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New site on previously redirected domain not being indexed

 4:01 pm on Mar 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

Hey Guys,

I need some help. Last year I did a 301 redirect from one of my domains (was a PR 4 website before) to another domain. But few months later I decided I am better off creating a new website at that domain. So I removed the 301 and made a new site.

Ever since I removed the 301 (over 6 months and counting), Google still hasn't indexed this domain. Here are the things that I have done so far to get Google to index this site:

a) I thought content was the issue, so I started blogging. But still no love from Google yet.
b) Then I thought I should get some links to it, so I did that and pointed quite a few links from QUALITY sites but still no gain.
c) I even submitted a sitemap in google webmaster tools, status says submitted and "OK" but still no pages in index
d) checked everywhere and made sure I am not blocking any bots

Please guys, some help? It would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!



 5:19 pm on Mar 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

Have you submitted a reconsideration request through Webmaster Tools, explaining the changes you've made and what the problem is?


 7:20 pm on Mar 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

I did that back in September, no reply from them yet. I submitted another request last week though.


 12:14 am on Mar 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

I thought content was the issue, so I started blogging.

Correct me if I'm mistaken, but that, to me, implies that, apart from your new blog, the site has no valuable content. If that is the case, a reconsideration request will just be a waste of time as a manual review of your site will only confirm the validity of the penalty.


 6:13 am on Mar 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

The website was never penalized and there was never a penalty. So what you are saying if a site just consists of a blog, then it doesn't offer good quality content?


 11:27 pm on Mar 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

if anyone could help me with this case, it would be greatly appreciated. I literally see no reason why this site wouldn't get indexed. It has never gotten a penalty or penalized before.

I usually don't have any problems as I have been doing SEO since many years but I don't get this one.


 2:41 am on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

Is the site being crawled, at least? If not, it sounds like a technical issue. If googlebot appears in the server logs but you still don't see any pages for a site:example.com query, then we'll discuss further ideas.


 2:37 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

hi tedster,

thanks for replying. Yes the bot does come visits the site. But it only looks at the homepage, robots.txt, atom.xml and sitemap.xml. It doesn't go deeper than that. It gives 404 code for atom.xml and sitemap.xml as i don't have them but gives 200 code for robots.txt and / - - [12/Mar/2009:12:10:45 -0600] "GET / HTTP/1.1" 200 23522 "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; http://www.google.com/bot.html)" - - [13/Mar/2009:05:06:47 -0600] "GET /robots.txt HTTP/1.1" 200 422 "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +http://www.google.com/bot.html)" - - [13/Mar/2009:05:06:47 -0600] "GET /sitemap.xml HTTP/1.1" 200 1444 "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +http://www.google.com/bot.html)"

And yes, no pages of this site is in google's index.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 5:55 pm (utc) on Mar. 17, 2009]
[edit reason] disabled url [/edit]


 3:05 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

Download your robots and htAccess files and check everything. Test some server headers for URL's on your home page. Run Xenu and try the W3 Link Validator at [validator.w3.org ].


 5:29 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

Just an FYI, I don't think that first log entry you posted showing an access of your main page was really Googlebot. The IP address comes from The Netherlands. There's a lot of Googlebot spoofers out there these days.


 7:50 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

hi longen,

I did a robots.txt validator check and all is good there.
htaccess check - all is good there. All pages are getting a proper 200 OK code
XENU - all pages came up as OK, no errors
W3 link Validator - everything came up ok as well


 7:51 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

hey rainbroick,

good point, i'll go back to my logs and check if the real googlebot is actually coming to the homepage at all.

update: Yes i did find the real googlebot visiting the homepage. But doesn't go deeper than that.


 8:15 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

So what you are saying if a site just consists of a blog, then it doesn't offer good quality content?

No, that's not what I'm saying. You said you thought content was the reason you weren't getting indexed, and that the solution might be to start a blog on your domain. So what did your new site consist of, I wonder? I might be misinterpreting what you said, but I thought I'd ask as it might help analyze the problem. Also, what do the GWT diagnostics and (crawl) statistics tell you?


 9:38 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

hey robzilla,

everything (errors, not found, timed out etc) is 0 in GWT. It also says "Googlebot has successfully accessed your home page" and the crawl stats :

Googlebot activity in the last 90 days
Number of pages crawled per day
Maximum 13
Average 5
Minimum 0

Number of kilobytes downloaded per day
Maximum 1,331
Average 1,076
Minimum 0

Time spent downloading a page (in milliseconds)
Maximum 2,000
Average 307
Minimum 0


 9:54 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

And yes, no pages of this site is in google's index.

If I may, I'd like to push the question even more precisely. Does the query site:example.com show zero results? I'd like to focus on the difference between "not in the index" and "not showing on any regular searches".


 10:14 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

not in the index, returns 0 results for that query.


 10:21 pm on Mar 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

Since it looks like you're being spidered successfully, the reconsideration request you submitted last week sounds like the right thing - along with the backlink building you have already begun to do. It may take some patience (not that you have already needed some) since it can take weeks or even longer to see results.

I've seen other cases where a 301, once put in place, seemed to "stick" and the domain had lots of trouble even after the redirect was removed. I'm not sure if it's a trust issue or just a technical bug, but whatever the cause, backing out of a 301 can sometimes be a problem


 4:08 am on Mar 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

Hey Darkroom,

Assuming that you initially did the 301 from site A to site B.

If site B is not in use currently, I would have probably reverse redirect from site B to site A as it might help.


 5:17 am on Mar 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

Google just updated the 301 redirect help section. Maybe you can find some helpful tips there.

They have a video there too. posted march 4 09

From what I see tedster is right... your domain may just be stuck in googles eyes as a 301. Try to setup a different domain the same content on and see what happens. That way you will verify if its the CONTENT or the DOMAIN.

Good luck!

[edited by: tedster at 5:32 am (utc) on Mar. 18, 2009]
[edit reason] make link live [/edit]


 12:26 pm on Mar 18, 2009 (gmt 0)

I've seen this happen as well and the problem was resolved by temporarily blocking everything via robots.txt. To get a fresh start we excluded everything and added the meta no-cache to the head and let it sit for a month to help Google clear out all the old data.

When we removed the meta tag and exclusions it took 8 days to get the index page ranked once again.

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