Choosing a new physical location is an excellent way to spur the accelerated growth of the company. Moving to the new premises, however, is not just about putting things in the boxes and transporting them. The changes are also tied to the virtual world and affect the visibility in search engines. Hence, one must ensure that the online transition plays out smoothly and avoid a plummet in search visibility. This is a matter of timing, consistency and paying attention to detail.
A modern organisation leaves quite a bit of tracks in the digital landscape, and now it’s time to do some backtracking. It’s advisable to start the preparations a few months in advance, before the relocation hassle begins. You have to keep a comprehensive record of all the necessary changes, and the ones you see though. This may seem like a daunting task, even more so because you have a bunch of other things to handle, like investing time in finding appropriate mobile storage solutions, overseeing the packing, and hiring professionals. So, on top of all that, you are under pressure to consider an online metamorphosis.
2. Hide and Seek
One of the ways to prevent the negative impact your online presence is to discover all the places where Google sees your business information. There are great tools on GetListed and Yext you may use to figure out where your address and info are stored. If the citations cannot be updated, then delete them and create new ones. You can first focus on major data providers that serve as trusted sources of data. When they embrace a new fact, the signal is sent far and wide across the cyber galaxy. It’s a common practice for directories to employ the verification procedures, but some websites permit you to make an instant change whenever you please.
It goes without saying that business owners must display their true, official location on their pages. Still, there is no need to change the address at Google Places right away. In fact, it is against Google’s Business Listing Quality Guidelines to list a place that’s not active yet. Update only when you complete the actual physical move and the Google will likely create a business listing with the new address. Look for duplicates and, should you find any, report them to Google for removal. You don’t want to confuse the customers by presenting conflicting information regarding your location, email and phone number.
4. On the Same Page
A website is your most authoritative digital business asset, so the changes must be reflected there as well. As soon as you move, the new information should be easily accessible to Google. Bear in mind that details like your addresses are listed on various pages, so pinpoint all the spots that need to the tweaking. Furthermore, see to it that reviews are shifted over to the new listing, which is the task for Google support. You may speed things up by providing a current URL with reviews in the Review Transfer Request. Finally, note that Google also keeps an eye on “real world” records, including utility companies, phone companies, and professional associations.
5. Cut the Deadwood
Carrying out the updates as fast as possible allows you to be less exposed to the decline in local rankings. Yet, you cannot expect all the changes to happen at once, as each and every website has its own updating schedule. It is of the utmost importance to realise that the adjustment period lasts usually about six weeks, for that is the time it takes Google to find out new info and come to trust it. If possible, don’t change things like your phone number, and face people with fewer changes. Finally, after a few months, check whether the old contact information has managed to linger somewhere.
6. Cover all the Bases
There is a multitude of reasons to relocate, but it is surprising how many people fail to grasp the online implications of this step. Try not to make the same mistake: Do your homework and identify all the pages that must be modified. Take control of your online listings at various data providers and directories. Be through and stay organised until all the relevant pages have been adjusted to represent new realities. You may find better odds at the new location, but do not let diminishing viability undermine your business dreams.