By Jill Whalen
I wanted to discuss the possibility of developing a best practice/checklist
guide for our company to follow. Our new initiative will be to launch 50
or so micro-sites focused on our key product categories. These sites will
need to be rolled out quickly.
Iím not sure that we can help you with what youíre asking for, because
creating 50 micro-sites would not be something we would recommend. Iím
concerned that youíve been provided with some bad info from somewhere if
youíre thinking that this is the way to go. Creating micro-sites is a very
old SEO tactic that was never very effective, and itís not something that
the search engines generally appreciate. Perhaps you were thinking that
only the home page of a site can rank well in the engines? If so, this
isnít the case at all.
A much smarter idea would be to fix up your current corporate site so that
every page of it is optimized in such a way that each of your main
categories and each individual product page would rank on its own merits.
One great site is 1,000 times better than 50 small sites.
Hope this information puts you on the right track with your SEO strategy!
[As you can imagine, Chris wasnít too thrilled with my response and replied
with a bit more explanation. See his/her response with my comments
> Appreciate your feedback. Our plan was the following. Please let me
> know if you still have the same feeling regarding our strategy.
Jill: Sure, see my comments below:
> 1. Create transparent micro-sites using our flagship name.
> Example: OurBrandBlenders.com
Jill: Yes, thatís how I originally assumed you would be doing it. Again,
> 2. Become an authority through the use of forums, RSS and general site
> content (trends, how toís), portable media and community evangelists
> to be the go-to place for all things relevant to the category.
Jill: How do you suppose small sites can become an authority? The idea is
to have one large, great company that will become an authority because its
links and word of mouth will make it so. It will be next to impossible to
try to make 50 different sites become authority sites because youíd be
splitting the potential authoritativeness between 50 domains instead of
one. Again, bad idea.
> 3. Use unique navigation structure and product information to create a
> rich, unique experience.
Jill: This sounds like a branding nightmare to me. Every site will have
different navigation, even though they are selling products from the same
company. Again, bad idea. Very bad idea.
> 4. Use SEO best practices to gain traction on the engines - including
> link acquisition.
Jill: You canít use SEO best practices because the original premise (50
sites for one company) is already bad SEO practice, so anything you do from
there is going to be bad SEO practice.
> Still not a good idea? I would really appreciate some additional
> feedback. We are committed to doing what is the most
> appropriate long-term strategy.
As you can see, itís most definitely, in my opinion, 100%, a huge mistake
for you to go this route. I think if you do some research on SEO best
practices for the 21st century youíll find that the majority of professional
SEOs would agree.