Will changing the domain name affect my search engine ranking?

Hello SEO people, I’ll keep this concise. I need help. I’m not very familiar with SEO or website building (I studied finance), and I’ve been running a mobile detailing business with a GoDaddy website and domain for 4 years. It’s been successful; I ranked #1 on Google for “Car detailing my city”. I’ve had Google Analytics and Search Console set up without issues during this time.

Recently, I rebranded my business from “old mobile detailing” to “new mobile detailing” and bought a new domain to match the new name. I transferred my old domain to Google and purchased the new domain through Google. Here’s what I’ve done to maintain my ranking while changing the domain:

  • The website is still hosted on GoDaddy and is live on the new domain with identical content.
  • I updated the Google Analytics code and changed the default URL in the property settings to the new domain.
  • I updated my business name and website on all social media platforms including Yelp, Google My Business, Facebook, Nextdoor, and Instagram.
  • I set up a 301 permanent redirect from the old domain to the new domain.
  • Enabled path forwarding from the old domain to the new domain in Google Domains.
  • Initiated a change of address in Google Search Console, which is in progress.
  • Submitted a sitemap for the new domain in Google Search Console.

The website functions correctly, and the redirect from the old to the new domain is working as intended. However, I’m concerned about potentially losing business. While my old domain still ranks #1 on Google, clicking it redirects to the new domain. How can I ensure the new domain appears on the initial Google page? Will everything resolve itself over time? Any advice or insights would be greatly appreciated.

3.5

You’ve taken significant steps to ensure a smooth transition with your rebranding and domain change, which is crucial for maintaining your SEO rankings and business visibility. It’s normal to experience some initial fluctuation in rankings as Google processes the changes, but your implementation of 301 redirects, updating Google Analytics and Search Console settings, and initiating a change of address in Search Console are all positive steps. Monitor your rankings closely over the coming weeks and months, and continue to optimize your website’s content and local SEO efforts. As Google indexes the new domain and recognizes the redirects, your rankings should stabilize and improve over time. Patience and ongoing monitoring will be key to ensuring your new domain appears prominently in search results for relevant keywords like “Car detailing my city.”

Swapping your website’s domain name messes with all the links people used to find you. Google might not rank you as high in search results because of that broken link stuff.