Jump to content

  • Log in with Facebook Log in with Twitter Log In with Google      Sign In   
  • Create Account

Subscribe to HRA Now!

 



Are you a Google Analytics enthusiast?

Share and download Custom Google Analytics Reports, dashboards and advanced segments--for FREE! 

 



 

 www.CustomReportSharing.com 

From the folks who brought you High Rankings!



Photo
- - - - -

Need Help With De-indexing Problem


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 gmr324

gmr324

    HR 2

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 11:18 AM

I've been hoping to get an expert opinion on a site I have on whether
its experiencing a Google sandbox/filter/de-index/penalty.

site age: 18+ months
site PR: PR4
Site has ZERO errors in Markup Validator Service /

--- Site Rankings History

o site:domainname.com search shows site
o site ranks nowhere for a search on its own domain name without .com added
o Google daily UV volume is about 25 and is half of Yahoos
o this problem started and has persisted since Jan 09
o My daily UVs peaked in Dec 08 / now sitting at one third of those peak figures

--- Post Content

o Unique content product reviews generally 200-275 in word count
o All product images are stored on my site
o The affiliate links are set to Nofollow
o Roughly 400 reviews posted
o Privacy Policy page exists

--- Site Backlinks

o 12,000+ niche related backlinks to my site
o Over 600 unique domains backlink to my site
o My site has one-way site-wide blogroll backlinks from 22 established niche related sites
o Many of my backlinks were generated from link bait articles
o Never paid for or sold a backlink and don't even have a blogroll
o No reciprocal or three-way linking ever used
o Have submitted many blog comment backlinks on niche and non-niche sitesI submit frequent
unique content and try to add value by outlinking to related authority sites

--- On-Page SEO

o Noticed my header tags hierarchy was missing h2 tags on posts / only had h1 and h3 tags
I've been working through the posts correcting this
o Site is optimized for title and meta tags
o No hidden text issues / checked with Lynx viewer

--- Google Webmaster Tools

o Sitemap is verified
o 7 404 Not Found Errors
o 0 Timed Out
o 0 Unreachable

--- Advice Received Thus Far

I've been told to get another domain and do a 301 redirect
Also been advised to move all my content and backlinks to another domain
I've also been told to avoid filing a re-inclusion request since it's unlikely
to remove problem
Also advised to get dedicated IP for my site

Would appreciate any expert opinions and prefer not to have my site mentioned on the forum
Please PM me for domain name

Many Thanks

George

#2 Jill

Jill

    Recovering SEO

  • Admin
  • 33,244 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 11:27 AM

That's a lot of info, but I'm not sure if you said whether the pages of your site are indexed in Google or not.

I would also suggest that you get some professional help in reviewing your site since the forum is to be used for general questions, not those specific to any given website. (Unless you're a regular poster and community member.)

#3 gmr324

gmr324

    HR 2

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 11:31 AM

QUOTE(Jill @ Oct 8 2009, 12:27 PM) View Post
That's a lot of info, but I'm not sure if you said whether the pages of your site are indexed in Google or not.

I would also suggest that you get some professional help in reviewing your site since the forum is to be used for general questions, not those specific to any given website. (Unless you're a regular poster and community member.)



Hi Jill,

Thanks for the response. Yes, over 400 pages show up when I do the site:domainname.com search.

George

#4 Randy

Randy

    Convert Me!

  • Moderator
  • 17,540 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 11:36 AM

Just to make sure I'm clear on this point...

Is the 400 page total roughly the number of pages in the site?

If so, it's technically not an Indexing situation, but a ranking one. It's a fine line distinction, but if all/most of the pages are getting indexed it does remove one fairly large potential issue.

Which then leads us down some other roads. Like if there is another site out there duplicating your content or if something has been done to attract a penalty or if competition has simply become more fierce in the last couple of years.

#5 gmr324

gmr324

    HR 2

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 11:45 AM

Hi Randy,

Yes, there's roughly over 370 reviews posted, so those numbers would match up. Now interestingly
enough, when I do an exact match search on any given review sentence, two results show up
being the main domain first and then the post url second. In some cases, like last night, the
whois url showed up first. Not sure if this implies a supplemental index issue or not.

Many Thanks

George

#6 adibranch

adibranch

    HR 5

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 332 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 12:00 PM

definitely dont change your domain.. fix the problem. And yes this sounds like sandboxing. If your pages are indexed but not showing in results, then its a sandbox issue. You have to work out why, but normally its down to pages being too similar.

Are you being found for ANY terms via google? what do your stats say about the keyword referrals from G? Are you listed in the first 500 results for anything at all?

