Blog Indexing Question: My ranking for my core keyword went up, but most of my site was recently put in Google's Supplemental Index, and I saw my income and traffic drop sharply. I have not built any links recently or made any changes to my site. How can I fix this and get my site top rankings again?
Answer: Google has been tightening down on their duplicate content filters. They have also been using PageRank scores to determine whether to index a page, if they should stick it in their supplemental results, and perhaps how strongly they should apply various filters (such as duplicate content filters).
Between slightly lower internal PageRank scores (minor issue) and increasingly aggressive duplicate content filters (major issue) and significant duplication from page to page on your site (major issue) much of your site is in Google's supplemental index.
Get Real Links:
In general, the best way I know of to move sites from more supplemental to normal is to get high-quality links (donâ€™t bother to get low-quality links just for linksâ€™ sake).
Since you said you have not built links in a great deal of time and few people are talking about your site in the active parts of the web the key is to write more about things that people are talking about or would comment on. Great content helps build links. You have to keep blogging if you want to keep your mindshare up.
Others pointing more link equity at your site from external sources should help improve your PageRank scores. PageRank is a large part of what is used to determine if a page is of high enough quality to stay indexed (or put in the supplemental index), and how aggressively duplicate content filters (and other filters) should be applied against it.
If you get strong editorial deep links from other bloggers that should also help search engines crawl that portion of your site better to make up for any information architecture related issues that may be causing certain portions of your blog to be inadequately crawled.
Make Longer Posts:
Since your posts tend to only be a sentence or two long, most of the pages are rather similar to each other. You may want to post more text in each post, and turn comments on to have more unique text on each page.
Reduce Sitewide Repetitive Features:
You need to make your page titles and meta descriptions unique on each page.
You may also want to resort your code order to put unique content higher in the page content and have duplicated and sitewide template related issues occur later on.
Don't Link at Garbage:
Since your site has a rather low PageRank you may want to only list your blogroll on your home page instead of every page of your blog. Take out other parts of your site that heavily duplicate each other from page to page. Also consider removing your sitewide links to some of the unimportant pages on your site to flow more of your link equity throughout your site.
I would also recommend removing the tagging pages on your site as your site is already navigable via your categories, and the tags create low value noise pages that reduce your link equity distributed on the quality pages. I also think it is foolish to link at all those auto-generated Technorati pages...that wastes a lot of your link authority. I would also recommend not linking to some of the pages you don't want Google to index, such as those printer friendly pages. You may also want to block those printer friendly URLs using the Robots.txt protocol.
You also have a few broken links on your site that could be fixed.
All these changes should facilitate better indexing of your blog posts.
Issues for Commercial Sites:
Many commercial sites (especially thin product database sites) also fall into the Google Supplemental index. The above examples all apply to those types of sites, but in addition you could consider the following
- add an editorial element to your site to improve your sitewide authority score
- enable customer feedback and reviews to get more unique content on your pages
Keep in mind that if you do not do any offline marketing or much marketing outside of search, your site is more prone to large swings from search related fluctuations than some other sites which have more brand equity and/or do other forms of marketing.
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