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Search Engine Optimization: Mirror Sites

Search Engine Optimization: Mirror Sites

May 22, 2002
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" What you are doing with mirror sites is basically cloning your existing site over more domains. "

Since I have heard a lot of talk about mirror sites on the boards, as well as questions about doorway pages and gateway pages and what is a good search engine plan, I thought it time to put some ideas down on paper. I hope this helps those out there who have never gone after the search engines before, or even those who have tried and are not getting the results they want. While I don't profess to be the expert, I do have a bit of experience and think that there are some important points to consider. Please read on and I hope this helps...

While most people who run smaller sites or business have only one main site that they promote, there are ways to create more sites, without really doing a ton of work. The trick is to take what you have and use it to your advantage. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel, just work with what you have to grow it and make it seem larger than it really is. The bigger you look, the better you look and the easier it is for people to find you and hopefully give you their money.

I am going talk about creating a network for your site, turning it into many sites, in essence. This is not hard, it just takes a bit of time and effort and some serious thought. What I am going to discuss are mirror sites, doorway pages and gateway pages.

Mirror sites are part of any good search engine plan. What you are doing with mirror sites is basically cloning your existing site over more domains. Say you run an amateur site, with the domain www.naked-amateurs-are-us-for-you.com. Find yourself more domains that all deal with the amateur niche. Anything will do, really, as long as amateur is in the URL. Now, clone your site into these other domains. Don't just put the exact same thing in though, change the colors a bit, change the logo, some different pix on the front page - that sort of thing, so that they are not identical.

Now you have your own little network of amateur sites, just like that. Why, you ask? I like using a building as an analogy. The more doors leading into your building (site), the easier it is for people to get in (and pay you), simple as that. The trick now is to create the doors.

Mirror sites have the benefit of having more domains that search engines can key in on. URLs are always important for being found by search engines. The more URLs you have, the more keywords you can use to get found, and the more people should be able to find you. You never know just how people search and what they search for, so this helps to cover all your bases, so that anyone searching in any way should be able to find one of your sites. Rather than submit all of the mirrors, just submit one and let the spider follow the links to all of the others.

Mirrors also serve another very useful purpose, which is creating a network of links. Many search engines, such as Google, love to see lots of links pointing to your site(s), this ranks you higher, since Google considers you to be more important if there are a lot of sites pointing at yours. Even better are relevant links. So, if you mirror your site and then link it to your main site, what link is more relevant? You want most of your links to come from sites with similar content, this is how these links are relevant - your site and your mirrors will have 99% similar content, which equals very high relevancy.

You have now created your own network of relevant links, all with similar content, which the spiders can follow and thus index, thus rating your site higher. It can also help in that the spiders need to find only one of your sites, since they can follow all of the links to all of your other sites. This can actually rank you higher. Rather than submit all of the mirrors, just submit one and let the spider follow the links to all of the others. Since the spider "found" them all by itself, and found them by following links from relevant sites, it will think that you are even more relevant. Confusing, yes, but it does work.

In my next article, we'll look at Gateway and Doorway pages. Stay Tuned!


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