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Creating another similar site, looking for your thoughts
apauto




msg:3716126
 10:57 pm on Aug 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

Hi guys,

I have a site right now that sells widgets. I like the site, and its doing well, but I have thoughts for another site that I want to take with a new approach to see if users like it more.

The new site will also sell widgets, but I am going to write new descriptions for each widget. Also, the site will have a lot of content that the other site doesn't, and will also have many features that the other site doesn't.

I'm worried that even though the sites are going to be completely different, they are still going to be selling the same widgets.

Should I worry about Google? I feel the sites are going to be different enough so that it shouldn't matter, but has anyone done anything like this, and been penalized in Google?

Thanks in advance!

 

tedster




msg:3716158
 11:56 pm on Aug 5, 2008 (gmt 0)

It's certainly possible to have two different sites both succeed. But I think one key here would be not to try to use the established site to leverage the rankings of the new site in any way. In other words, really build the new site as a business all on its own.

apauto




msg:3716195
 1:31 am on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

Thanks tedster.

Since both of the sites are selling the same widgets, what if the SERPs happen to have both of the sites listed for blue widgets?

Lets say someone knows that both of the sites are owned by me, and reports it to Google. With the conditions in the original post, do you think it should be ok?

Thanks, appreciate your advice!

tedster




msg:3716230
 2:26 am on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

It can happen either way. If the new site is significantly different then you could be OK on a manual inspection, but there's no guarantee on that.

minnapple




msg:3716242
 2:45 am on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

More than once I have clients that opened multiple sites selling the same product line.

Google ranked one, but not the others on any particular phrase.

Somehow it associated the other sites with the others.
In one case, Google favored one site over another.
Unfornately in this case, it picked the site that had the lowest conversion rate.

After months of trying to make Google change it's mind, we disallowed googlebot from the lower conversion site.

I have worked with clients that went from super sites to multiple targetted sites and back to super sites again after the performance changed.

If you are looking for a bigger footprint, multiple sites do help, but the cost of supporting the branding and the admin comes at a cost and the benifits have been less than predictable over the last 6 years I have been watching .

apauto




msg:3716251
 3:03 am on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

minnapple, how different were the sites?

subhendu




msg:3716324
 7:00 am on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

One bigger site is better than having two small sites. For related topic or products I would create a directory or section to fucus on the area. If the product are same then why I sould go for two different sites? I can add extra featurs to the existing site also.

For unrelated aeras products two different sites are fine.

HuskyPup




msg:3716560
 1:28 pm on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

but has anyone done anything like this

Yes, I have several sites like this and all rank well however I had better explain that mine are all country-widget-produced focussed.

My widgets, whilst mostly identical, are mainly produced in Brazil, China, India, Italy, South Africa and Turkey and these sites all rank highly in their respective Google.tld and some quite well in Google.com.

Each site has a two-way link with the company.com which ranks highly in Google.com for all these widgets, and many more widgets for which we do not promote through a country.tld.

I do have a mini version of the .com using a .co.uk for our most in-demand widgets for the UK. The widget descriptions on this site are even more in-depth than the company.com and this site also ranks well on Google.com and Google.co.uk.

All-in-all G has mostly done a great job of placing the sites in the right place however one possible word of warning.

It's possible your new site may not rank very well to commence with, I'm finding with even new and totally unrelated or reciprocally linked unique product sites are taking quite some time to climb the SERPs. If you do create such an ostensibly different new site then make sure you link them.

I know, I know, some agree, some disagree on this, that's simply been my positive experience.

Therefore do not make a carbon copy, that will just be a waste your time.

wrkalot




msg:3716583
 1:44 pm on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

I have a competitor with over 250 stores, many of which have the same products, descriptions, etc. but have additional content that makes it look like they are different. They use a central database and templates to achieve this. I have seen on many occasions where they have 3 stores hold top 10 positions for a specific widget.

For more generic terms they rank well for only one of the stores but not in all case. I'm not sure how they are pulling this off but I would imagine it's costing them a fortune to maintain.

apauto




msg:3717032
 9:02 pm on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

One bigger site is better than having two small sites. For related topic or products I would create a directory or section to fucus on the area. If the product are same then why I sould go for two different sites? I can add extra featurs to the existing site also.
For unrelated aeras products two different sites are fine.

In my main post, I mentioned how even though I'm selling the same widgets, I want to take a different approach with a different site to see if it will help improve sales. If it does improve, or even if it doesn't, and is about the same as the original site, or maybe less, I'd may as well keep it around if it's bringing in orders.

Does that make sense?

Therefore do not make a carbon copy, that will just be a waste your time.

Absolutely, it will not be a carbon copy ,it's a completely different site, with a different angle and approach. It just happens to have the same parts, but with different descriptions.

I have a competitor with over 250 stores, many of which have the same products, descriptions, etc. but have additional content that makes it look like they are different. They use a central database and templates to achieve this. I have seen on many occasions where they have 3 stores hold top 10 positions for a specific widget.

250... wow. I am just going to have two :) Have they ever been reported to google?

apauto




msg:3717033
 9:03 pm on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)


More than once I have clients that opened multiple sites selling the same product line.
Google ranked one, but not the others on any particular phrase.

Were all the sites equally optimized?

apauto




msg:3717034
 9:05 pm on Aug 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

It can happen either way. If the new site is significantly different then you could be OK on a manual inspection, but there's no guarantee on that.

Do you think it would be worth to ask Google their opinion? I want to ensure it's all white hat, but then again, I don't want to open pandora's box.

wrkalot




msg:3717559
 1:40 pm on Aug 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

I would leave google out of the loop. I currently have 2 stores that sell the same products. Both are ranking on page 1 and 2 for the same terms. In one case for specific product search I take up the first 4 spots (when they decide to show the seconded indented listing for each site). Same products, similar content, different pricing structure, different hosts, vastly different site structure overall... much like all of the other sites in my niche.

It's a difficult task to say the least and not what I had in mind when I started this whole thing (it's a long story) but it can work.

apauto




msg:3717820
 5:55 pm on Aug 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

wrkalot - did you register the domains through the same registrar?

vero




msg:3717837
 6:24 pm on Aug 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

I have 2 similar sites, one on widgets, one on blue widgets. Some of the things I've done that seem to be working:
Don't link from one site to the other.
Try to get different sources for external links to each of the sites.
Make sure the sites are not on the same server.
Most of all - Make sure the content throughout both sites is unique - nothing duplicated in the copy, different layouts, unique navigation, etc.

apauto




msg:3717918
 8:04 pm on Aug 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

vero, how long have you had these two sites with no problems?

wrkalot




msg:3718496
 1:56 pm on Aug 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

apauto: Yes

apauto




msg:3719673
 7:49 am on Aug 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

Any one else have any experience with this?

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