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Does Google favour big sites, or sites with deep folders/pages?
helenp




msg:4559993
 1:01 pm on Mar 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

I am sort of sick seeing hardly only big brands in top search with urls like this:

Brand/city/widgets/
or
Brand/city/widgets.htm

I have a site wich is more than 12 years old and is named
citybrand
and have pages like citybrand/widget.htm

Same as me there are many other local sites, old as mine or new with similar pattern.

I just did a general search for widget city in which I before was on top, same as many other local companies and we are nearly all buried in search expecpt for more specific searches like blue expensive widgets in city.

So, on that general search for city widget there were all big brand portals with deep linking folders... except one site, same age as as mine, that have restructured their site, adding folder and index pages, not for user but for google and have appeared in search with a url like this:

citybrand/widget_city/

I had a look on there site and all links from homepage
goes to a folder, i suppose an index page
like this:

/widget_city/
/luxury_widget_city/
/cheap_green_widget_city/

Is this something we should be "forced to do" to reappear?
.

Mod's note: Fixed some typos which changed meaning, and added a few words for clarification, per poster's post later in this thread.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 4:45 am (utc) on Apr 1, 2013]
[edit reason] fixed typos and some formatting [/edit]

 

aristotle




msg:4560086
 8:01 pm on Mar 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

For years Google has been testing various adjustments and manipulations to the algorithm looking for ways to give higher rankings to big brands. In order to achive this goal, they had to sacrifice relevance and usefulness, but were willing to do so. As a result, the current algorithm has a strong bias in favor of big brands. For this reason, I think you would be wasting your time trying to change your site's structure.

Lame_Wolf




msg:4560087
 8:24 pm on Mar 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

helenp, who writes the content for your site, and is it in English?

This is not a poke at you, but your post was littered with typos. If your site is the same, then may be Google will see your site as less professional than the ones above you. Just an idea.

lucy24




msg:4560091
 8:47 pm on Mar 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

Wasn't there a quite recent thread asking the exact opposite question: Do search engines prefer a shallow site layout where everything is-- or appears to be-- in the top directory?

It's not about the URL. It's about distance from front page measured in number of clicks.

Helen, your site is primarily in Spanish isn't it?

helenp




msg:4560097
 9:50 pm on Mar 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

For this reason, I think you would be wasting your time trying to change your site's structure.

Not so sure,
as one site that normally were lowered rated than us, have done so, and they are on first page for general searches sucha as city widget,
but not with there homepage, they are on first with a page called brandcity/widgetcity/

helenp, who writes the content for your site, and is it in English?

No problem, my sister in law that is british do the english section.

Helen, your site is primarily in Spanish isn't it?

No, the page is first in british english, then in both spanish and swedish, I only do the spanish and swedish sections.

However its not only my site, my site can have problems due to all duplicated issues I had.
I am speaking generally as the first pages are now full of big brands, nationarl or even international portals and this affect all other local sites as well.
The worst is in google.es, first 3 pages full of big national portal pages, some portal have even more than 3 or 4 pages in some cases.

helenp




msg:4560103
 10:22 pm on Mar 31, 2013 (gmt 0)

uups,
on first post I say:
have restructed the site, not for user but for google and have disappeard in search with a url like this:
Canīt edit it,
but it should be appeared in seach and not disappeared....

ie, one local site has restructured their site adding folder and index pages, and is has raisen and can be found among with the big brands, not with there homepage, but with a page with folder such as brand/citywidget/

therefore my question.
sorry for the confusion
.

Mod's note. Changed "disappeared" to read "appeared" in first post, and made a few spelling corrections in that post and this one.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 4:49 am (utc) on Apr 1, 2013]

aristotle




msg:4560131
 12:36 am on Apr 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

At most this is a very minor factor. It's not the reason why big brands are ranking above your site.

As I said, Google has intentionally biased the algorithm to give a big advantage to brands, even though it makes the search results less relevant and useful overall.

Robert Charlton




msg:4560168
 5:25 am on Apr 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

Wasn't there a quite recent thread asking the exact opposite question: Do search engines prefer a shallow site layout where everything is-- or appears to be-- in the top directory?

Here's the discussion that seemed to ask that question, but in truth the poster confused so many issues that he wasn't accurately asking any one question....

Should I flatten my store's URL structure for better SEO?
http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4543213.htm [webmasterworld.com]

helen's question might be making similar conceptual errors as the original post, but the emphasis is in a different area.

helen... the above post is going to be tough reading for you, but I suggest you try to make sense out of it. You're not apparently asking about multiple file paths, though... the part you're asking about is direct links from home vs a hierarchical nav (navigation) structure.

Note, and this is important, that nav structure and url directory structure are not necessarily the same thing. Sometimes they are, but nav structure is about clicks from home... which can be independent of directories.

