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Site Hacked, Now Fixed but Rankings Drop



12:55 pm on Apr 11, 2013 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

my site was hacked in feb. I got an email from google about malicious script on my site and sure enough someone planted some iframes on all my pages. I fixed the problem submitted a request to webmastertools that the site was clean and all was good. after a while I noticed a slight drop in rankings for quite a few of my keywords. my question is can this have a temporary effect on rankings? or would they bounce back after a while


12:59 pm on Apr 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator goodroi is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

What timeframe are we talking about?
When was the hack fixed?
Are you sure you fixed 100% of the hack?
When did rankings drop?


1:09 pm on Apr 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

htdawg - I just opened a topic on a currently ongoing Wordpress Brute Force Flood. If you're site is WP it is highly likely you have been hacked. See: [blog.hostgator.com...]

Be sure you apply the security fix outlined here: [support.hostgator.com...]

You may have fixed your intrusion, but the global flood is currently affecting many sites traffic.


6:40 am on Apr 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Site was hacked on feb 15 and fixed 2 days later, someone had added a iframe at the bottom of each html page. meanwhile google had already added "this site may harm your computer" to my domain in the search results so that didn't help either. after site was cleaned I went to google webmaster tools and requested a review. got an all clear and warning was removed. It may be just a simple shift in rankings but its hard to track alot of keywords and even then you cant tell 100% what position you are really at for each keyword. I know that for most we are in the top 10. It may or may not be related to the hacking.


10:17 am on Apr 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

forgot to mention my site is not wordpress


2:27 pm on Apr 15, 2013 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

It's unlikely that your current ranking problems are related to the hacking incident from February unless you didn't completely secure your site and the attacker has subsequently made other changes to your site that don't trip the Malware Warning. You can look for clues by checking the Search Queries and Content Keywords functions in Webmaster Tools to see if there are keywords that are obviously unrelated to your site's topic.

Overall, I'd expect that your ranking changes are almost certainly due to recent changes in Google.


7:56 am on Apr 16, 2013 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

how do you explain to a client that rankings change and he cant expect to be in the top 10 search results for most of his keywords and on all of google e.g .com, .ca, .de, .co.uk ....
I try to explain this but he keeps saying its my fault we dropped in rankings. another thing I forgot to mention is that our hosting provider
moved our site to a different server in January and our asp pages were showing a 500 internal server error for a week or so, then we had a problem that our site wes not visible in other countries for a few days (we would ping the site and could see 100% packet loss for almost every country except mine) then in feb. we got hacked. all of this must have had an effect on our rankings plus algo changes that google does. There is no 100% sure way to find out what the actual cause is.
It could be dozens of reason e.g
hosting problems
site changes (add/delete content)
algo changes
loss of backlinks
and the list goes on


8:03 am on Apr 16, 2013 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

what would you say to a client that wants to rank in the top 3 positions
for several of his main keywords but wants to rank in several countries as well as google.com (.ca, co.uk, au, etc..) for example his main phrase is #2 in google.com & #9 in google.ca but he wants to be #1-2 in .ca as well? I try to exlain that I cant control this.


2:47 pm on Apr 16, 2013 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

what would you say to a client that wants to rank in the top 3 positions

I'd ask him why he thinks he deserves it, and if he's really better than the people who are there now. And then I'd ask him if his SITE reflects his unique points of value (plenty of businesses are better than the businesses that outrank them, but they do a poor job of reflecting that on their sites) And if he's not willing to answer or address that, I'd find a new client. (And I have, in that situation)

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