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Building a New Site Without Shopping Cart for Better Rankings

Building a New Site Without Shopping Cart for Better Rankings

7:25 pm on Jun 19, 2015 (gmt 0)

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joined:Dec 11, 2014
posts: 43
votes: 14

My company is a pretty large brand in our niche. We private label our products and have become the largest retailer in the country for our niche. Our website has always had a shopping cart. It always ranked pretty well, but over the past couple years it has since moved off the first page. There are a number of issues that can make this occur, but we are of the belief that websites without shopping carts are now performing better in the search results than websites with shopping carts (I'm not looking for a debate on this). Therefore, we are now building a website that more resembles a brand/manufacturer without a shopping cart.

Here's where it gets tricky. We still want to use PPC to push traffic to our old site with a cart and keep that going through the launch of our new website that we want to rank well. There is obviously a lot of similar content. In fact, product descriptions have simply been copied over at this point. We have basically given up on the old site with a cart ever ranking well again, which is the point in creating a new one.

I'm looking for potential technical/SEO issues and solutions. Duplicate content is the main issue I'm looking to deal with. Is there a tag or something we can put on the old website that says the new website is the authority/original creator of the content? We want this new website to rank.

We're not going to redirect the old site to the new one.

Thanks in advance. Looking forward to any and everyone's input.
3:58 pm on June 23, 2015 (gmt 0)

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

joined:Nov 11, 2000
votes: 416

Under the scenario you're outlining, I'm not understanding what happens when a searcher comes to the new site, expecting a shopping experience, and doesn't find one.

I would think that you'd do better with a single site that integrated the shopping cart and informational content... but you need to be careful how you do that. Background information of the wrong kind... how-to-do-it articles and the like... don't belong on product pages, as they distract from the product focus of your shopping pages. IMO, they should not be blog articles either... they should be evergreen type articles running in tandem with your product pages, with prudent cross linking to and from the product pages.

Much shopping cart software, though, has no real place for informational content. I'd recommend a software upgrade or modification over the two-domain approach you're suggesting. Very hard to tell without more information about your structure and types of content. There are a great many reasons why your rankings might be going down.
10:33 am on June 24, 2015 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator anallawalla is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:Mar 3, 2003
votes: 21

I suspect that your new site might look like a thin affiliate site to the algo, so you should ensure that the two have the same owner in whois. See this Google blog post.

[googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com.au ]
2:46 pm on June 26, 2015 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

joined:Dec 11, 2014
posts: 43
votes: 14

Thanks guys.

@Robert: The content on our current (old) site is loaded with evergreen content. Our products are large purchases ($2k+) in most cases. The current site was made with a shopping cart with the assumption that people would know that they can buy it directly from us. Most retailers in our business require someone to call in or have someone come to their home to give them a quote. We were the first in our industry to actually offer the purchase of these products online. It gave us a major edge over the competition. Our edge now seems to be hurting us because nobody on the first page of google for our main money keywords has a shopping cart. Could be a coincidence, but that's not the point. Our CEO has decided to build a new site and that's what's happening. I'm trying to minimize any more potential organic traffic loss and HOPEFULLY have a better chance at rankings again.

Is there some sort of way we can use the content that is on the old site on the new site and tell search engines that the original/owner of that content is the new website?