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What Soze is describing seems to be a different issue - finding only 2 or 3 urls, even though the count shown is a lot higher, and you've clicked on omitted results. I started noticing this on one domain last week. It's smll brochure site that I did for a friend, and it was always well indexed. But right now...phhhtt.
The number of URLs ws alwys and estimate -- because of the wy spidered content is sharded across the server farm at a big search engine, this is apparently unavoidable. But being this far off is just strange.
Soze, here are some experiments you can try:
1. If you search on unique phrases, can you see other urls in the regular results that are NOT reported in your site: results?
2. What do you see on this search -- [site:example.com example.com]
3. And how about [site:example.com **]
"Web Results 1 - 1 of about 3,840 from www.ebay.com"
Then only shows the homepage.
After hitting the "repeat the search with the omitted results included" bar, its shows all supplimental except the homepage.
It worries me, but traffic doesn't seem affected by this. I'm guessing that "normal" searches by keyword are returning my pages just as before this issue arose.
I see that a lot when old Supplemental Results are being cleaned up. What happens is that first the unwanted pages are removed from the listings, and then a day or so later the counts correct themselves to the lower number (1 to 3 of 3).
See what happens over the next few days.
i.e. Search for "site:www.domain.com" -- only three results come up for a few of my sites, while my largest site shows 51 results.
Google says it is showing 1-50 of about 3,500 for my largest site, yet it only lists 51 pages. The page counts on my other sites are pretty accurate as well, but only a few pages show up for the site search.
Anyone know what's going on?
The only observation I have to offer is that just because a whole bunch of urls vanished from the site: results doesn't seem to keep those urls out of regular search results, at least in the cases I have seen so far. Maybe it's just a temporary result of some data shuffling? We can hope!
I actually started to wonder if site: was being obfuscated for people running IE with advanced features and the Toolbar PR bar but naaahh... they wouldn't do that. ;-)
It looks like they do have a serious problem with this new infastructure because it isnt working correctly. Google is in a mess currently imo.
Whilst they like to give the impression that they are in a mess when they arnt to confuse webmasters i genuinely think that this time they do have problems.
When basic functionality isnt working correctly, sites are missing, page rank updates dont perform as they should, something is seriously not right
I have been watching Google for a while (co.uk & .com) and it seems that the site: command has been behaving very differently during day / night
I have a six month old UK site that will show 200+ pages during the day and 2000+ during the evenings and weekends. Sometimes the large index hangs around longer but this has been going on for weeks. It seems that every time it changes it adds 10% or so pages.
Today the site: command is only displaying a few pages but is reporting about 240, there is no link to show all results.
This has not had any effect on my serps though and I'm sure it has all the pages in the index but is choosing not to show them. I do wonder whether the big G has decided to make this command as useful to SEO as the link: command has become.