Ideas Why My Traffic Dropped to 1/3

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  1. Glenn Stok profile image95
    Glenn Stokposted 10 years ago

    In the past few days my traffic had dropped to 1/3 of what it was.  Most of it lost from Google.

    Besides the latest Panda update, which helped some and hurt others, I am wondering if a change that HubPages just made had had a negative effect...

    Ten of my hubs that were idle (not featured) have suddenly become featured. I read Simone Smith's post (posted March 25th) about how HP changed the methods of featuring "to give them more time to naturally drive search traffic."

    My take on the matter of non-featured hubs:

    When a hub of mine became idle I would do one of two things. If I felt I could improve it, I would. Then it would be featured again. But in many cases I realized that they were not really offering any value and I deleted them.  I had been deleting a lot of my hubs due to this.

    I had been planning to delete the last 10 that were idle, but didn't want to go below having had 100 published hubs. So once I got down to 100 remaining hubs, I had been deleting one for each new one I wrote.

    I was actually taking advantage of leaving those particular hubs unfeatured so that they would not pull down the ranking of my other hubs in the eyes of Google. It seemed to be working. This idea was based on a statement Google had made -- stating that any poor content can hurt the rest of the site.

    But now that HP had suddenly featured all my hubs again, I wonder if that is the reason for my reduction in traffic.

    Any thoughts on the matter, or input on your own experience, are highly appreciated. Hopefully the results of this thread I am starting here may provide useful information for everyone. Did you suddenly have a bunch of idle hubs become featured again? And did you notice a drop in traffic shortly after that?

    1. Simone Smith profile image89
      Simone Smithposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Paul Deeds, in another thread on un-Featured Hubs becoming Featured again, had this to say:

      Because it takes time for search engines to crawl and propogate a noindex designation into the search results, it's possible for a Hub that was not featured because of low traffic to regain featured status without an edit if it's traffic increases.

      I's fairly unusual, but there has been a fair amount of turbulence in the Google indexes in particular lately.  So that's my best guess as to what may have happened.

      Re: the recent changes we have made. If anything, they seem to have helped our traffic, which is moving in a good direction, but it's too early to say.

      I'm sorry about the dip in traffic you've experienced! Here's hoping it is very, very temporary.

      1. Glenn Stok profile image95
        Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Thanks, Simone, for your reply. The dip in traffic could also be due to people being away for the upcoming Easter weekend. I'm never worried about a short term drop. But this time it's been enormous, and just after all my un-featured hubs became featured in the last couple of days. So that's why I was wondering if that may be the reason.

        As for what you said about Google featuring hubs without an edit, I don't understand. Unless I totally misunderstood what you were saying. Please correct my understanding of all this... As I understand it, being featured in HubPages so that they appear in our profile also allows Google to decide to index our hubs. If it is not featured in HubPages, then it includes a NOINDEX tag so Google may decide not to index it. But that has no certainty that Google will obey. I know that because I have noticed some of my idle hubs (non-featured hubs) were still indexed by Google anyway -- at their choosing.

        1. profile image0
          summerberrieposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          In my research about if placing a noindex tag on a hub hurts the hubs rankings once the noindex tag is removed ---- I read somewhere google does not necessarily obey the noidex tag on urls if those urls are substantial enough (substance coming from linkage).  So sites like the Department of Motor Vehicles might have a noindex tag on a page but if that page has enough links then google keeps it indexed.

          I don't remember the source of the infor/nor how reliable it is,but that is just something I read that might fit your situation.

          1. NateB11 profile image90
            NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

            That makes sense, and I've seen non-featured hubs in search engine results, so I surmised they were still indexed.

        2. NateB11 profile image90
          NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Yes, I've seen non-featured hubs pop up in search engine results, so I figured they were still indexed. Also, I had a discussion on a forum, and another hubber and I both had hubs come out of idle status, and I presumed it must have gotten traffic and woke up.

    2. NateB11 profile image90
      NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I've seen a surge, then a drop, then usually the traffic goes back up. I'm thinking any drop in traffic is most likely temporary. I have brought a few hubs out of idle status recently and it hasn't created a drastic drop in traffic.

      1. Jean Bakula profile image93
        Jean Bakulaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Usually the traffic goes down on weekends, and the Easter holiday may have something to do with it. It's my second Spring on HP, and it seems traffic does get slower about now and remains that way until the summer is over.

