Re-naming a page?

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Hello Everyone,

I have two internal pages that I would like to re-name for SEO purposes. The
pages are indexed and have a PR=5 but I want to use the exact words that
people search for to .

Is there a disadvantage to doing this in terms of PR and rankings? If not
how do you re-direct to the new URL without upsetting Google?

Thanks a lot,


Re: Re-naming a page?

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It will be a new page as far as the SE's are concerned.  It will not show
any improvement until the next update of the databases.

URL's are of limited value, though if you are competing for a tough term I
suppose it could give you the edge you need.

I would instead make sure that anchor text, page title and H tags all
contained the term you are trying to rank for.

John Merrell
Gateway Farm Alpacas

Re: Re-naming a page?


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It's a difficult question to give a general answer, but for anyone
else considering this here's one way to decide if it's a good idea.

1. Does the page have a good/OK SERP? If you are in the top 10, but
still want to improve it would be a very bad idea messing with this
page in this way.

Creating the same page, but with a different file name is a bad idea
when you already have a good SERP because you might loose it
completely. However, if you are in the top 20 or less getting no
visitors and have been stuck there for 4 plus months you might want to
consider it.

2. Do you have any links that you do not control pointing at these
pages? If so you can't just delete the pages since you'll loose the
benefit from those links. You can get around this with a 301 redirect,
but I've heard the results aren't always the same as before the 301.

3. Is it really needed? In your example you are going from a two word
filename that's hyphenated to a one word name (one of the other two
words). It's reasonable to assume that any benefit from filenames will
be split between any words.

In your example "workplace-ergonomics.html" the word ergonomics will
get 50% of the benefit. "ergonomics.html" the word ergonomics will get

Not quite that simple since we have the whole URL to take into
account. It's difficult to know which bits of the URL count, is it all
of it or does Google ignore things like www and com? Based on some
basic research I'm reasonably sure they could it all so-

6 words - www usernomics com workplace ergonomics html

ergonomics receives 1/6th (17%) of the benefit.

5 words - www usernomics com ergonomics html

ergonomics receives 1/5th (20%) of the benefit.

The boost from a filename etc... is small, so in this case it's not
worth the trouble. One PR4 link will likely result in a much bigger
boost to the page.

You can find info about a 301 redirect at

-- /

Re: Re-naming a page?

SEO Dave wrote:
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Hi Dave,

I've just done this for a number of pages on a winter sports related
website. It was related to a site reorg... the client had hundreds of
files in a single directory. Although this can be managed software it
was not that sane.

The search terms were reasonably competitive (around 500,000 results in
Google) and were ranking in the top ten. This was an accidental SERP as
I only noticed the inbound traffic on checking the client log files. As
the site has a seasonal bias I changed about 5% of the ULRs at the end
of last season to better target higher traffic keywords. I put in
redirects for some of the most popular pages, especially those with IBL
and then had a catchall to redirect to the site map for the rest.

It was a real white knuckle ride as the rankings dropped all the way
down the 10,000 google SERPS but a great pleasure to see them all
popping up over the last month. The client is over the moon as his
traffic is way up.

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This is a really really important point.

I think these example is why it is so important to consider SEO as a
part of the Website design and get some experienced SEO input at the
very outset.  There are so many of those initial decisions that can have
really signifcant long term impacts.

Re: Re-naming a page?

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Hi David,

Thank you so much for a very complete answer with the pro's and con's to

I do have uncontrolled IBL's going to this page, the page is maximized for
the word "ergonomics" and ranks at about 14th in Google and 9th in Yahoo out
of almost 2 million.

I was trying to push up a little but after reading your explanation and
David Off's comment, I think I will not make the change. I am continuing to
optimize the page(s) but won't rename them.

Thanks so much,


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