Romantic Depot operates six, soon to be seven adult stores offering sex toys and lingerie, in the New York City area. Their flagship stores are in Manhattan and the Bronx. They’ve been around for sometime and over the years their website aged along with other businesses seeking to help drive local foot traffic.
With the move to mobile devices in full demonstration the old RomanticDepot.com site was not responsive. This lead the owner of the chain to build a new site that was mobile friendly and it lead to Ultimate SEO‘s involvement overseeing the process of migrating to this new site without hurting the site’s strong local SEO presence.
Romantic Depot does have an impressive keyword positioning presence in the New York City area. Even nationally they are on page 2 of results for “sex shop“. The goal was to ensure a smooth transition to the mobile site while maintaining the SEO that had been built over the years.
The new site was largely a 1 to 1 ratio. The html static page manhattan.html went now to /manhattan/ on the WordPress site. We placed in any one off redirects, a redirect that took any url that ended in .html and would return it without the html and a redirect for the index.html homepage to come back with the WordPress homepage at /
Backlinks are the life blood of a sit’s ranking and it was important to ensure that those would be maintained with relevant content as well. Using SEMRush.com we collected all of the backlinks and their existing targets and ensured those had rules as well. While the site’s backlinks were in the tens of thousands it quick came down to a few hundred target urls that needed to be accounted for to maintain SEO.
Most of the work involved in preparing for the migration was speed performance in nature. The new site when tested on GTMetrix.com was loading in 12.6 seconds with over 400 http requests. We targeted a 3 second load and through Cloudflare.com we were able to utilize a CDN that brought the site closer to users as well as offered other benefits. Cloudflare alone brough the site load time to about 7 seconds.
We further limited content that could be on other pages for those other pages such as Google maps to the location homepages. Instituting lazy load ended up being the primary aspect of speeding up the site. Image optimization was also completed and a move to PHP7.3 from 5.6. Merging CSS and JS files also worked to reduce the requests.
With our work to provide a faster site complete the migration was completed and load times on the site are under 3 seconds for mobile users.
The problem that arises from multiple domain strategies is the segmentation of resources and confusion it can cause to Google Analytics. An easy eample of this is the bounce rate and pageviews metrics are actually hurt on the primary domain.
Consider this… a person searches romantic depot on Google. The first result is their site, likely the person is going to want to know what items might be at the store. Once the page loads they find the link to the store, maybe even before the page loads. Clicking that link they are now taken to a new domain.
That visitors actions would have counted as a bounced visitor. See when someone goes to your site and immediately leaves for another site that signals to Google that what was on that original site wasn’t what the searcher wanted. To prevent future searchers from going to a site that people leave directly after going to it they might increase the position of other sites to try and correct for this in the future. That ultimately means the top spot position for the keyword is being hampered by the site’s structure.
Further Google sees that a person wasn’t even interested enough in the site to look at a second page, they just left. In realty the second site is part of the same overall topic or brand its just that Google doesn’t necessarily understand that. An artificially inflated bounce rate and lower page views are all that the first site is getting and the second site is losing out as well as most of the marketing is surrounding the first site’s address…backlinks, social mentions and such.
The illustration above shows our page views of the main root domain. Guess when on the graph the romanticdepotsuperstore.com site was rolled into the main domains … late July. The thing is, the traffic isn’t any greater its just not split up anymore. The homepage link to the store is now going to a subfolder of the same domain, its helping by acting as another page view rather than hurting the site as a bounce.
The keywords and authority of this additional site were better utilized under the main domain RomanticDepot.com and this site was migrated to a subfolder /store as a separate WordPress site.
Thats important the site was migrated as a separate site under the original. This was done for multiple reason and it creates its own set of unique challenges but we’ll discuss that later in a future post.
The consolidation of the sites further helps with SEO because after we migrated we put into place redirects from the store’s domain to its new home within the subfolder. That means all the backlinks now combine to help one site. Lets consider the following illustration…
Domain A: DA 30 Backlinks: 10,000 Referring Domains: 1,000
Domain B: DA 30 Backlinks: 9,000 Referring Domains: 900
Competitor: DA 35 Backlinks: 13,000 Referring Domains: 1,300
Lets assume everything else is the same…we’d expect then that Competitor will rank higher on Google Search. But if we combine Domain A ad Domain B.