        1. NateB11 profile image90
          NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Good point about Easter, I hadn't thought of that; people are probably visiting family.

      2. NateB11 profile image90
        NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I might have spoken too soon, my traffic has dropped quite a bit now. While I've watched my traffic before, I haven't paid attention to exactly how much of a drop it does on the downside; it fluctuates a lot. I think I'll start watching it; if it doesn't come back up to something normal, I'll start to wonder; might need to do something with low-traffic hubs or something.

        1. Marisa Wright profile image87
          Marisa Wrightposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Repeat after me:  low traffic Hubs don't do any harm, low traffic Hubs don't do any harm, low traffic Hubs don't do any harm.

          That's not to say you should ignore them all.  You could do some keyword research to see if there's any way you could improve their traffic - I repeat, not because they're doing any harm, but because more traffic is always our goal here.  However, often it's just that you've chosen a subject that isn't very popular (or you've chosen a subject that's too popular and already saturated) so those Hubs are never going to do much.  If that's the case, then no amount of tweaking is going to make any difference, and that's OK.

          Some of my idled Hubs have come back to life, and my traffic has just had a surge.

          1. janderson99 profile image54
            janderson99posted 10 years agoin reply to this

            How and Why?
            "my idled Hubs have come back to life" ???
            - other people are reporting the same thing.

            1. Marisa Wright profile image87
              Marisa Wrightposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Because they've tweaked the traffic thresholds.  It was discussed somewhere on another thread.

              1. janderson99 profile image54
                janderson99posted 10 years agoin reply to this

                Grace Period?  Interesting that it's retrospective!

          2. NateB11 profile image90
            NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Well, that's good to know.

        2. NateB11 profile image90
          NateB11posted 10 years agoin reply to this

          I think a bit of a false alarm, anyway; stats are frozen, at the moment. Haven't been updated for about 21 hours. Which is alright with me, explains why my traffic isn't showing.

    3. Jlbowden profile image87
      Jlbowdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this


      You certainly bring up an interesting, as well as good point about the whole traffic issue. In a lot of instances, the ongoing up and down traffic dilemma appears to often be a mystery.  Just like our individual hubber profile scores. What given parameters for example constitute you receiving a score of 100, for a few days to a week. Then suddenly you drop down to a 95, or 96 overall score. And there is really no known reason why you may have dropped from that 100 score to the 95. Is there a particular equation etc... , or something that we as individuals do to achieve these varying scores? This could be brought up in an entirely different forum and this issue, just like panda updates and factors that drive our traffic has also been mentioned numerous times in the past.

      But if there is also a separate equation,whether governed my Google, or Panda updates, as far as rise and falls to the traffic to our different hub articles, then that is really a tough question to answer. I find that my traffic over the last month did drop about a 1/3 as well.  However at the same time, about a half dozen hubs of mine that were idle without any prior re-editing were featured. And when I saw a duel increase in traffic, I really had very few hub articles featured, if any. 

      So again this is a mystery to many of us, including myself. Possibly we should each start an individual journal, or log on each of our highest performing hubs, to see what changes come before, or shortly after we make changes to them, as far as traffic and other parameters go. This over time, may help each of us pinpoint, what governs the drastic up and down traffic changes that most of us experience. And pin the culprit on either google, Panda updates, or just poor performing and idle hubs to boot.


      1. Glenn Stok profile image95
        Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Jim - It looks like you had the same experience as I did. 1/3 drop just when HP added back all the idle hubs.  I really feel like deleting those hubs I had left idle before. But I didn't want to go below 100. I know it's silly to think in those terms. I shouldn't care if I have less published hubs. I think I cut it in half already. If I brought it down to 90 hubs and left just the ones Google sends traffic to, then maybe I'll get more Google-love overall.

    4. Marisa Wright profile image87
      Marisa Wrightposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Glenn, we all know that even a few low-quality posts will result in a low Panda score, which will drag down your whole sub-domain.

      But surely you're not saying you thought your idled Hubs were low quality?   As you should know by now, those Hubs were never idled because of poor quality, they were merely idled due to lack of traffic.  That's why they've become featured again, because HubPages has tweaked the traffic threshold.

      Another question. When those Hubs were idled, did you see an improvement in traffic?  If not, then they weren't harming your Panda score before, so there's no reason they would harm it now.

