The Importance Of Evaluation Prior To Cutting Website Content
Many individuals choose to cut content when they relaunch a website but it is important to take care in what is cut. Content management can be overwhelming when there is a lot of content. Sometimes these cuts can negatively impact the site. This is especially true if search engine optimization or SEO is not being used as an integrated strategy during the life and redesign of the site. When an entire page of content is cut, highly ranked keyword phrases can be lost resulting in decreased traffic to the website. If these pages were ranked highly in an organic search, organic traffic can significantly decrease.
SEO is important at the beginning of the process because it can help eliminate big mistakes later on. Prior to cutting any content from the site, the content should be checked to see how well it performs for bringing traffic to the website. It is important to determine which specific pages are performing the best in organic searches. This is the content that should be kept. If necessary, the content can be redirected using a URL or new uniform resource locator. Outdated content can be updated by adding the current information. It is important the page is redirected so the search engines and visitors to the site can easily find a close alternative.
If the organic traffic significantly decreases after removing content or a redesign, it is critical to determine if the reason was the cut content. The time frame can be compared to the same time prior to the content being removed. The comparison between the different time frames should determine the reason for the drop in traffic. Sometimes the pages have changed their URL's. The old URL should be entered into the browser to see if the page redirects. If it does not, this may be the reason for the decrease in traffic. If there is no issue with the redirect, the issue may be the content removed from the site was extremely beneficial to the SEO. It is important to thoroughly review the old content. If there is not a copy of the old content available, it may be possible to locate an older version using the internet archives.
The next step is looking at the number of visits to the page both prior to and after the content was removed. The number of visits made from an organic search may have dropped because the visitors and search engines were not redirected to a page with similar content. When a page is cut during a website relaunch, it is critical to ensure there is a redirect to another page. This is especially true if the page contained any external or internal links. Sometimes the answer is to put the content back on the site. Prior to making this decision, there are some important considerations. It is important to determine how the content will fit into the redesigned site and if it is possible to refresh the deleted content. A determination must be made as to whether the content remains relevant to the offerings and the business. Once the content is thoroughly evaluated, it will be possible to determine if adding it back into the site will be appropriate. This may bring back some of the traffic that was lost when the pages were cut.