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Behind an Authority Site

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by kakizito, Oct 31, 2011.

  1. kakizito

    kakizito Regular Member

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    Hello everyone!!

    Would thank anyone who could contribute with some insights about the background and creation of a big white hat site like webmd and health.

    Some things I can't figure about big sites like those:
    - Development: I can't make something with that dynamic and functionality in wordpress or joomla in what kind of platform or language are those type of sites built? Someone in freelancer would do the job or would be better go to a local web developer?
    - Content management: If I would pay someone to develop a site like that, the system implemented would allow me to manage the content or only the programmer would be able to do so?
    - Legal Issues: Would I need to have my site registered in some medical institution or a disclaimer would be enough?

    Do they really have a team that works on the site or is it a one men band? I mean, one person can pay a web developer and do the rest of the job, or is it really necessary to work with a team of writters who build content, a programmer to hande the technical part of the site, a graphic designer to work on the visual part of the site and etc.

    Any other advice or info you could give about starting an authority site would be very appreciated.

    Thank you
     
  2. darkmonk

    darkmonk Regular Member

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    WebMD is built on a content management system that was outsourced. They are more than just an authority website and it seems from some Googling that they have engaged in other types of work in medical information management.

    You either need a team of people, it is too big for one person to write and manage all that content all at once; or, you do it yourself but it takes a lot longer. Theoretically you could outsource all of it but your rate of growth will depend on cash flow as you will need higher quality outsourced workers.

    WebMD is an interesting example. They are doing some interesting stuff. It is more than just WebMd.com, they have a number of domains now. I'm trying to figure out how medicinenet is ranking for certain things when they seem to just be regurgitating webmd content.

    If you want to start an authority site then the best piece of advice is: start. Seriously, you can spend an eternity trying to analyze everything and never actually start. Know that it is a journey that will take some time, but you have to take the first step to start the journey.

    Wordpress should be able to get you pretty far, with caching, CDN, cloud hosting, etc. and once you get to a point it becomes an issue in theory you should be making a ton of $$$ to cover those costs.

    Personally I follow the how to eat an elephant analogy. Or something akin to BassTrackerBoats method that he has described in another thread on here. If I know for xyz niche I want to grow an authority site, then I try to pick a brandable and/or broader EMD, but then focus on micro niches first and let it organically grow into an authority site. I have not yet reached anything like the level of a WebMD, but I'm not going to just stop on any of the sites either as long as they keep producing cash flows.
     
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  3. kaplan

    kaplan Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Making an authority site is not an easy task, as darkmonk said wordpress is good enough and can serve you well.
    You will also need a good hosting with a clean IP.

    After that you will need to generate quelity content over time and get good quality inlinks to your site, the more high PR respectable sites will link to you the closer you are to be an authority site.
     
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  4. kakizito

    kakizito Regular Member

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    Thank you very much for your advices.

    Well, I already spent 2 years in micro niches sites, and I now have a modest income from those projects, that allow me to support a bigger project. So I m looking to build an autorithy site boosted with the traffic of those micro sites.
    The idea would be to turn my "small black hat grocerys shops" in a "big White WallMart", driving the traffic from one to another. Think you get the point hehe.
    My micro sites are all in the same niche, so an autorithy site would gather all those potential clients under a brand name. Making a sale and build a client database would be much easier and plus it would be white hat.


    I will go with wordpress, but my major concern, is that I think wordpress is a bit limited, this is, when you look to a wordpress site you can tell in the first look that it is under wordpress platform, it has that blog feeling. Can it be dramatacly changed in some way that it looses that blog, clone feeling?

    All my micro sites are under a shared account. When you say a clean Ip, do you mean I need to get a dedicated Ip?

    Thx
     
  5. kaplan

    kaplan Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    I am not saying you need one from the get go but in some point you will have to get a dedicated clean IP so other sites won't seat on your IP and will be a "bad neighborhood" as we call it.
     
  6. billygood

    billygood Senior Member

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    to start off, I would agree with a wordpress type off application. reason is that content data migration can be done or you can get on the amazon cloud with ease.

    MOST IMPORTANT : start doing it, as another poster said, you can get bogged down in the details.

    some real world observations:

    Post the content and don't worry about the scrapers, DMCA are cheap to file and provide a cheap thrill.
    if everything is working, don't touch it.
    fix bug's when they appear, otherwise code optimization is just a waste of time in the start-up phase.
    if you get big enough, hire people that really do know how to code. this way you can make changes that don't give you site issues.
    if you have a choice, stick to PHP for as long as possible.
    when you hire a PHP person, first thing to do is to secure your site properly so that the odd's of having an issue with data leaks is reduced to nil.
    next thing is look for the bottle necks ( you would be amazed on how cpu intensive Image serving can be out of a database can be )
    a 5% cpu cycle savings on a common used function can improve your site by 50% or more ( first hand experience )

    Upgrading to the cloud: spend a day or so reading, it's worth it, you might discover that you don't need a cloud but you need a better server with higher ram.

    plenty of fish is the prime example of a lean mean fighting machine. read about them.

    PHP is a ground level platform to start, after that you might integrate some python and perl.

    MYsql is good, very user friendly don't waste your time upgrading unless you want to drop big $$$.
    get a good night sleep with a note pad next to the bed, you would be amazed at the site improvements you dream of, now you write them down.
     
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  7. phpbuilt

    phpbuilt Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    I don't think you should do it, pick a different niche if you're wanting to make an authority site.

    Even if your on-site SEO is perfect, your backlinks are perfect ... eventually, all authority websites get a manual review once you start qualifying for a certain higher level of traffic.

    When that review happens, you're going to get slapped. You're giving medical advice and you're not a registered doctor, and none of your authors are registered doctors.

    Google is out to give the best results for a search, and different niches have different criteria they need to pass for a manual review. Health has got to be one of the strictest (how would Google look if someone typed in a medical search, found a lunatic's site and followed lunatic advice?) Unless you are investing big bucks into real qualified authors with real credentials, you don't stand a chance.