      1. GinnyLee profile image89
        GinnyLeeposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I have had two major drops in traffic similar to yours.  In both cases, the views bounced right back up after 1 -2 days. I hope yours does the same.

      2. Glenn Stok profile image95
        Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Marisa - Well I'll tell you a little secret. Way back when Google first announced that poor quality can hurt the rest of the site, I made a list of hubs that I wanted to delete to help the rest of them. But I was deleting slowly one by one.  Then when HP started doing the idle thing, I found it interesting that the ones they idled were the ones I selected to be removed. 

        And yes, I did see an improvement. And worse, when they added them all back a few days ago, my traffic just fell off the cliff. 

        So the answer to your question is that I do feel those hubs had quality issues. Please note that I am talking about myself and this in no way indicates anything about other Hubber's Hubs.  We all have different situations. Even I do. I agree with you that there are other causes for not getting traffic. It could be a poor choice of keywords. Or it might be too much competition with other article on the web dealing with the same category. All this can also lead to not getting traffic.

        Nevertheless, I did make my own judgement call on my own quality. And I was tough on myself, and had deleted a whole bunch of hubs (over many months) that I realized either were not what people were searching for, or did not have enough authority power behind it.

        By "authority power" I can give you an example  -- Those Hubbers that Paul Edmondsen posted about. They  had great traffic for a very good reason -- they have degrees and whatever else is needed to display authority on the subjects they write.  I tend to write some science related hubs, but since I am not an authority figure in the sciences, those hubs of mine did poorly. I also wrote some hubs on health related issues based on my own experiences. But non of that really works either because I am not a doctor. I thought that sharing my experiences may be something of value to others going through the same things. But I guess I was wrong.

        What all this boils down to is that I realize I need to focus on what works for me. I do see which hubs work, and I see why. So I just really need to write ONLY on those subjects. I guess that might apply for anyone -- Stick to what works, drop the rest.

      3. DrMark1961 profile image96
        DrMark1961posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Marisa you stated that we all know that a few low-quality posts drag down your Panda score. How do we know this? Should I be deleting some hubs instead of just adding more? How do I know what to delete? Do I base it on traffic, hub score, etc.
        Any clues? Suggestions?

        1. Glenn Stok profile image95
          Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          DrMark - See my prior post to Marisa. I gave some ideas there about how I plan what I delete. As for quality. That is not a clear subject. A poor performing hub can be great quality (as I see among our fellow Hubbers here), but they still may need to be trashed in an effort to make Google happy so that they send more traffic. As for your first question about Marisa stating that we all know that low quality drags down our score -- this was mentioned by Google in their Webmaster Blog a long time ago. Actually the way they stated it -- it lowers the ranking of the rest of the site.

        2. Marisa Wright profile image87
          Marisa Wrightposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          We know it because Google has told us. Traffic is irrelevant. HubScore is irrelevant. 

          There used to be a great blog post on the Google blog which explained
          what they meant by "quality" - although at the end of the day it was still open to interpretation. I can't find it now, and the "quality guidelines" on Webmaster tools aren't nearly so detailed.

          I'm sure you're not guilty of the most obvious transgressions like copied content, keyword stuffing, spammy links, excessive affiliate linking (Google doesn't mind affiliate links so long as they're limited and relevant).  However there are a few other issues which you might have.

          One is short content. Many bloggers (myself included) used to post very short posts occasionally - for instance when we'd come across a useful video or some handy links. If you want to do that today, you must add a reasonable amount of text to go with it, or it will be judged as "low quality" and can bring down your whole site. For a blog, the minimum is around 250 words. 

          Another problem is multiple posts which aren't sufficiently different from each other.  Google can decide these are merely "fillers".  One way they judge that is titles - which is why you should avoid using th same or similar titles and headings across several Hubs.

    5. Mark Ewbie profile image82
      Mark Ewbieposted 10 years ago

      That is an interesting and plausible theory.  I have kept on top of my idled pages - either deleting or revamping.  So I had nothing to come back.

      But I have been very suspicious of those low traffic pages that might not make the grade.

      I have no other observations to make, sorry.

