PHDVirtual.com launched an ambitious website redesign project. The redesign required extensive site architecture and page layout changes that if handled incorrectly, would have led to a drastic reduction in organic search engine rankings, traffic, leads, and ultimately revenue. (Note: It is not uncommon for a website to lose 30% or more of its organic search engine traffic after an extensive redesign.)
Silverback’s role in the project was to work with the Marketing, Web Design & Development, and Content Development teams to coordinate and execute a comprehensive SEO transition strategy designed to minimize organic search engine traffic loss and preserve the website’s SEO-related equities.
A comprehensive SEO website transition checklist was developed for each stage of the redesign process; Pre-Launch, Launch, and Post-Launch. Various individual tasks were assigned to the appropriate stakeholders at Silverback Marketing and PHD Virtual and a production timeline was established for the project.
Some of the critical steps that were incorporated into the process were as follows:
As mentioned previously, it is not uncommon for a website redesign similar in scope to the PHDVirtual.com project to result in substantial losses in organic search engine traffic. Even if the redesigned website does address some of the required SEO website transition best practices, the site is likely to lose traffic initially before gradually, within a three month timeframe, returning to pre-launch traffic levels. Neither of these outcomes was the case for PHDVirtual.com. In fact, comparing year-over-year statistics, the website experienced a 13.07% gain in organic search engine traffic in the first 30 days following the re-launch.