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Nothing is working - my rankings are terrible - help!

 12:48 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

I've followed much of the advice on these boards to optmize my pages over the last few months TO NO AVAIL. I don't know what to do! My site has been fully crawled by Google a few times and all 43 pages have been indexed, when I add more pages, they too get indexed during the big monthly crawls. I also paid for submission to Inktomi. I have a few links, enough to give me a PR 3, which isn't good at all, but it's a start. The site is in ASP.NET, all pages are .aspx. There is no fancy stuff going on, just lots of text and some images here and there. No frames. Good navigation, etc.

BUT, I don't even show up in the top 1000 search returns on google! Even very detailed searches, where I put in qoutes, "keyword 1 keyword 2" exactly as listed on my homepage title, etc. doesn't land me anywhere in the first 1000 returns.

I need your help please!

Here's a laundry list of my optimizations:

-Homepage Title tag with "Keyword 1 & keyword 2 by Company XYZ" All other title tags highlight the specific search terms for each page

-used H1, H2, and H3 tags with keywords
on every page. I sprinkle them around, at the beginning, in the middle, and at the end.

-put in alt tags for images

-added LOTS of content, I mean pages and pages of real content highly relevant to the search terms

-static IP address

-used Webposition Gold (software) to analyze my site against competitors that are ranking well. Tried to mimic them. Increased wordcount and added keyword density, etc based on the program's averages.

-no broken links. Site is never down.

The weird thing is, other sites that list my site/company's name will often rank higher than my own page for the exact terms I am trying to target. This applies to PR 5 affiliate sites that just grab all the URLs off Overture or Adwords (both of which I use) and post them on a page such that there are 10 or 15 links on that page, with my site being one of them. When I search my company's name, my site always comes up on top, but the keywords I am targeting describe what I sell, not the name of my company, and for those I am nowhere to be found in the search returns.

Suggestions, ideas?



 12:51 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hi wayzel, welcome to WebmasterWorld.

How many incoming links do you have from relevant, quality sites?


 1:03 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Might not be the problem but you might want to stop using WPG for position reports as historically it has been associated with getting sites banned.


- Tony


 10:00 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)


Interesting problem you have there, and one, many of us have been trying to wrangle with the last year or so.

I'm particularly concerned with what should now go in the Title tags.

As like you have pointed out, you have you company name listed after your keywords. I'm sure you might of moved your company name after your keywords to help with the optimization, but also retain the identity of the website and its corporate name.

My feelings now are that having on every page your company name may hinder your position even more if your in an industry which is saturated with optimized pages that just have key phrases identifying the content of each page.

Thatís my feelings so don't take it as the one of the 10 commandments.

One of my sites has remained truth to its core never designed please the search engines and this is going back some 5years, even though the meta tags where optimized that long ago appropiately for each page. The design is simple but effective with navigation a doodle and each page filled with relevant information.

But I see now that other sites that have moved ahead after been at the top for such a long time for so many keywords, who have come up with design model to fit in with what exactly will rank your page high in the SERPs.

So going back to the title, having your corporate identity in the title will lightly hinder your pages search results listening, as I have found for many of my site having the corp. id in the title specially as the 1st item in the title will not be a good idea.

Your thoughts SEO's!>?


 11:41 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

used Webposition Gold (software) to analyze my site against competitors that are ranking well


As Tony says, not a good idea. Could well be the reason you are struggling.

Something you would not have been recommended to here.



 11:55 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Myth...using WPG Reporter will get your site banned from Google.

Fact...using WPG Reporter excessively may get your PC's IP banned from Google (i.e. you will no longer be able to access Google.com from your browser using that IP address).

Google can't relate your use of WPG Reporter to your website. Think about it, if it could you could get any site banned you wanted by manipulating the key phrases used.

Having said that, Google kindly requests you don't perform excessive automatic searches on its site......so be a good net citizen and comply with Google's request. WPG reports are largely a waste of time anyway ;)


 12:00 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

The myth is that no sites have ever been banned from the Google search results for using WPG. They have! They may not do it now, but they have in the past.


