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Hypothetical Situation 1: I have a plan for an amazing large-scale website with lot's of really cool features, animations and interactivity. This will take a several months to completely develop.

Should I deploy a very basic version of the site now and continue to add features over time or should I wait until I have completely finished my website? Will making a basic version now and adding features later have any negative SEO effects short-term or long-term?

Hypothetical Situation 2: I am relatively new to web developing and still constantly learning new skills. Every year my skill improves such that my designs are much better than last year. I still want to advertise myself for freelancing work though my current skills only allow for relatively simple websites. If I make a website now it will be completely different next year due to my improving skills.

If I completely change my website next year will the benefits this could bring to SEO be impacted by my much lower quality site from before?


I have read in some articles before that if you have a mediocre or poor quality site then because of algorithms like Google Panda you can get lowered in search ranking and that even if you drastically improve your site the low ranking can stay for months of time because Google Panda needs to be "refreshed".

Is this really true and should I avoid submitting sites to Google until I have 100% achieved my original vision for the website?

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    Wait till you have something substantial to offer. It is premature to worry about all that now. When you have enough that you think you can please users, then worry about how Google will see it. It is always far better to deploy a decent website all at once. – closetnoc Dec 8 '15 at 3:15
  • @closetnoc I understand what you're saying but my the way I posed my hypothetical situation I didn't mean to imply my web design skills are bad. What it your site is good enough to be seen as good/passable by Google but it's just not up to your own personal standards because you know you can do much more later, Would submitting an average site now vs a great site later negatively effect SEO? – Ross Dec 8 '15 at 3:21
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    I was not saying bad. I was saying content. If you can please your users, then go for it. Do not worry about Google. Just make sure your site has something to offer. The content quality thing is really about user experience (UX) and content that is pleasing to users and not about Google grading your work. – closetnoc Dec 8 '15 at 3:27
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    For what it is worth, SEO is really really simple... it is just a bunch of moving parts. Focus on doing a good job and keeping it simple before making things complicated and you will be fine. You can also read some of the stuff I have written here to better understand what is going on. – closetnoc Dec 8 '15 at 4:00
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    Hey @closetnoc I'm fascinated as to why you answer the question in the comments. I go to anwer these 'unanswered' questions and find your comments have already dealbt with it. You obviously know your stuff and are providing good answers. Any reason? – garth Dec 8 '15 at 4:08
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There is no problem with showing Google a small site that you plan to add to later. If you have one page of good content, Google would like to index it because it could be useful to somebody searching for its terms.

On the other hand you don't want to publish to Google:

  • Broken links, images, or HTML
  • "Coming soon" or "Under construction" notices
  • Pages with little or no content
  • Half written articles that won't be useful to visitors

If you later decide to update your site, that is fine with Google. When you do so you can change the technology that powers the site, the HTML code, the site theme (look and feel), or your JavaScript libraries. Google won't care about those at all.

If you are going to change the URLs of the pages on your site you should implement redirects between the old and new URLs.

If you are going to take down content, that could hurt your rankings and SEO.

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It's generally bad for SEO if you submit a site containing a lot of improper grammar or if the HTML is incomplete. Its extremely bad for SEO if your site doesn't follow webmaster guidelines that some search engines provide such as Google.

If your project takes centuries to complete, then break the sections down and present them as you complete them.

For example, if you have a site on gaming, and you wanted to write reviews on 1,000,000 games, and you only finished a review for one game and partly finished a review for the second, then publish the first game review and then publish the website home page. The second game review isn't ready to be published.

Just make sure the code you publish online validates with w3c web standards as well.

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