One of the tasks a webmaster often faces with trepidation is moving content around without taking a hit from Google. So many have expressed this that the official Google webmaster blog has addressed it in the post on Making Site Moves Easier.
3 Kinds of Content Migration
There’s really just two basic categories of site move, but since the second group has two subdivisions, there may as well be three:
- site moves without URL changes
- site moves with URL changes
- site moves to responsive web design
Each kind of move will mean following different instructions, and Google does a good job of explaining the steps.
The Price of Site Moves the Wrong Way
It may seem like there’s no consequence to just shifting around your content on your site on the human level. After all, if your site is logical to you changes will probably will be logical to your customers who are regular users. But the search engines are not reading your site on the human level, and that will affect where your site comes up in the page ranks.
Humans tend to do a search and look at the first page or so. If you want new users, you will need to be found. Moving content around without keeping an eye on the Googlebot will change the way your site comes up on Google. That will change who sees your site.
It makes sense to follow Google’s instructions when you do site moves because then you will be doing things the way their search engine operates, and that improves your chances to be where you want to be in the rankings.
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