#7 gmr324

gmr324

    HR 2

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 12:14 PM

I'd very much prefer NOT to change or redirect my domain and risk losing a big majority of the
backlinks. In the Google Analytics panel, there's only about 25 keywords showing results that
vary in position from 50 to 200. The total number of daily UVs from Google ranges from merely
25-30 for over 350 review posts. That's extremely low.

Thanks

George

I was told by a Google Penalty expert that this is a trademark suppression penalty since my site doesn't show up for a search of its
own domain name (minus the .com). The baffling part is that I have never sold or purchased a link nor do I even have a blogroll.
So, to incur such a severe penalty has me very confused.

Edited by Jill, 09 October 2009 - 08:41 AM.


#8 Randy

Randy

    Convert Me!

  • Moderator
  • 17,540 posts

Posted 08 October 2009 - 06:35 PM

The expert is wrong. wink1.gif

And sadly there's not going to be much you can do without instituting a complete change in your business model.

I took a quick look at both of the sites you mentioned via PM and basically both are what are commonly referred to as thin affiliate blogs. Meaning you're doing reviews of products, then linking over to someone selling those with an affiliate link.

There is a good bit of duplication in some of your reviews, usually meaning you're using some text that's provided by a manufacturer or retailer and one or several other people are doing the same thing. This duplication isn't necessarily a no-no, but when it's in conjunction with an affiliate thing it basically leads Google to the conclusion that the reviews are not really adding any value for users. Hence the use of "thin" affiliate sites as a description.

Google has historically over the last few years been coming down harder and harder on such review/affiliate type sites. They started out in the Adwords segment, with what came to be known as a Google Slap. Where they took ads that might have a very high quality score and dropped them to a 1 quality score overnight, simply because the ad was from an affiliate site. This may be were your expert is getting the notion of it being a brand type of thing, but technically it's not.

Since then Google has become more and more vigilant in dropping the rankings of these types of affiliate review sites into obscurity in the organic SERPs.

So the bad news is the affiliate thing has basically painted you into a corner. Google just doesn't like affiliates when they can list the manufacturer and authorized retailers. Some are still slipping through, usually those that offer only a few things as affiliates, but when you start talking about hundreds of affiliate offers via reviews you end up painting a big, red bullseye on your chest.

The worse news is that now that your site has been discovered and categorized this way you probably shouldn't expect it to make a comeback in the Google SERPs. Because they're not going to lift the penalty. And if you simply get a new domain and move all of the content to it they're likely to find it pretty quickly and make the connection. They'll make it even faster if you attempt to redirect from the old domain to the new one.

This is one of the main reasons I counsel people to not build their business solely on affiliate sales. So much is out of your control with those (on both ends, not just with Google) that it's just not a wise business decision to make.

Sorry, but I don't see any way out of it. You could start all over again and do so from absolute scratch with all new content. But a year or two down the road you're probably going to find yourself in the same place.

#9 adibranch

adibranch

    HR 5

  • Active Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 332 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 04:32 AM

QUOTE(gmr324 @ Oct 8 2009, 12:25 PM) View Post
I was told by a Google Penalty expert


I'm sorry, a what?

#10 Jill

Jill

    Recovering SEO

  • Admin
  • 33,244 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 08:41 AM

Is this the same site you had problems with back in Jan. I think it was when you posted here with something similar?

#11 gmr324

gmr324

    HR 2

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 09:33 AM


QUOTE
I'm sorry, a what?


Yes, I simply Googled "Google Penalty" and found a person who claims to have a very
high success rate at unwinding Google penalties. He has, in fact, cause self-imposed
penalties on experimental sites just to prove out his work and suppossedly has good references.
Problem is he charges $200 per hour.


QUOTE
you're using some text that's provided by a manufacturer or retailer


Randy, I'm very grateful for your in-depth analysis. I went out of my way to avoid using any
text or images from the retail sites I am an affiliate for. I wrote 300-word reviews which added
information above and beyond what the manufacturer provided. There are other sites using
this model in other niches which are very successful and thriving. With that said, I believe
my reviews could have provided a more balanced review in pointing out negative aspects of the
products.

QUOTE
basically both are what are commonly referred to as thin affiliate blogs


In the Google Quality Standards document, they specifically describe thin affiliates as not
adding any value - "there is no value added (e.g. reviews, price comparison)." (Regarding the
first domain I sent you) I would hope that providing 300-word unique reviews whose content
cannot be found on the retail site, that this provides that extra value and insight. Furthermore,
are we headed down a path where Google would prefer to present the "even more thin" parroting
price comparison (bizrate, nexttag) sites in favor of ones like mine?

It may be that there needs to be a higher ratio of informational/news postings relative to product
reviews. Or do you think that product review links now need to be in-content links versus
stand-alone or banners?

Look forward to your feedback

George


Edited by gmr324, 09 October 2009 - 10:05 AM.


