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Navigation - Considering the Recent Algo Changes

   
9:00 pm on Jun 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Hi,

Guys listen I wanted to know the best navigation structure for html websites and for blogs as well with the recent long tail updates and in general I suppose as well.

My html websites have around 30 pages. I have a template and that template has a link to all the pages in my website.

This means that on my homepage I have 29 links and on all inner pages there are 29 links all going to all other pages.

So in essence every page links to every page. Could this be hurting my google rankings. I normally drive most links to my home page and some to my inner pages.

I thought this was so brilliant that I found a bit of code and added it to the sidebar in all my wordpress blogs - which resulted in the same thing.

Every page links to every page.

I do have one website that the home page has all the links and all the other pages ONLY link back to the homepage but none cross link.

Now if this is a bad thing what would be the ideal structure.

I have many mini-sites that follow this exact model. Should I change this.....
4:20 am on Jun 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



I'd say linking every page to every other page is not really navigation - it's more like a having sitemap on every page. The problem is that this linking style blurs many of the unique signals of each page into one big pile. It's like being at a meeting where everyone's name is David. Yes, they all have last names too, but it still makes things just a bit crazy.

On sites that are bigger than yours, sometimes CSS hover menus have the same effect. I've seen sites with over 1000 links in a hover menu - so every page STARTS with 1000 links! And the reason I get to see some of these sites is that they're having trouble getting Google traffic.

In my experience, it is better to create an effective Information Architecture [webmasterworld.com], or "IA". Some pages should not be 1-click away from Home, for example. It can be challenge to design a really good IA, but your visitors usually will love it when it's done well.

The users will reward you by spending more time on the site. And there can be Google rewards, too, by featuring your best pages on more targeted searches.
7:09 am on Jun 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Ok Tedster, I think it has an effect on my rankings. Some sites just cant get over PR0.... others not 1 iota of traffic.

Thanks for the link Tedster... I'll try to read and follow intently...
1:17 pm on Jun 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I think it depends on the relative importance of the various pages. And on a small site like yours, it's easy to structure (or sculptor) the internal linking any way you want. So I suggest pointing a lot of links to the pages with the best chance of attracting visitors from the SERPs, and fewer links to the less important pages and pages that aren't likely to attract many visitors. As time passes, and some pages do better or worse than expected, you can re-adjust the internal linking accordingly.
1:22 am on Jun 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



< moved from another location >

I use Dreamweavers spry menu bar for my site structure and get reasonable rankings for my main keywords.
However I am aware that this menu bar although it works using Javascript and css it still leaves the actual links within the html code in each page. This means that for all 117 pages I have 117 links on every single page pointing to every other page throughout the site. This does make it wonderfully easy for my customers to navigate quickly to exactly where they want to go.

But of course it lacks web site structure. Is this a major problem that I should look at? Anyone else had experiance with this or similar?

Any opinions appreciated...

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 1:35 am (utc) on Jun 12, 2010]

 

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