TheHighlander

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Hail Local Search Forum!

I have a new legal client I am working with that is going to be re-launching their site after leaving Justia. I would like to try and maintain as much authority as possible for them during this but have hit a speedbump since the other agency owns their blog domain.

The site is hosted on domain A, which the client owns and we are taking over without issue.

The blog is hosted on domain B. Justia owns the blog domain but the content is all custom content from the firm.

From my understanding we can't 301 the blog because we do not own the domain and we can't copy/repost the blog content without risking a dupe content penalty.

Is there anything that can be done in a situation like this? Will we likely have to scrap the old blog content and start anew?

Any input would be greatly appreciated.
 

CodyBaird

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What's the domain / blog in question? Would Justia sell it to the business?

You are going to lose A LOT of juice without those 301s and page authority of each
 

Linda Buquet

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Hail Local Search Forum!

"and we can't copy/repost the blog content without risking a dupe content penalty."

Hail Highlander! :) Thanks for joining us.

There really is no dupe content penalty. It's a myth. So no risk. Google just may not count the content on the new site since Justia is more authoratative and it's likely already indexed. So it won't hurt, but may not help much either.

However when they leave Justia - will they leave the content up or take it down once they stop paying? If they wrote it, I'd sure copy so you have it. Could also re-write the good posts just to have some content to get started with. !
 

TheHighlander

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Thank you for the feedback Cody and Linda:D

The client is libertylaw.com and their blog is oaklandemploymentlawyerblog.com.
The website is doing pretty good as is but they have been blogging for several years on that domain and have around 800 posts.

It would be great if we could purchase the domain and then implement a regex 301 redirect, but since the client doesn't own it I am preparing a contingency plan in case Justia declines.

It sounds like the next best option though is to scrape the content, review the blogs analytics and then edit/re-create the more engaging posts?
 

JoshuaMackens

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Agreed with Cody. Do everything you can to get that domain. Justia won't get any value out of it and there is a case to be made that it's your content, not theirs. So, at the very least, they would have to take down all of the content, leaving them with a bare domain that they probably don't know what to do with.

However, we do know what to do with it so you definitely want to get it.

Cody is the expert in this area but I'm not sure I would 301 it. You could try it and see if it makes a difference. If it doesn't budge in 2 months or so, I would take the 301 off and I would find some choice places to put some links (definitely the homepage). Maybe you should just do that in the first place.

You might could even put the links in there before Justia takes the domain in case they do keep it for whatever reason. At least the links will be there while they keep the domain live.

Cody could probably shed some better light on what to do though since I have little experience with that. If it were me, I would just do some testing and see what works.
 
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To my knowledge, the only reason you wouldn't want to 301 it would be if you were worried about an unhealthy backlink profile on the old blog. If you don't have good reason to think there were bad backlinks on the old blog, there's nothing but upside to 301 redirecting. I think ahrefs has a penguin penalty checker as part of their deal, but that's really not my area. Sometimes feels like SEO's a wide open prairie, and I'm studying some ants with a magnifying glass right in the middle...

What I'd do, examine the old domain with ahref (or another tool). The number I've heard, is that 85% of the value of the links are passed along with a 301 redirect. If you look at the backlink profile to the old site, figure out what's most important, what's a risk, what's easy to get back, etc. together with that 85% you shouldn't have much trouble figuring out roughly how much that domain is worth to the client. If it would cost you $10,000 in manual time to get back the bulk of the important backlinks, then it's likely going to be much cheaper to buy it from Justia than recreating it from scratch.
 

CodyBaird

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Sorry. No need for 301 if client buys site. Hell, I would push Justia to just give it to you. Bad press to keep a SMB's website when they leave.

The biggest mistake that every SMB's or rookie SEO makes is to move on from their old domain even with penalties.

The second biggest is when they migrate from one cms platform to another and f@?k up all the URLs on the new cms by creating new URLs for service and blog pages and then forgetting 301s. Effectively pissing away all authority built to date.

"Moving On" without seasoned digital properties from GMB pages, yelp & yellowpage profiles to the website without fighting tooth and nail for them is an extremely rookie move. And only made by someone that lacks the experience of knowing how hard it is to build a site to 800 pages.

If the domain is 10+ yrs old with 800 pages of content dating back to the beginning then I would value that site at around $250k. Good luck quickly "moving on" even if you do scrape all the content and make a mockup new version.

Knowing this makes it very simple to place numerical value on the cost of walking as well as the value if you wish to purchase which you should.
 
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