By: Jenni Walsh – Bayshore Solutions Digital Marketing Team
Are You Getting Ready to Launch a New Website?
Everyone has a website now. It’s no longer important to just have a website. These days, you have to know how to attract visitors and encourage them to take a specific action on your company’s website.
When you launch a new website, it is also very important to make sure you are thinking about how search engine friendly your website is, especially if you have already had a search engine optimization (SEO) campaign in place. Recently, one of my clients that I have been working with for over a year on their SEO campaign launched a new website without notifying me or asking me for any recommendations on how the website should be laid out. As one can imagine, I was very concerned because this can really affect rankings and the number of leads the website receives. Below is a list of things, a company should highly consider before launching a new website.
SEO Items to Consider Before Launching
Your Newly Designed Website
How is the website laid out?
Is the website designed completely in Flash?
- If you want to get traffic from the search engines and your website is in all Flash, then stop reading this post now and start re-designing the whole website. While Flash makes a website attractive, search engines are not able to read it.
Were all meta-tags and copy re-added to the new site while still utilizing SEO best practices?
- You don’t want the search engines to visit your site that was once completely optimized to find that no pages on the site are optimized.
Did you create and add a new HTML and XML sitemap to the website?
- Is there a link to the HTML sitemap in the footer of your site? The search engines look at sitemaps as a road map of your site. Make sure when you have a new site you are telling them exactly where to go and what pages are important.
Are all search engine verification tags implemented on the site?
- The search engines have different methods of verifying your site with them. Make sure you add these codes onto the website.
Did you make a list of all the URL’s on the old site so they can be 301 redirected to the new URL’s?
- A 301 redirect tells the search engines that a specific webpage has moved to a new URL. It is important to 301 redirect all old URL’s to the new URL’s as soon as possible after a site launches.
Do you have analytics installed on the site?
- This won’t affect your SEO but it is still VERY important to make sure you are able to track all statistics on the new website. Also, make sure all pay per click or other forms of conversion codes are on the site.
What are your calls to action and where are they located?
- Once again this will not really affect your SEO campaign but it will affect leads and ROI so it is important to make sure your calls to action are in a prominent spot.
There are a lot of other factors that are important to a SEO campaign but this is a good list to use to make sure all of your basics are in place before launching a new site.
It’s still too early to know how much the new non-SEO friendly website will affect my client’s website traffic, leads and ROI, but I hope this post can help other businesses avoid this mistake!