How to fix an article that lost traffic?

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  1. Chriswillman90 profile image97
    Chriswillman90posted 8 months ago

    So most of my current articles are doing okay but one article has fallen dramatically over the past year and I'm not sure how to fix it.

    I've tried tweaking the title, the summary, adding more to the article but it has only lost more traffic.

    Any helpful hints on what I can do or is it just out of my hands?

  2. Marisa Wright profile image96
    Marisa Wrightposted 8 months ago

    I'd suggest posting it in the Improving Your Hub section so we can give specific feedback.

    Have you looked at the competition?

    1. Chriswillman90 profile image97
      Chriswillman90posted 8 months agoin reply to this

      I'm mostly convinced it's the competition since it's a tech article that more prominent sites have covered.

  3. Deepika ojha profile image74
    Deepika ojhaposted 8 months ago

    generate some backlinks, post some reviews on another's hubs

  4. DrMark1961 profile image97
    DrMark1961posted 8 months ago

    It is sometimes possible to improve the article by changing the title and thus making it more search friendly. I have noticed over the years though that some articles will get hundreds of views one month, and then go down to less than a hundred the next month. Sometimes they come back, sometimes they do not.
    It is sometimes the competition, as others will read your article and try to write something even better. If that is the case, you can try to read their article and write something even better, or write another article that might eventually get even more page views.

    1. Chriswillman90 profile image97
      Chriswillman90posted 8 months agoin reply to this

      Well if the title changes aren't helping, then it must be the competition. When I wrote the article, there weren't many prominent sites covering this idea like there are now, and Google will always give reputable sites coverage.

      I'm thinking maybe I add on to the piece since it's less than 1500 words to make it stand out a bit.

      1. Marisa Wright profile image96
        Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

        Have you checked to see if it's been stolen?

  5. Shesabutterfly profile image95
    Shesabutterflyposted 8 months ago

    I second Marisa's thought. If it is stolen, or has been in previous months it can sometimes take several months for traffic to recover. I have an article going through a vicious cycle as it keeps getting stolen every couple months. Frustrating. Everytime my traffic seems like it's going to recover it gets stolen again and my traffic drops off. It still hasn't recovered from the last time and I believe it's been four and half months since I've had the stolen article taken down.

  6. Chriswillman90 profile image97
    Chriswillman90posted 8 months ago

    I've checked and it doesn't appear to be stolen. I'll post in the improving your hub section soon to see if anything can be done. Thank you for your help.

  7. Chriswillman90 profile image97
    Chriswillman90posted 8 months ago

    Well technically I've found a few that partially copied the first paragraph I wrote but I'm ranked well above them.

    1. DrMark1961 profile image97
      DrMark1961posted 8 months agoin reply to this

      Many of my articles have been stolen, way too often to waste days tracking down web site owners and filing DCMAs. My articles still rank a lot better than the stolen copies, in all cases that I have been able to find, so I do not spend time worrying about it.

  8. profile image0
    Jean Harrisposted 8 months ago

    This is a little test I perform on my own sites when I see a formerly performing article not do as well over time.

    - Start on the index page
    - See how difficult it is to reach the intended article(literally count the clicks required).

    If you can click on a category tag and it's one page deep in the archive then the article is 3 clicks away before being readable. If however you start on the index page and have to click on a category page and then tap the "next" page some 20 times then the difficulty is over 22 clicks deep. The deeper it is the less important it appears because the value of the archive pages drops as you go deeper. This was easy to see when Google displayed pagerank.

    One remedy is to interlink articles, which hubpages does well. The catch however is that Hubpages currently displays non-article pages as related too, ie: Q&A or Forum posts so related articles don't always interlink.

    Interlinking of articles brings the value of category pages down slightly while raising that of actual articles, you can obtain the same benefits by finding/obtaining quality links on other domains. Search engines don't care where the interlinking comes from so long as it is quality and it makes sense.(ie: not obvious spam).

    Hope that helps explain one of the factors for fading over time.

