This is the fourth time this has happened (pre and post-Panda) and I would like to know how to make it stop.
My site will reach page 1 or page 2 for a variety of keywords for 20-30 days, and suddenly those pages will no longer rank for those keywords. They are still indexed, but can easily fall from being ranked #3 to #57 overnight. Different pages, tags, or categories might now rank for that given keyword, but the original high ranking URL has essentially disappeared.
For instance, on June 10 (yesterday) the following page ranked #3 for the keyword "sell textbooks for cash"
rentscouter . com / sell-textbooks-for-cash.php
Today, June 11, that URL is now ranked #60 - what happened overnight?
On April 21 that URL ranked #11 for the same keyword, by April 30 it was ranked #85, but on May 21st it jumped to the being ranked #5 and climbed up to #3 until that URL essentially dropped off the map overnight.
Another example, for "buy textbooks online" url: rentscouter dot com
March 26 #6
April 25 #4
April 26 #67
May 20 #109
May 21 #5
June 9 #8
June 10 - not even in the top 200, so essentially gone
What is the point of ranking for 30 days, not ranking for another 30 days, and than suddenly jumping back into the rankings higher than before for 30 days, before being banished again?
In both cases the exact match results value dropped from a #1 or #2 to 24 and 90 respectively for the above example keywords - how does that happen?
What is really silly to me is that whenever my site "comes back" in another 20-30 days it ranks higher and for more keywords than it did before it disappeared.
What is the point of the Google Yo-Yo?
What could they be testing with my site?
When they show it to users, it gets used with a low bounce rate, and an average of over four minutes of time on site. User feedback is they love the site.
When they don't rank it, the site only gets repeat traffic and new traffic from sites linked into us, but organic traffic essentially disappears.
The site actually has unique content that I know has been picked up by other sites; however, some of the sites that Google will rank my site #1 against one day and #67 the next have no original content, pages and pages of static information, or in one case less than 10 total pages:
selltextbooks dot org
That website holds a pretty constant #1 ranking for many similar keywords - is that a website that Google really considers to be a shining example of high quality unique content? Granted this domain was registered in 2004, versus 2010 for my site, but does domain age really make that much difference?
My stats show no change amongst the number of backlinks for my site or my former top 10, page 1, competitors in recent days so why the drop?
I would love to make whatever changes are necessary to stop the Google Yo-Yo as it very frustrating and difficult to try and run a business with such ups and downs.
I know the site could use a visual refresh, but it is pretty simple and straight forward, provides the users with price comparison information quickly in an easy to understand format, and presents them with user reviews and BBB rankings of the associated companies which most of my "competitors" do not. You can see this information in the company review section or when you search for a book to buy, rent, or sell.
In my mind, I think my site provides much more utility than competitor sites that do not experience this yo-yo effect - why is my site singled out while other sites hold steady?
I would really like to know what is the point of the Google Yo Yo, but more importantly I just want to get off the Google Yo Yo train and remain on the first page.