What’s the best practice, as we don’t want to screw up our rankings or page rank?
We’re doing a new home page design and adding some deep links to products, but reducing some links elsewhere as these pages can be accessed via navigation. can be accessed via navigation. What’s the best practice, as we don’t want to screw up our rankings or page rank?
JOHN MEULLER (Webmaster Analyst from Google):
I don’t know if there’s a general best practice guide.One thing I’d recommend doing just from a practical point of view is running this by your users,and doing maybe an A/B test.Maybe even inviting some users to your office directly, or to kind of a video chat to discuss the changes that you’ve made there so that you get their feedback.In general, if you’re just tweaking the internal links slightly, that’s not something where you’d see a big effect in the search results.Sometimes, of course, if you change them dramatically then that’s something that you might see as being visible in the search results.So, for example, if you move one category from being kind of like a sub, sub, sub category to something that’s linked from the home page, then suddenly that looks to search engines as something that’s a lot more important that we could potentially give more weight as well.So that’s something where, to some extent,you might see changes in search depending on what you make.But the general guidance I’d give there is really to listen to your users and figure out what they think is important, and to make sure that you’re reflecting that within your website.Because ultimately that’s what we’ll try to reflect in search as well.