    1. profile image0
      Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

      Also, not all articles can be boosted with high visibility in this manner, there is only one index page and a limited number of 1st pages in the categories to boost articles with. When I do this with my sites I have to decide if a page merrits being given more exposure or not and I try to make sure I make my best pages, or money pages so to speak, be the most highly featured. The rest help boost these via interlinking etc. ie: support pages that are good too, but won't become rock stars(nor do I want them to).

      1. profile image0
        Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

        One more point. If a website has 50 articles about changing spark plugs Google will still only be able to top-rank one of them as best for "changing sparkplugs" so you want to make sure you feature the right spark plugs page and have the other 49 support it by being less visible on your site(so as not to eclips the one Google has chosen as best).

        In some cases Google has the wrong one, but not often. You occasionally see Google link to your category page snippet instead of the full article, this is a sign you aren't interlinking articles enough and that Google perceives your category pages as more important than articles.

        Internal link structure is a really interesting and complex topic. It's taken me years to get a good feel for it. Bottom line though, you make an article more important by linking to it from important places. These can be external links too so definitely get some good ones if you can.

        Good luck! (sorry for rambling, I'm passionate about this topic!)

      2. DrMark1961 profile image97
        DrMark1961posted 8 months agoin reply to this

        I am learning a lot from your comments but was concerned about this one and wanted to come back and make this comment. You mentioned that not all of your articles are rock stars, nor do you want them to be.
        I guess I feel differently on that subject. No, not all of my articles are rock stars, but I do want them all to be. Maybe if I had 50,000 articles I would not be as concerned, but since I only have a few hundred I want them all linked and performing as well as possible. Not all of them (or even most of them) are money pages, and only a few even have products for sale, but I did put a lot of work into each article and want it to do well.
        I am sure you put as much work into each of your articles. Why would you not want each one to be number one on the search engine page?

    2. Marisa Wright profile image96
      Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

      I'm not sure what relevance this has, since we have no control over interlinking on HubPages.  As Raggededge has pointed out to you, we are not allowed to interlink our own Hubs extensively.

      1. profile image0
        Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

        Sure we can, just not from Hubpages to Hubpages. Google does not care where links come from, to Google the entire internet is interconnected.

        Lets say I have a pet care blog and I post a pet care article on hubpages. While the category pages on Hubpages may not display a link to that article there is nothing stopping me from adding a link to it from the category section of my own site to make it an important part of my pages.

        Get past the idea of "domain" and just consider connections - act as if your site and hubpages are all one site and you can use your site, or any site, to make that hubpages article more important.

        This goes beyond "backlinks", you are creating a link structure to maximize specific pages in a non-spammy way that simply ignores the fact articles are on 2 or more domains.

        1. profile image0
          Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

          Joost De Valk is a believer in this as well - https://www.searchenginejournal.com/bes … ts/231253/

          He's managed to hugely increase traffic on sites via simple internal link structure changes. It works.

          1. Marisa Wright profile image96
            Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

            There's that word "internal" again.

      2. profile image0
        Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

        also, "as raggededge has pointed out to you"...  ??

        1. Marisa Wright profile image96
          Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

          She mentioned HubPages' limitations on internal linking to you in another thread.

          My point was, if you don't mean internal linking (which you've just said you don't), then don't say internal linking.  I'm not saying links between separate domains aren't valuable - of course they are - but it's confusing to call them "internal". 

          And just to be clear, HubPages has a rule that says you must not link from the vertical sites back to a Hub on HubPages.com or to a different vertical site.

          1. profile image0
            Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

            internal linking = how I set up MY pages. I'm trying to convey the idea to you that you can blur domains in creating your internal link structures(and they are internal to your articles) without breaking hubpages or any website's rules.

            We're not looking at this the same way, obviously.

            1. Marisa Wright profile image96
              Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

              You quoted Joost - here's his definition of internal links:  "Every website consists of internal and external links. Internal links connect pages and posts on your own website and external links connect your page to other websites."

              Here's Moz's definition: Internal Links are hyperlinks that point at (target) the same domain as the domain that the link exists on (source). In layman's terms, an internal link is one that points to another page on the same website."

              No ambiguity there, is there?   If you want to propound a theory (which you're absolutely entitled to do) about interlinking your own pages on different domains, then I suggest you come up with a new term for it.  Otherwise you're going to get people misunderstanding what you're saying, like I just did.

