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Site-wide changes: is it wise to do all at once?

7:05 am on Aug 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I've recently completed keyword and basic competitor research for the site that I'm currently working on, and I've generated a list of basic on-site changes (title tags, h1s, content recommendations, etc.) Obviously each page will be optimized for a different keyword. My question is, never having before had the opportunity (read: willing clients) to make site-wide changes, is it wise to change all of the title and header tags at once? We have some rankings for the keywords that I'm working on, although not many, and certainly not great ones, for the most part.
4:01 pm on Aug 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Interesting question. I'm not convinced there's a clear cut answer. If you do a little bit at a time, you'll probably learn some lessons along the way that help you improve the balance of the changes.

But if you've already got all the changes ready, then you might well do it all at once. My best guess (and obviously this is pretty blind) is that you'll get mixed results at first. If you did a good job, then after a wobbly period the new traffic will show a net improvement.

Recent posts here have noticed that on-page changes are not affecting rankings as rapidly (or even as often) as people expect, based on their past experience with Google. You're going to get a ring side seat at this particular show.

So whichever route you take, and I'm not sure it's going to matter all that much, please get back to us. Inquiring minds do like to hear these reports!
4:12 pm on Aug 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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(title tags, h1s, content recommendations, etc.)
All of the above sounds like manually applied changes to me (as opposed to template changes). So, why don't you just do it in a natural way - make the changes live as soon as you implement them. Given that G* bot cannot collect all 100% of your pages at once, the time it takes them to re-index all pages will give you some additional randomization which should make it look even more natural.