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This 31 message thread spans 2 pages: 31 ( [1] 2 > >     
Is This Proof Of A Overoptimization Filter?

 9:12 pm on Aug 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

Okay, a little data first.

The site is about 6 months old. I have added relative backlinks, about 5 a week since the site started up. Total of about 40 backlinks with PR of 2 to 5. I purposely added the backlinks slowly to avoid the so called sand box stuff.

I optimized the site (not overly so I thought) for a 2 and 3 word phrase using the state that the site services. In other words...

2 word ---> state widget
3 word ---- state widget whatever

As of last week the site was slowly creeping up the ranks. Started in the 700s about 5 months ago, was at 158 as of Friday for the 2 word phrase. Number 78 for the 3 word phrase.

Last week I decided to change the home page file name to state-widget.html. Also another 3 backlinks were added with a PR of 3,4, and 5.

Today for the 2 word phrase, gone. Nothing in the serps. for the 3 word phrase, I actually gained a couple of positions.

I don't think this can be the sand box thing, the site is still indexed. It just totally dropped for the 2 word phrase. So you think I hit that edge that we are not supposed to go over with optimization?

I noticed that googlebot started a deep crawl, got about halfway through the site then stopped and it hasn't been back since.

I also deleted all the 301 redirects on the site except for a redirect from www.mysite.com to mysite.com. The reason I did this was because for some odd reason, googlebot was starting deep crawls and then just stopping at these redirects and not going forward anymore. I thought there might be a problem with that. I had about 6 301's added to pages that no longer existed. The site gets fresh info on it almost daily exept for the home page.

Is this proof of the so called and very contreversial overoptimization filter?

Just wondering.

Do you think I should wait and see if it returns? It just freaks me out that it's gone for the 2 word phrase.




 8:02 am on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

What page were you focusing (homepage I presume)on the most?

Maybe I'm missing something but why would you change the file name?


 8:24 am on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I could be wrong but if you have changed the file name of the page.............that makes it a completly new page and will be ranked from scratch!


 10:20 am on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

The same thing happened to me all my ranking have been pushed back, since early today. I dont know what can be wrong...i did not do any new optimization to my site ...all the optmization was done 6 months back. I just kept addind new content..and some new links exchnages thats all.

What could this be?

[edited by: eelixduppy at 7:55 pm (utc) on Feb. 18, 2009]


 10:23 am on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Sry i forgot to mention google was also doing a major crawl through my site...infact its still crwaling though mine.


 10:34 am on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Is this proof of the so called and very contreversial overoptimization filter?


"Proof" is a repeatable experiment that has been repeated "x" times where "x" is a number proportional to the size of the index, the complexity of the algorithm being tested and taking into account factors which could achieve the same effect.

Or, in old English "one Swallow does not a Summer make".

Do you think I should wait and see if it returns?

I think you should wait, generally, longer than you have been doing.

As of last week the site was slowly creeping up the ranks.

It takes longer than a week for these effects to make a difference and then stabilise.

You really need to wait until all the dust has settled until you start tweaking.

I would now probably leave it alone and wait and see what happens over the next 4-6 weeks.



 1:18 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I would suggest you roll back your pages/links to whatever they were before the drop in rankings, to see if you move back up.


 1:27 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

My site ranked on top for 2 probably best 3 keyword combos in web development. Today my index page had been removed (now not in top 1000 even!) and this happened for the second time already! The first disappearance happened I believe due to the sloppiness in the internal linkage where links to home where different sitewide (some to company_info.php, some to company_info.html, some absolute ones with http:// some without) After correcting this the home page reappeared only to disappear again in 3 days (after next fresh crawl)!

Can my non-standard filename for index page(not default, index or home) trigger duplicate content penalty of any sort?

I am at my wits' end...


 1:28 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

i think there is an update happening...im pretty sure im not gonna rank good in the new update. All the 3 google servers show me different results.


 1:56 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Illusionist which ones are you checking?


 2:06 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

www www2 & ww3


 2:14 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

You changed the name of your page. What did you think was going to happen?
Check to see if it is even indexed yet? Check your error logs to see if anyone has come in to the old page via Google.

added- Do you still have an index.html?


 2:21 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm seeing a bounce-back to serps from a few weeks ago. The cache has been updated, but the rankings look like they did in July when everything went a little goofy. Best advice is to not chase your tail.


 2:29 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I hope this gets corrected i lost 90% of my traffic today!


 2:35 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

same here illusionist, not a nice feeling is it


 2:36 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

About 50% traffic lost without having done anything to the site lately...


 2:48 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I feel like crying! Can anyone tell me what just happened to our ranking?


 2:59 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

about a 50% drop in traffic today here too


 2:59 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

results are going up and down like a yoyo illusionist, wish i had an answer.

but I doubt taking off all your optimization will do much good short-term. I've done it before with little good effect.


 3:06 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I just wish somone would have the answer to this google drama! I taking beating in google like never before...:(


 3:15 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I feel like crying!

Welcome to the wonderful world of search-engine-awareness. This same thing happened to me over a year ago, simply disappeared from the index. Slowly crept back and now have PR6 on homepage and several internal pages, with rankings gradually getting better for some good phrases.

