Most people refer to a new start with the web presence as an SEO relaunch. In fact, this is understood as a very large update or a new installation of the existing website or the existing online store. With this measure one would like to improve the position (ranking) with the search engines or also achieve new rankings.
Why is an SEO relaunch being carried out?
As mentioned before, an SEO relaunch is a fresh start that is used to achieve better rankings in search engines.
For example, if a company sells top merchandise in its online store, but has poor Google positioning due to a website that is not well optimized, and thus sales remain low, this can be a sign that with an SEO relaunch the web presence should be improved or the website should be redesigned.
Is an SEO relaunch easy to perform?
The relaunch of a website should be well thought out, because it also involves some risks in terms of SEO optimization. Often the same mistakes are made, especially with a domain or server move. Therefore, it is even more important to proceed carefully in order to really not forget any aspect of the relaunch.
With our SEO relaunch checklist we show you what is important for an SEO website relaunch and with which factors you can catapult your rankings to the next level - sales will increase automatically afterwards.
What all is changed during an SEO relaunch?
It must be said at the outset that there is no general recipe for a perfect SEO relaunch, as it must be treated individually. Depending on the current state of the existing website, a SEO Relaunch Plan prepared to serve as a guide for implementation.
The checklist includes the following items:
Technology involves looking under the hood of a website. Here it is determined how well the website performs in its current state and whether optimizations can improve it. Added value for the relaunch obtain lets.
Various tools are used to determine this status. As an example, one can use the tool GTmetrix (https://gtmetrix.com/) use
With this tool, you can already see the tendency of how an SEO relaunch would go if you rely on a technique that inherently has problems with performance.
First and foremost, you should make sure that the Server response time within an acceptable range. A response time of 3 seconds would still be a good value - everything beyond that would lead to a worse ranking in the long term lead. The less time it takes to connect to the website, the better chance there is for a good SEO relaunch.
But even if no change can take place in the technology, with this tool you can see more clues where to start with a relaunch to achieve more performance. Keywords: load time, content layout shift, first contentful paint.
If it is intended that the existing website can be reached via a new URL, then it must be ensured that the linking to the associated pages is also adapted.
Care must be taken to ensure that all sub-pages that have a good ranking retain it.
Example: https://lorem.at/news/ should be used when switching to https://ipsum.at/news/ otherwise existing rankings would be destroyed - here you would be redirected to a 404 page, which would not be a good sign for Google. For this you would destroy an existing ranking due to a Redirection error forfeit. If this redirection is to be created as part of the relaunch, make sure that it is a 301 redirect is involved. This states that the new link is permanent and Google can use it for both indexing and ranking.
With links, it can quickly become confusing.
Therefore, it is necessary to answer these questions conscientiously:
- Is a sitemap available?
- Where is page XY linked?
- Can users find the linked pages quickly?
- Are the linked sites sufficient in content to merit their own sub-page?
- Do many links exist to websites that no longer exist?
- Are internal links available?
The background of these questions is very important regarding the SEO relaunch, because the sitemap and its links are the framework of the website.
Is a sitemap available?
If the answer to this question is "yes", then it is important to take the sitemap and work through it thoroughly. The aim here is to analyze the structure of the website visually. If errors in the links are already apparent here, then these must be taken into account in the further steps.
Tool: Octopus (https://octopus.do/import)
With this free tool you can create a sitemap graph and edit as desired.
Example: WordPress Plugin - Rankmath Sitemap.xml
But if there is no sitemap on the current website, then you should definitely make up for it! For SEO and also Google, a sitemap is one of many important building blocks to use.
There are various ways to prepare a sitemap - whether written manually or generated automatically by a plugin. You can read more about this in our glossary article.
Where is page XY linked?
For example, if performance pages are not included in the main menu of the website, it can be a sign for Google that these pages are not so relevant. Thus, a worse ranking is achieved than would be possible.
Care must be taken to ensure that sub-pages that are expected to rank well are also placed high up on the website.
But please don't get the idea to include every sub-page in the main menu 😉
Can users find the linked pages quickly?
If a link for a subpage with good content is positioned in an unsuitable place, so that users would find it difficult to discover, then this is also a reason why a poor ranking was achieved. It is possible that the page could have achieved a better ranking if the link could be found in a more visible place.
For example, if it is a service page with important information, then it would not only make sense for the search engines to include it high up on the website, but also for the Usability. Because websites are not built for Google, but for people. The better a website is to use, the better the rankings will be after the relaunch.
Are the linked sub-pages sufficient in content to merit their own sub-page?
It may be that individual sub-pages have been created with virtually no content.
These will normally not achieve any rankings and usually have no added value for users. Not only for an SEO relaunch is the added value of the pages relevant, but also generally for any SEO optimization. In the worst case, said sub-pages can drag down your entire website and negatively affect your ranking.
However, in order not to lose the content of the sub-page, it should be determined on which filled performance pages it can be additionally placed. It can sometimes be difficult to reposition the content, but this will make other pages more attractive to read or view, and that in turn will keep the User longer on the website.
Do many links exist to pages that no longer exist?
If you have a website that has been on the market for a long time, it is quite possible that subpages that are no longer needed have been switched off, but no redirection has taken place.
This creates so-called 404 error pages. These serve to signal to the user that he has not landed on a content website, but on an error page.
