Site icon Bill Hartzer

Moving a Website from a Static Home Page to Your Latest Posts

Well, as you probably know, or at least if you read my blog (this site), or follow it, you’ll know by now that I’m always testing various things on the site. I was one of the first ones to move to HTTPs, for example, and even tracked my rankings and traffic…just to show that moving to HTTPs helps, and doesn’t hurt, traffic and rankings. I thought it was time for another test, so take a look at my site’s home page now. I just changed it from a static home page and I am now showing the latest posts, the blog posts that my site is really known for.

I had been ranking in the top 3 for “search engine optimization expert” on Google, so it will be interesting to see if I can maintain that search engine ranking without having an optimized page about that topic or about those keywords. I don’t think it will actually make a big difference or matter much, but I certainly will be watching.

One way that I am testing or tracking this is to use Google Analytics. So, you may not be aware of this, but you can actually put in an annotation in Google Analytics and look back later at your notes to see if whatever you changed has any effect on rankings. Here’s what my annotation looks like:

I made a change yesterday where I added more blog post links on the sidebar, and normally I don’t recommend making changes like this one day after another, as you can really end up messing up the actual testing. But in this case, I’ve been wanting to go to a more lively home page with my latest blog posts so let’s see how Google interacts with these changes.

One thing I also did was to take my site’s home page and move it under the “About” tab in my navigation, since it’s still there. That way there is potentially a chance that that page might end up ranking either in place of my site’s home page or it might actually rank along with my site’s home page, giving my site more coverage in the search results.

Anyhow, here’s how the page looked before.

One thing that I’d also like to mention… if you use WordPress, make and you make this change, you’ll want to make sure that you only show a snippet of your posts on the home page, and not the full text or the full post. If you show the full post, then you’ll end up creating duplicate content on your site’s home page.

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