Google changed my pagerank in a flash many years ago back in 2014. What would you have done? You awake one morning and checked your email to find a penalty greeting from Google. Oh no, you think. What is your new pagerank? You checked your pagerank that was rated a #3 last night and it’s now down to a zero this morning.
Where did you start? You may have wanted to cry, shout or even kick something. You were in the Google penalty box!
However in 2022 you would not know your pagerank score. Google did away with pagerank years ago but still uses it as an SEO measurement according to Hubspot. It’s like your grandmother’s old secret sauce recipe, no one knows exactly what is in it.
How and Why Google Changed My Pagerank – The Penalty
Today you may find a warning in your Google Analytics or in your Google search console. They still send out emails when you have anything that is not correct.Google did away with pagerank years ago but still uses it as an SEO measurement. #SEO Click To Tweet
What To Do?
Or you may think “This could make a good blog post and a test example for others.” That was my thought after the surprise and then not so surprised as I had been reading how sites like Wikipedia changed all their links to nofollow.
So the first thing I did was install a new plugin called WP External Links to add the nofollow attribution to all. I waited 24 hours and checked that it is working properly before submitting a reconsideration request to Google.
Here is an example of a newer alert today from the Google Search Console:
At least these new alerts give you something you can do and why an issue is affected on your blog or website. You can hit the fix button to go right to your dashboard to begin making the adjustment.
5 Steps to Check Why Your Pagerank May Be Down From a Google Penalty
- Check Your DoFollow Attributes – This seems to be the biggest recent cause of why Google changed my pagerank in a flash – You can visit Ahrefs for free to see all your site’s backlinks.
- Scan Your Website via WordFence – This suggestion came from my techie Mayura and he reminded me to do a WordFence scan. Mayura also went on to help with the reconsideration request process. (You can read the follow up post from the answer received from Google). FYI: Wordfence is a WordPress plugin.
- Check Your Visits Count – Did your views drop dramatically? If so it may be other SEO issues besides follow or nofollow links. Mine did not. The visits remained in the normal 3,500-6,000 per day range. This was not a reason Google changed my pagerank instantly. You can now do this with SiteKit – another WordPress plugin to make your life easier.
- Check Your Domain Authority – You can check it via my new favorite place for DA: Ahrefs domain authority checker. I recommend you keep a chart so you can check it monthly.
- Check For Spammy Comments – Do you check all your new comments? Do you look up their blogs and see if they are legitimate before approving new comments? I’m went back over old comments and deleted any that appeared spammy. I believe this could have been one of the reasons Google changed my pagerank overnight back in 2014.
What Are Unnatural Outbound Links?
I did not have any links for sale or link schemes. So what else would cause a Google Penalty like this to happen and why did Google changed my pagerank overnight?
- Sponsored Posts – If you do sponsored posts, as I have here on occasion, be sure to make those links all nofollow and label sponsored or at least in your footer area.
- Guest Posts – Do you have guest posts on your site with outbound links? Be sure to make those nofollow too. I did have contributor posts here that could have been the cause for Google to send me a penalty in 2014.
- Comments – Followed links with keyword rich anchor text could be another cause which is why I made my comments nofollow for now. Today they are back to do-follow with no issues.
What Else Is Google Doing To SEO of Late?
If you are a blogger like me you may be busy writing content, sharing others content, spreading your content out and not paying attention to every Google update. Today SEO is more about the EAT principle:
By showing the above characteristics on your blog you can rank better in the search engines whether on mobile or desktop. Providing helpful content to your readers can make a big difference not only to your readers but to the Google Gods.
The Dec. 2022 helpful content update was released Dec. 5, starting to become more visible today & will take about two weeks to fully roll out. It improves our classifier & works across content globally in all languages. Our help page explains more: https://t.co/MS7hbcBTsp
— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) December 6, 2022
Your Turn On MyPagerank Today
I’d love to know if you’ve received an email from Google about unnatural outbound links as well over the years. Are you glad we can no longer see the pagerank score that Google had back in 2014 when this blog post was first written? I’d love to hear from you about your pagerank or site’s SEO in the comment section below.
- Best Paraphrasing Tools Free for 2023 To Save You Money - January 31, 2023
- Instagram Saves: How To Leverage IG Saves For Engagement - January 27, 2023
- All You Need To Know About How To Save Live Photos As Video - January 26, 2023