I have designed a website a few years back, and it ranks pretty well, customer is happy, no problems there. I took one of the pages and replaced manually all the tables with <div>, used structured data and got the website to look exactly the same.

I would like to know what other steps should I take to improve or at least not hurt this page's rank, or if perhaps I should just not bother altogether.

What are best practices here?

By the way, the page is not live yet.

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    Im just curious why you even did that? If it looks exactly the same, what did you achieve?
    – Octopus
    Jun 25, 2013 at 16:41
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    @Octopus Well, because the code is much better organized and smaller, so if I or someone else in the future needs to change it, it'll be much easier, and I won't look bad haha. Also, because of the whole discussion whether tables are good or not for design, I'm afraid that using tables will have an impact in the future. Jun 25, 2013 at 16:55
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  • Depends on what you want done.
    – Rob
    Jun 25, 2013 at 21:20
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    Thanks @DisgruntledGoat. In regards to those 2 links, the page meets all the criteria feature on the accepted answer for question 1 and question 2. Even before the table changes. I guess I'm looking for somebody who has some experience on this, I don't want to hurt the website, but I also don't want to work for nothing. Is there room for improvement? Is this as task worth doing? Jun 25, 2013 at 23:24

1 Answer 1


One important reason for updating a website that's years old might be to incorporate a more mobile-friendly design, since the sale of mobile devices are now outpacing desktops, and expected to outnumber people by the end of the year.

Since you're already obtaining good ranking results and your customer is happy, you might just adapt your old pages to mobile-friendly ones and serve them on a subdomain (e.g., m.yourdomain.com).

Those pages can have the structural changes that you're thinking about, such as using responsive elements like div's with CSS, instead of rigid tables. Thus you'll be providing an updated design, while expanding accessibility - and you won't have to be concerned about changes in SERP or otherwise to your main website.

Alternatively, you can implement those changes in your current pages to make them more responsive and optimized, leaving the content intact so that your SERP is also not affected. For more about this from an SEO-perspective, take a look at: Responsive Design & Mobile SEO: Best Practices for 2013

There are many tutorials on the web showing how to approach responsive web design, here's just one: Responsive Web Design

Lastly, in consideration for updating your site's code, you might want to test if it meets current W3C standards or not, which can be done using their online validator: W3C Markup Validation Service You can also test how it appears in recent browsers using Browser Shots.

In short, I wouldn't feel compelled to redesign a site just for the opinion of future developers, unless there are significant issues that are impacting its use (i.e., it doesn't conform to W3C standards, or appears incorrectly in current browsers). A better reason to do this would be to think about potential visitors and their user experience, taking into consideration growing trends in technology like mobile access.

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