Also, it's not the size of the site that matters... it's the number and quality and relevance of inbound links in relationship to the structure of a site, the quality of the content, and how well that content engages search visitors. But large, well known sites generally can do things that small sites can't, and you need to be aware of those differences.

helenp




msg:4560190
 6:20 am on Apr 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

It's also not the size of the site that matters... it's the number and quality and relevance of inbound links in relationship to the structure of a site, the quality of the content, and how well that content engages search visitors. But large, well known sites generally can do things that small sites can't, and you need to be aware of those differences.


Yes, but the site in question I speak about does not have good inbound links have lot less than me and not more than the others local sites, and I really doubt that one of there pages with urls like
theresite/blue-widgets/ would have more inbound links than there homepage with url theresite
As i said a page level 2 are on the top among the big sites with similar pattern, on the big sites those keywords in folders are natural.
If I had a big international company its obvious, that I would have a structure like mybrand/country/city/widgets/, and this site in question has done the same using therebrandcity/widget-quality/ and therebrandcity/widget-luxury/ etc. only that this site is small and local.
This is done for seo purpuse, as in all those folders these pages are index pages with folders with keywords in the name of the folder.
I do know this site, have compared it many times in the past as it is one of the oldest sites.

There is no logical reason that this second page should be higher in serps than there homepage. It looks to me the Seo done those folders with those keywords in the folders to see if an innerpage will have better luck than the homepage.

The only reason to rank higher can be that they done the pages, each with a folder and an index page with search results and naturally those have more keywords than the homepage both on page and in keyword in folder.

helenp




msg:4560192
 6:35 am on Apr 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

Here's the discussion that seemed to ask that question, but in truth the poster confused so many issues that he wasn't accurately asking any one question....

Should I flatten my store's URL structure for better SEO?
[webmasterworld.com...] [webmasterworld.com]


I have read or at least followed that thread before, however what I am saying is the contrary, should I restructure and have more folders, all with keywords in the folders?
At least, doing many folders with keywords in, it looks on the structure that I am a big company even though Im not.
I just cant understand how that second page can rank higher than page level 1.

Robert Charlton




msg:4560213
 8:04 am on Apr 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

This is done for seo purpuse, as in all those folders these pages are index pages with folders with keywords in the name of the folder.

The ranking effect of keywords in the file path name is miniscule.

At least, doing many folders with keywords in, it looks on the structure that I am a big company even though Im not.

This isn't remotely how Google looks at "branding" factors. A hierarchical structure might well make better use of what inbound linking authority your site has, but unless you know why you're building a directory structure, it might not help you. It's definitely not for "appearances"... to look like a big site.

I just cant understand how that second page can rank higher than page level 1.

I'm assuming that there are probably a few things you've left out of your analysis.

Let me ask you how many product links you currently have on your home page, and whether you have any product categories and category pages.

helenp




msg:4560229
 9:36 am on Apr 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

I'm assuming that there are probably a few things you've left out of your analysis.

Let me ask you how many product links you currently have on your home page, and whether you have any product categories and category pages.


Sorry, doesnīt understand,
do you mean my page or the other site I am talking about?
Our site are quite equal, a homepage where you can find keywords city widget (we are talking about a general 2 keyword search).
What then differ is that this other site has done "category pages" same as the big portals, that have city, another city, a third city etc. Only the difference that this site have done the categories differencing the kind of widgets, so they have pages (index pages in different folder, with some text and database result) with categories like this: all widgets, holiday widgets, luxury widgets, beachfront widgets, and widgets for sale.
I dont think nodbody will do diferent folders and index pages for diferent categories of widgets if not for seo purpose.
The correct would be that google displayed the homepage for such a general search as city widget, however as the "categories" pages are results from a database (a list) the words city and widget appear more times.

helenp




msg:4566841
 6:58 pm on Apr 21, 2013 (gmt 0)

The ranking effect of keywords in the file path name is miniscule.

retaking the thread,

I moved the files to a folder called widgets some weeks ago,
just searched for widgets mycompanyname, and on top there were 4 sites optimized for widgets and part of my companyname,
and below instead of my index page wich is the most important page the pages in that folder wich is named widgets comes up, these pages doesnīt even have backlinks I think.
The word widgets is nowhere to be found on any of the pages.
In this search, those pages were more relevant to google than the homepage as the word widgets is in the url.
I wonder if the importance is not that miniscule.
I dont remember but I think before searching for widgets mycompanyname my homepage came first then the optimized site for widgets.

aristotle




msg:4567052
 2:58 pm on Apr 22, 2013 (gmt 0)

Did your changes have an effect on the amount of traffic your site gets from Google?

helenp




msg:4567073
 4:34 pm on Apr 22, 2013 (gmt 0)

Did your changes have an effect on the amount of traffic your site gets from Google?

Dont know, the traffic is up and down, keep changing, and the pages I moved was not to get more trafic, just to have more order in my files, these pages are hardly visited so cant tell, just thought was curious how google found them by the name in the url.
Btw, today the indexpage comos above those pages just as it should, but yesterday the indexpage did not appear at all.

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