Domain Manage

What would you do ?

Discussion in 'General Board' started by mojoco, Apr 14, 2011.

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  1. mojoco United Kingdom

    mojoco Well-Known Member

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    Some advice please guys.

    OK what would be the best thing to do in the following scenario........


    Keyword-Domain.co.uk is an existing established website. It is a big site, stacks of original content and has thousands of backlinks.

    However despite the content and links the site is slowly losing its position in Google. It was in the top 3 and has steadily dropped back to page 2.

    The website is an established business with a client base, goodwill, brand recognition etc, and a real world staffed office handling all manner of customer services.

    If the business was able to acquire KeywordDomain.co.uk what would be the smartest thing to do ?

    Redirect KeywordDomain.co.uk to the existing Keyword-Domain.co.uk website. ?

    Build another website on KeywordDomain.co.uk in an attempt to dominate two positions ?

    Transfer the site to KeywordDomain.co.uk and redirect Keyword-Domain.co.uk to the new URL ?




    I'll be very grateful for your feedback. Thanks.
     
  2. Domain Forum

    Acorn Domains Elite Member

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  3. wb United Kingdom

    wb Well-Known Member

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    All this would do is protect a competitor from using the domain and perhaps gain some type in traffic. I don't think this would be the best choice if you're looking at in from an optimisation point of view.

    Pretty sure it's against Google's terms to do that, and if it is you would be risk having both websites delisted.

    I'm not a big fan of hyphens, so I would probably do this option. It shoudn't lose the value of the existing backlinks, and new backlinks should have more benefit from the non hyphenated domain being given the 'exact match' bonus.

    All in my opinion of course. :)
     
  4. JackG

    JackG Active Member

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    Without a shadow of a doubt transfer the site onto keyworddomain.co.uk and redirect keyword-domain.co.uk.

    You wouldn't loose your client base either.

    Like wb, in my opinion.
     
  5. retired_member13

    retired_member13 Banned

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    I'd redirect the new KeywordDomain.co.uk name to the existing site to begin with, at the same time as firing the SEO consultant and getting a new one.

    When I had a decent strategy in place I'd look at which name to use as the main URL after that as part of a long term goal. 301ing sites across doesn't always work in terms of getting all of the link juice from links that go into the redirected URL (as far as I'm aware) so the risk would need to be factored in.

    TBH, it sounds like whether or not they have a hyphen is the least of their worries... :)
     
  6. JackG

    JackG Active Member

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    Totally agree with the SEO consultant comment. I'd be asking some serious questions as to why my website is dropping down the ranks.
     
  7. WigWam Singapore

    WigWam Well-Known Member

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    Definitely find a new seo consultant ;)

    well I would say that.

    WW.
     
  8. spondishy

    spondishy Active Member

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    I would do the following making sure all urls are correctly 301'd:

    Transfer the site to KeywordDomain.co.uk and redirect Keyword-Domain.co.uk to the new URL ?
     
  9. Blossom

    Blossom Well-Known Member

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    301 redirects don't pass full juice, and in some instances I've seen a couple which have led to sites dropping drastically for individual pages. Even after 3 months they hadn't returned so they removed the redirect.

    It's worth doing a backlink analysis, contacting the most important sites, explaining that you've moved and asking them if they would update their existing links.

    Also might want to determine whether it's Google's algorithm changes, an increasingly competitive market, competitors going crazy with low-quality link building etc. before you shoot the SEO. I've had one site recently which is dropping down page 1 for a very competitive keyword (£20 PPC) because the main competitors have bought horrible spammy links on several thousand websites. Would love to be a fly on the wall when that comes crashing down.
     
  10. wb United Kingdom

    wb Well-Known Member

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    If done correctly and Google is notified of the change of domain then there should be no reason why rankings should drop. I've never noticed anything like this, but I'm always happy to stand corrected when needed.

    As a recent example, Frog on here transferred his DiscountVouchers.org over to CouponCroc.co.uk without any problems or losses in rankings by the looks of things. That's set up with a 301 redirect, and looking at the backlinks I doubt it would be ranking at #6 for 'Discount Vouchers' if it wasn't for the redirect.
     
  11. Aegean

    Aegean Active Member

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    Personally I would use the extra domain to build a content rich related site to promote the primary domain. Redirecting a keyword related domain is a waste of resources, in my opinion.
     
  12. retired_member32

    retired_member32 Retired Member

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    i would build on the new domain ,unique content and rank it higher than the original site ,when it surpasses your original domain..i would do a redirect onto your new site (un hyphenated)...
     
  13. Frog

    Frog Active Member

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    Its not that simple though, a short term hit on traffic is inevitable. No matter what you read elsewhere, I am 100% confident that 301's don't pass the full benefit on either.

    Given that he is saying "The website is an established business with a client base, goodwill, brand recognition etc, and a real world staffed office handling all manner of customer services." it sounds like a real business, not a bedroom affiliate site. If they are already running on low margins they maybe can't afford a traffic hit to do it. There are loads of websites stuck on crap domains (or even shoddy urls like /product6.html etc) because they now can't afford to risk changing what is already working.

    Depends what you sell also - contact lenses would be a lot of repeat business, so a short term hit in rankings wouldn't kill you as everyone knows your url anyway. If you're selling one off purchases like wardrobes or medical procedures a traffic hit like that might mean not being able to pay the wages that month as you just threw away 50% of that months orders.

