Categories: Crawling, indexing & ranking :

Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group.

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Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Lb Boyce 12/3/13 3:31 PM
I've read the FAQs and searched the help center. 

The last year has been spent creating a new site with a new e-commerce company. It launched mid October. The traffic to the site has declined steadily ever since the launch. 

Google is showing very few backlinks however many appear in some other search engines and in Open Site Explorer. I don't understand this discrepancy. 

Now that the site is live I want to start working on obtaining more backlinks however the initial poor traffic has forced my attention to other areas.

Any suggestions you have are greatly appreciated.

Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Ashley 12/3/13 3:47 PM
Lb - 

So, can you tell me what changed:
- The domain and/or any URLs on the site
- The design (look & feel)
- The content
- The hosting

?
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Ashley 12/3/13 3:51 PM
Also - don't go building links. Building links = unnatural links = an attempt to manipulate ranking = against guidelines. It's a liability. 
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Lb Boyce 12/3/13 3:52 PM
The domain is the same.
The URL's changed however we are redirecting them (I think this is working correctly)
The design and feel are very similar.
The content has been improved - its always a work in progress.
The hosting company is different.
Thank you for your help.
LB
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Ashley 12/3/13 4:38 PM
Got any examples of old URLs? It'd be nice to check the redirects to make sure they are 301s. 

Google seems to be indexing the site great (3K results), which is good to hear. 

What about performance? Any issues with the host? Uptime ok?

You've had a pretty steady decline in backlinks recently. Any thoughts around the cause of that?


One of the biggest things I see is a lack of unique content. I tried to look at several pages and the content was really lean, what was there could be found elsewhere (like shopwiki). 


I like the site and what you're trying to do, but I also think that it is getting really competitive out there and vintage furniture stuff is hot! The site looks pretty dated/lean to me and the pics are really small. When I'm a user I want to see awesome photos of something I'm buying, especially something like this that requires detail. I also want a modern, fast and easy to use site with rich unique content and lots of ways for me to explore what they have to offer. 
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Lb Boyce 12/3/13 5:33 PM
/Bed-Bolts-for-Rope-Beds/departments/991/
/Chippendale-Pulls/departments/12/
I'm not sure about the lose of backlinks? I didn't realize it was so great.
Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. 
the robots.txt fetch seems to show many attempts each day. Errors 0/Attempts can be over 400
Why is it not modern and easy to use? 
I know it needs to be faster.
The content is very specific to the product - I don't know how to make it more unique when it is something which has been the same for up to 200 years
I'm not trying to put you on the spot - I'm just trying to learn.
Thank you for your help.
LB
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. StevieD_Web 12/3/13 6:47 PM
While you are working with Ashley on the big important issue....



>The content is very specific to the product - I don't know how to make it more unique when it is something which has been the same for up to 200 years


How many ball feet should I use per item?

Is 3 acceptable or 4?  Why wouldn't 4 be acceptable

(the answer has to the do with smooth, flat, level surfaces.... any error on any surface OR even the slightest difference in the mounting depth of the screw and the 4 footed item will rock on the unlevel feet.  Of course we both know that... but does everybody?)


How about a photo of the product being used.  You get to add all kinds of interesting nouns and adjectives while describing the product usage.


Natural finish?  Does the product corrode when exposed to salt laden air found near coastal regions?

Size.  What is the tolerance for the exactness of the size.  Are there batch to batch variations is size?  Or variations in color from batch to batch?

Do you offer the same style product in silver color?  Or wood?

How long has the product been sold by you?

Prices.  Are they stable or do they fluctuation based upon raw material costs?  When can I anticipate a price increase?  How long is the price locked in and guaranteed?

Do you manufacture this product?  if not, who does, or do you purchase from multiple providers?

Country of origin?

Shipping costs (I know, horrible question).  Ok, how about shipping weight for bulk purchases?    Shipping location?  


There is a lot of information that you can add, some of it is pretty mundane.  But each snippet of content yields a richer, deeper, more meaningful website that sets you above the competition.


Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Corruption Private 12/3/13 11:00 PM
Just used Backlink Watch and spotted a lot of small directory listings. Google tends to have problems with those.
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Lb Boyce 12/4/13 4:05 AM
Thank you for this insight. I have added info into this product and will start on adding to others.
I can see where this will be helpful to users.

This items is fairly unique in that we don't have anything similar to it.

There are items such as drawer pulls or glass lamp shades which other than their own unique color or shape (which you can only say so much about) have the same characteristics which do need explaining however it will probably get repetitious. Do you recommend repeating the same information. We have technical pages for some of this information.

Thank you I appreciate your help.
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Lb Boyce 12/4/13 4:10 AM
Thank you for looking at this.
What kind of links do they want?
Not sure how to move forward with this information.


Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Ashley 12/4/13 7:05 AM
Google wants natural links - the ones you have nothing to do with. 
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Tshikatshikaaa 12/6/13 2:46 AM
Sorry, but link building is not necessarily black hat. Google has nothing against a bit of article marketing, when the articles are genuine and contain value and are not posted in multiple directories. Link baiting is also perfectly acceptable method to build links... 
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Ashley 12/6/13 8:13 AM
Sure thing. Then go ahead and risk it.

By the way - link bait is different. If people link to you on their own volition; fine.

If you're writing articles for links, then they should be followed. It's great marketing - sure. But they are technically unnatural. 


If I have it wrong, please point me to some documentation and I'll adjust my advice. 
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Tshikatshikaaa 12/6/13 9:33 AM
Matt Cutts on link building: http://www.stonetemple.com/link-building-is-not-illegal-or-bad/ -> It is not illegal

Only sponsored content should be nofollow (see http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.nl/2013/02/a-reminder-about-selling-links.html).

 
Re: Traffic to site has dropped dramatically since hosted by a different group. Ashley 12/6/13 11:20 AM
You're proving my own points for me:

No, not all link building is bad. The philosophy that we’ve always had is if you make something that’s compelling then it would be much easier to get people to write about it and to link to it. And so a lot of people approach it from a direction that’s backwards. They try to get the links first and then they want to be grandfathered in or think they will be a successful website as a result.
 
Their goal should really be to make a fantastic website that people love and tell their friends about and link to and want to experience. As a result, your website starts to become stronger and stronger in the rankings.


So - a great site/service that earns links has always been fine. Building them/creating them = not fine if followed.
Nowhere here does it say that article marketing for links is a good idea or acceptable. Nowhere. 

Any links intended to manipulate PageRank or a site's ranking in Google search results may be considered part of a link scheme and a violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

The do reference "large-scale" article marketing; but I think that's sticky territory. 99% of ALL article marketing I've seen is junk and JUST there for links. Think about it - when was the last time you, as a user, went to one of those article sites to find authoritative content? If you don't go there, why would you want to post there?