My rankings were for "Product Review" keywords, and I have sidebar page items on each of these with additional information. In some cases, Before and After pictures on a sep page.
Each used to rank on its own, now all my review terms are gone. The three that remain are;
-Product before and After Pictures (Ranks Product Review page not Before & After page)
-Product A vs Product B (Again, page is not correct, rather than VS page it ranks the Product Review page that links to that page.
-How to use Product A (Once again, rather than rank the page I wrote specifically for this, the Review page is ranking for this.
It really seems like google is refusing to rank my terms for what they are optimized to rank for. Led me to believe an over-optimization penalty, so I changed my on-site anchor text from "X Review" in the sidebar to a longer term without review in it.
However, then why did my homepage which is not optimized for any specific keyword drop out of the serps?
Its really hard to even get online to look at it, but a friend told me I should try to get some feedback on the site and if all else fails move to a new domain name. However, is that even the issue? All the websites ranking right now have very little content on them, 500-600 words according to the word count. Mine are 1500+ on every page. Does google not like in-depth content?
Some have less than three sentences in the review, and the rest are images. People really liked my site too, I got 4-10 comments a day asking me questions and I responded to them all personally. I was proud of what I built, and now it is in ruins.