How Can Changing Urls Impact And Affect Your Seo?

How Can Changing Urls Impact And Affect Your Seo?
How Can Changing Urls Impact And Affect Your Seo?

How Can Changing Urls Impact And Affect Your Seo?

Does changing a URL affect the SEO performance of a website? Yes, altering a website’s URL can impact its SEO performance.

For many years, digital marketing professionals have advised against modifying site URLs, which can negatively affect SEO rankings.

If not done properly, a URL change can negate previous SEO efforts, significantly dropping search rankings and traffic. It’s important to exercise caution if you’re planning to change your website’s URL.

The impact of changing URLs on your SEO can be severe.

Doing so makes your site susceptible to 404 errors and broken links, which means it’s nearly impossible for Google to properly index your site.

Before making changes to any URL, there are some very important factors you need to consider.

WHY MIGHT YOU WANT TO CHANGE YOUR URLS?

WHY MIGHT YOU WANT TO CHANGE YOUR URLS?

There are a few reasons to consider moving your website to another URL.
Specific Reasons Businesses Change Their URLs

  • Rebranding Initiatives – Businesses often change their URL addresses during rebranding. This may involve adopting a new domain or altering the website’s structure, which results in URL modifications.
  • Business Name Changes – Changing the URL domains on a website is common when a business rebrands or changes its name, especially if the URLs contain the company’s name.
  • Developing a New Website – Businesses may decide to transition to a new website and transfer existing URLs to the new domain. This process involves creating a new domain and URL structure, typically necessitating the redirection of old URLs to the new site.
  • Updating Product and Service Range – When companies change their entire range of products or services, it often necessitates a comprehensive update of their product or service pages. This change usually involves redirecting old and outdated listings to the newly relevant URLs.

HOW CHANGING URLS CAN AFFECT YOUR SEO RANKING

HOW CHANGING URLS CAN AFFECT YOUR SEO RANKING

Minor modifications to your URL, including changes to the domain, server, punctuation adjustments, or alterations in capitalization within your directory, can significantly impact your SEO.

Below are some key SEO risks associated with changing URL structures:

  • Transitioning to a Lower-Quality Domain – When switching to a new domain, it’s crucial to assess its history. A background of penalties or spam can lead to a substantial decrease in traffic. Additionally, there’s a risk of encountering duplicate content and complicated redirects.
  • Delay in Indexing the New Site – Changing a URL, regardless of the reason, often results in a temporary traffic decline while Google reindexes the site, even if the change is executed properly.
  • Neglecting Redirects and Other Mistakes – Errors in this process can lead to significant, challenging losses. Any alteration in a URL will impact your organic search performance, potentially negatively.

 

If you have established a robust link portfolio generating considerable referral traffic, it’s an asset to your website.

However, if you intend to relocate your site or modify your website’s URL, there’s a risk of losing the referral traffic that you’ve worked so hard to build.

HOW CHANGING URLS CAN AFFECT YOUR REFERRAL TRAFFIC

  • Older Websites Gain from Link Quality – Inbound links from older domains are often more valuable than those from newer ones. This is because older sites are more likely to have accumulated links from other reputable websites, enhancing their link equity.
  • 301 Redirects Do Not Preserve Full SEO Equity – While redirects are useful, they can slow down page loading times and do not fully transfer SEO services equity to the target pages.
  • Faulty Redirects Result in Lost Link Reports – If a link to a target URL is not correctly redirected, it is reported as a lost link, which can be detrimental.
  • Indexing Requires Time – Google often needs time to re-index URLs after changes, especially for modifications that are not at the root level.
  • Broken Links Negatively Impact Traffic – Google’s ranking of a site is heavily influenced by its inbound and outbound links. Changing URLs can lead to broken links, directing visitors to error pages, which harms both referral traffic and the site’s domain authority.

4 BEST PRACTICES FOR CREATING URLS (SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO CHANGE THEM)

4 BEST PRACTICES FOR CREATING URLS (SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO CHANGE THEM)

In some situations, you may want to change URLs, but ideally, it’s best to establish them correctly from the beginning. This approach is more beneficial for your SEO and the overall health of your website.

To assist in creating URLs that minimize the need for future changes, consider these best practices:

1. Follow a Typical URL Structure

To prevent future complications and the need for changes, such as with WordPress URLs or other sites, stick to a conventional URL structure.

Consider the categories and subcategories that will be part of your domain and aim to simplify them. For example, avoid creating overly lengthy URLs with multiple subcategories, like “[domainname].com/category/subcategory/sub-subcategory/product.” Instead, a simpler structure like “/subcategory/product” is often more effective.

2. Make it Navigable

Beyond adopting a standard URL structure, ensure your website is easily navigable from top to bottom.

Determine a clear hierarchical structure that facilitates easy exploration by both search engine crawlers and users. Maintain a logical approach and create a sitemap that supports the growth of your website without necessitating extensive changes in the future.

3. Stick With Keyword-Focused URLs

To enhance your SEO, it’s important to include relevant keywords in your URLs where suitable.

Avoid overloading your URLs with excessive keywords, but also don’t overlook their importance. Use specific keywords in your URLs that complement other on-page optimization elements, such as title tags, meta descriptions, and headings.

4. Use Hyphens and Avoid Special Characters

When separating words in your URLs, use hyphens and avoid special characters that could complicate links or negatively impact your SEO. Hyphens effectively act as spaces, making your URL structure more straightforward to understand.

Want to Get the Most Out Of Your SEO Efforts?

Optamark Digital is home to a team of skilled digital marketing professionals. We use SEO to help businesses get better at on-page optimization, increase their organic rankings, and meet their marketing targets. Our experienced strategists work closely with each client to understand what they need and create personalized SEO plans that get the most out of their investment. From making great content to focusing on what users want, we take care of every part of SEO to make sure our clients get the best results.

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Optamark Graphics
Optamark Graphics
Optamark Graphics
Optamark Graphics
Optamark is an outsourced service provider to a network of experienced, independent distributors of printing and promotional products. The Company’s services include product sourcing and order fulfillment via access to a network of preferred vendors, invoicing, collections, back office support, sales and marketing support, professional development training, and working capital support.