SEO Fiasco: Returns to

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Marketing Wrangler Kevin Bates has announced that will revert to its original domain name, on April 09, 2024. WooCommerce joined Automattic in 2015 and rebranded to Woo in October last year. Despite the earlier change in its domain name, the branding identity and all icons remained the same. 

Google to Blame?

Kevin Bates has clarified that “Moving to created challenges for our users to find WooCommerce in Google searches, which were made worse following Google’s March update. To address those challenges, we assembled a group of SEO experts and consultants to evaluate the best way to build on the strength of the WooCommerce brand. We collectively believe that reverting back to will deliver the best outcomes for WooCommerce and the wider Woo community.”

Mario Peshev (CEO of DevriX) feels that “The Google HCU and March core updates completely tanked WooCommerce’s visibility.” “It’s not every day that you see a domain name migration reversal, especially from a 3-letter .com domain. Google updates are partly to blame for the decision.” tweeted Carl Hendy (SEO and E-Commerce Consultant).

However Kristine Schachinger (SEO Consultant) tweeted “I don’t think that’s anything to do with updates this is a migration gone bad.” Greg Boser (President & Co-founder of Foundation Digital) also supports this. “This isn’t about Google. It’s about them simply doing a shitty job with the migration. Projects like that take far more planning than most will be willing to do in order for it to end up a complete disaster.”, he tweeted.

Andy Beard (Entrepreneur & SEO expert) thinks the Woo is to be blamed for the fiasco. “Thousands of links not changed on domains they control. Also on domains they do control, the emphasis is to sign up ecommerce hosting clients, not rank the woo domain. They compete with themselves on many terms. Pages on old domain still indexed”, he said.

Regardless of the cause, there is agreement that the situation represents a significant setback for WooCommerce’s visibility and SEO performance.

Response From the Community

Community responses reflect a mix of concern and skepticism. “Every SEO consultant’s worst nightmare.” This is how Hashim Warren (Product Marketer) dubbed it while Dinesh De Silva (CEO of NetStripes) tweeted  “huge SEO fail of WooCommerce… This ought to be a case study in the future for brand name changes & re launches”. 

Cyrus Shepard (owner of Zyppy SEO) tweeted “The chance of things going *worse* after a second migration is easily > 0”. Will King (Head of SEO at Eastside Co) too thinks along the same lines “The thing is, reversing the migration will cause new disruption. Sometimes better to fix whatever’s gone wrong and stay the course.” David Iwanow (Head of Search at Reckitt), Pedro Dias (Founder of Visively) and Alek Asaduryan (Affiliate marketer and SEO consultant) also do not believe reverting to the original domain will succeed. 

“Changing a site’s domain is always a risky move, and this story is a good example of “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it,” tweeted Miriam Schwab (Head of WP Relations at Elementor).

Matt Cromwell (Senior Director of Customer Experience at StellarWP) shared his experience: “We migrated from iThemes to SolidWP and still get traffic for iThemes branded search. It’s 💯 possible to do it, but you have to be dogmatic about your on-page terms and results before, during, and after migration.”

Due to this upcoming change, Woo customers must update all URLs in their marketing materials, documentation, and code to Also, WooCommerce 8.8 release has been rescheduled from April 9, 2024, to April 10, 2024.

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