Domain AB: DA 40 Backlinks: 19,000 Referring Domains: 1,900
Everything else still the same….Domain AB will now rank higher than the Competitor.
I hate missing out just as much as anyone else. Its why Ultimate SEO has accounts on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Pinterest, Flickr, Youtube, Blogger, Instagram, SnapChat and more. But the only thing worse than not being on a platform is to not appear active on that platform. If someone’s first impression of you or your company is your activity on a forgotten profile it is more damaging than not having been there to begin with.
Thats where IFTTT has stepped in and been able to save time while helping to get a message out consistently. From WordPress IFTTT automatically shares and posts each update to a slew of other sites and until recently its been the most effective means for auto updating social media. Now that Google+ has ended and with the loss of Gmail applets on IFTTT it may be a good time to look again at social media auto posting techniques. Recently it appears LinkedIn may have discontinued its connection to IFTTT as well, which is a shame and hurts both LinkedIn and IFTTT.
In researching IFTTT applets Buffer.com came to light. Its mostly a paid version of what IFTTT did for free but it also includes a free options which allows integration with 3 social media platforms. In the use case of Ultimate SEO that meant connecting to LinkedIn. The other two positions going to Facebook and Twitter as those are the powerhouse social media platforms.
My ultimate goal is to fully automate this process and I haven’t yet seen that in Buffer.com but further testing may reveal that an action from IFTTT completes this chain. Its not enough to be able to post an individual article from one site to all, we need something that checks all sites and then auto publishes what isnt published on others to those sites.
You might think of this daisy chain of social media as if it were a PBN. It’s a network of separate sites but all you.
I’ll keep you updated on this case study. At present though IFTTT still appears to be the best auto posting option for social media. It can start from a sites RSS feed or an integrated service like WordPress then post to a central site such as Blogger which has a lot of versatility due to the number of connections available.
Some connections utilized for Ultimate SEO include:
(The WordPress to X recipes are available but I’d recommend making these connections through Blogger where possible for consistency)
It may appear that I love Blogger but its important to have a centralized distribution point. Consider how easy it would be to accidentally create an auto updating loop if you didn’t have a defined start. I accidentally created one of these months ago and it was annoying first discovering it and second reviewing where in the chain I was picking up the update I was trying to put down. So blogger serves in that regard as a check point on redundancy. I also prefer a secondary site from WordPress. If after publishing something on WordPress you realized the permalink is too long or something just didn’t look right, you at least have another spot to stop that mistake from going out to everything else.
Guest Posts or User Submitted Posts are content written by another author not working for the site in which the content is being displayed on. UltimateSEO has a very easy guest post system and its free. Content submitted to our site may be syndicated on as many as 300 other sites that we maintain or are affiliated with. That can potential deliver you hundreds of backlinks from multiple domains. We offer this feature free of charge at this time, but may charge in the future. Why is it free when other sites charge? Its because we want good content and diverse opinions. So please ensure your post is original, timely, accurate and fresh.
Guest Posting is a win win scenario for us and you and your site. You can write an original article and we’ll post it if it is about SEO or SEM in general. Specific niche SEO topics are also welcome. Writers can include backlinks of relevant in their posts. We’d like to recommend no more than one link per 250 words. If there is an issue we’ll let you know. We also ask the your post include an image or an image per 500 words. So .in a 2000 word SEO post we’d like to see no more than 8 links and we would like to see about 4 images.
Ultimate SEO reserves the right to remove or edit posts on our site. We will also provide credit to content creators who retain ownership of their content but license the display of that content to use by using this form.
To submit your own guest post visit our submission page. Approved Guest Posts also appear among the site’s regular articles.
An easy way to build backlinks is through directory submissions. Anything hard though is worth more, so keep in mind directory submissions don’t carry the weight that in content links will. With that said there is still diluted value in link directories, just don’t focus on them.
Here are some link directories and they are organized by SEO power.
The button below opens a new window with about 100 sites. We also have the following directory sites maintained by Ultimate SEO and these are always free to list with. This site also has a directory on it built in…you can access it by the top menu bar.