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Should My Site Have a Static Front Page?

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This member asks whether or not her site should use a static front page for its home page rather than a traditional blog page. We discuss the situations in which a static front page is appropriate and consider the SEO implications of a blog page versus static page.

Video Transcript

Rick: So the next question you asked is “Should I have a static first page?”

Angela: Yeah.

Rick: And the question here is… it depends or the answer to that question depends on what kind of site you have. I mean, if you’re talking about a real estate site, yes absolutely. You should have a static front page because it’s not principally a blog, right? It’s principally a site for your clients to interact a few and static front page is the best way to do that. However, if you’re running a blog, so for example… well, we’ll just go to the Community Library site or let’s see… www.mmllibrary.org. Okay so this is that church library site that we’ve been working on and she wants… the people when they come to this site, the very first thing is to see announcements and articles and that sort of stuff.

Angela: Okay wait, hold on a second. Where are you now? Because I’m not seeing that.

Rick: Well, that’s what this is right here. This is a blog page. I’m at mmllibrary.org. Can you see it on my screen?

Angela: Yeah and I’m on the GoTo Webinar viewer but I’m not seeing where you are. I’m still back on your Customize Thesis Like a Pro where you were just talking about the 301 redirect.

Rick: You must have lost… your connection must have slowed down or something because I have moved on. But let’s just see if other people can see this. If you cannot see the Macintosh Memorial Library webpage, would you raise your hand? And we’ll just see if anybody else is raising their hands.

Angela: How do you raise your hand? Oh, I see it.

Rick: Yeah, there’s a little hand button there. Oh actually Angela, right now, the thing is showing that you’re offline. My viewer is showing you as being offline.

Angela: I’ll keep my audio connection with you, I’ll just click that and come right back. Okay.

Rick: Yeah so in any case, this is a case where you have announcements and blog posts on the front page and then the whole meat of the site is elsewhere. But that’s not typically what you would do with a business website. Typically with a business website is you would have a static front page and then your blog page. If you have a blog page, your blog page would be separate page so…

Angela: Okay well, the reason I asked that is does it matter for SEO whether your front page is static or whether it’s… I mean, I do understand the importance of blogging and SEO and all that. But does it matter?

Rick: Well, the thing is that the content of your home page would be changing all the time if it was the blog page. Which means that Google’s not really going to know what the page is about because the page is always changing, right? So if it’s a static front page and it’s about a certain thing then Google always knows what it’s about because its context, its text isn’t constantly changing. In this situation you know, blog posts are displayed on the home page and if you’re interpreting what the home page is about based on the blog posts and you have more than one subject on the page, right? You might have 20 subjects on the page and that I think, reduces the effectiveness from the SEO standpoint. I think from an SEO standpoint… unless you’re really… the focus of your site is a blog. From and SEO standpoint, a business is better off having a static front page where that’s it’s very clear and relatively unchanging what the home page is about.

Angela: Okay.

Rick: Okay?

Angela: Okay so if you made changes to that static page… I mean, let’s say you kept the bones of the static page intact but let’s say you’re changing out, rotating images or in that multimedia box, if you’re changing out videos which is what I would do because I’ve got new properties.

Rick: It has nothing to do with SEO. That will have very… oh, not that it has nothing to do with it but the content in the sidebar, because it’s in the sidebar, it’s going to have… it’s not going to significantly influence what Google thinks the page is about because Google knows the contents of the sidebar. Sidebar content is generally less important than you know, content content. So…

Angela: Okay.

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