He makes further comments but the preceding has apparently led to a full fledged blog post that is well worth reading: The New Ocities of Search Engine Optimization by Michael Martinez, SEO Theory, 27-May-2011.
It could -- in your navigation -- be 20 clicks away from the home page.
It could also be one of the highest performing pages on your site because it has plenty of links coming from other sources.
The reason that the close association from home developed is that many sites backlinks point at their homepage so much of their SE link value flows through the site from that home page. The few of us saying that the solution is an increase/emphasis on deep links so that SE link value flows through the site from many points have been largely drowned out by those recommending flattening sites. Either can work but make your choice based on understanding of the process and IA, not rote.
I have never agreed with flat site architectures, and the more I look at Pandalyzed sites, the more I feel that is a very poor choice for site structure. They are almost too a 1 flattened (in architecture). Is that why Panda selected them for shunning? I have no idea, but clearly the lack of navigational hierarchy is not helping them.
Note: for those of you who hate math and physics please persevere - or at least skip along past the beginning to Drilling Down to More Important Metrics - although term definitions are critical to asking the right questions, testing hypotheses, understanding the answers...
There is much more. Much to think about. So, go read.
...your internal link velocity is more dependent upon your site design than your external link velocity.
...most SEOs have only considered External Link Acquisition when using the term Link Velocity but this point of view overlooks the importance of PageRank Deflation — the devaluing of a site’s PageRank by flattening or stretching its internal link count across the number of pages.
As more SEOs have pursued flat site architectures in their design strategies they have deprived search engines of the means to rank pages according to internal authority. Flat site architecture spreads PageRank too thinly. It blends the signal (highly important page) with the noise (leaf node page of little value).
As you squander your PageRank you relinquish crawl, robust indexing opportunities, the ability to pass PageRank and anchor text within your site and to others, and your pages compete with less authority for the keywords you target.
You have? Great! Go re-read.
Hot Diggitty! I'm actually doing things right!
you need to stop paying lip service to measurement and actually measure the content, the links, the rates of changes you incur, and the ratios between the important aspects of your site and search optimization strategy.
Or, at least the iamlost variation of the Michael_Martinez way...
Seriously, a cogent argument and a great read.
Thank you, Michael.