Ok so here is what I wrote: A complete redesign and restructuring is what we are doing. About 85% complete. What CainIV has describes is essentially what we are doing. Guess we had the same line of thought.
Wow I freaked. I was replying but when I submitted it the thread was closed. I see they split it once again.
Ok so here is what I wrote:
A complete redesign and restructuring is what we are doing. About 85% complete.
What CainIV has describes is essentially what we are doing. Guess we had the same line of thought.
We only have and always had just home, about us, copyright, tos in footer. We did nofollow those links as we didn't need any PR flow to those pages. We have a link back to the home page in our navigation that is NOT a nofollow. Gotta have a link back home somewhere.
If anything may have appeared spammy, "I said may", this was it. Our home page wasn't a keyword but a proper name so no problem there. But our sections and sub-sections were. And yes there was repeats (not even close to some of the junk you find in the serps mind you). But we did cut down on needless repetition and went to a natural type navigation as CainIV has pointed out above.
We have a modified pyramid also.
Example would be:
Food <- Main Category
Recipes <- Sub-category
Cookies <- Sub-Sub-category
Another Topic <- Main Category
Something <- Sub-category
Something about Something <- Sub-Sub-category
The reason I am using "Food" here is for understanding sake.
We have a multi-topic site so our categories aren't completely related so I don't cross link the categories. So we don't link between "Food" and Anther Topic in the example above. We have not linked them for about 5 years.
So our home page links to "Food" and "Another Topic" but not their sub-categories. The home page features articles and discussion from the various different categories we have. (think About-dot-com here)
The main "Food" section features latest articles and discussions in the main body of that page for it's topic coverage.
Our old navigation structure use to be "Food" then links to "Something Recipes" "Something Else Recipes" "Something Again Recipes" in the navigation -- featuring articles in the main body. Each of those sections is where our articles were categories and listed. Those sections cross linked also as well as the articles. But we did try to avoid going overboard and not to repeat too much -- "Such as the word "Recipes".
Now our navigation structure for "Food" would be "Recipes", "Another Food Topic", "Yet Another Food Topic". And there is NO repetition if possible.
The "Recipe Section" features sub-categories, such as "Cookies" in the main body with descriptions of what the user would find in each category. The left navigation is bread crumbed style which does not cross link other "Food" Categories but links back up the structure.
The "Cookies Section" features articles and discussions for that topic and the left navigation links back up the structure. If there are alot of articles/discussions there are pages that list "more articles" and "more discussion". Those "more" sections are a complete list and remains most static. The "Cookies Section" will change as it features the latest articles and discussions so the links will rotate.
Articles again have a navigation linking back up the structure. The old style cross linked section (with keyword repetition in the navigation) many time could have thrown those overboard. Articles will link to related articles and discussions. Why wouldn't I present that to my visitors. We could eliminate this as keywords tend to build up there. It is natural for that to happen. Those do rotate to give exposure to different articles and discussions. I can easily choose the latest but as we are database driven and a VAST site...difficult to just make them completely static. Just a consistently evolving site.
Hard to explain but when viewed...A very very simple and easy to navigate structure. I mean you can't get any more simplistic as our new structure.
Got tired of them so I got rid of them.
Always had ours unique but redid...errr...redoing some of ours anyway. Using a more natural yet promotional feel rather than completely keyword focused. Not redoing articles as we will be filtering out the old with new and revised copy.
Titles for sections will of course have a keyword or phrase. Can't help it really. But will use a more promotional use of language. Bit more snappy and stands out from the rest. Articles will use be the article title. Articles will be replaced so titles will change and those too will be a bit more snappy. We will be talking about SUBJECTS not KEYWORDS. Not focusing too much on keywords and let that happen naturally.
Yeah rewriting and replacing content but that work will be done when we get the structure completed. Yes use natural language and talk about SUBJECTS not KEYWORDS.
Not much for image use that would warrant the use of an alt tag. I just used the tag but put nothing in it. ""
Headers are fine...Always have been.
Found a mess of broken external links. Working those out. Nofollowed external links for the time being and I need to not vouch for any external links until I make it through all of them. Ummmm that is ALOT to go through. I wish now I had 100 pages for our site. Would be sooooo much easier.
Yes this is EXACTLY what I noticed also. Many 950'd pages made a jump to mid 200-500's for sections that we already converted.
Our only downfall is that soon after we eliminated old 301 redirects from long ago URL changes. This cut our links way down to our articles. But I wanted a re-do as we were scraped, copied, bamboozled from enjoying such high rankings for years. Just imagine how bad that was because we are a general multiple topic site...EVERYONE and their pet moose was after our stuff. Our homepage, according to yahoo, has about 1030 external links into our home page and 3000 site wide. Those are natural we never pursued links but an occasional promotion or directory.
Links are going to be last on our list. Will be working on getting some new links as we redo and create content. Hey, not for rankings but we gotta find extra traffic somewhere :) We don't have much choice now.
[edited by: arubicus at 9:44 pm (utc) on Feb. 27, 2008]