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Organic Traffic To Redesigned Site Down 60%

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3 replies to this topic

#1 JWG


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Posted 01 June 2009 - 04:01 PM

I have an analytics client that did a major redesign/reorganization of their site late in March that resulted in all of the pages in the site getting new URLs with the sole exception of the home page (clearly a bad move but at this point water over the dam). Content is mostly the same, expanded somewhat and rearranged.

Since launching the new site organic traffic is down 60% with no sign of improvement. The home page currently has tool bar PR=5, and all the rest have PR=0. The entire site has been spidered since the change. Most if not all links to the old version of the site were to the home page so they remain in tact.

Based on my reading of your articles this is neither sandbox nor aging, right? How long would you expect it will take to get back to old traffic levels? Recommendations?

#2 Jill


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Posted 01 June 2009 - 04:22 PM

Maybe never. Depends what else you changed.

There are many things you can do during the redesign that messes up old rankings and they only way to get them back is to fix what was messed.

Some examples are removing old copy that was working well and substituting it for flash or graphics or other copy, changing the site architecture so that important pages are buried when they once were easily accessed and had a high internal link popularity.

Those are just a few examples, but it's hard to say what your problem might be without some in-depth research into things.

Minimally, you should go back and 301 redirect the old URLs to the new. That might help things somewhat.

#3 Randy


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Posted 01 June 2009 - 04:54 PM

If you've (hopefully) got the analytics data from before the redesign you may also want to grab a list of all of the keyword phrases that attracted traffic for at least a few months before the redesign, then compare this list to the keywords attracting traffic after the redesign.

One of the things I've seen literally 50+ times is when a redesign or copy rewrite focuses so much on a few prized keyword phrases that it completely forgets all of the hundreds of phrases for which the site might have been pulling traffic previously.

I just had this same discussion with a friend over this past weekend who is struggling with the same sort of thing. He had the data so I was able to export it and crunch it via an Excel spreadsheet. Their new copy focused on just a dozen or so of their "money" phrases, or what they thought were their money phrases. But when you looked at the actual data those dozen or so phrases attracted less than 10% of their organic search traffic and less than 7% of their total sales. Lots and lots of other phrases made up the other 90% of their search traffic and 93% of their search traffic sales.

So now they're rewriting some pages and adding other pages to target those other phrases again.

#4 mal4mac


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Posted 02 June 2009 - 04:16 AM

Why not put the old site back up and then *slowly* evolve it, page by page, to look something like the new site, but with the traffic of the old site?

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