Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 34.229.194.198

Forum Moderators: Robert Charlton & goodroi

Message Too Old, No Replies

Drop in rank after implementing Https.

     
1:16 pm on Sep 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Aug 27, 2005
posts:353
votes: 3


I am seeing a drop in rank in keywords that I wrote down their relative positions before implementing https. Now that I have done https on 8/29/17 (the correct way with 301 redirect, and removing all instances of http), I am seeing some keywords disappear from rankings, while others have reduced in rank, and some are in the same position before and after.

Is this normal? How long till the rankings return? Anyone have experience with this that has seen a similar thing happen to them?

I have read stories of some people switching back to http to get their traffic back after losing 40% of their traffic after 2 months of waiting for their rankings to return.
5:43 pm on Dec 18, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

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

joined:Aug 4, 2008
posts:3524
votes: 324


disspy:
Obviously the Google SE algo is still not conversant with redirecting backlinks from http to https

If that's the case, then google should fix the problem ASAP, in fact should have fixed it before they started trying to push everyone to switch to https.

Some of the people who switched to https could be innocent victims who are suffering traffic losses because google's algorithm isn't always handling the transition correctly itself.
9:42 pm on Dec 18, 2017 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Mar 17, 2005
posts:74
votes: 3


@vphoner
It is like you described my situation. Pretty much the same but we did a lot of things to optimize for https so reversal would be the pain in the ass. Will implement HSTS next days to see if anything would change.

@aristotle
I am not sure Google cares much about hundreds of webmasters who went by their rules and failed because some Google clerk stated moving to https is safe. Officially, Google stated that the traffic could decrease with the move, but should return to normal after a while. However they did not instructed what to do if the move fails and how long their mechanisms need to process backlinks and restore PRs (if any) ...
11:11 pm on Dec 18, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member editorialguy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:June 28, 2013
posts:3365
votes: 707


Obviously the Google SE algo is still not conversant with redirecting backlinks from http to https

We moved our main site from http to https quite recently, and Google Search Console is now showing five times as many links for the https version of our site as for our old http version. That suggests to me that Google is doing a pretty good job of digesting and reassigning the links as it works its way through our pages.
1:38 am on Dec 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Sept 14, 2011
posts:1045
votes: 132


That suggests to me that Google is doing a pretty good job of digesting and reassigning the links as it works its way through our pages.


What Google shows you in webmaster search console is a sample of your links, it does not show you which links are toxic or filtered, it's just a toy - not to be taken seriously.
Now many people are experiencing a fall when changing to https I wonder if some people might want to reconsider their posts....

Where are you getting this "filter" information seoskunk? Please post link to authority source.

The amount of misinformation and misinterpretation out there boggles the mind.

Google made a very explicit announcement that using a 301 when securing protol has NO negative affect on ranking

Well if they filtered out links from non-secure sites to secure sites... LOL


Like I said.... Time will tell
1:45 am on Dec 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Sept 14, 2011
posts:1045
votes: 132


Oh and HSTS, if you experience a problem on https you could magnify it with this change. And you could be completely screwed for six months.
2:04 am on Dec 19, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member editorialguy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:June 28, 2013
posts:3365
votes: 707


What Google shows you in webmaster search console is a sample of your links, it does not show you which links are toxic or filtered,

The relevant point is that, after only 12 days after we switched our main site from http to https, Google is crediting the vast majority of our inbound links (good, toxic, or otherwise) to the new https version of the site.

Is this because of our https sitemap, our redirect from http to https in .htaccess, our new property in Search Console, the things that CloudFlare is doing, or all of the above? Beats me, but Google does seem to have figured out that a link pointing to http:// oursite dot com can now be treated as as a link to https:// oursite dot com.
3:29 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

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

joined:Oct 25, 2005
posts:3589
votes: 45


I am have converted multiple websites to https I would safely guess 10 maybe more and none have had a problem at all.
I really feel the website in question was on the edge and the new deep crawl was the undoing.

Going to https is nothing more than moving to a new IP. Your domain was probably going to tank anyway. Moving back to http and I would guess you might disappear. Just let it be and work it from were your at,
8:49 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Mar 17, 2005
posts:74
votes: 3


@seoskunk

So you are against HSTS? Explain please?

I think the problem with our site is probably with the page speed as well, which decreased 15% after switch to HTTPS, but that should be normal.

