How to Change Domain and Keep Your Rankings?

If you want to rebrand your business then you can change domain. Else, you can change your long domain name into a shorter one. 

But, if you have worked hard on SEO and gathered raking from search engines on your existing domain, and it is really difficult to keep your rankings intact while you change your domain. In this regard, you can take help from a reliable web development company in India

How to Change Domain and Keep Your Rankings

Why would you change the domain name? 


Before you change the domain, you need to know the reasons for changing it. There are two probable reasons for changing a domain such as rebranding the business or to make the existing domain shorter. 



People can also change their domain to rebuild their online reputation. Here you can find the reasons for changing the domain: 

If you want to add a specialization to your business, then you can add a specific keyword in your domain name. For example, if you are specialized in wedding photography, then you can change your domain name from photography services to wedding photography services. 

If you have a long domain name then you cannot promote your business by a longtail link on social media. You can promote your business with a short name and people will get confused when they redirected to a different domain. In this case, you can search for a specific short domain online. 

Steps to change domain name without sacrificing your ranking: 


If you purchase a new domain name then you do not need to check the past records of the new domain. But, you must check the past history of an old domain, in case if you buy a domain from the auction. 

Structural damage or a penalized domain name can put your business in big trouble, and you can check the domain name on archive.org. You can check the content quality of an existing domain from this website. 

Plus, you must check the backlinks and then you can search the domain name on Google search console. If the domain name has been penalized by Google then you can find its spam content on the search console. 

Review the existing backlink and search performance: 


you must check the backlinks and search performance of your existing website. It is better to make an inventory of your existing SEO status and you can use Google Search Console in this regard. 
On the basis of the performance on the search console, you can change your domain name. From Google Search Console, you can download various reports regarding your existing domain performance such as performance report, index coverage, sitemaps, link report, and mobile usability report.   

Migrate the website: 


To migrate your website to a new domain, you need to export all files from your hosting service, and then you need to upload theses file to your new website. 

If you do not know the technical specification of your website, then you can take help from a reliable web development company India. They can assist you to build a new website with your existing files. If you use the same hosting service for your new website then you can create a new folder for your new domain, which is known as an add-on domain. 

You can simply copy the site files from your existing site to the new domain. Wordpress users can clone the old website content and export or import files from one site to another by the phpMyAdmin tool. 

Add redirects from the old domain to a new one: 


301 redirect

it is better to use “301” redirects than “302” temporary redirects. It is a critical step for your new website because you can retain your existing ranking on your new domain by using proper 301 redirects. 

Redirects help Google and other search engines to understand that your website content is migrated to a new domain, and Google can index your new domain accordingly.  

Make sure, you should not use redirects for your home page only, you must take users to the right place and use redirects for your every page. Normally, redirect files are located as .htaccess in your hosting services, and you can use plug-ins for your Wordpress website.     

Tell Google about your new domain: 


Google Search Console is completely free and you can easily change the domain name in GSC. But make sure, you must use the 301 redirects in your old website before you make the changes in GSC. 

You can find this feature in the old GSC version and you can hire the best web development company India in this regard. They are experienced in this niche, and they can easily use proper redirects in your old website to clone the content to your new domain. 

Test your new domain: 


now you need to test your new domain and you can check your new as well as old website on Google Analytics. If Google Analytics tracks your new domain properly then you will get your old ranking on your new domain. 

In this case, you can open your new website on a private browser and check its real-time visitor in GA. If you cannot find anything on the GA overview section then there must be something wrong. 

You can wait for a few weeks and check your new domain on Google Analytics again, and you can find a few pages with 404 errors on GA. You need to fix the redirect problems of those pages immediately. 

Apart from that, GSC or Google Search Console will notify you via email if any problem is detected on your website, and you can check the index and coverage sections on GSC to identify such errors.

Post-migration steps for your new domain: 


You need to change your business email after migrating your old website, and you can easily change your email address from the hosting admin area. If you cannot able to set-up a new email address then you can take help from a trusted web development company India. To set-up bulk email addresses for all employees is not an easy task and you can assign this job to a web development company India. 

Apart from that, you need to update few essential things on your new website such as contact details on the contact page and in the site footer, social media profiles, and other online accounts that you have for your business. Plus, you need to change the Google My Business profile and add your new domain with a new portfolio. It is better to keep your old domain with ‘301 redirects’ for three to four months because Google will take some time to migrate your website. To know more and retain your online ranking, you can contact a web development company and they will clone your content and retain your old ranking by using their advanced tools and techniques. 

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