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Main » 2011 » August » 18 » 10 Main Reasons of Rankings Drop
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10 Main Reasons of Rankings Drop
10 Main Reasons of Rankings Drop

1. Broken Links  

Broken links can cause serious problems, especially if it's a prominent internal link on your site. It can be time consuming/impossible to check each of your links manually, so I use a free Broken Link Checker.

2. The Google Honeymoon Ended

Google Honeymoon is the term for the phenomenon where a new site enjoys high rankings for a short period of time before falling to its more realistic ranking.

3. Algorithm Updates/Link Juice Lost

Search engines are constantly updating their algorithms which dictate where pages rank for keywords in the search engine results pages in order to keep things fresh and ensure that the best content is kept at the top. Even if your site isn't being directly affected by an algorithm update, sites which you get a lot of your links from could be. This can diminish the amount of link juice which you have overnight, so your ranking will likely drop with it.

In June we have tracked our statistics in order to test how 2.2 Google Panda Update affected our clients. What we saw made us proud of ourselves: 92.6% of our clients didn't experience any ranking drop due to the Panda Updates. And 78% of those who lost their rankings, managed to bring them back within a month and even increase them with the help of our link building service. This is a very good statistics that shows that all the job, that we performed in order to improve our service for the last 6 months, has paid off.

4. Malware 

If your site is the victim of malware and Google detects malware on any of your pages, it will notify and warn any potential visitors in the SERPs who click on your page before they actually get to your site. Very few people will proceed after seeing such a warning (would you?), so this can account for a HUGE drop in traffic and can dissuade not just the casual internet user, but other webmasters who would potentially link to you or even those who have already linked to you, to break those links. This obviously can have an adverse effect not only on your traffic, but your rankings in a relatively short period of time.

5. Google Sandbox Effect Started

You may enjoy those nice rankings due to the honeymoon or another phenomenon temporarily, but afterwards you are dropped in the sandbox which is like a punishment for new sites just for being new and unproven. In this case you should stick to low competition keywords, creating great content, and looking for high authority incoming links to prove your value to Google to get you out of the sandbox sooner than later.

Have you already been affected? Learn more about how to get out of Google sandbox.

6. Server Issues  

If Google cannot access your server because of issues with your host or on your end, this can cause a problem if left unfixed after a period of a few days.

7. Robot.txt File Problems      

Make sure you don't have any bonehead mistakes in your robot.txt which may be prohibiting search engine crawlers from gaining access to certain pages of your site. Make sure you're only blocking the URLs you don't want crawled with that file.

8. Penalization  

Your site could have been penalized without your even realizing it if you broke Google's rules. Steer clear of black hat SEO techniques to ensure that you are not penalized.

9. Duplicate Content

Search engines like Google hate duplicate content. This is especially true when it happens on the same site, but it can be an issue on different websites, as well. Not only does this irk Google, but when it finds duplicate content in two or more locations online, Google has to determine which is the true original content, and it may not always be your site that gets the credit, regardless of whether you put that content on your site first or not; so this can have adverse effects on your rankings in a couple of ways.

Why not do a free search on CopyScape to see if anyone has copied your content without your permission.

10. The Google Dance  

  The Google Dance refers to the phenomenon of pages randomly jumping around different spots in the SERPs, sometimes drastically. Of all these reasons, this one is the least able to be explained clearly and rationally. Typically, if the Google dance is the culprit for your rankings drop, the good news is that you'll regain your higher rankings shortly. It's just a random shuffling and fluctuation of listings which usually doesn't last long.

Stanley Damon    Your SEO & Sales Consultant
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