In the eyes of Google all sites are created equal
Some time ago a bunch of newspapers demanded to get a higher search rank from Google. The reason was that they didn’t master even the simplest of SEO (search engine optimization) skills and thus wanted to be given a free-ride in pagerank. Nice try, insert coin.
Now the New York Times has gone and demonstrated once more that they lack that basic technical competence. Their goal was to merge the International Herald Tribune website into New York Times. Unfortunately they failed miserably with regards to SEO and reduced 993 000 Google hits on IHT to one.
Not all too brilliant work if you ask me. The reason behind this epic fail was that they redirected all IHT content to the start page of NYT, making the hits collapsed together by Google.
In time Google will index the articles at their new destination, but they will lose their old Google juice.
Note that this is not a bash specifically aimed at New York Times. I simply use their case as one example among many of what the consequences may be. When you create information on the web, there are a lot of things to consider. Since a majority of visitors often come from search engines (Google), it’s suicide to skip the SEO part of the development process.