Pagerank updated and the site is downgraded !

Google, Personal Blogs, Wordpress

There has been another round of pagerank  update and I see that many sites have got a higher pagerank and few of them have even managed to get a PR of 4 within few months !

This site had a PR of 4 from quite some time and even during the last update where few sites were penalized for selling Text Link Ads the PR of this site remained at 4

At that time, I thought that I wasn’t penalized since I was not selling Text Link Ads from my home page (which had PR4) and was only having post level ads (Around 5 post level ads were active).

However this round of pagerank update has taken the PR from 4 to 2, reminding me of QOT’s PR downgrade from 6 to 3 !

I am not sure if dividing existing PR by 2 is the way of Google penalizing sites selling text link ads. I immediately stopped Text Link Ads and in a way it was even easy since a new month just began !

I have also raised a reconsideration request with Google !

But again I am not completely sure if TLA is the core reason behind this downgrade ! I moved my hosting from Dreamhost to MT some time back and one of the biggest mistakes I made was not to check on the XML sitemap.

After the hosting change, the XML sitemaps generator plugin for some odd reason started putting the XML file on while Google was searching for it on I had manually set to and during the move, the option changed to “Automatic” and happened to select the subdomain.

And I realized this only after 3 weeks ! Duh !

The crawl stats also confirmed that the sitemaps were not accessible from quite some time !

Crawl stats

I fixed the issue and even then I see that 0 pages from sitemaps are included in the search index.

google webmaster

Has the PR downgrade affected traffic ?

This site for one gets almost 80% of the traffic from search engines (mainly Google) and I have noticed that some of the high traffic pages are no longer in the Top 10 !

I do see a dip in the number of unique visitors, but after including the landing page, the pageview count hasn’t changed much.

I am hoping the reconsideration request to fix the PR 🙂 And if any of you are running Text Link Ads and also get a huge amount of traffic from Google, you should consider switching the text ads off !

And yes be careful about XML sitemaps when you are moving to a new hosting ! (Though not sure if this is also the reason for downgrade !)

Talking of PR, do share your experience as well ! Has it improved ? Do you see change in traffic with the improved PR ?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Shankar Ganesh May 2, 2008 Link

    I think you should’ve dropped post level link ads way earlier. Atleast you did it now 🙂

    I always notice a slight increase in traffic before the toolbar PR update. It happened with my previous blog, and also with Killer Tech Tips.

    And then traffic shoots up in the weeks ahead, I’m expecting the same this time too. I only hope PR 6 stays 😀

  • venukb May 2, 2008 Link

    Right shankar, it was really dumb of me not to remove it then.

    Guess I am one of those types who continues making a mistake until punished 🙂

    Also going by the quality of content and publishing frequency on KTT, I don’t expect it to go down 🙂

  • TheAnand May 2, 2008 Link

    My PR has been circling 4-0-3-0-2. . . .each time just before the update, it goes into 0 then back to a nominal rank. . . .luckily for me, the search traffic has only been growing. If you do not plan to monetize….PR is just another number 🙂

  • SIddharth May 3, 2008 Link

    Better luck next time 🙂
    I got 0 this time 😀

  • Madhur Kapoor May 3, 2008 Link

    My PR increased from 2 to 3 . Earlier my PR was 0 as the site pas penalized for selling TLA . However i haven’t noticed any change with regard to traffic as compared to PR 5 or PR 0 . However PR does seem to effect the SERP .

  • venukb May 5, 2008 Link

    Anand, interesting to note that it goes to 0 in the toolbar, does it indicate that your PR is going down ?

    Madhur, did you also apply for a reconsideration request ? If yes what was the result ?

  • Nirmal May 5, 2008 Link

    I think you can get back the PR in some case, not sure, but Sizlopedia got back the PR5 after being penalized.

  • Raj May 5, 2008 Link

    I’ve had PR 4 for a long time now

  • venukb May 6, 2008 Link

    Yes Nirmal waiting for the result of the reconsideration request.

    Raj, If you want to leave it @ 4 , never sell text link ads 🙂

  • nikman May 10, 2008 Link

    Dang that really sucks. Guess that means no more selling links!

  • Raj May 13, 2008 Link

    This is a very nice post, thanks for posting about it!