    6. Randy Godwin profile image59
      Randy Godwinposted 10 years ago

      Obviously no one here knows anything for sure about what Google is doing for the moment.  Or if they honor no-index tags or simply ignore them in some cases.  I would simply categorize it as normal HP clusterf**k we have grown used to puzzling about.  No one knows, I tell you!  roll

      1. wilderness profile image95
        wildernessposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        We don't know what, why or what the effect will be of google's actions, but whatever the answers are it was caused by HP clusterf**k.  At least if the result is bad - if good it was caused by incredible good luck in getting around the clusterf**k.

        The logic is impeccable! lol

        1. Randy Godwin profile image59
          Randy Godwinposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          No, of course any action HP takes it is blameless in your eyes, wilderness.  And I haven't experienced anything good HP has come up with in so long I really couldn't vouch for their success rate.  How's your traffic lately?  roll

      2. Glenn Stok profile image95
        Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Well Randy, I have discovered that Google ignores the "noindex" meta tag in some cases. I had some idle hubs that still came up in a search for the title. But what we don't know is how they make the decision one way or the other. I am sure you also had some idle hubs that were still indexed by Google anyway.

        1. Randy Godwin profile image59
          Randy Godwinposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          At this point I really don't care anymore, Glenn.  I simply delete them as soon as they go idle.  smile

    7. VVanNess profile image78
      VVanNessposted 10 years ago

      I notice traffic drops on a different combination of my articles every day. I try and fix them, but I can only do so much. I think it's safe to say that your views will fluctuate every single day regardless of how good your material is. I wouldn't worry about it. Your views will probably be up again tomorrow or next week without you doing a single thing. lol

      1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image87
        TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Glenn:  I pretty much do as you do, but I also am consistently upgrading and trying to use the ideas from Phoenix.   Some weeks I don't write at all because I spend a lot of time analyzing my stats and tweaking my hubs BEFORE they become idled.  Doing this makes me realize that some articles just aren't good and will never be, so I dump them.  I feel if I keep refining my work and tightening my hubs, eventually I'll have a body of work that is good, brings in views and of which I can be proud.  Phoenix's ideas about grouping, linking and creating niches I think has helped me not get hit by Panda this time.  Even with all of that, my views are not nearly as good as I think they should be for all the work I've put in, but at least for now I'm holding my own!

        1. Glenn Stok profile image95
          Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          TIMETRAVELER2 - Yes I know you've been following along with Phoenix's hubs too. I have also done some grouping and indexing within niches as he had taught us. But with the latest drop in traffic, I have to wonder if it was all worth the time. I think my main problem is that I don't write in just one niche, which would have created some authority on that one subject -- according to Phoenix.

          1. Barbara Kay profile image74
            Barbara Kayposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            I wonder about writing in one main niche too, to get authority. I have one that gets a good 80% of my traffic and the rest just don't do so well.

          2. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image87
            TIMETRAVELER2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Glenn Stok:  I have five niches right now and have set up  a spreadsheet to track their daily numbers.  In each niche there seem to be several articles that do well, but the rest always lag behind, even though the content is of equal merit.  I do think Phoenix's ideas are worth the time because by grouping into niches I am able to examine each niche separately and tweak, delete, etc. where necessary.  My numbers have never been very good because I do no marketing, although if someone would send me an invite to Pinterest, I would like to try messing around with that to see if my numbers improve.  Everything Phoenix has taught me has helped me to have better quality, but I agree, the grouping and maintenance is tedious, hard work.  After 15 months, I'm about to reach 50,000 views...and this is after having dropped 50 plus hubs awhile back.
            Somewhere in my questions to Phoenix I asked about writing articles about health and not being "credible"...he does not see a problem, but I've noticed my Health niche does not do nearly so well as my others.  The statistical side of HP fascinates me, so I keep playing around with my work to see what will go and what will not.  My main niche is mostly seasonal (RVing), so I need some others to offset the lag time.  It brings in 60% of my traffic, which isn't saying much!  Just keep at it and the pieces will fall into least that's my philosophy!

    8. paradigmsearch profile image59
      paradigmsearchposted 10 years ago

      All I know is that damned rabbit and his sidekick have killed my traffic this weekend.

    9. brakel2 profile image76
      brakel2posted 10 years ago

      My traffic dropped by 1/3. I think it's because of Easter and a weekend. Weekends are never good for me, and three hubs never get much traffic anyway. I don't think they're very good, so I may delete them one at a time. Glenn may be correct that poor hubs drive down the good ones. PS blames it on the bunny, and he always cracks me up.

