow these instructions.

  1. Visit google.com in your browser.
  2. Enter in the following search, make sure it’s exactly as shown below
    site:mywebsite.com
  3. You will then get results that Google has indexed.

You now have some bulk data of what Google can see. But it’s not sorted and there aren’t any metrics on how the page is seen within Google search.

Does your content receive any traffic?

Now that you know Google is indexing your content, how do we find out? Google Analytics if setup should be your first stop. You can review the data in Google analytics and see what is your top viewed content.

(Show picture of Google Analytics section + steps to find it )

Migrate High Traffic Content

If you do have content that does receive high levels of content, you should migrate over to your newly launched site. Ensure that you maintain the same URL or “slug” in WordPress. If you cannot, then you will want to make sure that you redirect the content correctly. I’ll explain more about how to do this with WordPress further down in this document.

Redirecting High Traffic URLs

If you’ve moved your content to a different URL, then you’ll want to make sure that you redirect the content appropriately. This is important to maintain your content’s traffic and ranking with Google.

With WordPress, the easiest method is by using a WordPress Plugin called Redirection. It’s free and works really well, here’s some reason why we recommend this plugin.

(picture of redirection plugin)

  • It’s simple to set up and maintain.
  • It’s free.
  • It provides redirection and 404 monitoring.
  • It can export Apache or Nginx rules for faster processing time (performance)
  • Automatically convert 404’s into redirect rules.

Some hosting providers such as Kinsta don’t allow for this plugin to be installed on their platform due to high resource usage. They do provide an alternative to creating redirects within their control panel.

Setting up and configuring the WordPress Plugin Redirection isn’t covered in this post. There’s lots of information online using a simple Google search. Or you can hire our team to help you set up the plugin, and monitor/maintain your redirections and 404s appropriately.

(Insert Divi template to reach out/link to service library)

Ensure you’re generating and submitting a Sitemap to Google

Lastly, you will want to make sure that your new site is set up to generate a sitemap and submit it to Google via the Google Search Console. This will speed up the indexing of your new site, as well as keep Google up to date when you make structural changes to your site.

This can be done using a WordPress plugin, the following are some that we recommend.

Setting up and configuring any of the above WordPress plugins isn’t covered in this post. However, there’s lots of information online using a simple Google search. You can also hire our team to help you set up the plugin for your site.

On-going Monitoring of content and URLs

You’ll want to continue to monitor your content and URLs using the WordPress plugin Redirection for 404’s as well as review Google Analytics to confirm that your traffic is dropping too much.

If you’re looking for assistance with your WordPress website, ensure that Google sees it correctly as well as monitor and improve your rankings and content. Feel free to reach out and we can work together to ensure your sites are set up correctly as well as monitor and maintain your overall site SEO and search engine ranking on an ongoing basis.

Author

  • Jordan

    Jordan has over 20 years of experience in Information Technology, largely spent at a leading Canadian childrenโ€™s hospital within their research institute. His technical background is vast and includes networking, systems architecture, client-side support, server administration and management of technical assets.

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