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So, like many I have a site that for some reason is no is longer being fully indexed by Google. (Now only showing Url for pages with no title/description).
My question is; is it a possibility that the navigation bar and footer, which are currently duplicated on each page, could be the culprit. Is there any way to present the code so google follows the links but doesn't think you are trying to create duplicate content or is this something that doesn't need to be taken into consideration.
I don't think that has anything to do with this matter, my guess is that those contentless sites have simply had a lot of external seo work done on them, link campaigns etc. Almost every site out there has at least a shared footer and primary navigation bar, I'd look elsewhere for your explanation
erroneous conclusion on the part of google, but it would not be the first time.
their conclusion comes from analysing the structure as opposed to content. users on the other hand don't give a rat's ass about structure while searching, they want relevant content. they *may* care about structure if they stick around after arriving for the content, but that's a separate matter.
i have seen situations like this where x number of sites use the same *highly structured* navigation template, but have different content because they market different products be marked as *related sites* by google and their sister data user alexa.
More likely those sites had a commonality in their inbound/outbound links. e.g. a webmaster uses the one template for a bunch of different sites then puts them all in a link triangle.
I had a site on a free ISP that used to do really well.
Suddenly, last October, pages started to become URL only at the rate of 30 a week, until in early December, only the homepage was left with a snippet.
I moved the site from a free ISP to virtual hosting, and with no other changes, the site reappeared in Google at the rate of 30 pages *a day* and since December has had 80-90% of the pages fully indexed and (touch wood) no URL only pages.