My traffic collapsed (server issues, sandbox, something else?). Please read!

by dunker 9 replies
Dear Warriors,

I have a big problem. I have started a guitar-related website at the end of June. I did a really good on-site SEO, added my website to a lot of various directories and then did some link building with iSnare (I published and distributed 8 articles).

The traffic growth was quite impressive.

I guess you can see what my problem is. On Sep 22nd my traffic collapsed from 6'500 daily visitors to 800 ... The problem is that the daily traffic from Google went from 6'200 to 500, so Google is definitely the only actor here.

I think there might be three reasons for this:

1. The GoogleBot punished me for my server issues. I was having some really serious server issues that started on Sep 18th - my server was unavailable 30 times for 5 minutes that day. In the next two days my server went offline 20 times. On Sep 21st it went down 40 times for 5 minutes. It was quite catastrophic. The next day, on Sep 22nd my traffic collapsed.

I think this is the most reasonable explanation - the GoogleBot punished me. Do you think this is the reason? Today I have moved the website to a powerful ServInt VPS and I need to know how to tell Google everything is great again.

2. Google might have put me in the sandbox, because the website is quite new (3 months). How can I check that - and how can I fix that?

3. I have sold 3 do-follow text-links from the home page on Sep 10th. Do you think this could be the reason? Do outgoing do-follow links LOWER your PageRank?

So, dear Warriors, I really need your help - you can see from the screenshot that the situation is really bad.

What do YOU think went wrong? And how can I fix that?

Please, help.
Thank you so much!

#main internet marketing discussion forum #collapsed #issues #read #sandbox #server #traffic
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  • Profile picture of the author Eric Lorence
    Yes, server downtime will be a factor, are you on shared hosting?

    That sort of traffic will tax a shared server and may get your site shut down.

    Consider upgrading your hosting, the traffic will return.

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    • Profile picture of the author dunker
      @eslorence: As I have said above: "Today I have moved the website to a powerful ServInt VPS and I need to know how to tell Google everything is great again."

      Do you think that was the sole reason? What about the other two options? I really want to know your opinions, dear Warriors.
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      • Profile picture of the author Eric Lorence
        Moving to it does not necessarily mean it's all yours, as many confuse a server rating with how much they're able to use.

        But if it is you personal server...

        Powerful maybe, but dependability is the key.

        And again, server down time is what is hurting you.

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        • Profile picture of the author derekwong28
          What you have described is normal for sites using lots of duplicate content, especially those with thousands of pages built from a database e.g. lyrics, recipes, and guitar scores etc. Typically traffic would be in the thousands for the first 3-6 months and then suddenly collapses. I wonder if your site use a lot of duplicate content?

          You should also check whether there has been a marked reduction in the no. of pages indexed using the site: command.

          Outbound links may affect traffic but I don't think 3 links alone will lead to the effect you described.


          Do not get between a wombat and a chocolate biscuit; you will regret it dearly!

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  • Profile picture of the author dunker
    Thank you, dear Warriors!

    If the problems were in fact caused by my server problems, when can I expect my traffic to go back to normal? My website has been on the new server for 5 days now and the traffic is still exactly the same as it was (ca. 900 daily visitors instead of 6'500).

    Yes, I do have some indexed content from other guitar websites, but for instance seems to be doing great (I am guessing approx. 70'000 daily visitors) ONLY with content from other websites. My website is different, I just add some value with chords/tabs, but am focused on something else.

    However, the number of indexed pages ( Search with Many) has stayed pretty much the same, it has dropped for 5% maybe.
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  • Profile picture of the author macchiavelli
    Contact google ASAP, this can be resolved easily if you just contact the main source.
    We can guess all we want but only big G knows why they cut your traffic.
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    • Profile picture of the author dunker
      Contact Google? Are there any recommended ways of doing that? I didn't even know there was a way of contacting Google ...
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      • Profile picture of the author dunker
        OK, the things have changed a bit ... On Monday, Sep 22, the traffic has collapsed from 6'000+ to less than 1'000 daily visitors. On Monday, Sep 29, I have moved my website to a new powerful ServInt VPS, but the daily traffic numbers were around 1'000 all the time.

        Well, I imagine that after some time GoogleBot found out that my new server is OK and on Saturday, Oct 11, my traffic increased to 4'500 daily visitors again.

        I hope that my server issues were the only problem and that everything will be fine now. Thank you for your support!
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