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Duplicate words in <h1> and <h2> headings
yeto



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 2:49 pm on Mar 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

I used duplicate words in my <h1> and <h2> tags and my site disappeared from Google search. My site still shows up under site: but not when I search Google using my keywords. I have since changed the site back to original wording but no change from Google as of yet.

By using duplicate words in the <h1> and <h2> title tags has my site been penalized or is Google just going through some changes and this is just coincidental and my site will come back?

Thanks,
yeto

 

tedster

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 10:04 pm on Mar 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

Hello yeto, and welcome to the forums.

It is very unlikely that duplicating the H1 tag as an H2 tag will cause a penalty. At the same time, there should be no reason to do that. H1 is the headline or topic of the entire page and H2 is a sub-head - the topic of just part of the page. This is the opportunity to give search engines a more granular description - what just part of the page is relevant for.

it sounds like you have lost ranking for some keywords - that is not necessarily a penalty. Ther are many possibilities here. What happens in these two cases?

1. If you just search for your domain name?
2. If you search for the Title element of your home page?

yeto



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 5:16 am on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

"1. If you just search for your domain name?"

SERP = 1

"2. If you search for the Title element of your home page?"

I searched as deep as SERP 464. My site is not to be found. I was at SERP 1 - 34

Thanks in advance for any help,
Yeto

tedster

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 5:24 am on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

A few questions come to mind. First, how old is the site? How about backlinks to your site - have you been getting any? ...and have you set up Webmaster Tools to see if Google is reporting any problems?

yeto



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 5:25 am on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

"2. If you search for the Title element of your home page?"

My website is not in the top 1000.

This all happened on Feb. 28. One thing I noticed was that the crawl stats graph line, In Google Webmaster Tools, stopped on that same day and did not start back until March 5. This has never happened before. My website in the past has been spidered every day.

Thanks,
Yeto

yeto



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 5:28 am on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

"First, how old is the site?"

2 1/2 years

"How about backlinks to your site - have you been getting any?"

I have been maintaining my usual backlink program which equals approx. 1 quality link per week.

Thanks,
Yeto

Robert Charlton

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 8:06 am on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

I have since changed the site back to original wording but no change from Google as of yet.


What was the time sequence here? How long after you made the onpage changes did the ranking changes occur? It seems extremely unlikely that onpage changes would have caused you to disappear for your title element.

...or is Google just going through some changes and this is just coincidental...


It's wise of you to understand that relationships between site changes and ranking changes can be coincidental. Because your link building sounds conservative and clean, I'm thinking it might be a temporary Google glitch, perhaps related to the crawl interruption. There have been many reports of slowness in Google crawling, and Google is going through a lot of changes right now.

It's also possible that you've been a victim of some mischief. Have you checked your pages to see whether you've been hacked?

yeto



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 1:35 pm on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

What was the time sequence here? How long after you made the onpage changes did the ranking changes occur? It seems extremely unlikely that onpage changes would have caused you to disappear for your title element.


The changes happened within hours (approx. 2-4)

It's also possible that you've been a victim of some mischief. Have you checked your pages to see whether you've been hacked?


I don't know how to check my website to see if it has been hacked. Could you share on the best way to do this?

Also, I have been thinking about this for some time now. I seem to waste so much time trying to satisfy Google and keeping my SERP at the top versus Bing and Yahoo. With Bing and Yahoo I am in the top 2-4 SERP without all the headaches. I am wondering should I just concentrate on SEO for Bing and Yahoo and just forget about Google or would SEO techniques be the same for all three? But, on the other hand, when I rank in Google they send me a lot of business.

Thank you in advance for your help,
Yeto

Robert Charlton

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 7:19 pm on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

I don't know how to check my website to see if it has been hacked. Could you share on the best way to do this?


The possibility I had in mind was that outbound links might have been added to your site via some kind of security breach. To check your site's external links, use Xenu's Link Sleuth, which is a free tool available download.

(While we generally don't discuss specific tools in this forum, Xenu is a freeware industry standard.)

If your site is small, you might also check your pages on your server to see if any have been changed recently without your knowledge. If you've been making frequent content changes, though, those changes would mask other change dates.

From your comments about generally not doing well in Google, I'm thinking it's probably not a hacking problem, but more likely backlink and optimization issues. That said, it would be prudent to check, since you've disappeared for your page title.

To introduce another thought... is there a possibility that you also have overly frequent repetition of the same anchor text in your backlinks?

The changes happened within hours (approx. 2-4)


In the past, this would have been too soon to expect page changes to be reflected in serps. Since you've been having crawling issues too, I'd think it would be much too fast.

One suggestion about changes... when you make a page change, give it some time. It's bad practice to make a change, react too quickly, and change things again. You won't know what Google is seeing or considering... and in fact Google might respond negatively to too-frequent changes.

Robert Charlton

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4092095 posted 8:31 pm on Mar 6, 2010 (gmt 0)

PS to the above... as I'm catching up on my reading of other threads in this forum, I noticed this thread which will lead you to some new Google resources on hacking....

New Message Center Notifications for Hacking and Abuse
http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4089942.htm
[webmasterworld.com...]

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