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301 high ranking page to new MicroSite

     
8:13 pm on Aug 8, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I have a very large client who is getting a lot of traffic to their high authority widget site for "custom widgets". They have built a separate site for Custom Widgets and are planning to 301 redirect the successful internal custom widgets pages on the high authority site to the new Custom Widgets site. Is this a terrible idea? How likely are they to maintain traffic levels of the current custom widgets page?
6:15 pm on Aug 17, 2016 (gmt 0)

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If you do your 301 permanent redirect properly the search engines will eventually "learn" the page has moved over here... and the traffic will eventually follow.

You could also take the approach of leaving the page on the original site and provide a link to the new separate site for this product. You might be battling yourself for the SERPs with this approach but you will have to decide if visitors to the main site might be interested in this product and would be better served by having it in the two locations.
10:08 am on Aug 23, 2016 (gmt 0)

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They have built a separate site for Custom Widgets and are planning to 301 redirect the successful internal custom widgets pages on the high authority site to the new Custom Widgets site. Is this a terrible idea?
I think it's a terrible idea, but I'm a fairly conservative SEO who knows a doorway site when he sees one, and assumes that Google will too. There's also the loss of authoritiy when a site is split up, as well as a loss of breadth, which I've come to feel is important. This feels to me like it's simply zoning into a keyword for the sake of old-style keyword matched SEO.

Possibly, the satellite site will have enough critical mass that it can grow some authority of its own, but that seems pointless to me. The key pages already had authority, and I assume they were integrated with other pages on the original site in ways that wouldn't be confusing.

I've heard stories from time to time, about, say, big pharma building a new site for a pill... and that seems legit if there's all that much to say about the pill, it's applications, the life style changes it will bring about, the side effects it might bring about, etc etc. Just from a management standpoint, it might enable the new topic to secure some identity that might be lost in a bigger site... except in this case I got the sense the it was already doing well. Why mess with a good thing unless you have compelling reasons for the change?
12:15 pm on Aug 23, 2016 (gmt 0)

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If the idea is that a new site is required either because the custom option is very different from the main one, or there's too much specific content to warrant it being part of a smaller site, then the question comes down to whether a 301 is the right way to do it. It is, of course, although you should also consider how the main site is going to link to this separate site.

If the idea is that new site = better rankings, then this is likely to be a flawed plan, certainly in the short term as Robert Charlton suggests. You're launching a new site, with all that entails.
 

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