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Some weeks ago, I migrated a 500k-webpage site from HTTP to HTTPS

  • I implemented the appropriate 301 redirection
  • I removed the sitemap of the HTTP property within Google Search Console

Today I found some abrupt changes in the figures of the coverage within Google Search Console:

  • "Excluded: Page with redirect": boosted from 116k to 500k
  • "Excluded: Duplicate, submitted URL not selected as canonical": dropped from 500k to null
  • "Excluded: Discovered - currently not indexed": dropped fron 500k to null
  • "Error: Submitted URL seems to be a Soft 404": dropped from 20k to null

I would like to believe that these changes are the expected ones and are good for the ranking of my pages. Any similar experience would be welcome.

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I think this is a case of Google moving your traffic over to HTTPS.

Your property that is verified in Google Search Console is a prefix property: http://example.com. That will only show stats for the HTTP version of your site. If you add a second prefix property for HTTPS (https://example.com) then you should see a growing number of indexed pages on that property.

You could also add a "domain property" in Google search console for example.com. That will show all pages on both the http and https versions of your site.

On the other hand, there are often ranking and SEO problems when moving to HTTPS. See Are drops in Google ranking common after switching to https? The safest way to move to HTTPS from an SEO standpoint is to run both HTTP and HTTPS simultaneously for a year and have canonical tags that point to HTTPS. After a year, you can put in redirects to HTTPS. Not all sites have problems with redirecting right away, but using the canonicals for a year seems to make the transition painless from a rankings standpoint. See my experience with moving my largest site to HTTPS for more details.

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