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Has removing a post killed my google ranking?

  1. I made a post private on tuesday (by mistake - wasn't having a good day) which is now public again, and set another back to draft status. Within 24 hours, I've all but disappeared from google. Is there any chance these things are linked? The only other thing which might be causing a problem is that I've been scraped a few times recently.

    Thanks!

    The blog I need help with is thetruthaboutbreastfeeding.com.

  2. We can only speculate, since you haven't provided a link to the blog. Speculating, I'd say unless the posts you set to Private or Draft were your most popular, it's unlikely they're a factor.

  3. ok, thanks for that. blog is here: http://thetruthaboutbreastfeeding.com/. Could it be the scraping that's causing a problem? If it had just happened for a couple of posts I wouldn't be too worried, but I've suddenly disappeared from the top 10 pages for lots of very different keyword searches that used to have me on the first page.

  4. Scraping is pretty common and usually doesn't affect the original blog. It seems very unlikely your private post is related.

    You're still in Google's index: http://ismyblogworking.com/thetruthaboutbreastfeeding.com

    Most likely Google is playing funny games again. Hopefully it is only temporary. You can check that nothing is wrong by setting up Webmaster Tools:

    http://support.wordpress.com/verifying-with-google-webmaster-tools/

  5. Thanks. Set up the Webmaster Tools and discovered that I had 67 404s (as a result of the post deletion issues described above). These appeared on the same day I disappeared from Google. I realise this could be a coincidence, but I'm concerned the two are related. Is it possible to delete a post without ending up with these crawl errors or do I just have to sit it out?

  6. No, if the search engines have already indexed a post, then deleting it will produce a 404 and the search engines get cranky.

    In webmaster tools, you can submit URL's of your own stuff to have them remove them from their indexes. It typically will take 2-3 weeks for google to get them removed. Sometimes sooner.

    Generally it is a really bad idea to publish stuff and then a while later delete them. You will always suffer in the end due to the 404 errors and cranky search engines.

    And Google is not your only problem. Any search engine that has indexed those posts will be getting 404's, and getting cranky also.

  7. Yes, all my search engine traffic was affected by this... All the files are now back in place, so no more 404s, but I guess it might take a while to recover from this. Thanks for your help.

  8. The next time they crawl your blog, they will see the posts are back in place and the 404's will go away.

    You can also through webmaster tools ask google to reverify your site.

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