 12:09 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

makemetop, that is simply impossible. You are saying that Google would ban Yahoo.com if I set up 20 million searches for the key phrase "Yahoo"....of course it wouldn't and has never done so.

I don't like what WPG Reporter does, neither does Google, but you can't blame WPG Reporter for getting sites banned.

Any sites which may have been banned or penalized weren't banned because of user automated search queries.....they were damaged goods for other reasons.


 12:20 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Ah - a doubter :)

Watch your sticky mail this evening (I need to send you something from another machine). Others have doubted - all have conceded!


 12:34 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

They may not do it now

Barry - are you suggesting that the problems with WPG have now been resolved?



 3:52 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

That is something that only WPG and Google know, I don't. Certainly, it is probably a lot harder for Google to detect automated rank checkers than it was when I had my little "problem" - but I have never taken the risk since with any software.


 3:57 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

This was something I came across Googles guidelines the other day, this was news to me at the time

"Google does not recommend the use of products such as WebPosition Goldô that send automatic or programmatic queries to Google"

Using the programs to check rankings, submit URLS consume computing resources and violate googles terms of service.

So I guess there is no agreement there ;)


 7:34 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Any comment, percentages?


 7:39 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

I tried putting the company name on several sites in the Title tag, all suffered. Cant say that putting the company name in title is what hit me but it certianly didnt help.


 7:39 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Wayzel, try searching keyword1 keword2 +A
If you rank high then welcome to the great Google Florida/Austin update. You may also want to try you search on www.google.it it appears to be using non "filtered" results.


 7:49 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Get inbound links with Keyword 1 and/or Keyword 2 in them. Get lots of them. Get them from sites themed on Keywords 1 & 2. Get a DMOZ listing for the general theme as well - try to get your keywords into the listing. Build lots of textual content using the keywords and words in the general theme. Link to other sites which rank well in those terms - not competitors maybe but others. read this at least once a quarter and try to do something on it at least weekly:



 7:50 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't think WPG is the problem. I am having almost the exact same problem, except my site hsa a PR 5. I don't use WPG. Some of my pages are in the top 10, others are not even in the first 900 results! And my homepage is nowhere to be found as well.

Google is supposed to use a predictable and logic-related algorithim to index pages. But lately, none of google's listings have been predictable or logic based!

I am totally baffled as to why some of my pages are coming up in the top 10 and others I can't find at all. It seems to me with my pages, I either make the top 10 for them, or they're just not there. They've been indexed and they're in the engine - I used allinurl to find out.


 9:15 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Google doesn't want its algo to be predictable. I would not be surprising if they were using a number of slightly different algorithms just to make it unpredictable. If the algo is predictable then seo's can get listed high and non seo'd sites will suffer. Thus the user doesn't get the best result.


 10:26 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the comments everyone. At least others are finding this baffling too!

Regarding questions of 'how many sites link to yours,' I am not exactly sure because Google confuses me on this matter.

When I search for 'www.mysite.com' i get the option of seeing sites which link to mine and sites which contain the term 'www.mysite.com'
SO, I have ONLY ONE site that links to mine according to this, but I have 57 sites which contain the term 'www.mysite.com' (this includes my internal pages too though.)

google.it and google usa do show different results.

For example, on google.it, searching for keyword 1 keyword 2 company name brings up a page within my site that does not have keyword 1, keyword 2, OR company name anywhere except in the title. Pages that I feel are more relevant (and contain keyword 1 keyword 2 in the body content all over the place, and in the alt tags, and in the title,etc) rank lower. On google usa, the homepage ranks above this inside page (as it should.)

Looks like the key to this game is all about links no matter what else you do.


 10:28 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

Oh yeah, one more thing, how the heck do you REALLY get listed on DMOZ?

I've submitted twice over the last 4 months and never heard any replies back. Could a competitor of mine be the editor of the directory, perhaps?