#12 Randy

Randy

    Convert Me!

  • Moderator
  • 17,540 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 09:57 AM

Well, you have another issue besides what Google does or doesn't decide to do with Affiliate sites. And I highly suspect they'll start using this as a new hammer in their toolbox when removing affiliate sites from their index.

The new thing is the recently released FTC Guidelines regarding this type of paid endorsement. We're discussing it here and there's a link there to the FTC document.

I for one will not be surprised if Google, and maybe the others too, don't start becoming very, very aggressive with affiliate and/or affiliate review sites that don't expressly state quite prominently that there is compensation involved. It'll make their decision a lot more black and white since basically no affiliate sites at this point make this clear to the average surfer.

Let's just say going the affiliate route is not a way I would attempt to build a business anymore. And not something I would recommend going forward with all of the potential legal implications. I'm even having my attorney look at implications for my own sites that already have an affiliate network, and if I have any duty to make sure they're abiding by the new guidelines or if I incur in any exposure if someone doesn't. Don't have an answer on that one yet.

#13 n3o

n3o

    HR 1

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 11:03 AM

i think even the famous money making mogul johnchow was sandbox

#14 gmr324

gmr324

    HR 2

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 01:18 PM

Update & Question:

Randy, your points about thin affiliates and the new FTC development are well taken and I am going to
look into adapting my site content accordingly. However, I have one more question which may be pertinent here.

In scanning the Google Webmaster forum for the subject "trademark suppression penalty" (not ranking for your own domain name), I
discovered a thread that discussed this penalty in the context of multiple domains under the same DNS.

I setup my main primary domain site 2 years ago using a Hostgator shared server account with unlimited domains. The second
site was setup 18 months ago as an add-on domain. I went through and did all the typical site development and
content creation. This second site ranked well for about 2-3 months and died in the rankings. As I stated above, this rankings
issue has persisted for the past 9 months.

Well, I then setup a third unrelated site as a second add-on domain to the main one three months ago. I went through and
did all of the same development and content creation for that niche. Low and behold, three months into the mission, this
site had experienced the same "trademark suppression" severe penalty.

Obviously, all three sites share the same IP and C-class. The coincidence of the two add-on domains having their rankings
tank three months into the process made me question what I was doing wrong. The Google webmaster thread suggested
that Google will view all 3 sites in this scenario as redundant even though the content and backlinks are totally unique.
The three domains do not link to each other in any way. The primary domain has always had great rankings which have been
very stable.

Question 1: Does Google view all three sites as redundant since they share the same public_html folder of the primary which means they can still be accessed as subdomains of the primary?

Question 2: Did I create my own problem here by the way I structured the setup of these 3 sites?

Question 3: Would transferring all these 3 sites onto their own dedicated IP and C-Class remedy this common rankings problem?

Question 4: How could the secondary add-on domains ever have ranked well for the first 2-3 months as they did?


Please excuse the naive questions here, but I'm hoping this points to the root of my problem?


Many Thanks

George

Edited by gmr324, 09 October 2009 - 01:31 PM.


#15 Randy

Randy

    Convert Me!

  • Moderator
  • 17,540 posts

Posted 09 October 2009 - 10:36 PM

If the sites are all targeting the same general keywords (even if to different markets) something similar can happen. But then it's simply a case where the most powerful domain will filter out the other two. And assumes a lot of things not mentioned, like similarities in WhoIs, etc.

But no they don't as a general rule just blast every site on an IP number or class C. In these days of shared hosting they'd scoop up too many innocent victims. Most servers in fact have anywhere from several dozen to several hundred domains on them. All of which could be under the control of completely different people.

You have to try really hard to burn an IP number or range. Seriously hard. I didn't see any evidence of anything like that.

Would moving the domains to separate IP classes "fix" things? No, I highly doubt it. If a connection has already been made between the sites it's already been made. And if it's not already been made then having them on the same server/IP isn't going to make any difference.

Soooo...

Q1: No. Though it would be wise to set up 301 redirects on the subdomain addresses for other reasons.

Q2: I doubt it. There are probably all kinds of clues floating around, with your hosting structure being just part of the equation.

Q3: Nope.

Q4: Because 1) New domains get a grace period; and 2) These sorts of things rarely get noticed and/or dealt with immediately on their end. They try to give new sites a break for a few months to see what they're actually going to become before they put it through the full analysis process.

Lots of sites start out making affiliate offers. I do it myself when I'm conducting my market research. The difference being that when I decide a market is worth being in I then devote the time, money and effort to make the offer my own instead of referring to someone else's product or service. I can get away with that because there's a new site grace period. I just need to factor in the upward rankings bounce new sites tend to get and plan for it to stop.




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

We are now a read-only forum.
 
No new posts or registrations allowed.