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I have been watching something I am not sure about. I beleive that a website I work on is being replaced with another domain. The domains are both owned and maintained by the company I work for. So I am not overly concerned with losing rank for the comapny, just for the domain i work on.
With regards to the domain I work on, it links to the domain that it has been replaced with throughout the site.
An example of what I am referring to is:
Lets say I am targeting the term widgets on x.com and a.com has never ranked for that keyword. x.com has historically ranked on that keyword for months and months. Now, x.com is gone, but a.com is now ranked for this keyword.
This is not an isolated issue, it seems to be happening on several keywords that i target. I have read and replied on a thread or two about affiliates having this happen to them, but before I say this is what has occured, I need to know if this is the case.
What makes it interesting for me is that from a company perspective, having the a.com domain replacing the other historically strong website, is more than likley a good idea because that is where the end user will go to eventually anyway.
Again, this is not happening to one specific page on one specific term, this is one domain replacing another in googles index.
Is this a normal thing?
Also, both sites have their own unique content. Would it be replaced like that because google knows we own both domains? a.com has very little keyword density, in fact it does not even have the full terms that I am targetting. Any thoughts?
I read the recent thread and it was mentioned that a particular website was generating traffic for that keyword and that is how it was replaced. I am just trying to determine if that is the case. If it is the case, what steps can I take to prove this actually happened?
Somehow Google thinks the sites are interchangeable. What causes this? All I can think of is that the two sites used to have quite a few links going back and forth. I took the majority (but not all) of the links down a year or so ago but as yet it has made no difference.
Or maybe they see that both sites are unique in design and content, but one sote is basically promoting the other site, so just give it ti the other?
I need to find out why this is happening as my employer needs to know this, especially if my pages lose rank and tank money wise, but it is being replaced with the primary domain.
I mentioned this to him, and only used 1 keyword as a reference, but he said he will need to have a lot of examples, right now I can pull about 20 examples and if things do not change soon, it is going to have to be a case for me to prove and want all of my ducks in a row.
As for giving the stonger site the rank - that is hard to say as both sites are similarily strong. As I mentioned previously the sites take turns and generally occupy the same spot in the rankings. That is the real "proof" that as far as Google is concerned the sites are the same.
My speculation is that perhaps the same thing happens in Google's serps with sites that are totally unrelated and have different owners too. For any particular keyword Google may decide that several sites are all similarily strong and then take turns letting the sites show up in the serps. I know I have clients whose sites will dissapear for a few months and then reappear for a few months in the same positions they used to occupy - and this has been going on for years.
If that is the case then making one site stand out head and shoulders above the rest should be the solution - perhaps adding more good one way links would do the trick.