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Getting Back Into Google

What Is the Best Process



12:39 pm on Dec 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

One of my sites completed dissappeard from Google over this update, has been first page for 2 years and in the index for 6.

Some other sites in the same industry as myself also have the same problem.

What I would like to know is...

How do I know if this is a glitch or a forced penalty.

I have enough quality links to the site still that I am hoping will allow the site to be picked back up, however how can I tell if this is penalty related for some reason and will never be picked back up. Also what can I do to find out how long it will take to get back in the index....and no my hosts was not down at all.

I do not want to get rid of the domain because it is our companies main site and ranks extremely well in all other search engines

I wrote to G 2 weeks ago but no response....


4:49 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

"...if Google is using the broad match in their search then that page is not going to do as well because it is too specific." - too much information

now thats ironic!


4:52 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Does the canned response indicate a penalty or not....i.e how can you even know if you are excluded forever....

What I'd take from this response is that you will be recrawled at some point in the future and should hopefully get back in..

However would or do they say to GoogleBot ignore www.mysite.com for whatever reason...thats what I'm trying to get them to answer....even a yes no penalised would be helpful.


4:56 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Does the canned response indicate a penalty or not....i.e how can you even know if you are excluded forever....

If you do not get googlebot for a fortnight then you might start working on your backup plans. I know a person who got this same reply a month ago and still has not seen googlebot on his site. He has given up on his site. His site was clean BTW. HTH :)


5:00 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I just want to re-iterate that I have good incoming links PR 8 etc...still showing in Google so surely GoogleBot has to follow them and will find my site....

...now is there likely that something will be in their algo that says if you follow a link to www.mysite.com ignore it do not index....obviously it is more likely to be a group value (incorporating a penalised site list)that mine may have been placed into...

...it would be handy to know if I'm in that list...


6:02 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


My site was also nowhere to be found (missing, not just lower in ranking) after Florida. Also not found in the Google directory. Came back after 4 days. This happened once before after a Google update, but it took much longer for the site to reappear. I created some Adwords, pause them when the site is visible, and unpause them when the site disapppears.

Good luck, hope you get your site back in the index.


8:04 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

this problem of "site vanishing" for no reason is with hoars of other weebmasters too!

However me and super_seo have seen it in a bit different way "a slow death". We too still wondering for the reason of such strange problem!

Did you see any symptom like "No Cache", "No title and description" of listing before being vanished?


9:03 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


No slow death for me...near the end of the update I was doing well...3rd place...then suddenly the next morning completely gone vanished no warning......

I'm very confused...no info to troubleshoot :(

And still no G reply...


9:07 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Getting Back Into Google
What Is the Best Process ....

more non-reciprocal, non-anchor text links to dilute all those reciprocal keyword1-keyword2 etc anchor text links you're disadvantaged for.

[edited by: guynouk at 9:19 pm (utc) on Dec. 3, 2003]


9:08 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Although Google is said to deny it, it seems obvious to me that this whole situation is a simple attempt on their part to force commercial web site owners to buy into Adwords.
Imagine you were an Adwords advertiser and your ad box is stuck over on the right, not all that noticeable compared to your competitors' optimised sites in the main list. You'd complain to Google saying "How come I'm paying for an advert on your site when you are listing sites for free, in a better page location?". You might tell them to sort it out otherwise you'll take your ad budget to Overture.
Google might respond "OK - we'll get rid of your competitors. We know what are the most popular words to zap because advertisers are buying them on the Adwords program, so those are the ones we'll dump.". They then replace the top rankings with 'authority' sites or shopping directories. They agree to keep directories on the results because Google's advertisers may also be paying to appear on them and they would not want to offend their advertisers.

Thus, Google pleases its advertisers, it encourages people to buy into Adwords, and it can tell the world that if you want to find sites selling widgets that if there aren't any in the Adwords section at the moment, they can be pretty sure that there will be some there very soon. They can say "why should we give people free advertising when people are willing to pay for it?".

So folks, this is the situation that we are facing. It is the end of free rankings on Google (ones that you can make money from anyway). Unless you have factors on or about your site that allows you through the net, and into the high ranks, you had better start thinking about what you're going to do.

