Anyone Else Having Issues with Google Rankings?
First a couple of questions for you:
1. How have your Google Rankings been going since the core update in June? Have you notices any changes good or bad?
2. What is your niche?
3. What is your theme and do you use a theme builder?
I have been on a mission to figure out why Google has stopped ranking my pages, and I've been coming up with some new interesting things that could be the cause.
If you're having trouble, these may help you solve some of your problems. At least it will give you something to experiment with.
First, A Little Background Information
My site was bee-bopping along and doing pretty well. I was ranking in the top spots for a couple of my articles on Google. This was a few months ago.
Then, it just stopped.
I thought, "Well, I'll just write even better content."
I've been creating articles with a minimum of 1500 words, and most of them are over 2000 words.
I've been using these guys to add to my articles:
I kept thinking, "Now Google will rank me!"
I changed my theme.
I changed to the beta servers and now my site is super fast.
"NOW Google will rank me, for sure!"
I asked for advice from Kyle.
He told me to make my homepage a blog roll because it will make it easier for Google to find my new posts.
I use Jay's ranking system - every. single. time.
(Bing loves me though, so there's that...)
So what to do...?
I know There's Something That I'm Missing
Not to toot my own horn (toot toot), but I know my content is as good as what's currently ranking in many cases. So, I KNOW I'm missing something. Something's not connecting right with Google.
I've been on a search to figure it out.
Here are a couple of interesting things that I discovered that may be causing problems:
1. At some point my journey, I started using underscores in my images. For instance, easy_cash_4_ads_review.png. I JUST read that that's a big no-no. Oops! You are supposed to use your keyword in your image, but dashes instead of underscores.
From the css-tricks.com forum:
"Underscores are seen by search engines generally as “word combiners”, and hyphens are seen as “word separators.” Scott was right, never use underscores for anything. You can make a sure bet that this issue reflects one of the many, over 200 factors that Google takes into account when evaluating your website. They’ve inadvertently stated this in the past, even Matt Cutts has stated plenty of times himself not to use underscores."
Did you know that? I sure didn't.
2. The reason I asked what theme you use and if you use a theme builder is because I started suspecting that there's something about using Thrive Architect that is causing an issue. I'm reading conflicting reports on it, but some people say that it absolutely causes a problem in Google.
For those of you that use Thrive Architect, have your site rankings changed since the update? If you use another site builder, have your rankings changed?
3. I found a website where you can check your SEO, and I put my latest article through there. Some of the issues that are marked say "Link to a sitemap.html".
That came up a few different times. Does anyone know what that means or how to do that? It seems to be semi-important. I already add my sitemap.xml to Google and Bing, and this seems to be something different.
Today I created my blog post right in Wordpress using the new content builder (which is WAY better than what it was when it first came out), and we'll see if that helps.
Does anyone know if I can go back and re-name my photos, or should I just worry about it going forward? Also, thinking of completely removing Thrive Architect and see what that does, but that's daunting because I'll have to redo a LOT of my posts. UGH.
What do you think? Worth it or no?
Thanks for reading!