      1. Jean Bakula profile image93
        Jean Bakulaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Don't be too quick to delete, a few changes or a little update can save the hub from Pending status. Plus I also did only delete one at a time when I did delete, so I didn't cause some other drastic change in my account. I also have a few hubs that I think are OK, but never got much interest. In that case, there's no reason to keep them around. You may want to fix them up and put them on another site. I wonder what the Bunny thinks?

    10. suziecat7 profile image84
      suziecat7posted 10 years ago

      My Google traffic has dropped to near single digit numbers. I am alarmed. I have seen the usual ups and downs but I only had 12 views today. Yikes!! I'm wondering if it might be a technical issue and am not really sure where to address this. How could my numbers have tanked so drastically in just a few days? Any suggestions?

      1. tmbridgeland profile image81
        tmbridgelandposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        It is weird. My #s spiked UP! In the last week or so I went from about 100/day to 200/day. Not great #s, but why a doubling, when I added nor subtracted nothing? Same thing happened last year about this time. #s suddenly tripled, stayed up a few months, then crashed about July first.

      2. donnah75 profile image94
        donnah75posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Mine has dropped drastically as well. I haven't seen numbers this low since I started. I know the holiday is a factor, but I also wonder if there is a technical issue. Hoping to see the numbers rise soon.

    11. brakel2 profile image76
      brakel2posted 10 years ago

      Thanks Jean. I don't have a website but signed up for Squidoo and  one other site. The hubs are about an old printer and archaic MS Words. I do know users sometimes have older machines, so I will see what happens. I love the bunny

    12. profile image0
      JustCraftyposted 10 years ago

      My  views have dropped also.

    13. Will Apse profile image87
      Will Apseposted 10 years ago

      I lost a third of my traffic immediately after Panda was rolled up with the search algo. Over the last week, I have seen a huge boost in traffic.

      I wouldn't worry about numbers for a few weeks until the latest changes have worked through.

      If numbers are still low in a few weeks time, my instinct would be delete any pages that have been dropped from the search results (search for page snippets).

      I would use the URL removal service to make sure that they really are gone. What else can you do?

    14. brakel2 profile image76
      brakel2posted 10 years ago

      Glenn   Your analysis makes sense to me. Some of my personal experiences never made the grade, at least not recently. I don't think Google favors them unless they provide a major lesson to viewers  One of mine and others had notes about personal stories by Google.on search page   The next day they went to an obscure page. Mine went directly below scraped content. I rewrote it, made it not personal. It never recovered. It is disappointing

    15. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image85
      Marcy Goodfleischposted 10 years ago

      I'm disappointed at the lack of recovery from hubs that lose traffic due to being copied. So far, most of my highest-performing hubs have been plagiarized on everything from Tumblr & Squidoo (neither has done a thing yet) to sites used for back-link schemes and sites in other countries.  I can't keep up with it.  This is not what I anticipated here.

      Easter is affecting all of us, but I can't attribute all my traffic issues to that. It's hugely time-consuming to track down the copies, and takes forever to get action. If at all.

      1. paradigmsearch profile image59
        paradigmsearchposted 10 years agoin reply to this


        This is a thought I have been toying with for awhile.

        What if you were to contact a collection agency? Have them send the thieves a bill for past and future usage. The collection agency does all the work, probably a 50:50 split for any money actually received. If nothing else, the copied hubs will probably disappear in a hurry.

      2. Glenn Stok profile image95
        Glenn Stokposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Marcy - I see you never claimed your Google Authorship. That may help with the plagiarism because Google will know when something of yours is posted by someone else. It won't stop the duplicate listing, but it may avoid the thief getting any benefit out of it as far as ranking is concerned..

    16. paradigmsearch profile image59
      paradigmsearchposted 10 years ago

      Well, Son of a Gun and Happy Hot Dog. My traffic is going up again. That usually doesn't happen until the middle of Sunday.

      1. Randy Godwin profile image59
        Randy Godwinposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        "Happy Hot Dog?"  lol

        1. Will Apse profile image87
          Will Apseposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          One day, I must try to master 'cow boy' lingo. It's those hairy leather chaps you have to wear on your thighs that puts me off.

