Basically, my site was #2 in Google for my keywords for months, then on the little Google glitch day it dropped, then it came back to 3, then it danced around a bit for a week or so, and for the last week I have been in position 14 with no sign of moving. This site was one of my top earning AdSense sites. Here's an updated chart: I'm still #3 in Bing and Yahoo, where I have been forever. I have not touched the site in months, so the recent change in rank is not because of something I just did. Existing SEO for the last two years has been links from relevant sites. No spun content, no spammy blasts, no forum comments, and no blog profiles. Nothing automated. My site currently has 25 pages indexed in Google. All are high quality, handwritten content. I wrote it myself and the niche is something I'm interested in so it was easy. It's not the typical spun bullshit or low quality shit that people outsource that doesn't give the reader any helpful information. The current list of sites that rank higher than me is: 1) Wikipedia 2) Some EMD from 2005 with 3 pages and no AdSense with decent relevant content (this guy used to be in #1 and I used to be #2) 3) Youtube 4) Youtube 5) Some store with 3,000 indexed pages 6) Sales site 7) Sales site 8) Relevant forum thread 9) Informational site with decent content 10) Some dude's local business (it's not a local keyword, though) 11) Youtube 12) Youtube 13) Big ass information site 14) Me Important note: None of the sites on page 1 have AdSense. From this we can conclude that the presence of AdSense doesn't improve SERPs even though Google stands to make more money from ranking you higher THE PLAN: I'm going to divide this plan into 3 different phases and do each of them one at a time to see what has an effect. Phase 1 - Content. I highly doubt the reason my site dropped in ranking is because of content. After all, the current #2 guy only has 3 pages on his site (although he is an EMD registered in 2005). I am also an EMD registered in 2008. So for the next 10 days I am going to post one new page of high quality, handwritten content per day. All new content I post gets indexed within hours so Google does like my site. I don't think this is going to fix my ranking, but it's certainly not going to hurt anything. Unique content is always good. Phase 2 - Ad placement. I may have too many ads "above the fold" but I don't think so because I think the "above the fold penalty" was a while ago and my site was never affected. That being said, my site kind of looks like this: I don't think that's an above the fold penalty but you never know, so when I get to this phase I'm going to remove the big ad at the top and see if that changes anything. I will leave the ad in the text because it's a small one and isn't above the content, anyway. Looking at my AdSense data, that big ad bar at the top is the least-clicked, but has the second highest CPC and makes up about 1/3 of the revenue this site generates. Phase 3 - Social sites. I've never done any social media linking before because it's never been relevant to my site, and in general I don't like it. Like if you search for "dog training," does a Facebook page about dog training really help anyone? No. What about a Twitter? Of course not. But I guess if you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right? So I will make a Facebook page about my site and link to my site, and a Twitter account about my site and link to my site. How pointless. But maybe it will work. I don't really think my recent drop is because of my backlinking profile since none of it was spammy to begin with, and the general consensus is that these recent changes are on-page based. I can't think of anything else it could be. My backlinks are awesome, my content is awesome. Maybe my site just got labeled as "not updated enough" (doubtful, since the #2 guy only has 3 pages and hasn't updated his site in ofrever), or maybe an Ad penalty, or maybe I don't have any social media going on. Give me your thoughts. I will update this thread with progress throughout the 3 phases as I see what effect, if any, they have.