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  1. #1
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    Another question about rel=nofollow
    I've read up on this extensively & need to make a decision.. any input would be much appreciated.

    I cross link my (well-ranked) content site with my shopping engine, ie. send readers to products in the shopping site (rather than direct to the merchant). This allows them to look at related products & window shop before they visit the store.

    Conversions have improved - I've isolated readers vs. shoppers, and have better focus. But the rankings for the shopping engine have been extremely erratic. Very unpredictable, but I've worked hard on the site - validation, content, seo-friendly, etc.

    Someone suggested I implement "nofollow" between my own sites.

    The link to the merchant contains "nofollow", but the link from my content site to shopping engine does not.

    I thought nofollow was for sites you don't trust, unrelated sites, or an indication of paid link. I'm not sure why someone would recommend this for my situation.. I created both sites, and absolutely support the shopping engine. It's well-maintained & I'm working on unique content (as much as possible given shared datafeeds). I've also tried to make my combination of merchants unique.

    These sites are related - I'm not hiding that & they co-exist nicely. I don't want to combine them as the shopping engine has growth potential outside the content niche.

    Without naming names, I reviewed a competitor site (way bigger than me!) - they run a large number of blog/content sites and link to products on their shopping engine. They don't use rel=nofollow.

    My gut feeling is that to use nofollow would be of no benefit here (and possibly indicate I don't trust my own site). I would really appreciate a second opinion.. I'm worried I might be missing something obvious..

    Thanks

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador ladidah's Avatar
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    I thought nofollow was for sites you don't trust, unrelated sites, or an indication of paid link.
    Not always true. I have nofollow to links on my site where I do not want my link juice to be waisted like 'about me', 'privacy', 'contact' pages. For my blog, I have it so there is no dupe content like archives, tags, categories, etc. so it becomes more of a cms.

    I have a site set up similar to yours but the only difference is they are not two different sites. It's one domain. So the shopping site has content to support it. Maybe since your shopping site has no content (since it comes from your well established site) and you are just linking to it, it has no chance to compete with the big competitor out there.

    edit: you have to add content to your shopping site

  3. #3
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    You've given me food for thought, thanks.. I didn't think of the static links, will fix where applicable.

    I've thought about combining the sites into one domain, but liked the new domain name (potential to grow beyond the current niche). Plus the content site is so busy already..

    I totally agree that a shopping engine needs to have increased content - I just felt validated when I saw the publishing empire with a similar approach. They're shopping site is terrific, I'm using it as a standard to measure against.

    And sometimes a shopping site needs to be just that; clean & easy to use. I've added custom fields & launched user interaction, have plans for more, just limited in resources. I realize in order to succeed it will have to be unique!

    The shopping site got a few product backlinks lately, which is good. Hopefully the rankings will stabilize (v. frustrating to see scraper & junk sites above you sometimes!).

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador Lanadili's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by teezone
    Someone suggested I implement "nofollow" between my own sites.
    If you did this, you would be cutting off all your link juice you have going to it from your well ranked content site. It would be like starting all over with the shopping site, and why should you since you worked so hard with your content site? I think it's best to keep it the way you have it now, because putting a "nofollow" tag to your shopping site will just drop the rankings from the SEs until it starts to receive it's own backlinks, etc.

  5. #5
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    mildly excessive cross linking is frowned upon + good seo relies on a wide source of backlinks, not just from one domain = get more diverse backlinks and nofollow to undo your crosslinking.

    this is just my opinion, facts are elusive little boogers in this realm.

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador 2busy's Avatar
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    facts are elusive little boogers in this realm.
    Sooo true. I "nofollow" all links from my sites to my other sites because I read some time ago that this can be a negative especially when domains are on the same "C" block* - but I do want to offer links for my visitors.

    *iirc, the term may be wrong but it's C something

  7. #7
    Affiliate Manager Howard Gottlieb's Avatar
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    We do cross link our related sites and only no follow all affiliate links.
    I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die
    to find out there isn't, than live my life as if there
    isn't and die to find out there is.

  8. #8
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    I never use no follow. To me that's just throwing up a sign to search engines I don't want. This really got some traction when Matt Cutts suggested sites selling links use that on those paid links, so why would you do that and call attention to yourself? I've never seen any evidence whatsoever using nofollow helps or hurts in anything (just speculation), so see no reason to use them. Good info - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nofollow

    Also, just throwing stuff out there. When you make your sites, you're supposed to think user first, Google will even say that. When you start coding your links thinking of page rank and how to manipulate flow of page rank etc. Is that a good thing in the eyes of Google, trying to manipulate the flow, the juice?

    The main thing for me, I haven't seen any type of evidence anywhere, that this actually does anything positive for your sites.
    Last edited by Trust; August 26th, 2008 at 12:12 PM.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the input, much appreciated!

    At times I regret launching a second domain (headaches like this), but at the same time, it was to make things clear for the user.

    If I write an article on the benefit of blue widgets, and they click on a product link, they can continue to window shop.. here's more blue stuff, and here are other widgets. It was designed that way.. they can go away from the content to browse independently.

    I will keep nofollow for the affiliate links, and leave my own connected sites alone. It doesn't say much if I tell google not to follow my own sites - plus if I change them all now, it might raise a flag.

    Trust, good point re: user first... I'm going to continue to work on this, and just hope google eventually gives my shopping site some credit...

  10. #10
    Newbie bizcoaching's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by visitourmall
    We do cross link our related sites and only no follow all affiliate links.
    Yes, we too!

  11. #11
    general fuq mrbshouse's Avatar
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    all of the nofollow stuff is a bit dated now and I think trust is spot on with "why call attention" it's not like the spider is going to stop....if you think it does not i think this is a mistake....it's only for page rank

    If i remember correctly this is about 2-3 years old now and came from the association of the big three trying to find a way to devalue spammy links...since then google themselves have tightened the screws and is in a near real time update for indexed sites....so the game is totally different now right?

    if g is in near real time try a test and report back to us, i'm sure this is info we'd all love to hear.

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