Discussion 2: 7 SEO Steps for Website Rehabilitation after Google Updates
Rehab page after Google update / Your Advice?
Guys I would appreciate your professional comments. I am now managing a German language content site in the health and beauty sector. 💁♂️😎😋
The page was launched in may 2019. Meanwhile DR42 with 289 referring domains. 98 posts published, with 361 pages indexed on Google (I'll get into that in a moment).
The site was hit quite hard by the last Google update and was already stagnating before. With the Google Dec Update, the site lost about 50% traffic from the previous month. 😣🙄
I am now supposed to bring the site back to old glory. I have found some ideas, but would like to hear more opinions. 🐱🏍
1) Link Ratio
The page has almost 90% DoFollow links. I think the ratio is dangerous. That means I have to create NoFollow links or change existing DoFollow links. This sucks, because in Germany few people link without money. That means you have to pay links most of the time and then of course you don't want to spend your money for NoFollow 😉.
2) Link Sources
The site has a fast link growth for German standards. 289 RD in about 20 months. These are not Private Blog Network (PBN) sites. But there are pages from link traders. Pages on which a lot of outgoing links are made. Would you go through all link sources again and sort them out if necessary? What would you pay attention to? 🧐🤓
3) Exact Match Anchors Incoming Links
There are a few Exact Match Anchors. For example, there is an article about hyaluronic acid, this article was linked to 15 times with Exact Match "hyaluronic acid" from different sources. Will not be easy to get all pages to link again with another Link Anchor.
4) Outgoing Links / Domains
It is linked 15 times to an online store, which is from the same owner. In principle, this was the reason for this page. To generate traffic from an "independent portal" for this store. All links are DoFollow because one also wanted to give some link juice. Critical? 🤔
5) Duplicate / empty pages
A lot of different tags were used in posts. These have zero added value in my opinion, but have generated many pages. This is WordPress. With 98 published blog posts plus 10 pages, there are 361 results in the Google index. Quite a few archive pages resulting from the tags. I would now remove all the tags and delete or deindex the archive pages.
6) Content Optimization
The content is very good and solid. Search intent has been met. 🥳 In November, important articles were also reworked with SurferSEO. This did not bring success. I would first do everything else and then look again to see if something can be improved here.
7) Google reports at the Core Web Vitals: Problem with LCP: longer than 2,5 s (computer & mobile), for mobile additionally CLS error: more than 0,1 (mobile device).
The site is based on WordPress and also the blog posts are created with Elementor. This eats time and makes it complicated. Switching from Elementor to WordPress Gutenberg would be a huge hassle. Anyone have experience with this? 👷♂️
I can see if the images can still be optimized a bit and if the webspace can still be optimized. Maybe I still need to call in a Speed Optimization Expert.
I attach a few screenshots. Does anyone else have any hints? Possibly also been affected by the December update? 🤓✌️👂
8 👍🏽 8
Obviously I don't think the reason the site's traffic is falling is due to links, anchor texts, etc.
The problem is all about the E-A-T update. All health sites were positively or negatively affected by this update.
The quality of the articles is no longer enough, especially for health sites.
Research the E-A-T. In particular, be sure to review the Google quality page guidelines document.
If you succeed in resolving the E-A-T issue, your traffic will be back. Good luck!
Thank you very much for your opinion. EAT should already play a role since the middle of 2018. However, as far as I know, it is not yet clear what exactly the December update has now brought.
The site is a YMYL site (health). However, from what I know of EAT, this page does not contradict EAT.
Expertise – The author is a medical expert, a health economist. Has relevant publications. Author bio is under each blog post etc . All content is very deeply researched and backed up with scientific sources.
Authority – The content is definitely linkworthy and of very good quality. Search Intent also fits. Of course there are sites that have a bit more authority. The only thing I can think of is that some of the link sources have a low DR. But they are always relevant to the topic.
Trustworthiness – As I said, Search Intent is adhered to. No bullshit is told. Sentiment of content also fits. The content is written by an appropriate author and is scientifically proven. The content is helpful. I'll look at the CTR and time spent on the site again. But technical security SSL etc. is not a problem.
Of course, that was only a fraction of what you can do for EAT, but in total I can't think of any big issues.
So I can't find any real leverage with your advice. Or what do you think?
You think that author is scientifically proven, but Google can think another. Maybe links on and from trusted medical sites can help
For you, the author can be an authoritative person on health matters. So is it the same for Google?
In order for the author to be recognized as an expert by Google, he must have scientific articles on health issues on the internet. Do you think the author of the article is like that?
