Passive Income

My Sites Have Dropped Out of the SERPS – Does Google Hate Me?

I have the habit of near the start of the month using the Rank Checker in Market Samurai to check where my sites are ranking. I did it a couple of days ago and was sad to see one that had been turning a few consistent pennies had dropped out of the top 100 positions. Odd I thought because it was an exact domain match which had happily sat on the first page for  three or four months.Now I didn’t notice this for every site put it down the Google dance and got on with life.

But it was new – I’d never seen an EMD drop so hard after so many months.   With the disturbing stories coming out recently of good people getting  de-indexed . I was concerned – not so much for the $10 the site earned me a month – but the fact that this could be the start of a trend.  I hoped I wasn’t next in G’s sights – but I couldn’t really believe that I had that much influence on the WWW but I  had started cleaning up in order to do the right thing , even if Adsense had asked for it – and I knew that not every bad arsed marketer had been hit.

Now I’ve seen the explanation – you may have noticed that Google has changed their interface to the new one:

Whether or not this is making any difference to people’s rankings in the SERPS – I haven’t heard so yet – but  what it has done is broken all the scrapers. How does this affect you? Well if you use a tool like Market Samurai or MicroNicheFinder or almost anything else  (except Google) to check your results  – its broken and the results are misleading. Market Samurai has announced an update on Twitter – but its not out yet.  I  suspect because the roll out of the new Google interface is gradual across  all its data centres that’s why sometimes the results are OK and some aren’t. If in doubt check for non-personalized results – scroogle does seem to be working BTW.

So if you do see something odd in a tool double check – check your stats –  if the traffic is about the same – nothing much has actually happened. But far more importantly in the immortal words of Jonesy – put your tin hat on  and DON”T PANIC!

39 replies on “My Sites Have Dropped Out of the SERPS – Does Google Hate Me?”

I did the exact same thing today when I checked my rankings on Market Samurai but also decided to check for myself on Google and everything is fine 😀

Tough not to panic when everyone is running for the fire exits. I for one started diversifying my portfolio both on the sites structure and monetization.
I’m focusing on making larger sites. All of a sudden those supersite webinars are becoming a bit more important eh??

On the monetization front,
– Affiliate marketing
– Own products
– and oh yeah, membership site

Im seriously throwing stuff at the wall and seeing what sticks…

Yeah some of my postrunner sites are definitly becoming “stuff against the wall” 🙂

I actually noticed something earlier last week being wrong with the Sitemaps in Google’s own webmaster tools. In webmaster tools itself it would show far less pages indexed then in Google itself when doing or using Market Samurai. I also noticed that the Google dance is far more pronounced since the last big PR update, so what to do? Nothing else as what you say, clean up if there is something to clean up and have sites that doesn’t make Google look stupid like Court and Mark from sayThe Keyword Academy say. SY

Must admit SY I rarely claim a site in WBT -only the very legit ones – and only out of curiosity

I have all my sites in Google webmaster tools as soon as I work on them seriously, makes it so much easier to see upcoming problems early, in the end, it is easier for me to work with Google then against it. Just my 2 cents, SY

Hi Lis and SY,

I definitely agree that working with Google is the only way to go.

Give them what they want because they are trying very hard to give their users what they want.

I don’t think that Google hates anyone and especially nice people like you two.

The Google dance is very pronounced at times. I have no clue as to the reason for it.

But being placed up and down one or two hundred spots within days is something that I’ve observed many times.

Just keep plugging in and as SY says catch what is not right early.

Even if everything is perfect the dance will still take place.



Webmaster’s tool has some really cool new features in about the past month or so. I really like the “top search queries” where it shows you how many times a keyword has been at each search position, and what the CTR is. I’ve already been able to use this information to go back and rewrite the meta descriptions on posts that were getting a decent amount of impressions … but comparatively few visits.

I think in 2010, there’s not much reason to avoid google … the amount of work it takes to “hide” from them (if it even works) just seems disproportionate to any potential value. (IMO)

You may be right – and yes I had a quick look at the new WBT does look interesting particularly the CTR

I noticed this with one of my sites that I thought was just experiencing the good ‘ole “Google Dance” since quite a few backlinks were being picked up. However, it’s been well over 3 weeks and I’m only receiving a few visits per day a la Yahoo, even though my website is still indexed in Google so I do believe Google is cleaning house.

…good thing I didn’t build my entire business off of EMD…especially in large quantities.

I have a local website that has been very difficult to rank for. There is one competing site I watch closely. I just write about events, businesses and local websites, local politics, and maintain a link directory to every website from a local person/business.

My competition charges businesses for links. I can’t believe they pay him, but more power if he can get it. All that the website contains is those paid links and an endless rant about a local playhouse.

