Google Webmaster Help…
Many webmasters for small independent websites have long had the suspicion that they might be at a disadvantage to larger corporate websites that can afford to create masses of webpages and content. The general consensus has long been that the more pages you have indexed, the better you’re likely to rank in the search engine results.
But a new video released on the official GoogleWebmasterHelp YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVOrml7fp2c) suggests that – shock, horror! – this is not necessarily the case.
In the video, Google’s Head of Web Spam Matt Cutts responds to the question, ‘Does a website get a better overall ranking if it has a large amount of indexed pages?’
His answer is of the ‘no, but…’ variety.
“It is the case that if you have more pages that have different keywords on them, then you have the opportunity where they might be able to rank for the individual queries that the user has,” says Cutts.
But he goes on to say that, “just having more pages doesn’t automatically mean that you’ll be in good shape or that you’ll get some sort of ranking boost.”
Quality or quantity?
In addition to the greater keyword potential of sites with lots of pages, Cutts also points out that if having lots of pages leads to you have, “a lot of links or a lot of page rank,” then that could lead you to rank slightly higher.
So how can webmasters use this information to boost their SEO campaigns? Firstly, they can choose to focus on quality over quantity. As Cutts explains, the true bonus that comes from having more pages is that they have the potential to generate extra links, but this is only going to be the case if they are high quality and actually useful. So if you’re on a budget it’s perhaps worth diverting resources to create a moderate number of high quality pages, rather than a lot of substandard pages.
Webmasters should also be sure to leverage the keyword potential that having a large number of pages offers, by targeting a broad range of user queries across their content.