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No Index or 301's

Discussion in 'SEO & SEM Discussions' started by whiterabit, Jul 30, 2015.

  1. whiterabit

    whiterabit Membership: Community

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    Hi All,
    I have a site that sells a range of big brand products. The products are listed out of the database in dynamic & unique URL's and generally sell within 45 - 60 days. Once sold they are removed from the website and a new product with a new URL is added in its place.

    Looking at my webmaster account, I have a lot of 404 errors on the product pages which are listed and then removed once sold.

    My goal is to support the overall website's SEO moreso than the individual products. i.e. I'd like the SEO to support widgets (website) and blue widgets (category) rather than blue widgets with flame decals (product).

    My question is, should I set the individual product listings as 'no index' or should I set up a 301 on the URLs that point back to the category directory once the product is sold?

    Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

    MIKE
     
  2. petermeadit

    petermeadit Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    If your individual items are getting into SERPs and getting Click through, then it makes sense you want them indexed. However you need to redirect that traffic one the url is removed using a 301 or similar. Your strategy for handling this will depend on how many items you are turning over. I recommend having a simple system of implementing the redirects when the item url is removed.
     
    whiterabit and findtim like this.
  3. findtim

    findtim Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    peter this can be set to automatic can't it ? eg" if 404 redirect to homepage "
    hand changing your .htaccess would only be profitable if the new item is VERY similar to the one that has sold out eg: handbag, it was pink, but now its pink with a silver strip, or a changed strap, etcccc
    -----------------
    in my directories if someone leaves i sometimes 301 redirect to a new service providing the same service eg: photographer, new photographer, gives them an instant boost and google seems to go " ok, thats cool, not to different " , but that is done manually to a specific url
    YES, it will quickly turn into a PAIN in the arse doing it by hand. BEEN THERE done that ! .........to many times.
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    as for products, if you head down the 301 path, i'd suggest you 301 to the category and not the homepage, this way you have the customer at least where they kinda want to be otherwise you will get a jump in bounce rate IMO.
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    Peter: i think this is an interesting subject + one that many people do suffer from......... me included as i know i'm just about to go through it AGAIN with a new project, so i'd be interested to hear your opinion on the actually script ( as their are many opinions online ) you prefer to use inside your .htaccess file or another method.
    tim
     
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  4. helloworld

    helloworld Membership: VIP

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    You definitely do not want no index. If the page is deleted it should be a 410. You should set the pages content to someting along the lines of "users who bought this product al.so bought" or "you may like these products instead". Include a return to home & site map option too.

    Personally, if the run is short, I wouldn't be putting to much effort into optimising the product pages apart from technical pov. I would be optimising the overall category.
     
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  5. whiterabit

    whiterabit Membership: Community

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    Thanks for the great feedback guys, I'll look at the 301's as a good starting point and will definitely look at the "people who bought also liked" idea, thanks helloworld!
     
  6. petermeadit

    petermeadit Membership: VIP

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    auDA Member:
    Yes
    Agree with helloworld
    Also you might think about marking the item as sold or some kind of archive rather than remove the url, it would still resolve and then direct traffic toward other related items.

    Tim. Many programmatic ways to implement the redirects. If it is category based and each category in its own directory, then a .htaccess could be placed in it with a redirect to the category root on a 404.