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Rewriting The Home Page
Posted 14 January 2005 - 05:45 PM
The site has made it's way back up Google for key search terms such as team building, and team building events, team building exercises - but in most cases still isn't back on the first page, so client is using Google Adwords and Overture, and is getting quite good results and relies on the site quite heavily for revenue generated by leads - which currently come from organic and PPC leads.
The home page is pretty awful - far too much conflicting infomation bombarding you when you get there, and the words team building jump at you from practically every sentence.
My question is: if I rewrite this home page, so that it is optimised for 2 to 3 key phrases and is better for his visitors, and sort out the meta tags, etc - will the ranking he has got in the Organic Google, Yahoo and MSN rankings at the moment be lost? Will we be starting again?, as he is very worried about losing the ranking he has got (as he is a small company).
Thanks (just liked the dancing banana!)
Posted 14 January 2005 - 05:55 PM
That said, it sounds as if the current index page is not very human-friendly. And is probably due for a change.
The only way to tell is to take the leap. If you're concerned, simply save a backup copy of the old page in case you need to get it back up in a hurry.
I've seen cases where the rankings and traffic might even go down a little bit, however conversions skyrocket and more than offset the loss in traffic.
Posted 14 January 2005 - 06:01 PM
I agree - I think conversions could increase significantly.
If I had to put the hold home page back - would the old rankings come back 'just like that'?
I really, really want to do it, but it is a big risk when so much is riding on it.
Posted 14 January 2005 - 10:47 PM
Pick the best converting terms and focus the home page on those. Add additional pages for the terms you are removing from the page, fully optimized for those phrases.
You are much likely to end up with better rankings, not worse!
You can always put the home page back if you need to, but don't be too quick to determine cause and effect. Give your new copy a chance.
Posted 15 January 2005 - 09:47 AM
If you're worried about the time frame traffic and sales may be off, my experience is that it'll take longer for the new pages to settle in than it would if you decided that you needed to switch back. It's always seemed that way to me, even though it makes no sense at all. So that might just be a figment of my imagination.
I would definitely plan on giving the new pages at least a month or two to settle in and start providing you with data before jumping back to the old page. I've found that you really can't look at short term (days or weeks) data and make a sound business decision.
Posted 16 January 2005 - 05:09 PM
Ranking for the term 'team building' on page 4 google.com and page 2 for term 'team building uk'. Page 1 for Yahoo and MSN (.co.uk sites) for the term 'team building' - so worried that I may lose this ranking with Yahoo/MSN if I change the page.
The home page is kinda optimised for the terms 'team building' 'team building activities, 'team building events' - these are well searched for terms (but I don't know if they are good converting terms - how would I find this out?
However, practically every other sentance has one of these phrases, and they don't flow for the reader - in fact the page reads really badly - however looking at the competition on Yahoo/MSN they use a large number of these phrases on their high ranked pages.
I guess by re-optimising the home page I may lose Yahoo/MSN ranking but could eventually gain on Google (if I have plenty of good links, good tags, etc)?
Posted 01 February 2005 - 07:07 PM
as I read so many times in Jill's SEO articles (i think ),
each page is a door way to the site, no?
Posted 01 February 2005 - 11:44 PM
Interestingly, several other pages have a higher PR than the home page, which I'm a bit upset about. I've been kind of wondering whether, this is a good idea and whether I should optimise the home page and leave it static and move the weekly news to another page.
Posted 01 February 2005 - 11:52 PM
Posted 02 February 2005 - 12:15 AM
I appreciate that. My thoughts were more generally related to keywork optimisation.
It's a fairly new site (3 months) and from Yahoo, to MSN, to Google, all of the backlinks point to the home page. The only thing that I can think of is internal links, as the pages that have a higher PR are pointed to a lot internally - but then so is the home page.
Posted 02 February 2005 - 12:22 AM
Posted 02 February 2005 - 01:19 AM
Sure. I understand that too.
Posted 03 February 2005 - 06:26 AM
It could even be that people are arriving from search terms that you haven't considered. (In that case that is a pointer for more content - perhaps a separate page targetting that term.) Also look to see if people are hanging around, or are they taking a look at the home page and disappearing. If they are, it could be like you say that the home page is actually putting off people, and that gives you ammunition to proceed.
However, do be aware that it could also be that people searching on that term are not likely customers for you. That happened to me once - lots of people were arriving (it was a technical term that I hadn't consciously optimised for) and immediately leaving. When I went to look in the search engines, I was surprised to see that there were no companies that I would consider to be competitors of this site anywhere in sight on the page. The reason of course was because people looking for this term were actually wanting something quite different.
So what I would do is look at the logs. Find terms that people are sticking around for - they are obviously happy that they have found a site that helps them, so those terms are good for you. But also look at terms where people are moving on sharply. If they are what you consider good keywords, and you have checked that your competitors are all over those terms, then that is a big potential market that you can go for.
Your home page does not need to be only targetting a couple of key words either. Remember - it works very well if the home page is a call to action to all the services you provide. Skilfully done, it can sum up all sorts of stuff on your site and point people to where they should be going next - calls to action - and target loads of good keywords to boot. Perfect for your visitors and not bad for the Search Engines too!
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