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Adding 25,000 Pages to a 3,600 Page Site - bad idea?



5:54 pm on Feb 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hi Everyone!

Please bare with me as I am somewhat new to the SEO game. I have a quick question about adding some new pages to my site. I run a real estate site and we recently expanded our coverage areas as our SEO is starting to really come together. The site currently has 3,600 pages indexed in Google covering a full county of cities. Each page on the site is spiderable including all of the separate listings for each city.

Information about the site: The domain is 4 years old and currently has a nice backlink profile. We rank #1-3 for about 50-60 phrases and each listing on the site we have is currently ranking in the top 5 for thousands of longtail keywords.

Here's my question:

We want to expand the site to include all real estate listings in the whole state. Doing this would add about 25,000 new spider-able listings to the site and our longtail searches should increase quite dramatically. Is this something I can do all at once, or should I take it a bit at a time? And, do you have any recommendations on the amount of pages I should add a day?



7:38 am on Apr 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member whitey is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Some more things came to mind - I'm trying to get a feeling of the flow of link juice via quality content to make your sites rank so quickly and authoratively.

All of the content on our neighborhood/city/county pages is written by me

Approx how many pages at each level , and how many listings do you generally cover.

Do you have some good links to give you a bit of a boost as well.

and approximately how many words do you aim for on each page and what proportion of the overall content on each page?


4:19 pm on Apr 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

Do you bother with other signals like FB likes , Twitter , UGC etc. on those pages ?

We have a blog that gets comments, that's the only UGC we have. Most of the comments are from other Realtors around the country that I network with. We guest blog on a lot of sites, and in return I have other Realtors guest blog on our site. There is quite a nice community of SEO savvy real estate agents out there, and I think I know most of them.

We do a contest every month to get Facebook likes. We have a Facebook business page, and our broker has a Facebook page that we use to keep in contact with old clients. For example we just did a contest where we had our Facebook followers submit their favorite photo's of our County. We posted all the photos on our site and put up a survey to see which one people liked the most. The people that entered the contest were asked to share and promote their pictures to all their friends to get them to come to our site and vote. Yes, we target Facebook quite heavily.

Anytime we put a new neighborhood page up or a new blog we post to Twitter. Anytime we have open houses we post to Twitter. Our following is dismal, only around 500 people. I think we could use it better, but as of right now, I just don't have the time to nurture a twitter following.

I don't have any social media buttons directly on our pages, but I am looking into it as they are obviously becoming more necessary. People don't really share our content, as it's not something you would share normally. Real estate statistics on our blog, how to buy short sales, and stuff like that don't really meet the share worthy type of content.

I have funnels setup for each County. I am targeting 5 different counties. So, level one is the county page, and on that page it has initial welcome content, approx 100 to 150 words. Then it has the listings, and below that is has the majority of content approx 400 to 1000 words.

In the content are internal links to each city in that county. The city pages are setup basically the same where they link to neighborhoods within the city. Each city page also has links to short sales, foreclosures, commercial, condos, and such. Then each of those pages has a nice article about the processes of buying those types of properties as well as local information on the area including statistics that we update once a month. And included in the condo's pages are all of the condo developments in those cities.

I've built over 700 pages that aren't included in the listings pages. The lower the level for example a subdivision page County>City>Neighborhood>Subdivision - The easier it is to rank as they are very long tail.


6:19 pm on Apr 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

< offtopic >

@Wheel in another topic you said:
There's no way a machine is going to write an article as well as what I can. Most people can't write articles as well as I can.
msg4289620 [webmasterworld.com]

Now you say:
I've added 5 to 10 thousand pages at once on to sites with about 10 pages. Didn't notice any problem...
I also later removed that content with no ill affects either.

Now,that being said, I'm working on releasing 50,000 pages of content on a brand new site. I expect to release them all at once. [webmasterworld.com...]
If I may ask - what type of content (and how produced) where those 5-10 thousand pages that were added (with no problem) and later removed (with no problem).

Why were they added and why were they removed.

Thanks for sharing.


5:32 am on Apr 29, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member whitey is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

If I may ask - what type of content (and how produced) where those 5-10 thousand pages that were added (with no problem) and later removed (with no problem).

It would be good to hear Wheel's experience , but as hispdcha seems to suggest , authority is going to get such a site through a lot of things a low authority will fall over on.


12:25 am on May 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks for sharing your case hispdcha. Lots of great information and a proven understanding of your audience. Maybe you can replace MLS! You must already be working on the next expansion.


