Site no longer ranking, "not founds" the problem?

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  • SEO
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I have a site of about 25 pages with all original text that used to rank quite well on Google. Several pages would be on page 1. But for the past 3-4 months, the whole site has been way back on distant pages...10th and beyond. I don't really know if it's because of panda/penquin or my own mistakes when I changed the site structure about six months before panda.

Webmaster tools shows that I have about 125 "urls not found" and that the detection of these has been slowly, buy steadily, increasing. A lot of this is old urls that existed before I foolishly changed the site structure without knowing what I was doing. In fact, I'm pretty sure I've done that twice since I first created the site two years ago. I simply deleted pages without redirecting to new urls. Other "not founds" are external links that I can maybe can get deleted.

As there's no other indication in webmaster tools that there's a problem with my site, I'm assuming that the accumulating "not founds" are the problem. I never did any serious backlinking (only used BMR for a couple of months) and have reduced some of the internal linking within the site, keywords, and changed some of the anchor text. I never engaged in any kind of link buying except for the brief time I tried BRM, and even then I didn't do very much.

I've added a few new (and good) pages of content, and have been waiting to see if anything would change in my rankings, but no, nothing.

I've thought of simply creating a new site with a similar domain and use the same content but don't want to redirect all the problems with old site to a new one.

However, I would really like to put the content to good use. Is there any way I can just take the old content and use it on a new domain without it looking like copied material?

If I added a lot more new pages so that I have as many new pages as old ones, would that help?

If anyone has any advice I would love hearing it.

Catherine
#longer #not founds #problem #ranking #site
  • Profile picture of the author yukon
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    You need to fix the 404 problem ASAP. Go through each 404 on WMT & do a 301 redirect to the correct URL.

    If you've built backlinks to the old URLs then Google can't find the page the old backlinks are pointing at, so they figure the page doesn't exist (can't be found, must not exist).

    Sounds like all your backlinks are pointing to 404 URLs/pages.

    Fix the 404's ASAP & keep an eye on WMT's for new 404's, then fix those ASAP.

    You could also do a site-wide redirect on all 404's sending them back to the INDEX page as a short term temporary fix, still need to manually fix the 404's in WMT, then remove the site-wide 404 If you go that route.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
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    You could also try running Link Sleuth to find all your sites 404 pages.

    It's better If you find all your 404 pages before Google does.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
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    Also, the BMR links are most likely being discounted by Google.
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  • Profile picture of the author CatherineMay
    Thanks so much, Yukon, for your invaluable advice. I suspected that doing something about these "not founds" was what I needed to do, but I needed to "hear" it from someone more knowledgeable than me.

    I've already started the process of creating 301s. After I get all of these corrected, do you have any idea how long it will take for my rankings to improve?

    Catherine
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    • Profile picture of the author yukon
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      Originally Posted by CatherineMay View Post

      Thanks so much, Yukon, for your invaluable advice. I suspected that doing something about these "not founds" was what I needed to do, but I needed to "hear" it from someone more knowledgeable than me.

      I've already started the process of creating 301s. After I get all of these corrected, do you have any idea how long it will take for my rankings to improve?

      Catherine
      After you fix all the 404s you still have the issue of the BMR links possibly being ignored by Google.

      When was the last estimated date you created BMR links?

      Also, If you have the URLs from the BMR backlinks, check & see If the backlink pages are still indexed in Google SERPs:

      Example backlink URL search:
      site:domain.com/some-backlink-internal-page-here/
      I could be wrong, but I have a feeling Google might be ignoring those BMR backlink URLs. If the BMR backlink pages are still indexed I suppose Google is still allowing the backlinks to help your own pages. The 404 fix should help fix the SERP rank problem (assumes BMR links are still good).

      If the BMR links are dead you'll have to build new links to replace those backlinks. First check & see If the BMR links are still indexed in the SERPs (backlink page showing in the SERPs).

      The amount of time depends on how soon Google visits your pages again, assumes the only issue is 404 pages. Keep an eye on WMT & the Google Cache dates for your own pages, that will give you some idea when Google last visited the pages.

      You could also make a very small edit to the page titles, so you have proof in the SERPs when Google last looked at your page (even If they don't update the Cache date):

      Example page title edit:
      <title>My existing page title here 1</title>
      The number 1 at the end of the existing page title is your proof that Google has seen your page recently. Make sure to fix 100% of the 404's before you do any page title edits, that way there's no confusion when Google last looked at your page.

      When searching for your own URL with the page title edit, search like this (exact internal page URL):
      site:mydomain.com/my-page-with-the-number-1-edit/
      Once everything is back to normal in the SERPs, remove the number 1 from the existing page titles.
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  • Profile picture of the author fmnely1
    DIRECT ALL THE 404 ERROR BY USING 301 REDIRECT ...REDIRECTING TO YOU MAJOR URL ...IF YOU USE WORDPRESS YOU CAN GET THE REDIRECT 301 BY DOWNLOADING A PLUGIN THAT SOLVE ALL THIS PROBLEM....THERE IS NO NEED OF CHANGING THE DOMAIN IN AS MUCH ITS NOT BLACKLIST YOU JUST NEEDED TO DO THINGS RIGHT ACCORDINGLY
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    Long Kept Guru Secret Traffic Heaven Download :Now http://www.filedropper.com/trafficheaven
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