Or other 'conspiracy theories' like we were just hit by another algo update or it is because we do not use AMP serving or many other possible reasons.
9:14 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

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

joined:Sept 26, 2001
posts:12913
votes: 891


Switching to HTTPS should not slow the site, or any of the other negative theories mentioned by some in this thread.

HTTPS does give pages a slight boost in ranking.
10:16 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:May 26, 2017
posts:89
votes: 33


Switching to HTTPS should not slow the site, or any of the other negative theories mentioned by some in this thread.
HTTPS does give pages a slight boost in ranking


I can't agree more.
IMHO, If someone is experiencing a ranking drop after going Https and he have not made some kind of technical mistake in the move, the reason has nothing to do with Https but it depends on some other factors, maybe it's just a coincidence (ranking is constantly moving, in the last months mostly heading down, for many, actually; we all know that).
I am just curious about one point, nevertheless. How many of those experiencing a traffic/ranking drop after moving to https are on a CDN?
11:47 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:July 7, 2003
posts:787
votes: 111


No CDN here.

Google's continued knowledge graph expansion is obviously also a factor in the ever-declining traffic. Any of the long-tail articles that we wrote in the last two years that had any success now have knowledge graph snippets complete with our original images.
4:11 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member editorialguy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:June 28, 2013
posts:3365
votes: 707


Google's continued knowledge graph expansion is obviously also a factor in the ever-declining traffic. Any of the long-tail articles that we wrote in the last two years that had any success now have knowledge graph snippets complete with our original images.

Unless searchers are looking for very simple answers ("What's the capital of North Dakota?" "When was the Empire State Building built?"), an answer box should drive traffic to the source page. That's been our experience, anyway. And as a searcher, I'm more likely to click through from an answer box than not. (A snippet from a recipe for chocolate cake, for example, is pretty useless, but an appealing preview of a chocolate-cake recipe in an answer box is more likely to attract my attention than one blue link in a list of ten.)

Getting back to the topic of https and lost (or not lost) traffic, we switched our main site to https earlier this month, and rankings don't appear to have been affected. The http: links in Google's SERPs redirect to the new https: URLs until Google reindexes them as https: URLs with no obvious change in rankings. (And, as I mentioned earlier, Google's reindexing process is moving along at a good clip.)
4:18 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member editorialguy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:June 28, 2013
posts:3365
votes: 707


Addendum: For us, CloudFlare's "always HTTPS:" option has been a boon, as I also mentioned earlier. It takes care of things like old hard-coded http: internal links that are easy to overlook when you've got thousands of legacy pages that were created in the pre-CMS days.
6:33 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Mar 17, 2005
posts:74
votes: 3


No CDN here.

Yes, probably some SE UI changes could affect ranking, but since our top keywords dropped from 1st to 2nd or 3rd page, that points either to algo change or a kind of a penalty, or just drop in backlinks. Logic behind backlinks drop was only related to https move because it happened during the move. It could be a coincidence, but in my opinion it is either some error we made during the transition or the issue with accepting and redirecting backlinks from http. We even tested some other 301 redirects we had in the past where we had a different URL slug, and everything works fine. The entire move-to-https checklist (beside HSTS and rel=canonical) has been implemented correctly.

Regarding the page load speed. GA shows slight page speed decrease after the move, and the webpagetestOrg performance review gives us an F for the First Byte Time. We didn't use WPT earlier before we moved to https so I cannot confirm we had a better grade before the move.
10:18 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Sept 14, 2011
posts:1045
votes: 132


So you are against HSTS? Explain please?


The only real benefit of HSTS is speed if you can get on the preload list, if your site experienced problems on switching to https then it would seem foolhardy to push ahead with a human review for HSTS preload.
10:55 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

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

joined:Sept 26, 2001
posts:12913
votes: 891


The only real benefit of HSTS is speed...
Besides the security of course.
7:18 pm on Jan 20, 2018 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member sgt_kickaxe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member

joined:Apr 14, 2010
posts:3173
votes: 0


I've watched my closest competitors switch from http to https over the past couple of years and if they got a boost from doing so it's not perceivable.

I've held off on HTTPS for the simple reason that I offer primarily evergreen content on static pages that do not solicit any data from anyone, not even tracking code. I rely on my raw server logs for information and this doesn't require on-page code. ie: there is nothing to secure, what is transfered is what you see on the site already. No logins, no interaction whatsoever. Comments are from a 3rd party company.
This 137 message thread spans 5 pages: 137
 

Join The Conversation

Moderators and Top Contributors

Hot Threads This Week

Featured Threads

Free SEO Tools

Hire Expert Members