Building an SEO-Friendly Rebranding Strategy
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Branding is the lifeblood of your startup. It gives it a unique identity, setting it apart from its competitors. Still, it would be best to keep in mind that your brand is changing as your company grows.
So, suppose you’ve shifted your focus, expanded to an international market, changed your target audience, or teamed up with another startup with similar goals. In that case, chances are your current branding strategy won’t communicate your business’s core values anymore. To maintain your relevancy, you will need to rebrand.
Rebranding is a complex process, entailing a broad spectrum of elements you need to address. And if not executed properly, it may hurt your online presence on multiple levels. Precisely because of this, you need to have SEO in mind when refreshing your brand.
Don’t change your domain name.
Changing your domain name may affect your rankings. So, please keep the same one. Of course, this would not be possible for those startups that are changing their focus entirely or participating in a merger. In this case, your domain name will change parallel with your new brand name.
- Make sure you keep your original content. This is an important step, even for those brands that are moving to a new domain. To preserve your content’s authority, you need to keep its structure, fonts, visuals- anything that might confuse search engines.
- Redirect every page from your old site to a similar page of your new location. And your URL structure determines how simple or complex this process will be for you. Use Google Spreadsheets to make a list of your old URLs in one column and new URLs in another so you can simplify this process.
- Keep your old site up for a while. Since it can sometimes take crawlers days to recognize your new IP address, you should consider leaving your old site up for a week or so. Matt Cutts addressed this in 2005, emphasizing the importance of preserving the senior site for at least 24 hours.
Create Targeted Content
Content creation is the backbone of your rebranding strategy. It helps you create an engaging story about your brand, engage people with it, and give it a unique tone and voice. This is an excellent opportunity to humanize your brand, build firmer customer relationships, and position yourself as a leader in your niche. Of course, you need to do a detailed target audience segmentation to help you see what your readers expect.
Analyze your blog’s performance, set up customer surveys, listen to them on social media, or even hire a Hong Kong SEO company to do your hard work. Once you know what your readers expect from you, you can produce highly personalized and consistent content that reflects your brand’s personality.
Update your contact information.
Accurate and up-to-date contact information is essential for all businesses, especially local ones. Namely, Google bots constantly analyze your contact information to determine your rankings. Moreover, it brings a sense of consistency and trustworthiness to your brand. Precisely because of this, your NAP (name, address, phone number) on your social networks, business directories, and other platforms should match your website’s.
When changing your brand name, you should also refurbish your business social profiles. However, updating your social media IDs varies depending on different networks. Here is what you should keep in mind:
- Facebook lets you change your page name and URL just once. So, when updating it, first make sure that this is the right decision.
- Twitter deactivates those IDs that haven’t been used for a certain period. But they do so really slowly. So, if you notice that your desired ID is already taken by a person or a company that doesn’t use it, you could contact them and see whether they’re willing to give it to you.
- As for rebranding, LinkedIn is one of the simplest sites. Still, if someone is already using your company’s name, you will have to change your brand name on this social network.
Social networks are your most valuable assets for building a solid brand image and driving quality website traffic. Therefore, make a solid social media marketing strategy and use these channels wisely to spread the word about your new brand. For example, you could share press releases, guest posts, and videos or organize a giveaway to boost brand awareness.
Even though it lost its relevancy, authorship is still a part of Google’s ranking algorithm, so it needs to be updated. You need to contact your contributors and ask them whether they want to change your website domain in their contributor links. If any bloggers don’t write for your site anymore, you should also contact them and ask them to make these changes.
Mobile-friendliness is your priority.
You’ve been reading a lot about Google’s mobile-first indexing. Simply put, when indexing your site, Google chooses your site’s mobile version as its starting point. So, your site’s responsiveness determines how well you will rank.
This is something you should keep in mind when refreshing your site. To make the most out of your site, you should make it responsive. Here is what it needs to include:
- Clear, easy-to-tap CTAs
- User-friendly and logical navigation
- Bold and simple typography
- Decluttered spaces, with lots of white space
- Flexible, easily loadable visuals
Keep monitoring your performance.
When refreshing your brand, chances are you will miss something important. This is why you need to keep track of your traffic, conversions, and rankings to identify any problems and irregularities as soon as possible. Only this way will you be able to improve your SEO efforts constantly and simultaneously build a solid and recognizable brand for your startup.
What steps did you take to ensure your rebranding strategy doesn’t hurt your SEO efforts?