Google might consider itself immune to adverse consequenses of Florida e.g. ending up the way that Altavista went a few years back. The only risk they seem to be running in my eyes is the possibility that thousands of aggrieved site owners start clicking away on the Adwords of their competitors to waste their money thus rendering Adwords unsustainable. They will have protection in place to try to stop this happening. They will want to cut down on the risks of this ever starting hence their denials that their real motives are to force people to run Adwords. They are currently hiding behind so-called honorable motives of improving results when IMHO it's a cynical tactic of making money at the expense of genuine businesses and the jobs of their employees. They don't even have the guts to admit why they have done it.

As a contributor said above, it's time to use a different search engine. IMO Google's latest strategy demonstrates that it has the morals of cheap chisselers. I for one do not intend to pay a penny into Adwords, given the devastating results that Florida has had for me and my clients.

Is anyone willing to reward that sort of behavior? I hope not.


9:32 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

are you sure of SUDDEN disappearance? your whole site was drpped at a click?


9:36 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Absolutely 100% logs etc confirm...lost evey single page overnight and also www.mysite.com immediately shows not in index..

Still have PR 5 and 137 backlinks showing though


10:06 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Jimbo, very well said. The money keyword for my niche with the -showtherealresults option has my site at #2, along with most of the other major players in the top 10. Post-Florida, the search now shows about.com, a sports page, a couple yahoo stores, and some sorta-relevant higher pagerank pages.

The more I think about it, the more it irks me that Google would pull something like this right before the peak shopping season. Because of this, I said F-off to Adwords and am now focusing on other search engines that don't have a "pump-up-the-IPO" filter on.


10:09 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Some of my sites had slow death , but 1 site was vanished exactly like yours just after update!
its index/main page was dropped from Google index.
It still shows PR 5 and backlinks but not in index.


10:15 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

mquarles & chndru

sorry for the long post but here goes.....

The point is that those companies that do well in the serps are making money, some of which goes into adwords.

Adwords doesn't really make us any money because there are plenty of idiots who are prepared to waste their money pushing the bids up to silly levels which they can't afford just to be number one, in a few feeks they go bust then some other idiot comes along and bids 5 a click just so they can say they are at the top.

What this means is that now we're getting less sales because of florida we cannot afford adwords as it only broke even for us, we're now looking at more profitable forms of advertising and new ways to get traffic without google.

Google will be enjoying a honeymoon period while everyone switches to adwords, but as soon as everyone realises that nobody profits from this new adwords price war except google they will begin to take their money elsewhere, i have already had 3 of my clients that i run ppc campaigns for pull out because prices are getting silly, fine for google you might say but it's nothing more than a honeymoon period, lots of people are testing the water for the first time but this will not continue.

The mistake is that google are annoying the very same people that pay their wages, most adwords customers also get some free traffic which helps to pay for adwords, not sensible in my view.

I know this has been done to death but I also think google are ruining the search experience for their end users. People are bound to say that it's just the guys that have been hit complaining but it's not, I am seriously seeing terrible results when I use google in normal searching.

My company is soon to open a new gift store and I was looking today for wholesale suppliers of luxury chocolates, could i find decent sites in the serps amongst the espotting sites, news sites and irrelevent sites? no. could i find anything in adwords? you must be joking, the off topic ads there are ridiculous.

This is not just people that went down in the update complaining, this is a serious problem with google at the moment and they need to do something about it before searchers look elswhere because if they did then google would lose adwords customers and guess what, they've gone and shot themselves in the foot again.

webmasters noticed on the day it happened, within a week newspapers and magazines started to notice and more and more searchers are telling me that they've started to notice too, so how long will it be before google notices?

anyway, rant over.

as you were :)


10:20 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I dont understand why ppl. converting all threads in Florida-rage thread?
It could be a differen problem which is being discussed here...


10:51 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Yep it seems there's lots of peed of webmaster out there...

For me I have another 2 sites selling the same stuff still doing well in the SERPS so the hit isn't as bad as it could of been..forward planning

But the site thats gone had over 400 pages lots of info etc....very well done.....

My sites left are single page sites still on the first page that I put together just in case something like this happened...don't get me wrong they are completely relevant for their keywords but have no other info on them

go figure...

The way I see this we can no longer work with Google as they go and screw us for following the rules.....

So do as I and many others now do and beat them at their own game...

Different domains diff hosting ip's etc....

Yes it fills the results with spam but what do they expect when decent hard working webmasters get treated like this....

Following Bretts original thread used to work for good rankings...now I believe it needs to be changed....and I for one could write a nice article on how to get to the top...with many throw away domains....

