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As a result, the new client's site got head tags that say "New York Widgets" when the client really has "Miami Widgets."
It's been 4 months since the head tags were corrected and several updated XML sitemaps later. Still, Google retains these bad head tags in the SERPs.
How long can stuff like this normally take? And does anybody have a suggestion on how to get Google's attention?
Please see my previous: I know that the Client B pages with the wrong <title> tags were indexed on 9 October and on 19 November. But yesterday I noticed in the SERPs that those pages do not display the "cached" link. What does this mean?
Is there any way to get the page versions with the correct <title> tags indexed?
Or is my only option to perhaps change the filenames of the pages, then 410 those old pages?
All that even though Google recommends fine tuning title tags in their webmaster guidelines.
If this lasts much longer I suppose our only recourse is to rename those filenames and 410 the current pages.
Keep an eye on Googlebot, and once the pages in question have been spidered a couple of times, this situation should resolve itself. It's very hard to be patient and "do nothing," but that's what it takes in this situation; Working on the other aspects of improving the site will help -- both practically and emotionally...
Programmers and designers have been given checklists of items to do and what to look out for. They wouldn't otherwise have knowledge of SEO and search engine visibility issues (and shouldn't be expected to have that knowledge, beyond some basics).
Even our experienced software tester wasn't aware of most of the SEO and search engine visiblity issues.
This system is working well now.
There are many times where the SERP title or the snippet shows text which cannot be found in the cache copy or on the real live page. A lot of this is bound up with the treatment of what Google used to call Supplemental Results.
The different databases are updated at different times, and the databases also hold on to old information for well over a year and can show different text depending on the actual search query.