              1. profile image0
                Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

                ...and I failed to convey the idea to you that Google just doesn't care about domains, they care about pages, and you can optimize the results of your pages by carefully considering the link structure you choose for them.

                "Link structure", how's that, I dropped the "internal" part for you if it helps you.

                I've read the same rules you have about links here and on network sites, no need to remind me, you will not see me inserting link schemes here. That doesn't mean that in writing articles here, and on domains I own, I haven't created an interlinked network of my own content with some very powerful pages as well as many pages which only support those pages. That is what an internal link structure achieves... though, as I hope I'm able to get you to at least consider, it's really just a link structure(not spam, not linkwheel, just careful consideration to what is linked from where).

                It's unfortunate that authors will work hard on a blog and gain innitial success only to wonder why their traffic keeps falling. The answer is often that those early articles are buried in their hierarchy and only linked to from a page in their archieves 48 pages deep, for example.

                Put your best foot forward? If this isn't the place to share ideas let me know. If I have offended you personally let me know. I'm the new one here.

                1. lobobrandon profile image88
                  lobobrandonposted 8 months agoin reply to this

                  I disagree with this: Google just doesn't care about domains, they care about pages, and you can optimize the results of your pages by carefully considering the link structure you choose for them

                  If that were the case why don't you try taking a page of the niche site and putting it up on a new domain where you have the best link structure. It won't rank the same unless your new domain has some good domain authority. What I'm trying to say is Google DOES care about domains.

                  1. profile image0
                    Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

                    The new domain is not yet linked to from the outside while the existing domain likely is, which is what makes it stronger. That page you said would sink has a lot less powerful pages pointing to it on that new domain, for example.

                    Look at it this way. If you own an established site and you pull any article from page 48 of an archive and create a small paragraph that makes sense about it and link to it from the index... what do you think will happen to it's ranking? Or if you move it from page 48 of the category archive to page 1?

                    Try it out. Don't change the content, change the locations of where/how it's connected to your overall network. Once you've mastered that then forget about "my domain" and just look at all your content as needing to be interlinked properly regardless of location.

                    I see this is an advanced topic not yet discussed here?

                2. Marisa Wright profile image96
                  Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

                  I don't need you to explain link building, thank you.  All I am saying is that what you're suggesting is not "internal linking".  If you can find an internet authority who says it IS internal linking, then I'd love to hear it.

                  Most people reading your posts here are Hubbers, not bloggers. Reading your post they could easily think you're recommending linking within HubPages, and then find their Hubs getting unpublished or snipped.   

                  You obviously know a lot about link building, SEO etc, so you should know better than to use jargon loosely and incorrectly, which only confuses newbies.

                  1. profile image0
                    Jean Harrisposted 8 months agoin reply to this

                    I didn't ask what you needed Marisa so I don't know why you're being rude, but you're still not grasping what I'm saying. I'm not talking about link building. I'm not talking about doing anything shady or breaking any rules. I'm well aware of the rules you're quoting at me etc.

                    If how you connect all of your pages together(or don't) is not about linking internally between your own content in your mind then that's fine too. Since Google does this I've taken the idea of "internal link structure" and stretched it to encompass the link structure between all of a webmasters content across every domain they own or use. How they are interlinked matters, can be used to great advantage, and I'm not talking about artificially sculpting or suggesting anything shady.

                    Please, if someone else has a hard time understanding what I say, or is simply interested in learning more, I'll gladly explain it to them. It's not your job to give me lashes for a word you don't like, please stop.

                    Peace? If someone's pages are suffering performance loss over time it is likely not the content but the result of the constantly in flux nature of how the web is inter-linked. Pages gain visibility, quickly when first published in fact, but that slows down over time. Adjusting Link-structure is one tool to remedy that which I'm found extremely powerful.

                    I don't know who I'm talking to yet, so I was sharing... I have no beef with you Marisa but don't need to be scolded or dismissed either for using a term you don't find accurate enough, ya know?

                    Have a great Wednesday.