Anyway back to the topic of a missing site....why...how and what to do......


11:00 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

hello people, i feel everyone on this florida update thing. the company i work for lost at least 20 top rankings. And like a earlier post said, they could be trying to make more money off of adwords, so everyday after work, i feel like the need to click those listings on the side "2o times each". After weeks of doing this, i bet those companies drop there adwords, lol, thus i will try my hardest to make google feel the pain, thats all i have hehe......


11:15 pm on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

you see, no matter how hard i try to stress the point that this isn't about webmasters who have lost out getting angry and pointing out that it's when searching for other things, other than my site that i'm really noticing a drop in SERP quality somebody immediately turns round and says "there's a lot of pee'd off webmasters aren't there".

I give up.


12:40 am on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Wanna Learn regarding slow death,

I never thought about it until you mentioned it, but what happened to my site which used to be number 6 (index page) for a two word keyword for three years; was right before the index page was COMPLETELY dropped from google there was a period of, I would say three to four days where it was listed as number six but the listing was different. It always listed my description with the category from DMOZ under it. During that 4 day window the category was missing. I thought that was odd but did not make much of it until I read your post. Now I am still in that category with DMOZ and GOOGLE but my index page is no where to be found :( I guess you would call that a slow death?


8:56 am on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

My lost keywords are something like widget insurance and sure enough when I search for -fufufu widget insurance I get back in at the position I would expect to have (did have prior to Florida) with all of my usual competitors around me. No surprise there.

As anyone else noticed this though?

If I search using any of the following advanced search filters I get almost exactly or exactly the same results as using -fufufu widget insurance.

intitle:widget insurance
allintitle:widget insurance
allintext:widget insurance
allinanchor:widget insurance

Within these filters are some of the heaviest factors in the Google algo. If I use just one of them my page goes from nowhere to #3.

I suspect that, for whatever reason, for certain keywords none of the usual weighting factors in the algo have been applied to certain pages. I think that this points to spam filtering with the penalty that no algo is applied to your site if it is stopped by the spam filter. This would explain virtually every piece of analysis posted on this discussion board over the last two weeks. Including analysis findings which appear to contradict each other.

This even works for foo bar though I don't have a clue as to why that term would be selected for filtering.

For anyone who is interested I've posted some other stuff on spam filtering and Google here:

[webmasterworld.com...] message #14
[webmasterworld.com...] #8 on the page

and here
[webmasterworld.com...] #7 on the page

I can't be certain that I'm right, but if I am then getting back into Google will be a different process to the process otherwise.

Good luck!



9:17 am on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Naturlainstincts said
>>you see, no matter how hard i try to stress the point that this isn't about webmasters who have lost out getting angry and pointing out that it's when searching for other things, other than my site that i'm really noticing a drop in SERP quality somebody immediately turns round and says "there's a lot of pee'd off webmasters aren't there".
I give up.

I think you should give up as this site is called Webmasterworld so what do you expect us to talk about...the weather....and this thread certainly isn't about search quality for users...its about getting a site back into Google...there's plenty of other threads you can hijack if you so wish...


9:40 am on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Got a so called reply from Google this morning the most unhelpful pile of crap....so they can't tell me if I am penalised they give me a URL which I've seen a thousand times.....why cant they say yep your penalised dont even have to say why....at least then I can try to make a change...or is it I'm penalised because my competitors spend more on Adwords than me!

Thank you for your note. Unfortunately, we are unable to send personal responses to all of the requests we receive to review individual website content. Websites can fall out of our index for many reasons, including

If you are concerned that your website may have been penalized, please review our quality guidelines at
[google.com...] . Please do not hesitate to contact us if you identify problems with your website and make the changes necessary to comply with these guidelines.

We are sorry that we can not provide individual assistance at this time.


10:14 am on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

If you are concerned that your website may have been penalized, please review our quality guidelines at
[google.com...] .

Hi Webdev,

I thought that I would go back and read that page again carefully to check if I am falling at any of the hurdles. Whilst I don't think I am breaking the guidelines in any way two passages make interesting reading in view of recent experience.

"In particular, avoid links to web spammers or "bad neighborhoods" on the web as your own ranking may be affected adversely by those links."

How do we know who is and who isn't a web spammer? What if you do swop links with what seems like an acceptable site and then some idiot web master gets caught doing something stupid? Also lets say that this has been a factor in the recent fiasco why does it apply to some search terms and not to others?