I’ve made it to the second page, but he’s maintained 1st page a few spots ahead of me for over a year that I have been trying. Today Google made the changes and his website is gone and mine remains.

There is another with and a domain age of 12 years that is still ahead of me. They haven’t change the website in many years and it’s just an incomplete link directory. No blogging or updating in many years.

Maybe these changes will hurt some existing websites, but newer and/or updated websites will get a chance?

Mark businesses will happily pay for links – and so long as the links are no follow Google doesn’t care. EMDs ;particularly one word or 2 word ones will always rank well – after all how would mcdonalds feel if wasn’t first – for “mcdonalds” – they would be angry and Google would be a joke! Where is your competitor getting his backlinks from – that will be the answer

Interesting. I’m glad the problem doesn’t appear to be permanent. The issues with Market Samurai don’t surprise me, there are many products out there that essentially set out to go against Google’s TOS and them ‘bang’ something breaks.

I’m not knocking the MS people, so far as I know it’s a good product, but so many products are built to run against the grain … I can think of a lot more profitable things to be doing than checking SERPs positions … but the screens look cute, that’s for sure.

The “problem” will solve itself when the programmers change the interface to deal with the new search engine interface. I only check SERPS once a month – I tend to forget site otherwse

@Dave Starr
The latest software update has sorted Market Samurai out completely, it works like a charm again. I am not sure why you think it is against Google’s TOS? As far as I know Google advises only against rank checking tools that are part of the website, not against desktop tools like Market Samurai. Like always, it is our responsibility how we use a tool and I think, especially in the IM / SEO niche a lot of tools can be used to make a site better / more valuable or to decrease the value of a site, just my thoughts, SY

You sure SY – I havent’ got an update from MS and I am still getting my site missing in action

Why do I think automated, pound on Google tools to check rankings are against Google’s TOS? Becuase I can read the TOS, and automated tools that take up Google’s bandwidth sfor non-search perposes are.

Otherwise, they wouldn’t need carefully worded and disguised “search engine courtesy settings” and other such delay schemes to try to disguise what they are doing … or need instructions for clearing your browser cache and other things to try to ‘trick your way’ back into Google when you occasionally get locked out.

If you are looking for a fight, you won’t get one from me. Use what you wish … I occasionally use another rank checking tool myself … I’m not a frustrated “Google Cop” … but I use it with my eyes wide open, based on my own reading and English comprehension.

If you reach a different conclusion, great, but we’re each entitled to our own opinion. I also base my belief’s specifically on Google’s demonstrated behavior when certain tools are used often. That’s all I’m saying, no more, no less.

Again, in my opinion you can do a lot more to directly benefit your site in the time you spend with tools like MS or any of it’s esteemed competitors. Paralysis by analysis is one of the chief reasons most of us don’t reach our goals.

Lol, I am not looking for a fight, why do you think that? Everybody is entitled to his / her opinion and his / her way of reading the Google TOS. As for “paralysis by analysis” I couldn’t agree more, excuse me, time to write more content for my sites 😉 SY

Hey Lis,

Thanks for that link mention, this whole thing with google making changes to the searches is making things more confusing with results.

I don’t use MS and other so no idea about that, hopefully if google are cleaning up, they get it right.

Definitely think google asked for the mess that has happened, they made it easy for some to use scraper sites etc and they know full well some will make thousands of the damn things.

Not to say yours are, they mucked up with legitimate sites too over the years and nothing surprises me anymore.

No wonder everyone has a love / hate relationship with them 😉


For a few weeks, Google was using an older version of their database (or they did an algorithm adjustment) where many new sites “appeared” to be deindexed. My scheduled weekly SEO Elite runs show that many of my sites dropped out of the index sometime after April 14 and came back somewhere around May 5.

I don’t know recall if SEO Elite scraps Google SERPS or uses the Google Developer API but the sites were not deindexed but dropped down from page 1 to page 80. (Now they’re back to page 1 and I did not upgrade to a new version to accommodate a new Google interface.)

But during this time period, panic set in. Some MMO Blogger blog gets flagged as spam by a competitor or irate user and it gets deleted; many new sites were shuffled around during this time frame, rumors flow and everyone changes their business model at a drop of a hat. Everyone now thinks they’re spamming G by building a niche blog.

Google will continue to make adjustments but they will not toss out your site if you’re providing rich, unique content that helps the end user. See:

This tells you exactly what G wants so why panic?

Howard – watch the video LOL Google is very good at the sales bullshite – if they could actually algrothmitically apply their so-called quality guidelines then a search for black laptops wouldn’t come up with the dot com of the same name – check it out – top quality content LMFAO!

