Sudden drop in rankings, don't undertstand why

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Hi
I have come back to my site for which I did not do any SEO since a few years. First thing I noticed was that Google did not consider it mobile friendly anymore. So I updated the mobile template and now Google seems to like it. But right after I did that there happened a significant drop in the site's rankings for all important keywords and for all platforms (desktop, mobile, tablet). Accordingly the visitor numbers have dropped significantly as seen in the graph below.
The only thing I did apart from the mobile friendly template was to register a free account with a Google rankings checking service. I have no idea why my rankings have dropped. This can't be a coincidence, the date coincides exactly - around 20 October. I've even got a weird idea that the ranking service I subscribed to might have done something to force me buy their paid plan. This sounds really weird by I don't see any explanation more logical than that.
Does anybody have a better idea?
#drop #rankings #sudden #undertstand
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  • Profile picture of the author fastreplies
    Originally Posted by Lev Dorosinskii View Post

    The only thing I did apart from the mobile friendly template was to register a free account with a Google rankings checking service. I have no idea why my rankings have dropped. This can't be a coincidence, the date coincides exactly - around 20 October.
    Yep, this is what happened.
    They have wake up Google and triggered it to go to your data, which
    looks like G. never bother to update after initial honeymoon years ago.



    fastreplies
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    • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
      Originally Posted by fastreplies View Post

      Yep, this is what happened.
      They have wake up Google and triggered it to go to your data, which
      looks like G. never bother to update after initial honeymoon years ago.



      fastreplies
      There have been so many algorithm updates in the past couple of years, any one of them could have dropped your rankings. I'm not sure how often Google crawled your site but I suppose it is conceivable that they gave up on it after years of no changes and stopped crawling it altogether until your ranking tracker tool forced them to (I highly doubt it, though).

      If that hypothesis is correct, Good luck figuring it out. It could be anything from content, to backlinks to page speed to ad locations, etc. Like I said, they had hundreds of algo changes over the past couple of years.

      Of course, there were many algorithm changes done just in the month of October and any one of them could have affected your rankings. I seriously doubt that a tool that does nothing but check your rankings for keywords would cause a drop, though.
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      • Profile picture of the author fastreplies
        Originally Posted by dave_hermansen View Post

        I seriously doubt that a tool that does nothing but check your rankings for keywords would cause a drop, though.
        That's where you're wrong.
        We had site for 5 years that would have the same ranking for the same KW but
        as soon as new owner decided to use G's WMT and the rest of garbage metrics,
        site dropped from the top like a rock to obliviousness.

        Better yet, after removing out directory from WMT, Analytics etc. it went up in SERP.
        Do me a favor, spread your wizzzdom for somebody else, whoever was born yesterday.



        fastreplies
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        • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
          Originally Posted by fastreplies View Post

          That's where you're wrong.
          We had site for 5 years that would have the same ranking for the same KW but
          as soon as new owner decided to use G's WMT and the rest of garbage metrics,
          site dropped from the top like a rock to obliviousness.

          Better yet, after removing out directory from WMT, Analytics etc. it went up in SERP.
          Do me a favor, spread your wizzzdom for somebody else, whoever was born yesterday.



          fastreplies
          Totally different scenario! Google Webmaster Tools (re-named Search Console 3 1/2 years ago, incidentally) is a Google tool that you set up for Google to check your website.

          How in the world is that the same thing as a third party tool that scrapes webs results and tells you what position your site is in?

          Your contention seems to be that somebody just searching for a phrase (whether it is a human or a tool) causes Google to crawl all of the websites for that searched-for phrase.

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  • Profile picture of the author Lev Dorosinskii
    Thank you guys. Now I see what happened. So the only solution is to spend again a good effort on SEO as I used to do years ago
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  • Profile picture of the author Lev Dorosinskii
    Some additional information. I've checked some pages - those that have dropped in the rankings - on WMT and I see there that Google did not give up on my site at all. The last crawl dates are quite recent, like 22.09, 10.10, 12.10 (and I started working on the new mobile template on 12.10). All other pages too were crawled quite recently. So Google does crawl my site regularly. But most of the pages that have dropped were crawled shortly before I started again working on the site, not after. So it looks like there must be some other reason but I can't imagine what it could be
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    • Profile picture of the author lambertson
      The only solution I see is to start updating your content and to check your on-page parameters. Lot's of websites have been affected recently just because they had outdated info, not enough content, or some minor on-page issues that are actually major.
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  • Profile picture of the author M Arslan
    Banned
    If your traffic dropped suddenly first thing is to check your google search console account to see if you received any warning from Google. Check your websites is mobile friendly. How is your user experience? If all things are right then move to your link profile. Check if there is a bad link pointing to your site. If yes disavow those backlinks and wait for the results.
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  • Profile picture of the author sandhya siri
    exactly, it has happened. whenever your site was outdated automatically rankings are getting down it was just for the time gap. continuously updating your website is the only solution to getting back your rankings. Because by the updation only Google crawls and provides best rankings.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lev Dorosinskii
    Thank you guys for your suggestions. Just to clarify, it's not that the site was not updated at all. It was, although no as regularly as would be good. But I did not do any other SEO activities for some time. That's what I mean when I wrote that I didn't do any SEO. And, M Arslan, the site is mobile friendly now. In fact, the rantings have dropped right after I fixed some mobile friendly issues. And I don't see any recent warnings from Google. I did find and disavowed some bad backlinks. But still it baffles me how could the ratings drop so much in just a couple of days and right after having fixed the mobile friendliness issues.
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