          1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image85
            Marcy Goodfleischposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Actually, the hairy chaps are less in style now. Our Texas dudes like skinny jeans & big belt buckles.  Boots are still required, though.  Just learn to say you're "Fixin' to" go somewhere or do something, and throw in a few "Y'alls" now and then, and you'll sound fine.  Watch the movie "Bernie" and you'll get the idea - they use for-real East Texans in the movie, and it's priceless.  I can teach you the Cotton Eyed Joe when you're ready to make a trial run to a honky tonk.

            1. Will Apse profile image87
              Will Apseposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              I don't know if I missed this post last night (it was late) or there was an HP glitch.

              Either way, this is just to say that you are very kind, Marcy, but I think you would have an uphill struggle. I am rather English and might just have to mime!

              I think the best use for yips and yalls that I have at the moment come from watching classic westerns on You Tube. James Stewart et al can just about hold my attention long enough to keep my mind off the cigarettes I am trying to get out of my life.

              The day I finally escape that evil I might let a few cries of triumph escape, though.

              ps. I'll keep an eye out for Bernie but I will only watch it if it is very calming.

    17. SmartAndFun profile image93
      SmartAndFunposted 10 years ago

      Mine is down to half of its normal amount. sad

    18. janderson99 profile image54
      janderson99posted 10 years ago

      I think the whole Idling Process has entered a new phase  - Greater Confusion
      => Old hubs are being QAPed
      => Changes to the Grace Period dependent on Hubber score (total mystery in itself)
      => Changes to the pass mark to get featured for new hubs + unknown allowances for creative works etc.
      => Mystery about the process for QAPing after a hub gets edited, perhaps more than once.
      => Hubs with NOINDEX tags take months to be deindexed and Google remembers them, and some appear to stay alive and not get deindexed
      => Idled hubs come back to life
      There is now no way of knowing why a hub gets featured or idled any more. There appears to be errors and inconsistencies.

      I have adopted the approach of 'don't ask why' just re-edit and move on. I have deleted a few, but otherwise kept all my 'little lovelies' alive and kicking. Each person can make their own decisions. The fact that idled hubs are getting featured again appears to be widespread, but HP has not really offered a plausible explanation. I don't care, as I have no idled hubs!!! I think the most likely reason for the Idled hubs to re-appear is the extended grace period. But Who Knows?

      1. janderson99 profile image54
        janderson99posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        My guess is that the NOINDEX tag is meant to be something permanent that website owners set up when they first set up the site. It is meant to hide house-keeping and other pages, that are not ever meant to be indexed.  It is not meant to be an on-again, off-again type thing. I think this is why there is no much trouble with it.

        1. Paul Maplesden profile image76
          Paul Maplesdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Noindex is one way to ensure pages are not listed, however that does still mean that a crawler will visit that web page and look at it, it's just that it may not index it due to the NOINDEX tab. If you don't even want a page to be crawled, then the best way to ensure that is by using a robots.txt file and disallow certain pages using that.

    19. ikepius profile image60
      ikepiusposted 10 years ago

      I write mostly about my personal experiences, and also about general issues. I sometimes get a traffic dip, but nothing to fret about. I therefore do not agree with the theory about being an authority. Maybe its just not well defined (how one becomes an authority)
      I believe that if one is patient and consistent and writes quality material google will eventually give in.
      my thoughts.

      1. Will Apse profile image87
        Will Apseposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        How does Google know that you are an authority anyway? Anyone can say they have a first from Cambridge. Does Google send round a car to check your certificate? I have a degree in Life Sciences and three quarters of a degree in Humanities but I lost the papers a long time ago. I can't imagine there is any record of my heroic accomplishments extant.

        When it comes to writing articles I reckon I could give as good an account of any of the sciences as the average hack journalist. Ditto, the arts. I would be faking no more than anyone else if I 'explained' what the Higgs Boson was. I can write wonderful reviews of films by parsing critics who have actually seen them (and feel it is fairer to do this than offer my own idiosyncratic take).

        Writers are writers.

        1. Paul Maplesden profile image76
          Paul Maplesdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          It's not clear exactly how Google determines if you are an 'authority', but what is likely is they take multiple areas into account, such as:

          - Published academic / scholarly papers
          - Your depth and breadth of writing on a particular niche (Does it sound like you know what you are talking about)
          - How many other people link to your writing (So Author Rank becomes similar in some ways to page rank)
          - How much your work is shared on the various social media networks
          - The amount of original content you create
          - Other areas?

