SEO Strategy Considerations for Microsites

By Nathan Janitz, Natual Search Supervisor, Content Solutions

It is common for enterprise level companies to create multiple domains to describe new products, promotions, or support informational hubs. While it often makes sense to create these sites to align with offline promotions, companies often exclude them from their SEO strategies. Often the creative brief around these ideas states that the content is meant to be temporary or secondary to the main intent of the promotional push. While this may be true, those websites often contain many SEO-friendly assets that can benefit the brand’s long term objectives.

SEO Benefits

Ranking for Competitive Keywords: Because microsites don’t have to be tied directly to a company’s main brand, there are opportunities to include targeted keywords within the domain. Engines often see domains with keywords as more relevant to a specific query. By including keywords within the domain (i.e., a brand can often rank on keywords that it wouldn’t have been able to compete on otherwise.

Site Links: Site with keywords within the domain can often rank with site links for upper funnel, high volume informational and navigational terms. By increasing the size of the listing, a brand can capture a larger share of the click through. This means more “free” traffic to your site. Sites with site links associated with them are typically considered more trust worthy by potential visitors.

Link Equity: Press releases, bloggers, media outlets, Twitter, and Facebook are all places that can naturally grow inbound links for a site. Since most microsites come with a media push of some kind (whether it be a simple press release or a full-blown TV campaign), they often become viral and naturally generate inbound links. These inbound links are weighted heavily by the search engines in ranking the pages.

SEO Considerations

Considering Duplicate Content: Content for its own sake splits link popularity and tends to
confuse your audience. However, content to promote, educate, and incent to act is a great thing. When creating microsites, ensure that the content adds value above and beyond content that already exists.

Consider Accessibility: Similar to a brand’s main site, consider all end users including spiders. If content is inaccessible to spiders, it will be invisible to potential users. Take the time to build in the same accessibility functionality as you would your main site. This includes adding text equivalents to any rich media.


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