Is it normal to submit and not hear anything back for 10 to 12 weeks?


 10:34 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

> Is it normal to submit and not hear anything back for 10 to 12 weeks?

No, normally you submit and won't hear anything back for 10 or 12 months.

Actually it depends on the category, if it has an editor, etc. I have gotten accepted as rapidly as 24 hours (though you can't see the listing for several days, usually).

FWIW - everytime you resubmit to DMOZ, your URL goes to the bottom of the list.

Submit it and forget about it. Find more directories to submit your site to and other sites to request / exchange links from.


 12:19 am on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

I have been waiting 14 months to get a site listed. Mainly because I resubmitted twice :(

To check the progress of your listings go to the Dmoz forums

<edit>ok, just put 'dmoz' and 'forum' in google and it is the first result</edit>


 12:30 am on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm particularly concerned with what should now go in the Title tags.

I would try the title of the page.

sorry, a little edgy after Austin


 1:35 am on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

try searching keyword1 keword2 +A
If you rank high then welcome to the great Google Florida/Austin update. You may also want to try you search on www.google.it it appears to be using non "filtered" results

why should we use 'k1 k1 +A'?

are 'k1 k2 +B' or 'k1 k2 +C' much worse?


 2:18 am on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

Welcome to webmaster world Saman.

+A means that the word "a" is on a page. "b" and "c" are not words. +a would presume that the extremely common word "a" is on almost all pages. It isn't on some pages though so this is not a perfect tactic to use.


 3:40 pm on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

In the same concern about not putting corparate ID on tiltes, is it a good idea or not to put the <META NAME="identifier-URL" Content="http://www.mydomain.com/"> on all pages?



 5:25 pm on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

This has always worked for me but takes a lot of work.

...and I mean a whole lot of work!

Make a new website/domain that is information only. Do not mention your company or product, just talk about the topic you are targeting with QUALITY sincere information.

Write about 100 pages of text. About 300 words per page. Use the other forum member's advice when building this site.

You will be asking "competitors" to link with you so you might want a friend's/family member's name to be on the whois informaion for the domain name.

To link with non competitors: Ask them to link to your product site and offer to link back from the information site.

This way you won't be directly reciprocating which is better for Google.

To link with competitors: Ask them to link to your infromation site and link back from the information site as well.

You have no choice but to reciprocate with competitors.

Get the 100 pages indexed on every imaginable keyword combination you can think of. Get about 500 unique and RELATED links to your two sites.

This will pretty much guarantee your site will be ranked top 10 on anything but the most competitive SINGLE key phrases. The best part is: These big 'updates' won't even touch your SERPs.

One more note: This took me almost two years, so please be patient. The segment of my company (the newest one) that I used this method on now gets one million unique visitors per month.


 8:12 pm on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

interesting tactic...but how do I then use this great new domain that ranks so highly to sell my product? How do I get prospective search customers to then come to my site while at the same time making it not so blatant that my competitors protest the matter and refuse to link to my informational site?


 8:50 pm on Jan 30, 2004 (gmt 0)

Most of your incoming links will be to the product site. Your PR is only a 3 so it will be easy to improve that.

If you can find 500 incoming links, most of which are not reciprocated directly, your PR should be a 7 or 8. THAT will guarantee excellent listings provided you are doing everything else correctly.

Your competitors will link to your information site. They will most likely have the highest PR (since they are competing for position) and will boost the information sites PR to 6 or 7.

This precious PR won't be wasted and you will have control of the site that is getting it.

All you have to is include one outbound link to your product site from the home page of the information site. You can do this without making it obvious and without hiding or spamming in some way. Do not have any other outbound links from the information site's home page. Link only to inner pages and link out from the inner pages all you want.

This is totally clear, non spamming and good practice. It is not deceptive and works well for SERPs and you are contributing free information to the world to enjoy. Everyone wins.

Please remember that this will take time and hard work. It is akin to a weight loss program. Stay motivated and keep at it.

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