Just in case you didn't see this excellent article by Jessica Worley, I wanted to re-blog it here. I like this technique of using parent pages, child pages, and even grandchild pages. This will most definitely help your SEO and marketing efforts if you make sure to redirect your old links!
Hi! I'm new to ActiveRain and it didn't take me long to figure out- the most popular posts are the ones that offer tips and advice. I'm a CDLP (certified legal document preparer) and although I'm not a Realtor or a mortgage broker, we are very similar. We all maintain our own blogs and hustle for clients. I am also self-employed, just like a Realtor. If I don't have clients, I don't eat, just like a Realtor.
So I think I'll keep my blogs mostly free of the world of divorce, bankruptcy and probate- but instead- try to help my fellow Rainers with WP tips. I've been using it for about 6 years now, so I've learned a few things I can share.
Silo Your Content: An Easy-to-Follow How-To!
If you are using WordPress for you website, no matter what your profession, let me show you how to nest your pages, just like the "big boys" do. If you are starting a new site, it is best to start out with nested content. If you have a site that's already up and runnning, then you will need to do a little more, meaning you will have to redirect your old links when you are finished.
Step 1: Create a parent page
Quick Sidebar: Some WordPress themes automatically add new pages to the navigation menu. That's getting into a whole new topic though, and it would be too much to write here. After you create this first page, check your navigation menu on your front page and make sure your page doesn't appear in your menu. (Unless you want it to.)
I am creating a page called "For Sale" first. Because, as (my friend) Michael George wrote a month ago- that's how Trulia does it. Example:
When you are logged in to the WordPress dashboard, you can create a new page by using the top bar at the top of your site, where it says "New+".
Or, by going on the left add clicking "Add New" under the Pages section on the left.
Once I click "Add New" I will create a new page. In this case, I will call the page "For Sale"
Have a look:
We can add content later (as in later today).
Save and publish that page. You won't be able to proceed to step two without it.
Step 2: Create a Child Page
Next, I'm going to create a city page that I do business in. (Again, I'm not a RE Agent though!)
Just like in Step 1, I am going to go to pages and click "Add New."
I am going to call this page "Phoenix". And you can see what it looks like below. So far, if you have a WP site, you have probably done this before if you post in your blog. Same thing, but we are just doing it with pages.
Pretty simple right?
Now, before you click the "Publish" button, you are going to go just below that area and choose a parent page. The parent page I'm going to choose is Phoenix. It's very simple! (See screenshot below.)
Hit publish! (Again, you'll want to come back and add content later.)
Now, take a look at my URL or permalink. Now I have affordableazdivorce.com/for-sale/phoenix
It's starting to look like a Trulia homes page:
This would be a great place to write all about Phoenix in general, or Phoenix RE in general. Maybe put some featured listings on this page with your IDX tool.
Step 3: It's time For Grandchildren!
How you do this next part has to do with your own area. In fact, with all of this, it's going to depend on your area. If you serve a large city, with neighborhoods (like Boston), then you'll probably will use neighborhoods next. In this case, I'm going to divide mine up into North Phoenix, South Phoenix, and Central Phoenix.
Just like in step one and step two, we shall create another page, and I will call it "Central Phoenix MLS Listings". But you could call it anything you want.
When I create this page, before I save it, I am going to choose "Phoenix" as it's parent. That makes sense right?
I choose Phoenix, the child of "For Sale" as the parent of "Central Phoenix." See screenshot:
We are breaking down our content in a way that makes sense to humans and Google. We have a broad overview page about Phoenix, and then, under that, we have neighborhoods. This isn't black hat or "tricky"- it's just good organization and Google loves that.
Here is what our new URL looks like:
This is where I would paste my Central Phoenix listings information, using my IDX tool.
Don't just post the listings though. If you want to compete with the bigger companies, you have to have better content. You'll never get the inbound links they have, so your only hope is to put content there. Resist the urge to simply paste some MLS code in there. Write some content, maybe post a video about the area, and add your listings below that. If you just put recent listings and nothing else, you aren't offering anything better than Realtor.com, so why would Google show your page?
Step 4: Redirect your Old Links
Okay, so if you already have a neighborhood page, and it's not properly organized in your URL structure, you will want to move it.
In other words, if you have a page here:
And you want to move it to a better SEO page, like this:
You will need to tell Google that the old page is moved. There are several ways to do this and since we are working in WordPress right now, we'll just use a plugin. (Some people will tell you that too many plugins will cause your site to slow down. That's only half-true. This one should absolutely have zero-effect on your site speed.)
1. Go to Plugins >> Add New
2. Search for Simple 301 Redirects
3. Install and Activate
4. Go to Settings >> Simple 301 Redirects
5. There will be a place for your old link and your new link- put in the links. Then, test your old page, and make sure it brings you to your new SEO-optimized URL.
Feel free to ask questions or leave feedback! Thanks for welcoming me to ActiveRain!