10:01 pm on Jul 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

I wanted to update this thread with some news. On June 7th our site took a panda hit I believe. On the 6th of June traffic spiked and we had more leads come in than any other day. On june 7th our traffic dropped about 20% and leads almost died. We usually get between 10 and 20 leads a day, but since the drop we averaged 2 to 5 day.

It seems that all of our rankings remained the same so I was a little baffled. I have been monitoring analytics over the last month and it seems that the traffic drop is all related to the new pages we added. It was all longtail traffic coming in on MLS# searches and address searches. Since June 7th our bounce rate went from 30% to 40% up to 50% to 60%.

Over the last couple of days, traffic has returned and leads are back to normal. Today is especially looking good with over 15 leads logged and traffic up about 20% for a whole day, and we still have 8 hours to go.

So this seems like a recovery, but of course I am waiting to see what happens. What did we do? Almost nothing. I didn't add or remove any pages, and I haven't built links. We have continued on a normal blogging routine about 1-3 posts a week. I am afraid that this is another jump before the fall, so I will keep you updated over the next couple of days.

Panda Hit: June 7th
Panda Recovery: July 18th

visitors: Down 20% With Panda Hit
Visitors: Normal Traffic Within 5%

Bounce Rate: Remains between 50%/60%

Avg Time On Site Before Panda: 6 mins +
Avg Time On Site During Panda: 3 mins or less
Avg Time On Site After Panda July 18-21: 6:15

Pages Indexed Before Implementing changes: 3,600
Pages Indexed Today: 40,000

You might ask why so many pages? It's because the summer is prime real estate selling time and there are a lot more active listings in the summer months, so it's the increased inventory that is causing our page count to be so high.

Let me know if you have any questions. :)


11:18 pm on Jul 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member whitey is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

There have been several reports of volatility in traffic on sites which may not be meeting the "quality" guidelines of Panda.

The fact that you're sometimes up , and then sometimes down means in my mind, that you are flagged by the algo for demotion. Google is starting to convulse about your site. In the beginning you had a good site , with lot's of positive signals and authority.

But be hard on yourself, does raising your 25,000 pages really meet the "standard" ? It's hard to imagine anyone loading that no of pages of expensive unique content in one go. If not, then you are playing around second guessing thresholds which you can get away with, chasing an algorithmn over which you have no control over, rather than building a good site from the ground up.

Big sites , with huge investments in large quantities of unique content, are also at risk , if all they do is say the same as everyone else in a different way.

I'm not sure what others think, but there must be a core of webmasters rethinking their strategies, cutting their sites back to the absolute bone, and focusing on quality rebuilds , and that's a big job which many will question against the risks.

Size alone, is not the answer. Consider making cuts urgently.


11:30 pm on Jul 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Well, I don't know how that works with real estate sites considering out best pages are listings, as that's exactly what users want. A real estate site with over 40k listings is definitely higher quality than a site with only 20 of their own listings.

Those stats are only for Google referrals, and not return visitors. Return visitors are averaging 11 pages a visit with 9 minutes on the site. :)


12:16 am on Jul 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member whitey is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Point taken. Maybe a paradox is in play.

So duplication of content listings and subject with other sites is not an issue then?

But you have to ask yourself why Google is starting to convulse. It can only be related to a question mark over those new pages and how Google scored them.

Are you still confident about what you did. If not, what do you think you have to do now ? Do you have analytics in on those pages ( you clearly have - but have you checked the impact of the lesser performers ) ? Are all pages performing well ? etc etc

I just don't think now is the time to be adding lot's of pages. Why risk what you've built - but that's what entrepreneural thinking does best. Stepping out. Good luck.


3:06 am on Aug 13, 2011 (gmt 0)

backing up a little ... As far as the panda updated and indexed pages go..
Quality content is still king. So, I'm glad for that update.

About indexing.. If a site gets thousands of pages indexed by Google then how is that strategy bad? Remember less than 75% of all searches are never repeated more than twice in Google. So having more "relevant" pages that talk about your subject matter, but with different relevant keyword phrases in each page will allow your site to get found for those searches that you may have otherwise missed.
Now chill out there SEO dudes. (I'm on your side) Yes - Some of those phrases may have low to no traffic, So I suggest keyword and SEO optimizing each page to help increase the chances of it being found in a real search. The way I see it is having thousands of pages in your website is like setting the foundation. You still have to do regular SEO you are optimizing your chances to get found more often for relevant keyword phrases that you may have otherwise missed out on before.

I will agree that blindly adding webpages without consideration to On or Off page SEO would not be very effective.

[edited by: tedster at 3:12 am (utc) on Aug 13, 2011]

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 6:57 am (utc) on Aug 15, 2011]

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