May 18, 2017

When creating our new website, we placed careful consideration on Search Engine Optimization (SEO). We did not want to hurt our rankings that we had spent years building. To retain Checkerboard’s SEO rankings, we focused on two areas: page redirects and our meta titles and descriptions.

This portion of the project started by evaluating all of Checkerboard’s existing web pages to determine which ones were important enough to stay and which ones had to go. We documented all of this on a spreadsheet. Many of the pages that were going to be removed had also earned “link juice”, which was gained from quality internal and external linking. To ensure we weren’t missing out on the valuable traffic that comes from those links, we set up 301 redirects from the pages that weren’t moving to the most relevant pages on the new website.

The other side of Checkerboard’s SEO equation was updating our meta descriptions, titles and focus keywords. We use a WordPress plugin called Yoast SEO to set them up. The meta descriptions don’t play a big role in the ranking factor, but they impact the clickthrough rate on search engine pages. The more relevant a meta description is to a user’s search, the more likely they are to click the link. We determined what a user’s search intent might be when using specific keywords. Then we wrote suitable meta descriptions and titles. Refreshing our meta descriptions and titles was important for attracting more relevant traffic to our new website.

SEO is important to all websites. It isn’t something you should sacrifice in a new design. Let’s chat about how we can help you with your next website while keeping your search rankings top of mind.