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    Switched high ranking site to https yesterday... Concerned for ranking future...


    Hi there... My site brideandgroom.ie has been on Google since 2006 and always performed well for search terms "wedding video dublin" and "wedding videographer dublin" and things of that nature. I had a site hack before Christmas (Japanese text hack), and my site was down for a while while a brand new site was built on a new Divi theme.

    Yesterday morning, my developer switched me over to https://brideandgroom.ie, as in, this is what Google is now directed towards. There are four versions of the site in Google Search Console, and a sitemap has been submitted, and apparently all of the things that need to be done have been done.

    I understand that Google can take a while to index things, but I'm concerned when I'm told that changing to https is essentially like having a brand new website and URL. Does this mean that after almost 12 years in business I'm now going to have to start fresh again? Or will Google see that https://brideandgroom.ie is connected to the old site that performed well in search results, and rank accordingly?

    One promising sign is that I'm ranking ok for the terms "wedding video" and "wedding videographer" on their own (well, it seems to be fluctuating as it's been only 24 hours since the migration), when before I didn't rank well for those terms on their own....

    Any help or advice? Thanks....
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  3. Dinosaur
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    Well firstly go and buy your developer a beer or 2.
    He/she has indeed done all the redirections correctly, so
    http://www
    http://
    https://www
    all point to the correct site. So many times on here we hear that people have lost rankings when switching but its because of this simple thing being overlooked.

    Because of this I would imagine you will be ok, I cant of course confirm how they have handled old pages if the URL's have changed but lets assume thats OK so give it a few days to settle down. If your rankings drop then come back and we can look a bit deeper.

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    • Richard1 agrees : Thank you, very helpful.
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    Thank you so much... All of the page URLs are the same as the old site, except that we're now on https

    If you go to site:brideandgroom.ie you can see there are about 170 Japanese text pages still on Google from the old site. I'm going to manually request removal of all of these myself... Hopefully the fact they'll still there doesn't annoy Google when indexing the new https version of the site...
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  7. SeoRaptor
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    I took a look at the page brideandgroom. ie/ ne/ Mink/ nuDIJ/ It resolves to a correctly set 404 that's the most important thing. Google will drop the pages.

    Actually, you can not ask for link removal in google SERP you can only temporarily hide them that's why it is important to have the correct header response on the page you want Google to drop from its rankings.

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    • Richard1 agrees : Interesting...
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    Originally Posted by Pierre Benneton
    Actually, you can not ask for link removal in google SERP you can only temporarily hide them that's why it is important to have the correct header response on the page you want Google to drop from its rankings.
    I have temporarily hidden all of those links -- did over 170 manually myself earlier on. What does the "correct header response" part mean?
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  11. SeoRaptor
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    Header response is the information, in the form of a text record, that a Web server sends back to a client browser in response to receiving an HTTP request. The response header contains the date, size and type of file that the server is sending back to the client and also data about the server itself. The header is attached to the files being sent back to the client.

    1xx: hold on
    2xx: here you go
    3xx: go away
    4xx: you ****ed up
    5xx: I ****ed up

    When a header response is properly set to 404 Google will, in the end, drop the page from its index. The reason I checked your pages header response is that a lot of people just call a page 404 and redirect wrong links. In the facts this solution is useless.

    In your case, you're good to go. Your redirections are well configured, same thing with the canonical tags, and the 404 header responses.

    It will take some time to gain your rankings back but your pages should soon be reindexed with the correct URLS.

    If it has not been done already, verify the https version of you URL in search console and resubmit a sitemap.

    Give Google some days to sort things out and you should be good to go.

    PS: If I understood correctly you switched to https because your site was hacked. Https is a very good thing as it crypts data transfers between the server and the client browser but remember that even with a proper SSL connection, your site is vulnerable to hack attempts if you CMS is out of date.

    Hope this helped

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    • Chedders agrees : Love the status description LOL
    • Richard1 agrees : Very helpful...
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    Thanks for explaining the header... So you think it's possible for Google to realize when indexing the https site that the old site ranked well? Or will Google rank the new site as if it was a new business appearing on Google for the first time? Do you think it will only take a few days? Or months? :-)
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  15. SeoRaptor
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    Do you think it will only take a few days? Or months? :-)
    Hard to say, but if you had backlinks, and that these are correctly 301 redirected to the new pages then it should be a question of a couple weeks i'd say (but nobody never really knows this kinds of things)

    Or will Google rank the new site as if it was a new business appearing on Google for the first time
    I'd say a bit of the two
    Technically it's a new URL access so it should be considered as a new site but if you already had content and backlinks on the same http urls then I guess that Google should make the appropriate relation between your old urls and your new urls.

    I think (but I have no proof of this) that google also checks Whois data so if this data didn't change it should understand that it is just a https switch.

    Tip : I haven't reread the whole thread so I might be repeating something that has already been said but make sure you verify the https version of your site in Search console.

    Hope this helped.
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    Thanks, yes, the https site was verified in Search Console...

    "but if you had backlinks, and that these are correctly 301 redirected to the new pages then it should be a question of a couple weeks"

    Are you referring to links to my site from other related websites? Yes, there are plenty of those... They are all http though, except two that I changed to https myself because I have login details for them, as I advertise on those sites... I don't think I know what 301 directed means, but hopefully my web developer does. He seems to know his stuff..
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  19. Dinosaur
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    For the home page at least it's done correctly try.
    That is what I was referring to in my original reply
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