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There will come a time when a company will grow past its adolescent stage and find their new identity. The funny thing here is, that this teen analogy also comes with all the awkward stuff. But like all things in life where evolution happens, this is a perfectly normal process. The next question here is that if rebranding can actually hurt your campaign and presence on the web. Today, we’ll find out.
Since a website (and business of course) is automatically known and identified because of its brand, it’s a clear, logical fact that when you then decide to change it, things will go crazy. Albeit only for a while, if you handled the change well. We don’t ever see Bruce Banner spaz out when he changes into his cooler more iconic Green version, right?
If we’re not as careful, however, bad things might happen. We don’t want to spend that much money on reverting back the brand.
It’s not just the image and logos however, the name itself, when you then decide to change it shouldn’t be done in a hastily manner.
The chunkiest part of this problem is with the creation of a new website. Yeah, you have to start at square one, my friend. Zero domain authority, zero traffic.
Unlike Puff Daddy, if you change your business’ name, people won’t recognize you immediately. Because, a business / website isn’t a person that you can associate an identity with a face. Yes, all that will hurt your traffic and performance in SEO. So, what do we do?
Publicize your new name. Whichever hip and cool name you would soon come up with to rebrand your business, keep in mind that search traffic is more all about the contents of your website. Some (not all) of the most important keywords that really do drive traffic to you are those that have your brand in it. Because of that, you will need to publicize your new brand name. On your content, try to create it in such a way that it can re direct the searches for your old name to the new site with a new one.
What about the website problem?
Well, the best thing to do there is to redirect the old site to the new site with all the brand spankin’ new name. This not only redirects your loyal customers to the new website, but it also transfers all authority to the new one.
Be careful however that you do not leave out old versions of the site running around out there. One version left out could give you headaches in the future when Google then hits you with content issue and canonicalization penalties.
Once that’s all out of the way, you can finally kick back and relax right? Unfortunately, like Zombie that won’t die easily, all the effort doesn’t end there. You have to make sure that all the necessary onsite elements are in place for the new site. Why? All that redirecting to a site that doesn’t have what it takes to carry all that authority might become a black hole of time and investment and just bury your rebranding campaign a little too early in the game.
Remember to pass all the pages of the new site on GSC for fetching and rendering. It helps a lot.
After all the necessary changes are done, comes the part where there’s pretty much no SEO-ing involved. Ahh yes, good old fashioned marketing.
Gather all your employees and give them all the necessary tools they will need with this giant leap of a rebrand. These include things like changing their business cards and email signatures.
Do your best to reach out to your customers, stakeholders and partners. Make sure that they are all aware of your rebranding. A good old fashioned email list can really help in these situations.
Social media. Make sure you get to utilize this well. You can utilize clever imagery here. One way to catch the attention of your audience and what you’re doing is with images.
Going back to the website, make sure that you still get to mention your old brand there. This clears up any confusion as well.
Keep that old name. Remember where you came from.