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Can Your Most Popular Pages Cause Panda Problems?

     
2:33 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



Could a top three page on your site be the cause of Panda problems?

I have a page that is a list of addresses and phone numbers for "widget centers" on my site. It is my third-most-popular page on my site. It accounts for just about 4% of my total page views. It gets LOTS of landings.

But the bounce rate is VERY high - it hovers around 86% bounce rate - and there is really LITTLE interaction with the rest of the site:

87% of visitors come from OFF site (i.e., landing page)
13% Come from another page ON my site
85% Exit from this page
15% Go on to another page on my site.


And the biggest problem is that it generates no revenue.

Is this the type of page - and are these the type of metrics - that can get you Panda slapped?

And at what point do you decide when a page is a liability instead of an asset?
3:49 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



If those were MY metrics, I'd say I was at that point. How long has it been like that?

It may well be cannibalizing your ecommerce efforts.

Personally, I might try putting it on a subdomain (with links to the ecommerce) and maybe even on a whole new domain.

If that's one of your top pages and people don't stick around, even if it gets traffic it may be doing you more harm than good.
3:58 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Where do the 87% of offsite visitors come FROM (search vs other websites)? What percent comes from Google?

Also, what is the average time spent on page for that page? A high bounce rate itself isn't always a problem, but if it's paired with a very low time on page it could be a sign of a problem. Some of my best pages have a high bounce rate but a very high time on page compared to the rest of the site and they have never suffered from Panda (low time on page ones definitely have).
4:26 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)



I think removing the page may cause unforeseen effects on your main domain. With that amount of traffic coming to the page, Google or whatever source must believe that your site warrants that page.

Could you come up with creative ways to monetize that page or adjust it so that visitors to it can convert?

If you really cannot come up with ways to generate revenue, then consider removing it and moving it to a subdomain. But definitely continue to try to monetize it. Why let good traffic make no money?
4:40 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



I am thinking more now than ever that it might be time to move either my info pages to a new domain, or move all my ecommerce pages to a new domain. They don't seem to be as synergistic as I had hoped.

I think my business model - or lack there of - is the problem...
10:23 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I am looking after a site that has a few of exactly the same type of pages and it did not do it any harm. It is worth remembering that some pages will have a high bounce rate by nature of the page - the visitor arrives, gets their info and leaves.

The trick is to somehow make the site memorable via such landing page, so that the visitor comes back to the site later on when looking at a different but connected info further up the buying process.
10:59 pm on Jul 25, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



By the way, I should clarify something about bounce rates.

For the info pages, I just started tracking "events" in google analytics in the middle of July. One of the events I track is how many people make it to the bottom of the content DIV.

So I see that while the bounce rate is ridiculously high, of the 3,397 people who loaded an article since I started tracking events, 2,915 scrolled down at LEAST 250 pixels, and 2,120 scrolled down to the bottom of the main content DIV.

So while it might not count in google analytics, that means that 62% of the unique page loads saw the user make it to the bottom of the main article. (And 8% made it through all the comments and past the footer to the very bottom of the page.)

"The trick is to somehow make the site memorable via such landing page, so that the visitor comes back to the site later on when looking at a different but connected info further up the buying process."


that is certainly something I am NOT doing well...

Very few people even make it from the blog "side" of the site over to the ecommerce "side" of the site. Even though I have some nice colorful "banners" on there.

So of those 3,397 unique article loads I mentioned above, there were a measly 12 clicks on the "banner" for my products at the top of the page (a click-through rate of .0035). There were 54 clicks on a square "ad" on the side (a click-through rate of .016).

~~~~~~~

This brings up another thought:

1) Google sees that my article pages are very popular on my site.

2) google also sees that I have links to products on my site.

3) google then sees that hardly anyone is clicking on those links to the product pages on my site...

4) Google then concludes that my product pages must not have much value.

Hence, my product pages suffer the majority of the traffic loss, while info pages drop only 6%.

alternatively, maybe google is seeing people click on a link from an info page to a product page and then click BACK quickly to the info page?

Logical? Or thinking too much?
11:09 am on Jul 26, 2013 (gmt 0)



I would of thought the most popular pages would help?

People like the pages, spend more time on them, interact more on them bringing the whole sites metrics up on average?
12:40 pm on Jul 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



I have a page that is a list of addresses and phone numbers for "widget centers" on my site. It is my third-most-popular page on my site. It accounts for just about 4% of my total page views. It gets LOTS of landings.


This honestly doesn't sound like a page that people are going to interact with. It happens to be useful, which is good, but it doesn't further the goal of the site (which is to sell products) People like come grab an address or phone number and leave, maybe never to return. Only very few go any further into his site.

So that page maybe popular, but it's a distraction for the targeted goals of the site, and it's a distraction for planet13, because it's taking his eye off the ball.

Google is all about patterns. It's a machine. So it will observe how people actually interact with a site, and judge accordingly. Maybe that one page being so popular only serves to make the rest of the site look worse, since few people venture into it.

Personally, I'd put it somewhere else. Preferably on a new domain.
3:54 pm on Jul 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



"...but it's a distraction for the targeted goals of the site, and it's a distraction for planet13, because it's taking his eye off the ball."


LOL!

Right now, I can't even find the stadium, let alone keep my eye on the ball!

"Personally, I'd put it somewhere else. Preferably on a new domain."


I am leaning that way - hard. Especially because this might be the type of page that would be helpful for mobile device users, and my site is not yet mobile-friendly. (I know, that is something I should have been working on five years ago.) So putting this page on a more mobile-friendly site would probably make users happier.

~~~

I know I have said it before, but again, thanks for all your advice on this forum.
 

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