We've launched a series of sites and want to ensure our techniques are "Google-allowed". We need a Google search engine expert that actually *knows* what they're talking about. On your part, we simply require an e-mail or two with suggestions or recommendations.
Here's our situation:
We have ONE server (one IP address). On this server, we host many domains, and sell around nine software products. Here are a few pointers, which include our issues:
* Every time a visitor hits the [url removed, login to view] the domain is checked and the user redirected to a particular subfolder. So, the IP address is always the same, but the subfolder is different. This is to save on hosting costs. (It's the subfolder that gets the page rank.) Point one: will this adversely affect us.
* Some sites have multiple domains, linking to the same subfolder. For example, product 1 may be linked to from [url removed, login to view] and www.xyz.com. Both will be redirected to [url removed, login to view] and [url removed, login to view] respectively. Point two: we need to know if this an acceptable practice. Some says yes-yes-yes, others say no.
* We have about ten domains that point to a subfolder with ONLY "site maps" in it... ie, a "mini-site" that serves simply as a mini link page to [url removed, login to view] and [url removed, login to view] etc etc.
* All the sub-folder sites point to the others (ie, <[url removed, login to view]> points to <[url removed, login to view]> using link text) using small text links at the bottom of each page. Point three: as these are all on the same server (ie, same IP but different subfolders) is this good practice?
* We have created "SmartPages" for a few sites. These were created using [url removed, login to view], using rules as described in "The Whole Truth" e-book. Basically they create ten mini-interlinked, semi-random pages, and a sitemap, which you should link to from the main page. These then redirect you to the main site. Point four: we want to know whether this approach is okay.
... continues in Deliverables section ...
* We have created our own software to create a LOT of SmartPages for a couple of sites. In other words, SmartPages based on 100 keywords, perhaps adding another 100-300 pages to certain sites. We have "master" sitemaps linking to those smaller SmartPages sitemaps. Point five: is it okay to use larger numbers of SmartPages? Where do we link TO these?
* Right now, we're going to link to the sitemaps from the main pages. Is it best to do this, or will it steal from its PageRank? Point six: should we submit the "sitemaps" direct to search engines... or should we link from the main page... or an inner page... or should we use another domain containing a mini "sitemap"?
* All smart pages are in subfolders. Best to keep them in the root (ie /prod1/) - how will this affect us rankings wise?
There may be a couple of other questions we need to bounce off you, but it will be a SHORT process for someone in the know.
DO NOT bid on this if you are UNSURE or DO NOT know about Google rankings. Solid advice ONLY.