If an established site drops from page 1 to page 10 – what do you do? I’ll tell you what I would do!

It’s Mike Liebner here! A brand new Blogging Underground member just asked me for help in the BU forum and I thought I would share this valuable info with you too.

The BU member wanted to know how to get his old established “PageRank 3 authority site” back up to the top of Google, as it had been #1 for a long time and had dropped significantly. In particlular he wanted to know how to post in the BU blogs to fix the problem.

I analyzed his site and found a bunch of mistakes and problems so I thought I would share the suggestions with all of you guys and expand a little so you too can get an idea of the things I would do to bring an older established site up that had dropped in rankings significantly.


If an established site has major problems – just posting in the Blogging Underground blogs or getting links from any other websites or blogs is not always going to be enough to magically solve the problems that dragged a site down in the first place and get it back on top.

Don’t get me wrong – the right kind of links will help almost any site move upwards – but we also need to look at other factors that could be hurting the site.

It could be as simple as getting a few of the right kind of links – but most likely it would require more than just OFF SITE FACTORS to get a site moving up the rankings and eventually back on top.

You may need to fix your ON SITE FACTORS too and correct any mistakes you can find.

Generally it’s pretty hard for me to make specific suggestions to someone about their site without taking a good amount of time to study the site in great detail. Problems are not always apparent on the surface. We don’t always see what Google sees unless we dig to find things. Plus I don’t know everything that has been done historically to a site which may have affected how Google sees that web site.

While it is normal for an established top ranking site to fluctuate in rankings when an algorithm change occurs at Google (they do happen with regularity) – it is not normal for a site to drop down 100 positions or worse.

If a ranking drops more than 50 or 100 positions then most likely there is something wrong with the site or you just did something they don’t like.

It might be fixed with some good quality links – but it may require additional work to get it back up.

So why does a site drop so drastically? Well – if it is still indexed there is hope. Also – you need to wait a few days or even a week or two if you can and see if it bounces back. A site will often come back after they re-adjust their algo changes – so don’t panic too quickly!

It may just be that over time a lot of little things added up and suddenly the site looks spammy – or it could be that the algo change factors something in heavily that was not factored in before.

Regardless of why a site has dropped – we need to look at the site itself and try to find things that we know that Google generally does not like and improve them.

Almost all sites have something that can be improved and often a few fixes can be enough.

The site I analyzed for the Blogging Underground member was NOT the type of site we teach members to build in the 12 Step Success Strategy Training.

It was more of a “cookie cutter” type site – very obviously auto generated by a script.

Sorry, but most coders who make scripts that auto-generate websites do not usually know GOOD SEO and they often structure sites the wrong way and do things that Google does not like.

A few less than perfect SEO blunders may not be a huge problem – but over time as a site matures, the bad things can start to add up and eventually hurt a site.

That’s why we offer training at Blogging Underground to help people build sites the right way from the ground up, so we have as much going for us in our favor as possible!

Every little bit helps!

The training here focuses on building themed content rich sites targeting a primary keyword and secondary keywords and supporting the site internally with good articles and proper site structure.

Sites that are built the right way from the ground up usually only need a small amount of good quality links to boost them to the top of Google because we only do things we know they like.

If you followed the training here at Blogging Underground and built sites according to the steps we teach, you most likely would NOT be having the kind of problem this member is having, because our training avoids doing the things that most often gets sites in trouble

The member’s site I have analyzed is more of a “cookie cutter” type of auto generated thin content site, built with a script that has little, if any original or unique content. It has lots of pages with similar or near identical content.

The site has page after age of line listings of services offered that link to inner pages with buy buttons and hardly any text.

I’m not slamming sites like this. I understand many of you have sites that are not purely “article type sites” and that’s fine – I also have some auto generated sites and sites that run scripts and do just fine with them – but you do need to be more careful with those kinds of sites because they are most likely to do things that can get penalized.

Penalties are normal – whether you are aware of the or not.

All sites get some kinds of penalties – that’s ok – usually they are not enough to drag it down, but unless you’re Wal-Mart or Amazon, or have a ton of natural traffic from people who love what you offer and visit your sites from word of mouth, it may not be easy to get on top with those kinds of sites if and when they get penalized for something.

Now – don’t freak out about getting penalized by Google.

Every site – even the most popular are getting scored and rated by Google and have some minuses going against them – it’s just that sites that have lots of PLUSES don’t get hurt as much by the penalties.

If your site ranked in the first 10 results before and you had a sudden drop to 100 or even lower, then there is a good chance something you did recently, or have been doing consistently factored in highly and is causing the drop in rankings.

Since we’re not talking about dropping from 1 to 2 or 5 – but rather dropping 50 positions or more in a short period – it can’t simply be related to what other sites are doing or have done – it’s something your site is doing.

The good news is that as long as your site is indexed by Google and can be found, there is a good chance we can get the site back on top by fixing flaws we know are bad for a site and by starting to do things we know Google likes.

If you start doing these things and see upwards movement it is simply a matter of getting enough little things on the site fixed to tip the scale back in your favor.