The SEO relaunch therefore also includes combing through the 404 error pages. These must be cleaned up so that users and search engines are not frustrated.
During an SEO relaunch all errors removed. Should a domain change or link restructuring occur in the course of this, then the same or similar sub-pages in terms of content must also be pointed to (301 redirect).
Are internal links available?
The internal Link building is just as important as the external one. That is, if all subpages of a website are accessible via the main menu, then this is a sign for Google that all subpages are to be evaluated equally. If, on the other hand, you have a service page that is intended to rank, then this should be accessible more often on individual pages via a link. This is a signal to the search engines that this service page is more relevance for the ranking than, for example, a privacy statement page.
During an SEO relaunch, it is important to make sure that these links remain intact and visible even after a domain change.
Features are very important in usability these days. These include not only image sliders and forms, but also usability, visuals, style elements, online calculations and much more. Features also include responsive designs (mobile & tablet) and how to display them correctly. Nowadays, the Google search engine is designed to work under the motto of "Mobile first" works. This means it favors websites that run optimally on mobile and puts desktop websites in the background.
If a website is only designed for desktop, it will slip further and further down the rankings in the next few years and lose importance - regardless of whether it is SEO-optimized in terms of content or not. Accordingly, care must be taken to ensure that online content is available and performant in both variants.
If a custom programmed website is used without a content management system (CMS), then this may have SEO benefits, but it creates problems that require an expert programmer to include additional features or change functions.
With a current CMS, such as WordPress, you have a "living" foundation that gets regular updates and features. So you don't need a programmer immediately for little things like changing content or creating redirects.
In addition, the functions of a CMS are easily extendable, since it is countless plugins exists on the market.
With an SEO relaunch it is therefore important to pay attention with which Substructure in the future should be worked, as there is a sensible and practicable solution for every application.
A well thought-out design is the "Alpha" and "Omega" of any website or online store.
If the user's expectations are not met in the first few seconds after accessing a web page, then this to 99% will not remain further on the web page and it this could scare away a potential customer.
In an SEO relaunch, not only the functions, the content and the link structure are crucial, but also the design.
If the customer is not picked up immediately, then any content that is present is worthless because it is not seen.
That's why you need to focus on a balanced design that is both modern and user-friendly. The structure and handling of the website, correctly sized buttons, legible font, easy-to-understand texts and properly placed call-to-actions (CTA) - all things that can keep a user on the desired page or redirect them specifically to another sub-page. The easier a user can operate and understand the website after the relaunch, the higher the chance that this user will discover other areas of the website.
If all the previous points are implemented, then the last step is the SEO content.
What is content?
This is the information that a website tries to convey to the user - that is, texts, images, functions and actions (call-to-action).
With an SEO relaunch, care is taken to create the usability and the page structure so that the website is primarily user-friendly. Because as described above in the text, it pleases not only users, but also Google, if a page is clear and understandable.
Another important point in the area of content is that texts should be optimized in terms of content. For performance pages, care should be taken that the texts do not sound "machine", but organic.
Here's an example:
1.) I am an SEO text. SEO texts are necessary to achieve good SEO rankings.
2.) I am an SEO text that describes the performance of the respective pages, that the content is SEO relevant, and thus there is no need to make an SEO text look machine.
It does not have to be a Keyword-Stuffing take place in order to create good content. Instead, much more emphasis should be placed on directing the user correctly with the words, images and interactions after the relaunch and to convey the topic that is being targeted. This also includes a SEO optimized text, which is prepared for Google, but not to the extent that the user has difficulty understanding it.
Not to forget would also be the structuring of the headings. This means that only one H1 and H2 heading should be declared on each page. H3 - H6 may occur more often on a page. This signals to the search engine Google how a page should be read.
H1 → Main heading
- H2 → Secondary heading
- H3 → Category Heading
- - H4 → Subcategory Heading
- - - H5 → sub-heading
- - H4 → Subcategory Heading
- - - H5 → sub-heading
- - H4 → Subcategory Heading
- H3 → Category Heading
The better the website is built, the more the user's eyes move, the more care is taken to ensure that images reflect the text they describe, the longer users will stay on a website to find what they are looking for.
Once you have gathered all the open points, it is time to create the SEO relaunch plan and take the necessary steps.
At this point, it is recommended to create a test environment in which this work is implemented - this prevents problems in advance that could occur in a live environment.
Depending on which points are to be worked on, should be meticulously adhered to the sequence be used to create a Smooth relaunch and thus strengthen and expand its established position in the search engines.
Attention. This checklist is the basis and to be extended for each case, individually and according to the necessity of the problems.
|Technology||Is the technology implemented cleanly and performantly?|
|Domain||Will it stay with the current domain or will the website be accessible via a different domain after the relaunch?|
|Link||Are all sub-pages correctly linked and accessible?|
|Functions||Are all functions of the website correctly integrated and functional?|
|Design||Is the design intuitive and user-friendly?|
|Content||Is the content legible and clearly understandable - are all elements clearly visible?|
Are you interested in your own SEO relaunch?
With our checklist you are now well prepared for your own SEO relaunch. As an online marketing agency, we strive to accompany our customers in their attempt to improve their ranking on Google. So if you have any questions, feel free to contact us at any time!