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Noindex all pages except home page

     
11:25 pm on Jul 19, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I'm doing a test to see whether or not noindexing all internal pages on my site will benefit my home page rankings.

The site has approximately 3000 pages. Up until last week the majority of them were indexed. I now only have the home page indexed.

Has anyone done this before and what were your findings?

Does anyone think this is crazy? :)
12:34 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Does anyone think this is crazy?


My first impression? YES!

But, you must have a reason for doing this. So, tell us what your game plan is and what benefit you feel there might be to noindexing all but the home page of your site?

Are you thinking that the home page would now show up in place of those documents that are now noindex and sort of act as a single power hub page? I'm trying to figure out what, if any, benefits there are to doing this other than a "soft delete", a "reset"?
12:42 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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About 3 years ago my site got whacked seriously by Google. Traffic these days is a tenth of what it was. I have tried just about everything possible to get it back to where it was but to no avail. This is just another attempt to kick start something.

Considering the home page makes up 60% of entries into the site I thought that by noindexing all internal pages that the power would all flow to the home page. Much like nofollowing did a few years back.
12:51 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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About 3 years ago my site got whacked seriously by Google. Traffic these days is a tenth of what it was.


Three years ago? And still no recovery? Don't answer that, you already did, it was rhetorical. ;)

I have tried just about everything possible to get it back to where it was but to no avail.


Just out of curiosity, have you changed your hosting provider during those three years?

This is just another attempt to kick start something.


I'm definitely interested in what you're doing. In all the time I've been doing this, I've not had the opportunity to perform such a test nor would I even think about it. But, now that we're discussing a site that appears to have a long term manual and/or algorithmic penalty, it would be interesting to see if you can "reset" things.

When you lost your traffic, was it to an isolated group of documents and/or sub-directories? Are you sure that noindexing ALL of them is the best option? You can't cherry pick?
1:05 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Is it possible to actually "reset" a manual penalty by doing crazy stuff to your site? Not being sarcastic here...but curious if anyone's ever been able to accomplish anything like this.
1:47 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Yes the site has been moved to another server in the last 3 years. After it was penalized.

I lost rankings for the majority of popular phrases but for some odd reason there was a handful that remained, just not as highly ranked as they once were.

Haven't tried cherry picking, yet.
3:32 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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wow...I thought that was a 2011 phenomenon... :)
3:42 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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instead of a universal no-index, did you consider just blocking google from indexing those pages?
3:46 am on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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creeking, that wouldn't work.You will have to de index them before blocking and for the kind of test he is doing, it isn't an option at all. The bots will still have to know there are pages on such topics.
11:08 pm on July 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Update: It's been five days and Google traffic has dropped by about 40% which makes sense as internal pages represented about this much traffic before I noindexed them. Home page has changed in rankings. Doesn't look positive at this stage.