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If removing thin pages hurts rankings, should you thicken them?



9:34 pm on May 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Due to Panda many webmasters might want to, or have considered removing their "offending" pages. Such as thin content and duplicate pages. However, I have heard that doing so will effect your rankings in further. Is there any truth to this?

If this is the case, are you supposed to thicken out these pages, what if this is not feasible?


10:32 pm on May 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I have a lot of "thin" pages that rank well. In fact we probably get more visits on those than the content heavy pages. If your "thin" page is beneficial to your readers, why remove / alter it?


10:49 pm on May 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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

If pages rank well, then those pages are not a Panda problem - by definition.

Google traditionally uses the word "thin" to mean content reproduced from a manufacturer or affiliate xml feed. They described Panda as targeting "shallow" content. Not the same thing at all. 2000 words can still be shallow. Content not duplicated anywhere else can still be shallow. A page that serves a useful function is not shallow, even if it only has 30 words total.

If you put content online merely to try to rank for certain query terms, then you might have shallow content - and it may not be "thin" at all.


12:21 am on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Thanks for clearing that up Tedster. I was thinking thin/shallow content might refer to something like a business directory, where for each listing it just contains the name, address, phone and a map of the business.

But then if that is the case, why are such sites hit by Panda? Too many ads on them possibly?


12:58 am on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)


How content not duplicated anywhere can be shallow? Even 2000 words? Can you shed some more light on this ?


1:18 am on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Probably talking about Indian-English written articles from paraphrased wikipedia pages.


5:08 am on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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

Can you shed some more light on this ?

To quote Gertrude Stein, "there's no 'there' there." Lots of words, but no value. Lacking depth. Superficial. Empty calories. Junk food for the mind. In other words, where's the beef?


5:30 am on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

here is google's guidance:
Would you trust the information presented in this article?
Is this article written by an expert or enthusiast who knows the topic well, or is it more shallow in nature?
Does the site have duplicate, overlapping, or redundant articles on the same or similar topics with slightly different keyword variations?
Would you be comfortable giving your credit card information to this site?
Does this article have spelling, stylistic, or factual errors?
Are the topics driven by genuine interests of readers of the site, or does the site generate content by attempting to guess what might rank well in search engines?
Does the article provide original content or information, original reporting, original research, or original analysis?
Does the page provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?
How much quality control is done on content?
Does the article describe both sides of a story?
Is the site a recognized authority on its topic?
Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites donít get as much attention or care?
Was the article edited well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?
For a health related query, would you trust information from this site?
Would you recognize this site as an authoritative source when mentioned by name?
Does this article provide a complete or comprehensive description of the topic?
Does this article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond obvious?
Is this the sort of page youíd want to bookmark, share with a friend, or recommend?
Does this article have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?
Would you expect to see this article in a printed magazine, encyclopedia or book?
Are the articles short, unsubstantial, or otherwise lacking in helpful specifics?
Are the pages produced with great care and attention to detail vs. less attention to detail?
Would users complain when they see pages from this site?


5:36 am on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

I am not saying google is consistent, but...

Original conclusions or interpretations. Original statistics. Original interviews. Original perspectives. Original photos. Original schematics.

This is what I think google "ideally" would like to see on a page.

Do lots of pages WITHOUT the above rank well in google?


But if I had a page / site that had been Panda slapped, that's what I would be looking to add.