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Dec 7 - sudden drop in rankings

Anyone experiencing the same thing today?

     

moehits

8:57 pm on Dec 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member




I have a site that yesterday ranked very high for many terms, today it is nowhere for any of them.

Things I'm seeing that changed, ...

In google sitemaps, it's saying many pages have low pagerank, or many pages have not been assigned pagerank yet, but the visible PR is very high across the site.

It has many high quality links, pr5 across the whole site.

The allinanchor searches used to show the site ranking high, now it is nowwhere for those searches.

cyclic

6:02 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



If this is old data showing and your original data is fairly new, would this explain why most new data has just gone, yet is still showing in the site index?

dazzlindonna

6:15 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



the thing is WHY do they do it when the holliday shopping season as at its PEAK.

My opinion only of course, but I honestly think they don't realize all the ramifications. For example, if I were only looking at a subset of results based on 90% of my sites, I'd think nothing had been affected. It is only because I know what changes I've made in the recent past, and have watched the affect during each of these data refreshes over the last month, that lets me see when they are using old data and when they have the updated data. But if you're Google, and all you are looking at is a random sampling of results, you may not even realize that anything is off. So, to them, it could be a case of "why not do it during the peak of the holiday season...since it's not really affecting much". But of course, in some instances, it's affecting a great deal.

What bothers me most, is my gut feeling, that they don't even realize that old data gets pushed now and then. Gut feeling only of course, but one that I just can't shake.

goodwin

10:02 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Is it getting better for you guys?

Here it's the same. We've lost 1/3 of Google traffic...

steveb

10:55 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



I don't know why anyone would think new/old data is relevant, other than obviously replacing a page cached in November with a supplemental cache from August is just lame search engineering.

Google has been doing data refreshes for at least 15 months, and they haven't ever done one that wasn't very poorly done, with large amounts of incomprensible errors. This time it seems lots of things have been randomly dropped.

Analyzing it beyond "Google continues to suck as a search engine" is probably fruitless.

dazzlindonna

11:04 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



can't really argue with that one, steveb. that's just about how i'm feeling about it right about now.

stevexyz

11:09 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



It would be interesting to know if there is a correlation between suicide rates and Google's slap dash God like (more apropriate would be devil like) changes in SERPS explained as data refreshes - they love to do this before Xmas which probably increases the rate. I don't think anyone knows what to do any more.....I even see people panicking because they go UP in the SERPS as they are petrified this may thereafter result in a sandbox filter being applied.

steveb

11:32 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



The do them every month, so I don't see what Christmas has to do with anything.

frakilk

11:37 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Would it be correct in saying that this data refresh is one of the worst for webmaster anxiety this whole year? I can't remember an outcry like this in months. I too have been affected like so many with rankings slipping by 100s of place for no apparent reason. Some of the crap that I am seeing rank above my site makes me sick to my stomach. When I think about the hours poured into my site compared to the obvious lack of hours given to looking after the others I can't help but think Google is playing a cruel joke.

Sorry for the rant :/

stevexyz

11:38 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



You are quite correct....they do take place every month...Just seems that this time around there has been a far larger effect than in previous months this year and its just before Xmas.

sailorjwd

11:50 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I see wikipedia taking over in many top 3-5 slots in my niche. Who the heck is going to find something to buy there or a consultant to hire.

When I search for 'Widget Building Consultant' I don't want to see wiki results.

hett1618

11:59 pm on Dec 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



I'm relatively new to this and this is the first time I've been negatively affected by one of Google's "actions".

If this is in fact a data refresh and not some sort of penalty, will our places in the SERPs be restored before too long, or is this the way their search results will remain until Google's next data refresh?

Put another way, how can we get our rankings restored?

mattg3

12:06 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



These constant updates are:

useless

1.) there is no performance measure to work to. How can a basically unchanged site vary constantly?
2.) Given there is no stable preformance measure, there is no point in doing anything really.
3.) User experience is equally useless as one does not know how traffic variations are caused within this Google update noise.

chewy

12:52 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



on some of the newer data centers I'm now seeing at least 1 of my "missing terms" cropping up.

One in particular is tagged with a?=gclidXYC_etc_etc URL extension and then has the friendly "Supplemental Result" tag.

Maybe this is progress - but still this doesn't look particularly good.

MattCutts

5:14 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)



Hey folks, I asked around and I don't believe anything new went out Dec. 7th, or the few days before that.

dazzlindonna

5:32 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Heh, and I was worried that they didn't know about old data getting pushed. Heck, they don't even know that ANY data was pushed. Scary! LOL. Ummm...Google...perhaps your computers have taken over and are doing things on their own? Ya might wanna check on that. :)

Inspired

6:00 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Matt,

Can you tell us the difference between the data on [72.14.203.107...] and [72.14.207.99...]

This would probably explain what's going on.

mvandemar

6:04 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Matt Cutts said:
Hey folks, I asked around and I don't believe anything new went out Dec. 7th, or the few days before that.

Matt, the reason you may not have heard anything about it is that it's very possibly not anything that someone did on purpose. This looks much more like a database index corruption.