Were you around here for the Florida update? I didn't pay much attention to it as my site wasn't affected one way or the other, but I read enough here to know that there were thousands of upset, angry and financially-ruined webmasters after that one. It happens . . . it's a tough world.

Can anyone tell me what just happened to our ranking?

I'd say renaming your homepage was a major contributing factor. I used to rename pages and they got dumped every time; I don't rename them anymore. The first thing I'd do in your place is rename it back to whatever it was before just as quick as possible, unless it's been awhile since you made the change. In that case, leave it and wait for things to adjust before changing anything else.


 3:20 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

There's definately something going on....i've dropped for a couple of keywords and dropped fifteen spaces or so for keywords i've dominated for a long time now...a year or better...one went from 6 to 21 and i haven't touched the site.


 3:22 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Yes it was around but it had been totally just after the update, so it didnt get affected.

I figure this out i did nothing to upset google, how did this happen to me. Man, i really hope someone figures out what happened so that we make the chnages required.


 4:19 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)


With sympathy for your position, allow me to suggest relaxation. When major changes occur, it takes days or even weeks for them to stabilize. If you're still having the same problem a month from now, I'd start to worry, otherwise just ride it out. People are saying they dropped out weeks ago, and are getting back in now, and others are saying they've dropped out now. Sounds like Google is tweaking its filters around or something. Who knows, you could be out for good, or you could be back in tomorrow. There is nothing you can do about it, it's way too soon to start looking for causes or making changes, so all you can do is watch and hope.


 9:58 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Sorry it took so long to get back to this post. I waited several hours last night and it was still on hold. Obviously it is up now.

Anyway, to answer a few questions...

Maybe I didn't make myself clear.

I changed the file name to incorporate keywords as in state-keyword.html. The bot crawled the new page almost immediately. I did this with the hopes of bumping the site up a bit.

The new page (new home page file name) was returning at about 158 in the SERPS BEFORE it was dropped for the phrase. The new file name retained its same PR as the old file name.

All incoming links point to just mydomain.com. No referrals directly to the file name.

This seemed to work for a few days. I even got a bump in the SERPs. But as of yesterday, nothing for the 2 word phrase. As I stated, the 3 word phrase and a couple of other 2 word phrases actually went up in the SERPs. In fact, one of the 2 word phrases currently ranks the site at #1 :-) Of course, I am happy about that, but the money 2 word phrase for some reason was dropped like a lead balloon.

Anyway, comments are welcome. I suppose I could go back to the original filename, however, maybe I should wait a month and see what develops. Since yesterday, googlebot seems to be crawling the whole site, albeit very slowly. New page picked up about every half hour or so. I also am reading other posts that seem to indicate a lot of movement as of late. I might just stick this out and see where I land.


 10:35 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

You know, this is getting really bizarre. I actually find most of the sites listing my site are popping up on the 2 word phrase, some of them quite well (#4, #8, #21, #28, #59). All these have the text in my title for the home page, but all are links on other sites to my pages. All have ONLY my 2 word phrase in the anchor on their page, nothing else.

What's up with that?


 11:33 pm on Aug 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

At around Aug 3-4, I've lost 50% of trafffic and then yesterday another 20%! This is the heaviest beating I ever got from G.

At first I thought I was the Olympics but when I checked my rankings, tears began to flow...

But like Muhamed Ali said "A champion has to be able to take a good punch", so I just have to take this punch, get up and go into the next round of the fight.

And the next round for me is to go deeper into PPC and viral marketing :)

I think a change in mindset away from free traffic, especially from G, will do a lot of good for my sanity. How about you?


 1:40 am on Aug 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm the same with an 8 year old site. Lost 70% of traffic around the 3rd and then another 60% of what was remaining within the last 24 hours. The sites that are appearing in top spots now make Google look like an absolute Junkit. Did a localised search in Google UK today using a 3 word phrase and on the first page for a particular brand of rental car. Google provided a first page of results that contained another search engine that was using cloaking to spam its what into the Google results and had not bothered to stop prevent the Google cache, rental companies in Lebanon, Costa Rica, Canada and Florida, and 2 other sites that have not been optimised whatsoever and had the 3 word phrase mentioned once only on the page. And this was using the UK sites only switch.

I have long been an avid Google supporter because of the way it provides uncluttered results, but if this is the way a search engine that has just completed an IPO conducts itself, then it is simply time to get rid of that stock. If this carries on they will be handing the No.1 position back to Yahoo on a plate.

Whatever they have tried to do - it has gone dreadfully wrong.....


 5:04 am on Aug 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

I wish I could give evidence for this claim, but sometimes we just have gut feelings about how things work in SEO -- but I do not believe there is such a thing as an overoptization filter.

What I think is happening is that Google is paying more attention to offsite factors, and Webmasters incorrectly interpret a "filter" or "penalty" for their onsite factors, when what is actually happening is there is more reward for offsite factors.

Having said that, for those who keyword stuff, that is another issue altogether.


 5:28 am on Aug 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

'I do not believe there is such a thing as an overoptization filter.' - Why not? Dont they call this spam?

Google has just redefined their understanding and definition of the term.

It exists.

This 31 message thread spans 2 pages: 31 ( [1] 2 > >
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