Perhaps there are things you should do with the backlink profile. I recommend getting backlinks from sites that are considered authoritative by everyone. (The Guardian, BBC or other authorized health site)
Sure we all like links from such authority pages but that is the hard work 😂 but you are absolutely right. I will do some more research tomorrow regarding the authority of the author and will try to increase that. Thanks for your help
Sure we all like links from such authority pages but that is the hard work 😂 but you are absolutely right. I will do some more research tomorrow regarding the authority of the author and will try to increase that. Thanks for your help.
Here's what I did. I googled our author. I then went through the first 50 pages and got an impression. About 50-60 percent are health sites or close to it. There are one or two really big authority sites (comparable to healthline in USA).
What I noticed is that on the last places there were also one or two sites with XXX junk and two sites that obviously copied our content.
I will see if we can publish on two other big sites. But that will be very cost-intensive.
Otherwise, the author has a good picture in the Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) from my point of view. But this is of course only my opinion and not Google.
Otherwise, I am currently somewhat lacking ideas.
"The site is based on WordPress and also the blog posts are created with Elementor. This eats time and makes it complicated. Switching from Elementor to WordPress Gutenberg would be a huge hassle. Anyone have experience with this?"
What hosting provider you are using? There can be significant improvement if using a premium WordPress hosting provider.
Switching from Elementor to Gutenberg is common these days and usually helps. Of course it means that site structure and visuality has to be re-done completely and if you have used elementor also in your articles, it will require lot more work.
I know few very good agencies that are very proficient with Elementor so there are always the possibility to improve performance without switching from Elementor.
Currently it's a 10 bucks per month shared webhosting. It's a German hosting provider called ALL-INKL. Not really a premium hosting.
I will investigate the efforts to change from Elementor to Gutenberg upcoming week. I probably wouldn't change the whole site, but at least the blog post.
But as you said, since all post are also build with elementor it would require a lot of work. I guess we would have to migrate each post manually…
Which is your recommended agency for improving the performance of Elementor?
hey I feel your pain
I have a health site and got hit by Google update 3th Dec
lost 80% traffic
trying improve my EAT too, but no success so far… maybe in some months
good luck for us
Oh Bruno, unfortunately this looks very familiar. What have you done so far to improve EAT?
All the best man!
Adas » Marcel
were some ideas that I had. if you have others to suggest, I would love to hear.
Take a look at the top 10 on Ahrefs. Compare the amount of exact match anchors for "hydrochloric acid". Is your site an outlier?
If they have 0 exact match and you have 15 then that could be a problem.
Marcel ✍️ » Nathan
competitors and amount of exact match anchor "hyaluronic acid"
SERP2: 5 (24%)
SERP3: 3 (60%)
SERP4: 6 (23%)
SERP5: 156 (43%) Wikipedia
SERP6: 1 (33%)
SERP7: 8 (27%)
SERP8: 15 (54%) Our Site 😉
So, yes we are a little bit above all others. Will try to fix that
Marcel ✍️ » Adas
Check out one of my other comments. Do you work with more than one author? Are they pseudonyms or do these authors also publish something elsewhere under their names?
Otherwise, I would Google their names and see what Google finds about it. Whether the names are always in connection with texts in the field of Health or published on sites with Health.
Possibly also link to LinkedIn or Twitter profile etc. from the author bio under the post.
Adas » Marcel
thank you for this. and yes, there is more than one author. however, they only publish on their Instagram accounts. I already put their Instagram and Facebook below.
Our author will now contact large Health sites once again. Not on our behalf but as a freelance journalist. She has a few contacts. She is also trying LinkedIn. She will try to write more articles for big publications to have her name even more on these authority sites.
These will not be guest posts for us. They won't allow links to us. Just content for those sites to boost the author profile. I don't know yet what to think about it and if it's worth the effort.
"The content is very good and solid".
Well, how do you know?
1) No, it isn't critical.
2) But there are pages from link traders. So, Google devalued these links. It is a game. These link can boost your site until Google's link algorithms find your pages.
3) It is a bad way of using exact match anchors.
4) No, it is not critical.
5) No, it is not critical in this case.
7) It is not critical.
Thanks for your opinion. 🙂
"The content is very good and solid".
"Well, how do you know?"
–> Well, of course it's just my opinion and not googles view. But, Author is known for health topics. The topics are excellently researched with sources. The texts are structured accordingly so that the reading flow is good. Images, videos are integrated and optimized. SurferSEO optimized. Content length also in the range of the other TOP 3 or slightly more. etc.
But as I said, just my opinion.
I'm also surprised that you rate many points from above as uncritical. Have you proven this? Thanks in advance!
