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Should Your Index Page Be Your Most POPULAR Page?

 5:12 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hi there, Everyone:

My index page is 10th in popularity on my site (in terms of overall visits, as well as in terms of being a landing page / entry page to my site).

Is that a bad thing? Or is it a good thing?

My home page has the most inbound links to it. It does seem to convert well in terms of sales for the traffic that DOES reach it.

Just not that many people visit it, and lots more traffic goes to pages that don't convert.

I wonder if this is a sign of a bigger problem? Maybe the home page needs to be better focused?

What's your experience with this?


Sally Stitts

 5:53 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

Good question!
My index page ranks #15, so I am in the same boat.
There are over 20,000 links to my most popular page (WMT).
But WMT doesn't even list the links to my index.htm page.
The link:siteindex.htm command says 3, which is patently absurd.
The link: siteindex.htm command says 445,000, which is also absurd.
I believe that the true number is somewhere in the 100's.

Add that weird chunk of data to your calculations.
Of course, to me, WMT is the biggest hodge-podge of scrambled BS one could possible create - some parameters updated daily (+1), some parameters not updated for months and months (internal links), some parameters just plain bogus. When the WMT incoming links are updated, they have varied by a factor of 10. Useless as a metric.

So, who knows?

[edited by: Sally_Stitts at 6:11 pm (utc) on Sep 3, 2011]


 6:01 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

It's only natural that a site's main page would be targeted toward it's primary keywords, that those keywords would be the most popular with your target audience, and that the main page would normally have the most general ranking strength. So you would usually want the main page to be the most popular, but it can also be the most difficult goal to achieve since the competition would also tend to be the strongest for those keywords. C'est la guerre.


 6:05 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

Depends on your site. In the case of a big news site, the home page is going to get tons of visits because that is what people will check for news. For a restaurant website, I'll usually jump straight through to the menu or the contact page. For a shopping site, I'll probably get referred in to a specific product page and never see the home page at all.

Sally Stitts

 6:05 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have a couple of very popular pages, which are linked to by appropriate keywords.

Those keywords do not even appear on my index page. It is "just an index" which receives far fewer links.


 6:27 pm on Sep 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

I've seen quite a few sites where almost no-one hits the home page from a search, unless it was a "brand name" search.

That's how it should be, the visitor should arrive directly at the seep content page that matches what they were looking for.

And, with a few lines of PHP code you can insert a few welcoming lines at the top of that first page when the referrer is a search engine and the visitor has no "previous visit" cookie already installed.


 5:12 am on Sep 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

I think that everybody should links their keywords linked to the relevant site. This is the better way.

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