  9. profile image0
    Jean Harrisposted 8 months ago

    DrMark, there are a few reasons I do not want all of my articles competing for #1. A side effect of years of studying how search works, how rankings work etc has left me knowing some things that once learned affect your overall expectations and methods.

    Example(hypothetical): You posted that awesome article last month loaded with amazing content, images etc. Now that was a true "rockstar" high-quality piece! Sure enough it skyrocketed in search as other hubbers loved it too, congratulations!

    But... you had those other 8 articles about a different aspect of the same topic already posted. One of them had that solid ranking too and you'd earn $5-$10 a day from the offer you put in there mid-page. That's gone now, what happened?

    A rockstar happened! That new rockstar article just became more important to Google so it's not going to feature your older article anymore, it likes the new one better and it's prominence on your site is canibalizing your older stuff. While it's a good thing you have an amazing article and it's top-ranked and all, suddenly your bottom line from your efforts just fell $5-$10 a day. See how that works?

    In that scenario you want to keep your money page(doesn't have to be money, maybe it's a key page in promoting yourself or your brand etc) AND have the new rockstar shine so you would need to better control the exposure you provide to one over the other. It's very possible to have that new rockstar support the original page if your link-structure is properly set up.

    This isn't an activity which is easy to master, and it takes time to re-organize a site(many months since you need to let things settle before making more changes). If done right however your visitors will not be able to tell you're doing anything at all but Google will notice, bigtime.

    example: Related articles section. If you have a wordpress website and you've identified the 10% money pages and the 90% support pages(numbers aren't fixed but in my experience it's usually a 9-10 to 1 ratio) you can place the 10% in one category and the 90% in another category and make your related articles only display your money pages, never a supporting page. This way supporting pages are always supporting and money pages are never pointing to support pages. I'm not suggesting you have two categories on your site, these are for content management only and will not be seen, and you can put the articles in other categories as well. From a code perspective however there is order, and no trace of it on the page.

    There are literally 100's of little things like that which you can do to prop up money pages, all of them whitehat, but you absolutely need a deep understanding of what you're doing and solid data about which are your best pages vs your competitors best etc.

    I posted an article a couple of days ago here on hubpages, it's only being propped up by virtue of appearing in one hubpages category on page one right now. If that holds I'll be able to learn how highly ranked Google will allow it to rise(takes months, often goes backwards from the intended final rank, fluctuates even then). When I have that data I can decide how much of my personal content resources(my own domains) to help prop it up with for better search results, if any. It would have to make financial sense to do as I have been self employed via my web properties for well over a decade now. I joined Hubpages due to recent news, a sense that Hubpages is about to flourish and the fact I just don't own a domain about all of the subjects I enjoy writing about.

    Aren't you just talking about backlinks? No, while backlinks are awesome this is how I manage my own page values to obtain the same thing that backlinks provide. Backlinks from other webmasters are not under my control, this is. I'm one of those webmasters who stopped spending resources/time trying to obtain backlinks because, in my opinion, creating content with that time and those resources pays me better and is permanent. I have not asked for a backlink in over a decade, 100% natural has worked well for me. I also do not believe in link schemes, link-wheels etc.

    Writers are taught "more vs better". Write more or make what you have better. There is a third option, write with purpose and a plan so that the articles play their role and don't fight each other for rank on the same search queries.

    I think I'm delving too deep into this for this forum at this point. Hubpages limits the ability to manage pages like this so outside content is required and you really can make one heck of a mess of things if you don't get it right. If I've piqued your interest in the power of link structures then use a small site under your control to test with.

    Tools:
    - Your Google search console dashboard to see where individual pages rank on average over time
    - (optional) A service that shows which of a competitors pages rank for the same and how important those are to that site in terms of traffic received. Most sites have a handful of pages that bring in the majority of traffic while the rest do little(but support!).

    1. DrMark1961 profile image97
      DrMark1961posted 8 months agoin reply to this

      Definitely not delving too deep. Thanks for taking the time to respond.

      1. Marisa Wright profile image96
        Marisa Wrightposted 8 months agoin reply to this

        The problem with all that is, as Jean points out, you can't manipulate your articles on HubPages that way.  It's a post worth keeping in case you ever start your own sites, though.

 
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