A dance around the serps for a the week or 2 before/after a PR update is well known.

I’ve seen plenty of sites tossed out for quality content – including some of mine own – Google is in business – they are about returning the best return for their investors/owners – they have no real interest in anyone else’s business model

I am also suffering from this same scenario.. My site is no longer indexed for almost all my keywords even my name! I am trying to stay calm nonetheless I am suspecting a major search engine update which started with the change in interface.

My blog is now missing a major part of its daily traffic (60% comes from search engines and most of that part comes from Google).

Kimwell your site is still indexed but you may have lost rankings. There has been a major update going on since early April – and I don’t think its finished yet. Also I found your comment in Askimet you might want to ask for reinclusion

For some reason, Yahoo loves almost everything I write and Google hates almost everything I write. But- whenever G decides to clean house, my sites almost always shoot up. (Not enough to make me happy, just enough to keep me interested. G is such a tease.) Sites that I was going to drop are suddenly pulling in search traffic.

WorkdVixen Askimet hates you too – file for reinclusion to get out of the spam folder! Yeah Google hopes you will go away and stop trying – so keep trying LOL

Thanks Lis! I’ve noticed that my comments aren’t showing up right away, but since I mostly comment on MMO blogs (or those who know IM), I was hoping that everyone was just moderating comments. 🙁 Oh well, I went to and sent them a message- I hope that’s what I was supposed to do! And darn tootin’! Someday, G’s going to love me. 😀

I use Rank Checker from (a Firefox plugin) and I have noticed no such problems with either sites falling down the rankings or the automated rank checking software failing to work associated with the Google update.

They got the update out faster – market samurai is OK now too – my blood pressure has recovered too!

That is good to know for those who use Market Samurai. I notice Scroogle is also in trouble and not displaying results now. Hopefully this will lead to more use for those who follow SERPs closely.

Good news that Samurai is up and running again.. I have noticed a couple of my top earning adsense sites have dropped in earnings though, so I don’t think it is all just software issues.

I recently discovered that producing really top notch super high quality content does make a big difference and people start providing natural links to it (especially if you are doing video or photo instructions on “how to” something…). I’m also following Matt Cutt’s blog and realize that Google is evolving extremely fast in terms of realizing what your site is about without sniping your keyword or getting tons of exact anchor text backlinks (I don’t say that this doesn’t make a difference). I think that it’s time to take over real niches by providing good content and proving that you are the best site in that niche and deserve to become an authority. This is the future of making money online from informational websites and contextual advertising.

Invest in nice sites, write content that helps people find what they are looking for and there won’t be anything to worry about in terms of penalties by big G.

Google sends you traffic, but they want you to work hard for it!

It is what it is 🙂

Otherwise, it is time to start building lists – lol.


What you say makes sense – until you remember in the 99.99% of niches that aren’t Internet Marketing and MMO – there is no one wanting to link to your site – however beautiful your site is!

I’m an anti-social traffic, SEO oriented marketer 🙂 (at least I was for several years now!)

However, I recently noticed a bunch of links (and here comes the power of keyword rich domains) pointing to one of the new websites from several home improvement (gardening) forums. What I realized is that someone mentioned my blog in one of the threads and it really went viral. Half of those who commented did agree with what I was writing about and all the other didn’t. The thing was, I got links, and even several properly anchored ones.

How did they notice my blog/website without getting links first?

Well.. the recipe is buying preowned domains + writing good keyword rich and useful content that people actually search.

And yes, you can be social in a bunch of other niches besides MMO. I even created a Facebook account for that particular website and started to get followers.

Worried about showing ads to that kind of social traffic? Hide them using “Who sees ads” WP plugin and show it to search traffic only. Just like RT does on his blog.

I’m sure that Google loves me, lol.

Thanks 😉

I disagree to a certain extend Lis, there are a lot of sites people still like to link to pet, travel, hobby etc related niches, others might be more difficult, I don’t think it depends on how beautiful your site is, it depends more on how useful your site is for people that are interested in the same niche. But there might be things around that really don’t get linked to and / or need a lot of extra help to get noticed, I am rambling again, sorry, SY

Same thing happened to me, I was wodering… but since this article I am much more comfortable. Besides, I checked the search engines myself like

Hey its been awhile since I came over here but its great to see that your are still posting. In regards to this post, I have a quick question about hubpages. Lately, about half of my hubs have been getting indexed for several hours after I published, then they get de-indexed or dissapear. I have only been able to revive two of them, mainly from links from social sites. Anyways, a few of them were over 1000 words – eek. I done a few tests in an attempt to bring them back. A few of them got several ezine articles and they have yet to re-appear. I ahve a few theories, but wanted to know what you thought or if it was happening to you.

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