Site Architecture

A site’s architecture refers to the structure of pages on a website and how they are linked together. Site architecture affects how search engine’s crawl a website and how users navigate through a site. As an important factor for SEO, our Hangout Notes cover best practice guidance and advice to ensure your site architecture is optimally structured. To learn more about the ins and outs of this topic, make sure you check out our Ultimate Guide to Site Architecture Optimisation.

Merging Internal or External Pages on One Topic Will Result in Higher Rankings

October 30, 2018 Source

If separate sites that rank well already and both focus on the same topic or service merge, then they will see an increase in rankings as Google sees an even stronger page than before.

Linking to Every Page From a Site’s Homepage Will Stop Google Understanding Site Architecture

August 24, 2018 Source

Linking to every page on a site from the homepage means that Google will lose the structure of the website as a whole, unless the site only has a small number of pages.

Google Requires Distinct Section on Site For Geotargeting to be Understood

July 13, 2018 Source

Google requires that websites using geo-targeting have a dedicated section on the site for specific territories such as a separate subdirectory or subdomain.

Google Requires Multilingual Sites to Have Some Form of URL Differentiation

July 13, 2018 Source

Anything that differentiates a URL can work for Google for multilingual sites with hreflang e.g. subdomains, subdirectories or parameters.

Country-Specific Content Requires Different Domains, Subdomains or Subdirectories

June 15, 2018 Source

For country targeting, Google requires a clear distinction between country-specific content by using separate domains, subdomains or subdirectories.

Google Assesses Language Content on a URL Basis

June 15, 2018 Source

Google looks at language content on a URL basis and doesn’t differentiate by URL pattern. This means you can use different language content wherever you want e.g. the root URL in one language and a subdirectory in another language is fine.

Link New Content High Up in Site Architecture

June 1, 2018 Source

If your homepage is particularly important, it makes a big difference for Google if new content is linked from there or high up within your site architecture. Some sites have a ‘New Articles’ or ‘New Products’ section to push those pages in search a bit.

Click Depth Determines Page Importance More Than URL Structure

June 1, 2018 Source

Google cares more about click depth rather than what the URL structure looks like itself with regards to page importance. For example, it doesn’t matter too much if a page is several layers deep in the URL structure if it is linked from the homepage.

Use Subdirectories Unless Pages Are Markedly Different From Rest of Site

May 18, 2018 Source

In general Google sees subdomains and subdirectories the same. John recommends keeping pages together on the same site as much as possible and using subdomains when things are different. However, if you have a strong reason for using a subdomain then go with that.

Related Topics

HTTPS URL Parameters URL Architecture Subdomains Canonical Domain Facets / Faceted Navigation TLDs Site/Page Quality