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Would This Be A Good Opportunity To Change A Page Name?

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#1 Say Yebo

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Posted 12 October 2015 - 04:22 PM

The website in question has a product page called company.com/product-X
It has a lot of natural inbound links.
Due to a site restructure 2 years ago, it was changed to company.com/products/X
A 301 redirect was put in place, and the new URL has since gained another 300 inbound links, naturally.
Now, two years later... the site is restructuring again.
So a choice has to be made to retain company.com/products/X, or to name it company.com/products/X-car-wax.
Normally, I would not change a URL just to include a keyword, but in this case the site's major competitors all have the keyword as part of their product name, so it's in their URL by default.
But Product X just has a product brand name, no keyword. So we COULD add the keyword after the brand name in the URL so it would match the competitors' and show up in the SERPS as car-wax.
My questions are: 
1. Is there any SEO benefit at all to having car wax in the URL?
2. Should we change the product's page name (for the reasons mentioned above) and set up a 301, or just leave it as is?
3. If yes, do BOTH the 'old' pages now have to redirect to the new one? I'm guessing yes.

#2 torka


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Posted 13 October 2015 - 07:39 AM

The jury's out as to whether there's a benefit. If there is, it's not significant. If it exists, would a tiny possible benefit be enough to justify the change? Only you can answer that. :)


On the other hand, there are some who think that too much keyword focus could hurt your pages -- and changing your URLs to include "keywords" when they haven't done so before could be seen as a sign you're trying a little too hard.


I'm always wary of doing something just because "everybody else is doing it." As my mother used to tell me: if everybody else is jumping off a bridge, that doesn't mean you should do it too. A few questions: are all these major competitors outdoing you in search, or are you holding your own as it stands? Are you certain that whatever rankings they get, they're getting because of having a "keyword" in their URL, or could it be in spite of having a keyworded URL?


My usual practice for any site changes: make the change if it makes sense for the business. For instance, if the change somehow makes site administration more convenient, or if there's a definite, known SEO benefit, or if it's somehow better for site visitors (or whatever), then do it. If it's a change simply for the sake of change (or for some potential -- but possibly nonexistent -- minor SEO benefit), I generally don't judge it worth the effort.


And yes, if you do decide to make the change, you will want to update your 301 redirects to send all previous URLs directly to the newest one.


--Torka :oldfogey:

#3 Michael Martinez

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Posted 13 October 2015 - 10:47 AM

I would focus on improving the page content.  Having run multiple URL tests, I can tell you that adding a keyword to them doesn't change rankings in a competitive SERP so it doesn't really matter how much value they may add.  They are not adding enough value to be worth the trouble.

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