This would be just one short post about something that got me worried for a couple of days.
I got this site that’s giving me (not that big, but at least) a consistent flow of extra bucks every month. Though I have left it unattended for several months, it continued to earn a few bucks for me. Then, three days ago, I happened to type the site’s key phrase in google using Firefox and realised that it was no longer at the top of the serp. Refusing to believe what I saw, I fired up IE and did a search there. IE returned the same results. My site is no longer there. I clicked to see if it’s in the second page. Nada. Third page? Nada. I gave up and allowed myself to wallow in pessimistic thoughts. Btw, this site I’m referring to is the one I did work on in the post called ‘Update to Keyword-In-Domain-Name Experiment ‘.
Fortunately, me, my son, and my wife decided to watch the Transformers (Dark of the Moon) movie in the evening. So, whatever brewing suicidal thoughts were interupted until the next morning. I then decided to accept the fate of that site and chose to go with the flow…that is, try to see what I can do with it. I was certain, my site was hit by the G’s panda update, or whatever animal it is called after.
I set off to do an overhaul of the site and see if I can bounce it back to its former glory. For 3 days, I researched about how to improve it and I worked on my site whenever I can. I removed some ads and added some more text on the content body. In an attempt to make it look more pleasing, I added some color to the previously drab black titles and subtitles. Through all the time I spent, I was able to effect a considerable change in the look and content of the main page only. Note that the site is not wordpress. That means, I need to spend more or less the same amount of time on all the other pages (which I estimate though to be just around 30). And the work I’ve done so far is in the local server only. I have yet to upload it to the live server lunarpages.
A check with statcounter showed that indeed there was a 60% drop of visitors for the past 2 days.
But what’s this? On the third day, the traffic came back like nothing happened. The site is back in the serp but Google is displaying the www version of the site. Let’s say my site’s url is http://mysite.com/. This is the url that I’ve been building backlinks to and the url that’s been at number 1 for its keyword for several months. Then google ripped it off the serp for a couple of days and then put it back, but this time it’s http://www.mysite.com/, on the third day. What the…?
I dug further using MS and yeah, that indeed is what happened. The funny thing is that while http://mysite.com/ has more than 5,000 backlinks, the http://www.mysite.com/ has only 16.
The http://www.mysite.com/ stayed on number 1 for another couple of days. Then it disappeared completely. But google put back http://mysite.com/ in its place!
I still don’t understand what happened, and since everything’s okay, I chosed not to tire my brain analyzing whatever it was that happened. I figured my site was not after all a victim of the Panda update. On second thought, perhaps the site was picked and placed on the the Panda cell for scrutiny for a few days. So, now that it’s back, does that mean it passed the panda sniffing test?
Now, I don’t know what to do with the work I’ve done in the localhost server. Do I upload it so that all the changes I’ve made will be effected on the live site, or do I stay put? Meanwhile, I’m staying vigilant, since I am now finding Google a little too unpredictable for comfort. Who knows what will happen next.