          So it's not just about 'formal' expertise (e.g. published academic papers), but also expertise as perceived by readers, shown through links, shares etc. Also, it's not just formalised areas that you can build authority in (specific academic disciplines) but any subject where you write on that particular niche.

          1. Will Apse profile image87
            Will Apseposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            I can speculate wonderfully. I can also say, I don't know.

            1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image85
              Marcy Goodfleischposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Such a great point - and well placed.

            2. Paul Maplesden profile image76
              Paul Maplesdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              I'm not speculating wonderfully or wildly (I'm not really the speculating type! smile ) - I do have a keen interest in authorship and author rank though and read a number of experts in the field, together with being part of the Google Authorship community (and ranking well with my own Google Authorship profile). Here are some useful links if you want to do some research yourself, with some useful pointers on what Google looks for in searching out crediblity and authority for authors:

     … ou-should/
     … 6LDjx1tWvg
     … 5467390263
     … jyAU8rJMdK

              And here's a great video interview and summary of the main author rank and authority areas from Mark Traphagen, one of the main G+ Authorship Experts.

     … traphagen/

              1. Will Apse profile image87
                Will Apseposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                That is a fine collection of speculations from marketing consultants and SEO 'experts'. I tend to wait until Google tells me what is on its mind about a subject. If you can point me to such a page I would be interested.

                1. Paul Maplesden profile image76
                  Paul Maplesdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                  I suspect that if we have to wait until Google tells us, we will wait until Doomsday! The very nature of Google means that they are notoriously close mouthed about what goes into their algorithms (search, page rank, authorship etc.), however we can make reasonable judgements, which is what those posts do.

                  I will say though that much of this has been backed up with research that people are doing and is based on current thinking.

                  Of course, it's up to you (or anyone) if you are interested in them or not, I simply offer them in good faith and hope that through following them, people can build some authority and get more traffic. After all, nothing ventured, nothing gained, and it's not like people are going to hurt themselves by building authority and expertise, is it?

                  For myself, I have noticed that through building authorship and expertise (based in pat on the articles I shared), my visibility and traffic have improved, and I am hopeful that as authorship becomes a stronger ranking signal, that will only improve traffic and revenue further. Whilst that may not be proof, I don't feel that I have wasted my time by learning about these things.

                  I appreciate that others might have different priorities.

                2. Bill Yovino profile image89
                  Bill Yovinoposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                  Exactly. Panda-Schmanda. No one but Google knows how their proprietary top-secret algorithm works. Write what you want and do the best job you can.  Everything else is just chatter.

                  And here's a bit of a monkey wrench.  Several months ago I unpublished all of my hubs for a couple of weeks. After republishing them, my traffic was about 4 times what it had been. It's come back down a little bit but is still much higher than it was before.  Don't try this at home. Your mileage may vary. Smoke 'em if you got 'em.

          2. Barbara Kay profile image74
            Barbara Kayposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            It might be just like a website. The more pages you have on different areas of the main subject, the better the site ranks. I wonder if this isn't true on Hubpages now that we have our own subdomains.

            1. Barbara Kay profile image74
              Barbara Kayposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Maybe having a different subdomain for each niche isn't a bad idea.

            2. Paul Maplesden profile image76
              Paul Maplesdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              That's true in as much as a website is your own personal credibility and authorship. That's actually one of the main reasons for authorship - People find it relatively easy to 'game' Google's system for rating websites through creating backlink profiles, some of which can be quite spammy (although Google has cracked down on this a lot.)

              However, if content is directly tied back to you as a person, spamming becomes more difficult, because you don't want to hurt your personal credibility, because that follows you everywhere.

        2. ikepius profile image60
          ikepiusposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Thank you. I completely agree.

    20. Will Apse profile image87
      Will Apseposted 10 years ago

      On Hubpages, at least, it is easier to focus on what everyone knows Google wants- content that meets its users needs.

      There is no doubt authorship is something Google is interested in but right now, it seems pretty peripheral.

      However Google approaches the issue, when it really gets stuck into it, it will be hard to game. So you might just as well follow their guidelines as try to second guess the metrics.

      Personally, I think it will be more relevant for health, news and subjects like the law where professional advice is important. It probably won't be so relevant for affiliate related stuff and 'how to unblock a drain' type articles.

