Reno - 8:06 pm on Jul 8, 2010 (gmt 0)
all the forums would be lit up with complaints... I suggest that others not overreact or feel total paralysis about making positive changes across their site.
Good advice, but it must be said also that in fact forums all over the web -- including this one -- regularly see the thread "I changed my site and dropped in the rankings". It happens so often that the old adage "where there's smoke there's fire" seems awfully relevant.
Upon closer examination, could it be determined that changing the site was not the bottomline cause, but actually other factors triggered this drop? Possibly, but we don't examine each other's coding (here or anywhere else for that matter), so that question is mostly unanswerable.
Thus, while I do make regular changes to my sites (especially new content) -- sometimes on a daily basis -- I find that a cautious approach to architecture formatting generally works best. Over the long term the sites see considerable change, but not all at one time -- it just seems to me that the Googlebeast is happier that way, and a happy Googlebeast lowers my stress levels, which makes my wife happy too ;)