If however after a few weeks of fixing things and your site does not move up at least a little in the rankings – then you need to ask yourself if it’s worth spending much more time on fixing the site.

You don’t want to waste time if you know you have done something really evil like blasting directory submissions or some kind of large scale automated spamming that you got caught for.

That’s hard to correct and a site may not be able to recover in the immediate future.

For example if you have 1,000’s of identical spammy text links with the same exact text or too many SIMILAR links from blasts of some kind it could be holding you back.

Then again its possible Google has simply changed an algo and now doesn’t like pages that have over x % of keyword density – or too many links on a single page or whatever it may be. If that is the case a few simple fixes may be all you need to get back on top.

The site I looked at for the Blogging Underground member that dropped to 100th place for his main keyword is thin on content – especially on the home page. It is also repetitive and is hammering a lot of the same keywords at a very high density.

Check out your page URL in the free AUKDAT keyword density analyzer tool

> AUKDAT Article Undeground Keyword Density Analyzer Tool

This particular site I am analyzing has no real content other than listings of services and no real content or even a description of what the site is about. Just a list of what’s for sale.

That isn’t enough.

In this case I suggest adding a few paragraphs of text talking about “the primary target keyword” for the URL so there is some real relevant content on the page.

I also saw this site was using HOME as the link site wide – I would make sure that the HOME link is changed to the keyword being targeted or “The Keyword Phrase Home”

That’s why I like ‘exact match domains” so much. It is very natural to link to the keyword for the home page links site wide.

The site has over 3,000 pages indexed but all the pages are near identical. I only looked at a handful but all of them were “thin content” and/or replicated/duplicated/similar content.

A few good original article pages would do wonders for this site.

Create some articles for relevant related keywords and put them on the site and make sure each article page links to the home page with the “exact target keyword” within the content. This is an in-content link and has magical powers whether internally on your own site or externally linking from another domain.

Each of the new article pages added to the site should be linked from articles posted in the Blogging Underground blogs and point to the new article pages that have the text links pointing at your home URL.

You will boost the value of these new pages and the relevance if done according to what we teach here at Blogging Underground will have a big impact.

Just a few articles will go a long way.

I suggest starting with a unique article posted in 3 different BU network blogs pointing at each new article page you added on your site. You are announcing your article pages in the BU blogs and establishing relevance for your keywords.

This is very powerful.

This in itself may be enough to get you moving upwards – but you still should try to fix other things you know can be improved on your site.

On this particular site I was analyzing, I would also make sure I had a good variety of links from lots of different places pointing at my home page, making sure that TOO MANY of them were NOT perfect links for “exact keywords”.

In other words make sure you have some links with the domain/URL or click here or click here for x etc.

The site I was analyzing had pages indexed on Google with BOTH www and without www – ie http://www.domain and http://domain

When Google sees those they consider them as 2 different URL’s that have exactly the same content. This dilutes BOTH URLS and makes it harder for that page to rank.

Make sure if this occurs that you put a script on your server to force one way or the other – otherwise your URL’s have duplicates with same exact content. You can do this by putting code in your .htaccess file

You can find the code in the BU Forum at this URL:


The site I analyzed had too much thin content, the near empty text light pages could be diluting the overall value of the site – especially if you have www and non-www URLS indexed that show exact same pages.

Get social!

It’s more important than ever to have some good social signals coming in to a site.

I would make sure the domain had a good variety of ‘social signals” coming in – Facebook likes, tweets on twitter linking to the site and some other web 2 links that popular sites usually have these days.

Also – if this is an important branded site or a money site, it should have its own associated social accounts that link back to the site and regularly announce things for the site.





Buffer Sites

Another thing that would help is to create a few related “article sites” about “the exact keyword target” and use the sites to link to your money site home page and to the best article pages.

They should have reasonably good content on them that is relevant to “the exact keyword target” and link from those articles to your home page and your best content on the money site.

Ideally you’d buy related “exact match keyword” domains that are on different servers/hosting/ip addresses – but if not practical – free hosted blogs can also be used as the buffer sites.

Link the “buffer sites” in the Blogging Underground blogs and in other places to make sure those sites have a little power of their own.

That could help a lot to revive a site like the one I analyzed. The additional PLUS POINTS may be enough to outweigh any penalties or negatives that originally dragged the site down in the first place.

Any one or two of the things I suggested may be enough to get the site back on top – but maybe it will take more of them – so I would just keep going and making the improvements and fixes until some upward movement occured.

Those suggestions should help almost anyone get a site that dropped back up on top.

Just remember – you’re trying to tip the scales back in your favor – so start doing more good things and fix as many of the bad things that you can and you should be able to get an older site that dropped back to number one!

power of links

Best wishes for your online success!

Mike Liebner

Not a BU member yet? Be sure to check out the Special Quarterly Deal – it’s only $33. a month to join Blogging Underground right now! More details and the secret purchase link is HERE

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Apr 25th by Mike L


  1. Great article Mike!

    Now to bring my site back from the dead…

    Mike L

  2. Even tho I don’t think free buffer sites work as well as actual sites, they are real easy to set up and you can pound them pretty hard with links without much fear of them being delisted.

    Mike L

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