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Main site vs secondary vs third site?

     
6:12 pm on Jul 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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We have mainsite[dot]com which has been online for almost 30 years, has a good history with Google, ranks decently, etc. However, this site is directed towards a niche market (the motorcycle apparel industry) but we have products that we want to promote separately as they aren't motorcycle related. We are wanting to branch out because our niche market is continually going downhill.

We are toying with the idea of creating an additional two separate sites (one for leather crafts & hardware, one for those said products that we want to stand apart from the motorcycle industry). We want to do this because people do not come to our main site looking for these products, the markets are totally different. My goal is to do this in a way that benefits us SEO-wise, without hurting us.

should we have our brand name on these other two sites as well or create a new brand name?

I'm worried about duplicate content because we will have some of the same products on all 3 sites. How different does the content have to be? Do the product names need to be different? Images will also be the same.

how important are keywords in the URL now? Should we have the same brand name in the URL?

are there any suggestions or best practices to follow?

will Google potentially see this as blackhat although it's not intended to be?
8:25 pm on July 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Companies expand their product lines all the time. Might look to see if it is possible to add the new stuff to the existing site without complicating thing with "seo only" sites...
10:17 pm on July 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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products that we want to promote separately as they aren't motorcycle related.

Those would not be "SEO only" sites, the whole point is that they are unrelated. Why lump unrelated things on one site just because it is older and doing OK?

I think iteri has the better idea, branch out and give the unrelated products their own showcase. I can't say whether the same brand should be used, I have not gone through an expansion such as that. I am sure that others who have done so will be able to give a more experienced idea of what does and does not work.
11:40 pm on July 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Amazon, of course, did not listen to that advice. :)

Seriously, somet hings can be made to work.

If one is going to do it separately, keep the ips, content, and everything else separate for best results.
2:19 pm on Aug 1, 2019 (gmt 0)

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If we said "New Brand Name (a division of Main Site)" would that be ok?

Could we showcase the products on the other 2 sites, then direct them to our main site to checkout? How crazy does that sound?