    You'll absolutely experience a short term drop, it just remains to be seen how quickly they come back, and if you can afford to risk it. I would expect that within 6-8 weeks you would rank higher for your main phrase if you went from a dash to an exact match domain. But it might take longer. Or it might not come back at all (if that happens you can almost certainly break the 301, write off the lost profits while you tried it, and go back to where you started).

    I wanted to get rid of that .org domain so decided to go ahead and do it and eat the short term loss... traffic was down by nearly 80% within 48 hrs... then creeped back up to only a 20% loss.

    If you're considering it I would expect to write off:

    week 1 - 80% of your traffic
    week 2 - 70%
    week 3 - 60%.... etc

    I think you will get back to 85-90%. I don't think its possible to get back to 90% normally - but the increase on the exact match phrase getting a boost in Google should outweigh that loss (if it doesn't, I probably wouldn't do the 301 in the first place).

    I'm now not sure how long it would have taken to get back to 95% (I think the 301 kills maybe 5-10% of the link benefit flowing in) as Panda came in and gave me all the extra traffic all the penalised voucher sites lost :D

    edit - another point I should make. Whether you'd want to make the redirect in the first place would hugely come down to how much traffic (and more importantly earnings) the main phrase provided now, and how much it would be likely to provide if you ranked better. And if it was possible to rank better without the exact match domain.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011
  14. wb United Kingdom

    wb Well-Known Member

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    (^ too much to quote)

    Haven't had to do any redirects or domain swapping before so that's informative, thanks. :)
     
  15. retired_member34

    retired_member34 Retired Member

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    Absolutely move the keyword-domain.co.uk to keyworddomain.co.uk. Make sure all the urls are replicated exactly, not just the home page and that each url is 301 redirected individually. Then specify the move under webmaster tools. Don't change anything else until the new domain is established and steady in G.

    I did exactly this and saw an almost instant big boost, possibly due to that wonderful myth the "exact match boost", on a very competitive keyword (admittedly this was a couple of years ago).

    I have also done what Frog described, moved to a new "brand" domain so no keyword match (apart from that provided by backlinks) and experienced the same as him. Disappeared for 3 weeks, then slowly returned close to where it was prior to the move.

    Everything Frog said is correct with regard to the affordability of risking their current rank for keyword, but if they are only on P2 then I doubt they are getting much from it?
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011
  16. Edwin

    Edwin Well-Known Member Exclusive Member

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    You may experience a short term traffic hit, but if you combine the following 3 steps simultaneously you'll have done everything possible to mitigate that hit:-
    A) 301 redirect each page to its exact counterpart on the new site (might as well also take care of "www" vs non-"www" issue at the same time i.e. settle on ONE specific URL structure and have the 301 take care of it
    B) Use the "move" under Google Webmaster Tools
    C) Add a rel canonical tag to every page with the full URL of the "new" page in it
    http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=139394
    (that will have the added benefit of helping if there are any other kinds of duplicate content caused e.g. by search string modifiers

    After that, I would try and get at least some of the existing incoming links changed to the new URL, especially any from on-topic "trusted" sources on sites that look like they're still being regularly updated.
     
  17. Systreg

    Systreg Well-Known Member

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    @ Mojoco, I have a similar question, hope you don't mind me asking it here, rather than me starting a new topic.

    I have a PR5 fraud related site that's on a .info with 2 hyphens in the domain name, but I want to use a .co.uk name instead of the .info and want to keep the PR.

    I don't understand any of the canonical or 301 type stuff, so, would it be alright for me to take the written text from each page on the .info site, and start a new page on my .co.uk site using the copied over text, and name each page with the last part of the url, not sure I'm explaining this very well, ok, an example, old site example page would be:

    domain-name-here.info/lottery_scams.html

    Copy the text from that page to make a new page at the new site as:

    newdomainhere.co.uk/lottery_scams.html

    Then, on each of the .info site pages, put one of those javascript time delay scripts in the head section of the html, so I can put a message on each page saying, 'redirecting you to ur new site in 30 seconds, or click here to go to the new site now'

    Would doing that transfer the PR to the .co.uk domain?
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011
  18. Frog

    Frog Active Member

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    No, it would create duplicate content issues and is not a good idea at all. You need to just copy all your files onto the new domain and do a 301 redirect via your htaccess file.
     
  19. Systreg

    Systreg Well-Known Member

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    @ Frog, not sure where the duplicate content issue would be? As I would be deleting all content from the .info site pages and posting it on a new site, so it would only exist on the .co.uk at that point.

    Wouldn't be able to copy files as the .info site is made in html and the new site would be using WP, so not possible to use files from one on the other.

    Sounds like a bit of a pain to me with 301 stuff I don't know how to do, so probably easier to leave the .info site as it is and start from scratch with the new .co.uk site I think, thanks.
     
  20. Frog

    Frog Active Member

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    What is your file structure currently, can WP permalinks replicate it?

    If it can, this is easy to do. Set up WP on the new site, use the same url's and copy the content into each new WP page/post. Then do a 301 across to the new domain.

    If you can't use the same permalinks you can 301 each url individually but changing the url structure along with the domain in one go is far from ideal.

    I would be looking to change it either way, especially if you have a great .co.uk domain to do it on. two hypens in a .info name = no credibility whatsoever.


    Duplicate content issues from your idea will come from the pages still being in Googles cache. It might fix itself in time, but telling Google you have moved the pages and doing it properly (via a 301 redirect rather than javascript) is definitely a better way to proceed.
     
  21. mojoco United Kingdom

    mojoco Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everyone for the info / suggestions.

    It is VERY VERY appreciated ! :D
     
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