      1. Paul Maplesden profile image76
        Paul Maplesdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Indeed, I am very careful to follow Google's guidelines to create great content, and also build on that with the authorship side of things.

    21. LucidDreams profile image64
      LucidDreamsposted 10 years ago


      I think you make a very good point!

    22. nufoundglory profile image58
      nufoundgloryposted 10 years ago

      FIRST, why did you delete your hubs? You could just unpublish them if you don't want them unnecessarily "hurting" your other hubs, no?

      SECOND, from my experience, suddenly publishing a hub in a completely different niche from the niche's that you're used to be publishing will cause sudden drop in traffics. So does including more than necessary ads on your hubs. I learnt the latter the hard way just recently.

    23. Will Apse profile image87
      Will Apseposted 10 years ago

      Apologies to Glen for going off topic so much. I honestly think it is way too early to start worrying about traffic fluxes at the moment, though. My daily views are now 2000 above 'normal' but I won't celebrate for at least a month. I wouldn't react to any kind of traffic changes until things have settled. Some of those old hubs could really take off, all of a sudden, a few of mine have. So I am changing my mind a little about merciless culling of underperformers.

    24. Techstuff profile image58
      Techstuffposted 10 years ago

      Depending when you first published your hubs, it could be because those articles have lost their freshness.  Each page indexed in google has a freshness rating, which can be influenced by not only updating the content, but linking other fresh content from other pages to it.

      The same applies to backlinks,.. say you posted something, and circulated it via your social media accounts and various other places.  Those backlinks will lose freshness (I am simplifying it here) so they become less affective.  Furthermore, there is link velocity that may play havic on old content.  Say that new post was popular and you got lots of social media links, and other people linking to you in articles... well if those links suddenly reduce, Google may think that its not popular anymore.

      Just a few things for you to think about.

    25. ikepius profile image60
      ikepiusposted 10 years ago

      I read somewhere that google was trying to abolish sites like HP. Perhaps that is true. They must think that we are all just interested in the ad revenue. Perhaps if we could correct that impression....
      ~ just saying.

      1. dailytop10 profile image84
        dailytop10posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Can you name other sites on top the top Google search results that don't aim for revenue? hehehe..I think that's far from being the reason behind sudden drops of views in HP. Mine is steadily going up so I believe it's about a hubber's chosen niche. May the poster's hubs are slow during these months and improves during the last quarter of the year.

    26. Will Apse profile image87
      Will Apseposted 10 years ago

      Some kinds of page are really harmful to your sub-domain. They will always be found amongst the low traffic pages. Some people are capable of nuanced judgement about what is getting low traffic because of competition or unpopularity of the subject rather than Google squashing the page for a myriad of quality or spam issues. Most newbies are not.

      I would say for the average hubber, having pages idled is a benefit to their account as a whole (if those pages have had enough time to make their mark). It is also a benefit to the site as a whole, which feeds back into individual accounts.

      I certainly don't want my account suffering because other hubbers are too lacking in experience (or are too egotistical) to get rid of their failed content.

      1. Jean Bakula profile image93
        Jean Bakulaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        All of my hubs are featured, but my score is down to a 90 again. I've heard so many times it's a meaningless number, so why have it? It makes me feel I'm falling downward. I don't write on here much anymore, because while the hubs are pending, they miss out on all the other people who would be intersted in a new hub, now they don't get discovered. We can only hope they do once they get crawled again, and who knows when that will be? I feel it's fighting a losing battle. My traffic is a sea of blue arrows, and I haven't had a score as low as 90 since I first built up my score and hubs. And all the changes are driving me crazy. If one stays off this site for 2 or 3 days, there's always another change. I don't believe the Revered Ones know what they are doing, besides alienating all their best writers.

        1. websinha profile image60
          websinhaposted 10 years agoin reply to this


          1. Jean Bakula profile image93
            Jean Bakulaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Hi websinha,
            I believe everyone's experience is different. There are millions of people on HP, and only a percentage of them write on the forums. I only come on when I see my traffic plunge or have another question, and can sometimes see what the answer is without writing. Just keep at it, write some hubs, and see where it goes. HP is a nice community, and it's pretty easy to write on. I had very few computer skills before I came to HP, I could email and write a letter on Word. So in a way I learned a lot. Plus I do get paid every  month, so it does feel good when that happens. Welcome aboard!


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