synthese - 9:12 pm on Jun 24, 2012 (gmt 0)
What if you're not purging the right pages? You could be removing the good stuff.
Trust me - the thought has crossed my mind. I used a bunch of criteria - low page views, high bounce, and just gut feeling. Whatever didn't make the cut was gone. Where there were some page views, did a 301 to something similar (although this was not always possible).
Began this in Nov 2011, and despite a small improvement in search referrals in May 2012, on June 8 it dropped back again... WE continue to add new content, but far less than of old.