"Google prefers developing scalable and automated solutions to problems, so we attempt to minimize hand-to-hand spam fighting. The spam reports we receive are used to create scalable algorithms that recognize and block future spam attempts."

Perhaps these are prophetic words! Google clearly has a database of spam reports. Before action is taken against a site I guess that a human uses some of Google's in house tools to check out the site and confirms that it is indeed using spam. What if those carefully checked instances where now being used as spam filter templates in a large scale use of "scalable algorithms that recognize and block future spam attempts." This would explain what has happened since Florida.

Best wishes



11:19 am on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

No use of hitting the Snake Hole, instead of killing snake.

Whatever the reason may be for sudden disappearance OR slow deaths... the question is what needs to be done to get back in google index or atleast invite googlebot to crawl again and judge?

Could be a Penalty though...but there must ba a certain way to overcome that Penalty!

Again, I am not looking for suggestions like "build on content" , "Link to good sites" , "Dont link artificially at all" etc. etc. AS I dont personally think google is still able to fight the Spam and further atleast my site is following almost all google guidelines.

So better find the way to invite googlebot again... and try for reindexing anyhow!


1:49 pm on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

My opinion is that Google is headed down a road that will take them where most companies go when sucess and money change the people and their way of thinking.

I have always felt that Customer Service is the only way to have a company flourish.

I keep hearing that google is free and how they don't owe us anything.

Well how free is it?
We are providing google with our hours of time and effort to supply them with the resources to make them millions of dollars.

If this effort stops or is reduced due to not having a continued customer interaction with its community it will suffer drastically in the long run. Theres no ifs ands or buts about it.

A good example is a company I worked for here in Massachusetts. It was #1 Retailer of the year for 4 years straight. Two brothers owned the business and built the company on customer service and reaching out to the community. The employees were treated like family.
The turn over rate was very low.
Then one day they decided to sell out to Warren Buffet one of the wealthiest men in the world. After the sale this company lost its retailer of the year and the one that gained this title is a couple who are married and it is a family biz. They have now won this title 2 years in a row.

What do you think will happen when google goes IPO?
We all are customers to google as we provide info and resources that enable google to make money. With out indexed websites there are no ad words. There is no google.

It will take time and google will have staff meetings and consultants and all that trying to figure where they went wrong. It is what happens when peopleand companies lose focus and become too big. There will come a day again when two kids from college are sitting in their garage and decide to start a search engine. MSN is not the next threat to google .. These unknowns are..
Thats my take ...


1:56 pm on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

>>What do you think will happen when google goes IPO?

Hopefully it will become more responsible. It cannot get any more irresponsible than present. Have you ever tried contacting adwords support?


2:43 pm on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Getting Back Into Google

I dont think making changes to your current pages that ranked well pre-florida will get you back in, and we are making it much more difficult than it has to be. Even if your search term is very specific to you or to your industry, it could be interpretted differently by somebody else.

For instance, if your big money keyword set is "doodad management software" You and everybody else in your industry might use that phrase explicitly to describe companies that offer "doodad management software". However, joe public might see "doodad management" as 20 different things. So you have to be more specific, even if the searchers are not. OR become the industry expert on "doodad management"

For certain 3 keyword phrases that i previously ranked in the top 3 for, we are now nowhere to be found and have been replaced by directories. Only 3 of the previously ranked sites are still left.

Two of those sites are publicly traded, which makes them an expert, and the other is a large company that has recently acquired several of their smaller competitors and partnered with other to expand there offerings. Those acquired companies and partnerships all link back to the site that stayed put.

The directories are authorities by nature. When you ask google for "doodad management software", it wants to say "what kind of doodad management software?" and answers with sites that can help you narrow it down.

I now see where i went wrong. I optimised for specific keywords instead of for joe user. So, become one of the "experts". Just my theory...hope it helps.


6:14 pm on Dec 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I have a gut feel that Google too dont want those Directory listings to appear at top!
Its just that they messed up this time.

Still, anybody has any past experience in getiing back a SO CALLED Penalised site?


10:02 pm on Dec 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

"Still, anybody has any past experience in getiing back a SO CALLED Penalised site? "

Anyone? I would like to find out how to get back in the Google SERPS for my keyword terms from a possible OOP (over optimization penalty). Please help.

This 59 message thread spans 2 pages: 59

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