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How to recover from a rel=canonical error

5+ Year Member

Msg#: 4167937 posted 3:13 am on Jul 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

I know that I am not supposed to mention my web site where I have this problem, so I hope it makes sense when I just talk about example.com ;-)

Sometime before the middle of June I wanted to add a <link rel="canonical" href="http://www.example.com" /> element to the header of my site's index file and I made a grave mistake - instead of www.example.com I entered www.example.com.com. When I noticed that my search results dropped dramatically I discovered my mistake I certainly fixed it but I still have not recovered from that error. Some pages are still cached by google under .com.com.
For example a google search for [a 3-word query] shows as the first organic result a pointer to my site with the error
Sorry, we can't find www.example.com.com. Please check the address for errors. Search the Web. or browse the Web by topic: Arts & Entertainment ...
www.example.com.com/ - Cached
and clicking this ends up at search.com
It appears that com.com belongs to cnet and they send anything they don't know to search.com.
If I use the google toolbar to look for the cache of my sites home page I also end up at search.com. I only see briefly the header of the google cache display flash before it is replaced by search.com but I see that the cache is from 7-8, which is after I corrected my canonical error.
I am running out of ideas what to do.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

[edited by: tedster at 3:19 am (utc) on Jul 11, 2010]
[edit reason] sorry, no search terms either [/edit]



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

Msg#: 4167937 posted 3:24 am on Jul 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

OUCH! As far as I know, once you have fixed the canonical tag on your pages, all you really can do is wait - and I've heard that recovery from canonical link errors is rather slow.

You might also try a Reconsideration Request through Webmaster Tools. At least you know a human being will look at the situation.

There is some irony here, too. You may only be seeing that #1 result because it's on a subdomain of com.com -- which clearly has a lot of trust and authority. I hope you also see something good when it finally does get fixed.

Something like this was almost in the stars the minute Google started supporting cross-domain canonical links.


WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Msg#: 4167937 posted 4:34 am on Jul 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

I did a reinclusion request for a client that messed up the same tags and the issue was fixed within two weeks. It is impossible to deduce that in fact anything they did fixed the issue as the website is spidered alot.

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