For the past several years I've been building a handful of sites. All of which are leveraging wordpress implemented in the root of the domain. For example: if you went to http://mydomain.com you would arrive at a wordpress blog. Then I have my own database driven application that extends off of the blog platform via links in posts, pages, and sidebar.
Based on my experience I had better results a few years ago. It was pretty easy to dominate the SERPs for my niche terms by blogging daily on revelant topics; and getting just a handful of long-respected, locationally (not sure if this is even a word) related sites. Honestly I was amazed by the power of wordpress. Keep in mind I always took steps to reduce/eliminate dup content and only posted original articles written by me.
But lately (even before Panda) it seems blogs in general are losing their favor with G. Exceptions, obviously are for extremely fresh, unique, well liked blogs with many subscribers.
I'm just wondering if my next site would be better off having my application and some static html pages with content in the root of the domain and having the wordpress implementation in a subdirectory, or even a subdomain.
Just curious if others are noticing blogs seem to be getting looked at more closely by G and maybe even being devalued by these last updates. And if my train of thought makes sense to anyone else...lol
[edited by: tedster at 9:44 pm (utc) on Apr 2, 2011] [edit reason] display the example URL [/edit]
I have a couple of Wordpress-powered sites and I'd agree that they are not ranking like they used to. There's no doubt that fresh content can pull in traffic but I am finding more and more that as articles age they slide.
My recent strategy has been to move away from Wordpress and use flat-file sites. I maintain the two blog sites still but the traffic is pretty much all long-tail now and it's hit and miss if a new article will find a position that sticks.
I use them more now to back up other sites in the network. New product news that is aimed at the reader that wants a quick opinion and overview but then the article will link to an in-depth product review that I place elsewhere in the network as relevant.
In that regard they still convert fairly well. In fact in % terms they refer customers at the same rate as the full product review sites that run on flat files.
Thanks for the reply. I had a feeling I wasn't the only one noticing this. I think my next site launch will use flat-files for the main site and extend the blog off of that.
And in reality it kind of makes sense, an established site/company with useful content/goods/services wouldn't need to rely on a blog as much to increase traffic. Lately I feel as if G-bot sees the genetrator = 'wordpress x.x.x' that it automatically gets some discount as to its value due to the ever-increasing splogs, MFAS, and scraper blogs.
Question now is do I put wordpress in subdomain or subdirectory? hmmmmm
@pitbullfan I wouldn't imaging that G-Bot sees the Wordpress generator tag and devalues the site - I think that would be a bit extreme! There are plenty of legitimate organisations using wordpress as a CMS platform and many using e-commerce plugins to convert wordpress into a e-commerce platform therefore devaluing any site on the occurrence of a particular generator tag would be ridiculous.
That said, I think certain aspects of wordpress are not as effective as they used to be; for example I do not think the built in ping functionality and similar plugins are very effective nowadays. In my experience these functions used to help blogs get indexed very quickly however this does not seem to be the case nowadays. Anyone else experiencing this?
I would still deem wordpress to be one of the best content management systems on the market (for free anyway!). I fail to see how you would be any better having a flat-file website, but I will stand corrected if necessary! :-)
I've been putting static sites INTO WordPress over the past year, and they're doing better than ever. I absolutely do not believe that Google penalizes or filters otherwise healthy sites just because they're in WordPress.
The thing is I don't require a cms for the application part of my site which is where I want most of my visitors. My success depends on people posting Widgets and others browsing/searching for Widgets. i still plan on leveraging WP just as a blog in a child directory. Thanks for all your always valuable thoughts. Cheers