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Does non relevant content dilute overall site keyword?

     
9:11 am on Jun 13, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Does non-relevant content dilute a websites overall relevancy ‘score’ for a given keyword? Example – If a website selling apples has lots of content on apples and also other types of fruit, will its relevancy for apples and ranking for apple keywords be negatively affected if site has lots of information on fruit in general.

Our situation...

We’re in the travel sector and run a reasonably successful site, have been around and competitive in our space for 12 years, picked up a few industry awards and have a reasonable backlink profile. Our service / product is available all over the world, so we have pages on our site relevant for each location and our service, around 1,000 at present, all unique, well researched content with lots of value added information that we feel offers more than the majority of our competitors. However, we’re not (yet) a household name or big travel brand and so often play second fiddle to the big guys, despite having what we feel is ‘better’ content.

Whilst there is ultimately a limit to what we can add regarding our specific service, there is no limit to content we can produce in the travel industry / sector as a whole.

Our question is, what are current views and hopefully experience with adding lots of content that is loosely relevant to your core service / product, but ultimately not going to drive revenue generating traffic. We have a lot of useful and link worthy content / guides that generate a high percentage of our overall traffic and natural inbound links, however it is not revenue generating traffic.

Should be continue to add such content to increase overall traffic / natural link acquisition despite not being entirely relevant to our core service. Will this dilute Google’s understanding of what our site offers and downgrade our rankings for our keywords?

We paid an external SEO agency (a lot of money!) 2 years ago to audit the site and they identified relevance as a key area to work on, suggesting we remove a lot of non-relevant content to keep our content on message. We did this, at the expense of a number of inbound links to that old content, but haven’t really seen much change.

We know things are constantly evolving, we’ve experienced our fair share of ups and downs over the years, just looking for recent experience on content relevancy to our ultimate goal / service.

Many thanks.
3:25 pm on June 13, 2019 (gmt 0)

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In my opinion too much focus on one keyword could actually backfire. I haven't seen much discussion about over-optimization recently, but in the past ( 10-15 years ago) there was a lot of specualtion that google had an over-optimization penally ( everyone called it OOP).

I wouldn't be surprized if google still has some form of OOP, not just for single pages but also for sites as a whole.
4:36 pm on June 13, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Don't worry too much about keywords, but, as you indicate, if it's about apples, that's fine. It's fruit, after all.
Removing other fruit still means your apples site is still about fruit.
Google should bring your site to the surface for the specialism of apples, but you might find other sites are also more relevant on apples based upon their other factors. It's not just about your site.
There are many things to think about other than simply being on topic.

Revenue generation is important, so don't lose sight of that goal.

Knowing how much more available traffic, and ultimately, conversions, is important, too.

Probably time for you to do another site audit before you make any significant changes.
4:55 pm on June 13, 2019 (gmt 0)

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It's a little tricky. On the one hand, non-converting content can help build top of mind awareness of your site and your services.

Additionally, link attracting content is great for getting inbound links. But what you need to do is link from that content to your money pages. That way your money pages receive the benefit of the contextually relevant links and potential customers can click to those money pages and convert (however unlikely there's always the outlier).

From a link building perspective, link worthy content is valuable.

Also, wrt keywords, how people are search is evolving because of mobile. So rather than entering bland keywords phrases, more and more people are asking more personalized questions like "Where can I...." "How can I" etcetera. So pages need to be able to answer those kinds of queries. Just something to consider as it's a trend.
6:08 pm on June 13, 2019 (gmt 0)

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It sounds to me like you are talking less about keywords and more about writing about related topics to your service/product offerings. Are you asking how far from niche can you wander without it causing SEO issues?

I would say that writing about services/products that you can't service the leads from can get dicey. You may have awesome info, but if you can't help the customer with the next step will it be a positive experience?

You also have to consider how will these visits effect your business. What if these articles generate 10, 20, 30 phone calls, chats, emails, etc. that can't be converted by your CSRs. What was the trade off between the traffic, links, and your operations bandwidth?
2:24 am on June 14, 2019 (gmt 0)

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One trick ponies have only one trick. Keep that in mind.

Nothing wrong with having a more fulfilled site/seo package ... after all, the intent is drawing traffic and THEN directing it where you want it to go after the visitor arrives.
5:31 am on June 14, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for the feedback, food for thought.

Just to be clear, the new content we are planning is more research based, rather than service / product, so we're not writing about selling oranges when we don't sell oranges, rather, statistics, reviews, comparisons of our industry / sector.

I guess we need to make a decision as to whether the investment in the new content is worth our while in terms of traffic / poss link acquisition, however from feedback here so far, it seems we shouldn't be overly concerned about adding sector relevant content from an SEO / keyword dilution perspective.

Thanks again.
3:12 am on June 15, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Know your core business plan ... if you are ecommerce in any way, shape, or form, keep your "info" stuff directly relates to your product THAT YOU SELL. If you are info/edu (ie, you have no PRODUCT TO SELL), then the sky is the limit on what you wish to share, assuming that "advertising" from whatever third party agency is your "income."

Know your business ... know your income sources ... and go from there.
9:22 am on July 10, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Hi,

Irrelevant content and excess of keywords optimization is consider spam by Google and major search engines. So, don't do like this optimization for SEO purpose.