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My Site is Slowly Disappearing on Google

     
12:40 am on Sep 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Hi

My site is dissappearing on Google after nearly 2 years.

No searches at all bring up the home page (which was on page one in serps until 1 sept) and it does not appear in a allinurl: search. Only one page is brought up in the results of the allinurl.

I'm concerned that the site has been hacked.

Can anyone explain why my homepage doesn't come up in the allinur? I also get some strange diigo.com link come up here too. Additionally, the title used above the result above the allinurl search looks unusual.

Can someone give me any insight please?

[edited by: tedster at 8:51 pm (utc) on Sep. 24, 2008]

3:50 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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The diigo link is interesting - why would a social bookmarking site outrank your original? I'm not sure about that, since I'm not all that conversant with diigo.

Usually when a site disappears and only links pointing to it are shown, something has weakened the site in Google's eyes. You are right to suspect some kind of hack. I'd suggest you run a link checker such as Xenu Link Sleuth for your domain and examine the results for external links that you didn't put there.

The allinurl: search can be flakey at times - all the special operators can be, in fact, although it is troubling to see it. How do the site: operator results look?

[edited by: tedster at 8:51 pm (utc) on Sep. 24, 2008]

5:04 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Thanks tedster

I'll check that out. I'd previously run Xenu and didn't see anything but I'll do it again.

As I said I'm both baffled and worried at the same time.

5:35 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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There are lots of possibilities to check for in addition to a hack. You might want to read through the "Defending Your Rankings" section of the Hot Topics area [webmasterworld.com] that is always pinned to the top of this forum's index page.
5:47 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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tedster

Thanks, I'll look at that.

Unfortunately it's not as though my pages have just slipped in the rankings, the home page is just, well, gone!

I could understand it if 'unusual' links/pagess were appearing as well as my pages but when my home page disappear it's very worrying.

The site had been ranking very well but now it's not to be seen.

Do the result of 'allinurl:' and 'site:' generally tally? The home page should appear in both shouldn't it?

There are other pages which have gone too which used to rank well. It seems as though some is slowly working at hijacking the whole site - bit by bit.

Anyone else got any ideas?

6:00 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I'm all for others pitching in here, but I also have one more question - have you looked at your Webmaster Tools account for information? If you don't have one, you can set it up quickly and see the reports as soon as you verify your ownership (takes about two minutes.)
6:16 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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tedster

I've just ran Xenu and it failed to find the home page?

Any ideas?

6:30 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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tedster

Yes I've had WMT running for a year or so.

Apart from duplicate metatags (which were cleared a long time ago but still come up as flagged) there isn't anything that I find odd.
It says that the site is still in the index and is being crawled although about three weeks ago I had a message saying I needed to increase the crawl rate to 'faster' That was changed.

The server statistic seem to indicate that googlebot is visiting the site too although not as much as it seemed to before. I judge this by comparing the % of visits against yahoo and the others (as well as looking at the actual visit numbers.)

I'm still lost!

6:48 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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If Xenu can't find your home page right now, that says something major about your server. You really need to figure it out - I'd say it's urgent.
7:23 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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tedster

Yes I think I agree.

I'm sorry to sound a bit dull but what do you suggest saying to the hosting company? I've already reported 'problems' to them but the answer was just that it all seems fine to them. What should I tell them to check? I really don't know where to start with a 'missing' home page.

Thank you for you help here (it's turned into a bit of a personal tuition session!)

7:24 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I've just ran Xenu and it failed to find the home page?
Did Xenu find anything or just not your home page?
8:47 pm on Sept 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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What is the home page path?

Is it just / or something else?

Is it at the www or non-www version?

11:56 am on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Have you been doing any SEO in the past or recently?

Has anything changed in terms of your site / strategy?

Any white-label of some sort?

11:58 am on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Aside from the Xenu issues, would you happen to have a links directory attached to your site? With a submit form? Just wondering...
12:39 pm on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Hi everyone

www - site comes up for both www and non-www
SEO - changing/tinkering all the time but very little. The same things are done to other sites which are identical design/build but different content - the others aren't affected.
white label - no it's designed/built by me.
link directory - no

I'm beginning to think I've got a major filter/penalty from Google. However, I thought this would be general and not page specific. Furthermore, I thought Google were messaging webmasters with warnings first.

All sites are doing very well on Yahoo and MSN.

I'm still no wiser

1:02 pm on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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*** www - site comes up for both www and non-www ***

To be clear, what do you get for these two searches on Google:

site:example.com -inurl:www
site:www.example.com

How many pages does Google say it has for each search?

[edited by: tedster at 6:46 pm (utc) on Sep. 25, 2008]
[edit reason] switch to example.com - it can never be owned [/edit]

1:57 pm on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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hi g1smd

site:example.cpm -inurl:www returns nothing
site:www.example.com -inurl:www returns nothing
site:www.example.com returns everything on the site, 3200 pages, including the home page.

The allinurl search doesn't find the homepage.

Hope this is what you wanted form me!

[edited by: tedster at 6:47 pm (utc) on Sep. 25, 2008]

2:17 pm on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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OK, for the "nothing" results, these mean that this *isn't* a canonicalisation Duplicate Content problem.

The Home page *is* returned in a site: search, so Google does know that it exists, and has indexed it.

3:33 pm on Sept 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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g1smd

Yes it is in the index but not in the allinurl search which I don't understand. I'm a bit concerned because there was a large spike in activity on the serve around Sept 1 after which the problems started.

I've read quite a few thread here and elsewhere saying that a missing index file in allinurl searches can indicate hijacking. What are your thoughts?

As I said I'm beginning to think pages have been penalised by google.

9:31 am on Sept 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Hi Everyone

An update for those who are interested.

The homepage has returned in both the general searches and the allinurl search.

It is more or less 30 days since the problem started and so I can only presume that the site was getting on of Google's 30 day penalties.

Anyway thanks for all help that has been given!

9:42 am on Sept 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I've just ran Xenu and it failed to find the home page?

sorry but dont you have to put the homepage as the starting page for the crawl?

7:50 pm on Oct 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Glad to hear that you're back on Google!

santapaws: you can point it at the directory

9:02 pm on Oct 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Just wanted to bump this thread to point out that an obscure diigo page is ranking for another major, broad, one-word query that it has no business ranking for. Maybe Google's algo has some major vulnerability that diigo has exploited?

[edited by: tedster at 11:14 pm (utc) on Oct. 17, 2008]