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Horror scenario: 301 question for you SEO experts

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by MrValdemar, Mar 13, 2017.

  1. MrValdemar

    MrValdemar Newbie

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    Since the last part of january, 4 of my most popular pages from my website have been demoted or simply disappeared from SERPS. They all used to be in the top 3 for extremely popular KWs and brought 30k visitors per month to my website. Now they bring close to zero. My website is completely whitehat with the following exception

    Being honest, these pages used to have a lot of overstuffing for the KWs they were ranking for. Not sure why G decided to punish those pages now, but that was fair enough. I removed any overoptimization almost instantly after the slap. This was a month and a half ago, none of the pages have recovered at all.

    I've tried everything I know (which isnt a lot but I've devoted a lot of time to study SEO these last 10 years), check their links, anchors, improved the site speed and crawling, removed any errors or 401, added new clean content without the overstuffing, deleted pages that could be seen as repetitive or redundant, adjusted canonicals, augmented and improved the internal linking, and actually a lot more without any result. The website hasnt been punished as a whole, I do still rank for some competitive words and I dont have any manual actions in WMT

    Frankly I'm at my wits end, I can't think of anything else I can do, except for two options I still have:

    1/ moving the pages to a new URL, still inside my website, but instead of the URL
    /clothes it'd be a 301 with the same content but redirected to /menclothes

    do you think this 301 would remove the penalty and those 4 internal pages would rank again? is this a black hat practice?

    2/ Delete those 4 pages, and make them again from scratch in the same website without any 301 and with a completely different url. I would lose the links though and god knows how long it'd take me to rank again for those very competitive words
     
  2. MrValdemar

    MrValdemar Newbie

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    wow, sure.....

    anyway my question was too long, basically I got penalized on 4 pages on my website and despite trying alot ot things nothing seems to recover their rankings, would change their URLs and do a 301 to the new urls while keeping the exact same content, do any good?

    thanks
     
  3. validseo

    validseo Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    keyword stuffing is a manual penalty. So if you don't have a manual action then that might not be the problem. I would start with just doing a minor freshness update to the page and double check everything in GSC to make sure there aren't other issues.
     
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  4. MrValdemar

    MrValdemar Newbie

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    seems like good advice, but would the 301 idea help or harm?
     
  5. validseo

    validseo Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Probably harm. Each redirect counts as an additional layer of linking. Even though Google recently implied there is no cost to redirects that still does not appear to be true. I recommend minimizing or avoiding redirects if possible. Save it for a last resort.
     
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  6. MrValdemar

    MrValdemar Newbie

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    damn, that was my last resort

    Im going to try the refresh content idea but I dont think its going to work, Ive tried so many things and nothing has worked, those pages are dead and buried
     
  7. ZachMiller

    ZachMiller Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    301 Redirects are a last ditch effort. They may bring up the rankings to begin, but the rankings will fall back where they were. 301s aren't dead.. just DIFFERENT.
     
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