Redesign for Client Website that Has Decent Rankings, Considering Domain Name Change


carltonrsmith

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Oct 18, 2012
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I am in an enormous quandary about how to proceed with this client's website.
He's been in business for a long time, and has some pretty decent rankings.
However, the way a lot of his pages are set up, is probably a sitting duck for future penalties. An overzealous SEO advised him to build a page targeting every possible service in his industry, and consequently, he has 29 SERVICE pages.
While the pages are fairly robust, it's overwhelming to the user.
However, and this is where it gets bad, he has a parent Service Areas, with every possible suburb you could target in a major metro area. Each page is exactly the same page, with geo modifiers switched out. Dios mio.
Anyway, on to the redesign, he's working with a web design company that charges by the page, so we have to get the page count cut in half.
I am wading through Google Analytics to determine his top landing pages from organic, as well as checking rankings. Then, kicked it back to him to come up with HIS most important services revenue-wise, so it's not "all on me."
Ultimately, part of his domain name targets a service no one searches, and doesn't really tell much about his business.
We could probably do better with something else. I know this is risky, but could we not mitigate the risk by putting up a Coming Soon page on the new domain to age it while redesign is going on, then when we launch new website (w/ new content), keep the old website up and redirect it (in pieces) until the new one starts to gain traction?
Thoughts on this strategy?
Has anyone been down this road?
 
Joined
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Sorry have not had time to reply Carlton and not much time now. Will briefly share one I did recently.

Client had a new EMD and wanted new design but we didn't want to risk displacing the A spot I got him and he's had for over 2 years now.

So 1st I told him to build the new site on the new domain with NO spiderable NAP. Anything NAP related needed to be in a graphic with no alt text.

Then I did the SEO on that site to build it up in the rankings, since new domains take time to build up.

Then the goal was once the new site got mid way up page one we'd do the switch.

So then once the new site/domain got to page one I chickened out and was afraid to rock the boat on the old mature #1 ranking site. So we put the new site on the old domain and left the new EMD up too. (With a different site on it.) So now he has 2 page one ranking sites. :)

FYI this is one of the examples I share in the Local SEO course you are considering. So if you take it you'll be able to see the techniques I used to get him this long lasting #1 and move up the new domain to page one as well.

Not sure how helpful that was, just a story of one I recently went through. Gotta run.
 

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