I've seen this before, with the exact same results as far as big shakeup. I believe I've mentioned it to you in the past. <When I do a normal site: query on my domain including the "www"> and look at the actual snippets being shown... they are all doubled. The cache itself looks normal, but the serps aren't calculated directly off of the cache, afaik. Anything not intended like that is indicative of a problem (even though as programmers, we do love to tell our bosses that they're just xtra "features" :P ).

Just so you know.

-Michael

[edited by: tedster at 9:11 am (utc) on Dec. 11, 2006]

sunny_kat

7:59 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I am also facing a similar issue...
There has been a sudden drop of rankings on couple of my website's

I am doing the best of my SEO knowledge to get them back where they were.

Wish me Guys!

Pamela2

8:11 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Matt, the reason you may not have heard anything about it is that it's very possibly not anything that someone did on purpose

This is exactly what I thought too. There is no way a site like mine would be zapped from my little niche with all its content unless there was some error.

There is a problem, and I guess the worst response of all from Google is "there is no problem". Oh dear.

frakilk

8:17 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Can you tell us the difference between the data on [72.14.203.107...] and [72.14.207.99...]

Yes this would definitely reveal something about what is going on. I am seeing normal pre-change rankings on [72.14.203.107...] but [72.14.207.99...] is drastically different and has propagated to almost all other datacenters. Hands up who see the same?

I really hope you can look into this Matt. This change is causing unnecessary anxiety to webmasters. If indeed it is an intentional rollout then at least confirming it would put our minds at ease that this isn't some big screw-up of the index. Thanks.

ayalon

9:57 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Hi All,

Our websites are all included in google news as they are news sites. After one day they are taking into the "normal" index, after another they disappear out of the index and don't come back. This is happening for already (a few?) days.

While looking on the [72....] datacenters i see these pages are nicely indexed and doing the same thing for other competitors websites i see the same thing happening. Also for major newspaper sites.

There's definetly something wrong with the index shown on the other datacenters.

Does anybody experience the same thing? Or does everybody onnly have the problem that pages drop out of index that were there already for monts/years?

twiglet

11:24 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



We experienced massive drops accross 99% of our keywords on 5/12. On 9/12, 95% of the keywords are back oa their original position so it looks like Google have either rolled back the data or fixed the problem

steveb

11:35 am on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Matt, the problems is you guys have no handle on how screwed up you have gotten. Dropping half a site's regularly indexed pages for supplementals months older, losing sites or site sections or single pages, etc.

December 7th was a very major shakeup, but the main thing for the 'plex to finally get through their stubborn head is your search engine gets worse every single month. People at the plex seem to genuinely not have a clue that Google is crap, and getting worse. December 7th was just another bit of same-old-same-old inept search engineering that made your results suck even more than they were the day before, while folks at the plex were clueless about it.

In other words, the major thing that happened on the 7th was Google engineers were asleep at the wheel, yet again.

fred9989

1:01 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



That's one problem.
There are many others, not least the inability of one of Google's main webmaster contacts to accept, establish (or admit) that a clear change in the search results has happened.
I'd see this whole farago as a warning about what happens to a company's effectiveness when that company's culture was suited to a few hundred employees and it now tries to adapt to its new size as a company with tens of thousands of employees.

Umbra

1:51 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Hey folks, I asked around and I don't believe anything new went out Dec. 7th, or the few days before that.

Hi Matt,

The only information I can squeeze out of this response is that any index problems that we see now is an artifact of an update from Dec 3 or before.

Other than that, given ALL the data that has been posted on this thread and previous threads, there's not much anybody here can do with your reply... it seems a lot like "politikspeak"

Pamela2

1:53 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Our site has gone now even from 72.xx.xx.xx.

I don't think I will ever see Google again in the same light as before. If our site has gone AWOL given its uniqueness and popularity, it will make me wonder what I am NOT seeing next time I do a search for anything else!

I cannot believe it. Surely they can see they have lost a whole chunck of stuff?

Quadrille

2:06 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member quadrille is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Logic says that if all you folk are going down,then someone must be coming up.

Comparing the two may indicate what's going on .

Unless it's one mighty coincidence.

So who's taking all those vacated topspots?

sparky74

2:06 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



As I was one of the first responders to this thread, I thought I would update on our position.

Its not good though, we have still lost all our major positions, we are UK based and we are appearing in some results when you click uk only.

Our site has been Deep crawled alot since 7th December, and our index page has been hit alot by the googlebot.

However our index page cache date is still showing the 4th Dec, and most of our competitors are showing 9th Dec. (in other words we are getting crawled but not updated)

So I wonder if the data got screwed on the 4th, when was your last cache date?

andrewshim

2:25 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



Just a bit of info :

When my site fell on Dec 7, I noticed the results returned was 21 mill. Now that it's back at pre-Dec 7 rank, it's returning 58 mill. Maybe G! was on a major purge exercise that didn't work?

Ian Cunningham

2:51 pm on Dec 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I've experienced a drop in a site I look after on around the 3rd Dec, I'm still looking through logs to see what is wrong. 7th Dec didn't throw anything new up for me though.
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