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Something is seriously wrong after I updated my site with new templates, moved to a new server and started writing on English rather than Norwegian.


I know from Google Analytics, that most of my readers comes from Google.

I do a quick test by googling (google.no) Oslo Fashion Fair 2009. This is the name of the article and is the title of my page. ( http://www.google.no/search?hl=no&q=Oslo+Fashion+Fair+2009&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&oq=&gs_rfai= )

The page that I trying to find is this: http://www.norwegianfashion.no/news/oslo-fashion-fair-2009/

This used to be one of the first pages in Google. Now you don't see my site until Page 4, and that is a link to something completely different.

On page 4 in the google search, you see this:

Designere - Norwegian Fashion
Norske designere Når man tenker fashion,tenker de fleste på designere som Yves Saint ...
Fashion Week Guide 16-22 august 2010 · Oslo Fashion Fair 2009 ...
www.norwegianfashion.no/blog/designere

There are a few problems with this:

  1. The headline says Designere - Norwegian Fashion. I no longer have a page called Designere. It's now called Designers.

  2. The link points to www.norwegianfashion.no/blog/designere. But I've never had that a URL with that name. The page does not exist.

  3. When you click the link, a completely different page opens.

I also noticed that I ahve lost Page Rank. My Page-RAnk add-on in Firefox will no longer rate my site, and Googles own Page Rank checker can't check my site for page ranking.

So what kind of SEO have I done?

  1. I've put the <title> tag at the top, followed by the meta tags <description> and Keywords

  2. For new pages, I use my intro texst in the description field.

  3. I've made sure to use appropriate H1 - H3 tags

  4. I've got relative content in headline vs intro and main body text, as well as appropriate keywords.

  5. I've added my site to Google

  6. I've used Google Webmaster Tools to optimize my site

  7. I've added a sitemap.xml

I don't know why I'm suddenly not being indexed by any search engines. What have I done wrong?

UPDATE

Using Google Webmaster tool, I can see issues Google encountered when crawling my site. Thre are a lot of 404 Page not found errors.

Example of 404 errors:
http://www.norwegianfashion.no/2009/nyhetsarkiv
nyhetsarkiv is now called news

http://www.norwegianfashion.no/author/marianne
I have deleted marianne ase user in Wordpress. This author do not exists any more

http://www.norwegianfashion.no/category/fashion-report/page/40/
Not sure what this is. I'v enever used this permalink structure.

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1 Answer

When I search for the exact URL, the page does not come up in Google, which means it is not indexed yet.

When you changed the templates and language, did the URLs change? If so then Google simply has not found the new page yet. The old page has gone so it was removed from the search results. What you need to do in that case is create a 301 Redirect from the old URL to the new one, /news/oslo-fashion-fair-2009/ then any links coming into the old page will redirect to the new one and pass on the "ranking".

Make sure to sign up for Google Webmaster Tools; you will be able to see all the pages that Google cannot find on your site. Set up 301 redirects for all appropriate pages.

Addition re comments: if only parts of URLs have changed you can use Apache's RewriteRule to make generic rules. This will massively cut down on how much you need in the htaccess. Here's an example that would redirect all the news URLs:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteRule ^nyhetsarkiv/([^/]+)/$ news/$1 [R=301,L]

So nyhetsarkiv/oslo-fashion-fair-2009/ would be redirected to news/oslo-fashion-fair-2009/.

Unfortunately, if all the article titles changed as well, there is nothing you can do apart from individual redirects. Don't forget this isn't just for search engines - if users follow a link to a broken page they'll almost certainly press the back button. Redirecting is the only feasible way to let search engines and users alike know where the page has moved to!

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Yes, the URL has changed.nyheter have been replaced with news. I am using Webmaser tools and looking at Crawl errors, I see a lot of 404 (Not found). See updated Q above for added info. –  Steven Dec 13 '10 at 14:32
    
The 301 redirect option is not a good choinse. Because I've got several hundred articles that has changed path :( –  Steven Dec 13 '10 at 14:40
    
@Steven: you may be able to use more generic redirects; I updated my answer with an example. –  DisgruntledGoat Dec 13 '10 at 15:50
    
Thank, I will try that. One thing though; I see that WP already redirects for me. If you try norwegianfashion.no/nyheter/oslo-fashion-fair-2009 , you will see that is changes nyheter to news. But there are no re-write rules in .htaccess file. –  Steven Dec 14 '10 at 11:03
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