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3 pages that rank well but similar content, should I merge them?

     
2:10 pm on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I wrote 3 pages with similar but 100% different, all by hand. The only thing similar are the page titles that have the city name in it and they all rank well besides each other in the Google Serps.

Like:

blue-widgets-city.htm

city-blue-nice-widgets.htm

affordable-city-widgets.htm

Should I merge them into one with 301 redirects?

The rank respectively one after they other so thinking of putting all the content on page #1 and redirect page #2 and #3 to page #1

Does that make any sense? This will make the page very juicy with about 2500 words of original hand written content.

Any opinion on that?
3:19 pm on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

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If it is not broken, do not fix it.
12:12 am on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Thanks Goodroi,

But in this case I want to improve the ranking, so not fix it, but make it better!

Would the combined content of the 3 pages and very high word count make it rank higher?

I heard that pages with close to 3000 words rank very well.
12:12 am on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I want to "concentrate" the content on one page.
12:20 am on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Might want to be careful about OVER concentrating. Some things don't need to be fixed.
12:34 am on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Hasn't any research been done on this?

Combining content into single documents and ranking consequences?
12:52 am on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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It depends on the situation.

Let's say #1 ranking site has a score of 100 points, if your site A & site B are ranking #2 & #3 and they have a score of 50 points and 40 points, then merging the two sites will still not be strong enough to outrank the site with 100 points.

Also combining so much content onto one page might hurt usability plus some people might delete links to your site after it gets redirected to another site.
1:58 am on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Wouldn't touch it -- If you only have one page, you have to "sell the visitor" on a click to your site with a single title and description plus you run the risk of getting-lost-in-the-crowd. With three you have multiple titles and descriptions at your disposal to entice them into clicking to your site.

Also, if you think about "authority" from a visitor's perspective based on SERPs you currently have from about 1/3 to [in some cases] about 1/2 of the organic results(s) on the page with your domain being mentioned -- IMO if they're all on the same site, that could quite possibly indicate "authority" to a searcher as much as [or even more than] a slightly higher ranking with only one page listed in the results.

TL;DR

What goodroi said initially slightly paraphrased:
Don't fix that which is not broken.
9:52 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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Got to agree with JD_Toims here.

As it is right now, you have 3 listings on page 1 and therefore 3 chances to snag a click through. To me it's not worth loosing 2 of those 3 chances in the hope of moving your 1 remaining result a bit higher (which may or may not work anyway).

Why not just keep the setup as is, and focus on other strategies to strengthen the site as a whole. That way you've got a chance to improve the rankings for all 3 of those pages rather than limiting yourself to 1
11:04 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I wrote 3 pages with similar but 100% different, all by hand. The only thing similar are the page titles that have the city name in it and they all rank well besides each other in the Google Serps.

I'm returning to the OP's original opening sentence which should provide the answer...

Different Content
Three Pages
All Ranking somewhere.

It might be that the keyword city-name is the stronger part of that ranking, but since the pages ARE ranking...

What are the page views> (check your logs) that might provide more information on where to go.
11:16 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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If they all generate similar traffic, do not fix it. If one page generate significantly higher traffic than the others, then consider merging the weaker pages into the stronger one.

I think it's about the traffic.