My opinion is based on my experience and the main principles of Google search. Search engine is software, that do something to get result. Many people focus on factors which can't be important to search engines or their algorithms. For example, duplicated content. Google adds only one page to the index. So, for search engine is no matter how many duplicated pages were created by Content Management System (CMS). Google Search "understands" that this case is possible. That is why they use canonicalization. Value attributes (dofollow, nofollow) is just a hint. You can use the nofollow value when other values don't apply, and you'd rather Google not associate your site with, or crawl the linked page from, your site. But it means nothing for your site visibility or ranking. There is no signal for Google. Google uses own algorithms to evaluate another sources. Links is the nature of Internet.
Discussion 1: My 2cents! When You Have as Many Sites and GMBs as I Do! Recovered From the Latest Google Algo Update
MY 2CENTS – When you have as many sites and Google My Businesses (GMB)s as I do, you will always see gains and losses with every Google update. Once again just wanted to share what I done to recover one of my biggest keywords of 37000 searches a month (product buying keyword)
– NOVEMBER 26th my site dropped from 2nd to 15th (so yeh it started way before 3rd December just that this time around the shifts were more than a couple spaces 😅)
– DECEMBER 1st back up to 2nd
– DECEMBER 4th down to 20th
– December 5th was approx 11th
– DECEMBER 8th DOWN TO 87th 😔
10 solid days in the 90's
TODAY is December 20 (uk) (after some dedicated work) back up to 4th
What I did:
1) LINKS – Had too many long tail anchors (all branded in some way) so added 2 links with shorter anchor text (synonym anchor text by the way) – some of you call them Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) and some of you mite call them "re-occurring"
2) Added a heat map to WordPress and used that to shift the page around and put popularity further up the page
3) Added a whole new menu of its own which were around 6 clickable buttons with hopper links (some of you know these as Jump Links) – the menu consisted of variations of the actual product for which I already had content on page (for example "blue jeans" "red jeans" "pink jeans" and so on )
4) for once in my life , I actually set a "text to keyword ratio" on page and changed any extra exact match keywords to once again "SYNOMYMS" (1% to 300 words to be exact) the article is 3400 words so it could be different for you
5) Analysed number one , two and three websites and literally copied the on page data (amount of keywords, description size, Htags, Alttags)
6) Took position 1/2/3 content and matched with mine – anything I was missing was added
7) Appropriate Schema was added (I say "appropriate" because most people add local business and the truth of the matter is that there is a schema for tons of business types and category types available)
even though the saying goes that "Google knows all" and "sees all" , Google uses Ai , and Ai is still a machine which depends on "learning", from the site above and two other sites which I have taken similar steps and managed to recover another one (awaiting the last one which wasn't hit so badly) it seems the most important thing was obviously "user experience" (due to Google knocking on about it) and the Ai still relay on us as webmasters to tell them What the site is actually about, what entities are associated with the website on the web, what the start goal is (user intent, site signals ) what the end goal is from our website (to sell Something, affiliate a 3rd party sale, provide info and so on)
Google still needs a lot of help to see a clear picture
If you were hit, What did you do to help recover this time around?
Ps…. I know I will get top spot in a few days because I've bettered my site than the top 3 sites by all angles
66 👍🏽 69
[filtered from 43 💬🗨]💬🗨
My 2 penneth- I think the work and the results are coincidental
Hey bro i respect everyone's 2 penneth's 😅
Would U like to elaborate on that?
Ronnie » Sandhu
I don't think the bounce back was because of the work, I think it would have happened anyway
Sandhu » Ronnie
And that's the beauty of never knowing with Google hey?? 😅😂 ….. but on a serious note, like, I have tons of sites and all follow a similar system which is applied, only 3 of these were hit by 1000% decrease, most of them were up ( very similar niches and keywords) and a bunch that didn't exceed 40-60% loss which all came back… the 3 that were hit 1000% or so never came back until I actually did something about it… I waited a few days between each and now a second one (out of the three ) has recovered it would be quite a pattern if I get the third one back a couple days after I apply the above fully… also just to be clear "I actually always advise my friends to wait it out" also been working and watching one of these sites for almost a decade now and went with my instinct I suppose 🤷♂️ but thanks for your input bro, I get where you are coming from too and would of loved to have been on your side of the fence when shit hit the fan 😅
Well, i was dropped on 60% at 4th an fully recovered at 10th of december. What i did? Nothing.
So, how you can be sure, that your actions give you any results and that it wasn't just Google backup?
60% drop to 1000% drop is very different my friend , I have tons of sites and most of them recovered by 15th , this one just didn't recover so easily.
Sorry by the 11th to be exact.
Plus Google would of returned me back to number 2 not 4 , anyway , it's good news that you didn't have to do anything (just like I didn't have to do anything to many of my sites)
but this specific one?
Was missing all
Those things above