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Huge Swings In Webmaster Tools Link Reports

     
8:48 am on Jun 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I noticed this morning that Google Webmaster Tools was reporting a drop in the number of external links for my large site, and that the number of pages linked had also dropped, to exactly 100,000.

Then I looked at my internal links, and saw that (while the number of links had actually gone up) there appeared to be the same limit on the number of pages in the report, eg 100,000.

This latter number was useful to me as it was another indicator as to how many pages on the site Google was actually aware of. Now a limit appears to have been applied.

Just me, or is anyone else seeing this?
12:39 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Last night GWT reported a 70% drop in our IBL's to our homepage. Dont know if this is a related event or not.

I have never seen such a large percentage drop in IBL's in GWT but so far no change in traffic so as usual with GWT I take the data with a grain of salt.
2:14 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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my backlinks also dropped
3:33 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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My backlinks dropped about 75% during April-May, in several sharp drops. As of this AM, they went from about 80 to around 475 - the old count - for the subdomain I monitor.

ALso I noticed that the URLs are not sorted by the number of links, descending.
5:57 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I removed my site from webmastertools, it offers too much disinformation that turns in to a waste of my time. While I value some of what it reports it seems not to be tied to actual rankings and is out of date far too often.
6:30 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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If my memory serves me right, I say the total number in black in parenthesis increase considerably, but the number to each page decreased.
8:28 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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are you seeing URLs with '0' links reported in Links To Your Site? I see a bunch, and well - it seems like a bug, since LTYS should only be reporting pages to which there are links..
8:31 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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seeing the same thing here mantucket.
8:35 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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there is something freaky going on as i have a site that has increased its links by about 20000 but the links themselves donot show up in the links tools....and do not show up with any other link checker tool. only the combined links number has increased.
8:38 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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mine has shot up too, from about 7,000 to 35,000. i dont recall sending out 28 thousand email requests last week, so either they were there all along or google's just stumbled upon a hidden part of the web.
8:42 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I've seen a massive increase in the amount of external links, 500K, in the last 2 days.

[edited by: truemat at 8:58 pm (utc) on Jun 29, 2010]

8:51 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I am seeing a nice (and hopefully true) bump in links in our webmaster tools.

First note that in April we saw a decline in links by about 40% and now they have rebounded and then some, but nothing outrageous. Ours is believable.
8:53 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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FYI, the INTERNAL links have skyrocked off the page to 326k. Which is not possible. We only have 2800 pages.
8:53 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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well there is nothing i can do as WMT shows a enormous number but will not show where the links are coming from....so there is no way to check what kind of neighborhood it is being processed from....has to be a glitch in the system...the pr tool bar has also been acting up over the last 24 hrs severely. is anyone able to see these new links in WMT besides the collective number?
8:57 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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FWIW I'm making sure to save All Links ... could be a hole has opened up where they're letting us see all the links they know of again, instead of filtering them. If it's a fluke or temporary - this list could be a nice reference list.
9:15 pm on June 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

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In GWt for one of my sites, the number of links to the home page has suddenly increased from about 1000 to 19,496. At the top of the list it says:
This table lists a sample of 375 external pages that link to (this page).
Total links: 19,496.


When I look at the sample of 375, the vast majority of them are spammy links from .cn (China) domains, and they appear to have been created by automated methods. So it's possible that someone (or some entity) has begun creating thousands (or possibly millions) of spammy random links using automated methods.
2:20 am on June 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Update, after dropping 70% in reported links to the root this morning in GWT we have jumped 8000%. Though closer to our real number of IBL's then ever GWT is still way off.

Really crazy stuff going on today in GWT today.
4:38 am on June 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Well, this has to be the biggest jump in external links. WMT reports links to my homepage has increased from 750 to 80,000. Too good to be anywhere near true.
5:12 am on June 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Same here - I've seen one page IBL count go from about 80 to 475 - to 114,300 ! The links report looks broken too - it's listing URLs with 0 links. It's also listing links from myspace, which are masked and have never shown up in the report before. Maybe worth asking in the goog forum..
5:32 am on June 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Back links increased from around 120 to 22,000 in GWT
5:09 am on June 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

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holy moly! The link count to the page of interest I mentioned before had gone from 85 to 475 - and now I'm seeing a count of 114,306 to the same page! Lots of masked links like those from myspace are now showing; myspace links never had shown up before...

[edited by: tedster at 5:57 am (utc) on Jun 30, 2010]
[edit reason] moved from another location [/edit]

6:21 am on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Yes - me too. My 3 sites have shown doubling of external links in Webmaster Tools. Something going down...
9:07 am on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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29th June - 660
1st July - 16,500

...quite a jump...
9:23 am on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I'm seeing 1 million page+ scrapper "mashup" sites grabbing my content. At least they are kind enough not to add nofollow but still, getting beaten with my own content is getting old. Traffic is way down.

[edited by: Sgt_Kickaxe at 9:42 am (utc) on Jul 1, 2010]

9:41 am on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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30th June - 398
1st July - 118,000

Huge jump but traffic is way down, worst in 3 years
10:27 am on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I'm seeing the total opposite, fast forward.
My backlinks shot up from around 400 to 60000+ (avoiding exact figures). Yes, 60000+ is not a typo!.
On another site I own, it has tripled.

While going through the links, it's not the same number on the list, but still says the totals mentioned above.

Appears to be a new way of calculating links, I will wait for it to settle.
11:42 am on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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It is probably just a bug. We see many links being shown with our IP, which would explain the jump.
12:08 pm on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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One of my mayday victim sites shows over 2million backlinks up from 40k. Not to mention that most link come from scrappers.
12:46 pm on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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As I said on Twitter a few days ago: "Last week, had 8800 internal links. Now have 135 000 internal links. No way that is right."

At the same time, the number of page URLs in that list has dropped from 2500 to 1100.

That is, Google says there are 135 000 internal links between 1100 pages.

Some pages are reporting 8000 internal links pointing at them, instead of the usual 400-500, however when you click to look at that list, only a few hundred of those supposed 8000 links are shown.

I don't see any change in external incoming link reporting, only in internal link reporting.
12:53 pm on July 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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It is a bug as looking at one page that shows 14k when viewing the sites linking to this page it says there are none. This is an internal redirect page that is blocked in robots.txt

I have seen myspace links for years so that is nothing new.
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