I market a conference and we have two very distinct customers.

Attendees and Exhibitors/Sponsors. Each customer has a different sales funnel.

I thought it'd be best to separate these into different web properties by dropping the exhibitor/sponsorship sales to a separate subdomain(sales.domain.com) to get two separate SERP listings (Attendee oriented, B2B oriented).

I setup r301s and links from navi, but no SEO juice is being passed on.

Did I completely messup in my thinking of being able to get two distinct search results?

  • to give you a better answer, it's best if you provide some example URLs and improve the details on your question. – PatomaS Feb 13 '14 at 5:57

There are two things to consider here: 301 redirects do not pass juice and sub-domains are their own sites. You will be fine in short order.

Regarding 301 redirects. A redirect does not pass juice, but it also generally does not mess it up either.

Regarding sub-domains. A sub-domain is it's own site. This means that is must be spidered and ranked as a new site. Having said that, the parent domain metrics do still apply but not page metrics.

Regarding both. Redirecting was the right thing to do. Search engines will drop your existing pages and spider your new pages. This will happen faster for each page that is redirected. If you use a blanket redirect to the effective new site depending upon how you do it, could allow the search engine to find your pages faster. You will have to allow the flushing out of the changes in the index and that can take a while. I expect that in about 30 days you should see improvement, but it may take another 30 days to shake it all out. By then search engines should have a idea of how to present your site in the SERPs.

Changes are never taken as immediate. When you make a significant change like this, plan on 60 days before really knowing the impact. It is possible that more settling out is needed and some SEO tuning and content changes need to be made. I generally avoid looking at the stats except to know if I made any errors for at least two months. Then I get serious. It may also help to use a sitemap for the sub-domain to help search engines. Google is very good at rediscovering sites of significance using a sitemap.

You should be fine if you only moved the content without too many significant changes. Otherwise, any additional changes need to be discovered, understood, indexed, and ranked.

It may be that you did a really good thing SEO wise.

Good Luck!

  • Thanks for the advice. I've moved this to a subdomain on Unbounce where I can test changes more rapidly and allow sales to updare info by themselves. Unfortunately, this means it's a single page and me stuffing accordion divs with previous info. What do you say about this? – Jon Feb 13 '14 at 7:39
  • Redirects do pass juice. If they didn't pass juice, they would mess it up, it's either one or the other: moz.com/learn/seo/redirection. Other than that, good advice. If your site has a lot of pages (thousands and more), it might take even longer than 60 days. Don't be alarmed by lower organic search traffic, it should go back to normal after a few months. – Ivo van der Veeken Feb 13 '14 at 15:54
  • About the test site, there's no way to compare that to real sites. If it's only 1 page, the redirect shouldn't take too long to be caught by Google. You can test your code there, but it's not representative SERP-wise. – Ivo van der Veeken Feb 13 '14 at 15:56
  • Redirect Juice: I was not clear. Redirect in of itself does not pass juice but it does not take it away either. So redirecting from an old page to a newer version will in effect be the same, but redirecting to an off-topic spammy page the juice from the original page will fade very very fast. This is done because of spam sites that use redirect. The assumption is that the redirect is done with good will until it is discovered not to be. – closetnoc Feb 13 '14 at 16:36
  • I still did not explain this well. MOZ is absolutely correct assuming that the redirect is not spam and the redirect remains. However, the mechanics behind the scenes makes the long answer complicated. I am writing a page explaining this confusing issue. Sorry for the confusion in my answer. – closetnoc Feb 13 '14 at 18:32

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