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I have posted this question on a Google Webmasters forum with no luck. I also called Google and spoke with a rep with no luck.

Here is our problem.

Overview

  • Website launch for a client about a year ago

  • They did a re branding company name change and URL change

  • About a month ago: we launched their new website and added the new website to Webmasters and Analytics, resubmitted sitemaps, etc. for the new website

  • We contacted Google+ and updated company name and URL a couple weeks ago (client did not receive Google postcard to update Google+ info)

  • We still have old URL in Webmasters too and I see it still has sitemaps, but if you click on any of the sitemaps, it shows the NEW URL and all the pages … remember this is when looking at their old website that we still have in Webmasters

  • So Webmasters has the old website and the new website

  • Yahoo and Bing show correct/updated company name and URLs … this is only a Google SERP problem

Problem

  1. On the Google SERP, the homepage title is showing the old company name, and not the new updated title. This is when searching for their old main service with targeted city (ex: electrician city name)

    This is weird because the title that is showing in Google SERP is just the old company name and not the old title for the home page … we never put just a company name as title

    • 1a. The meta-description and URL are updated with the new info (new URL and new meta-description)
  2. Website pages with the old title, meta-description and URL still show for specific long tail keyword searches

    • 2a. If you click on any of these pages that come up, they do 301 redirect to new site.

    • 2b. Only some of the URLs changed for secondary pages on their new website since we needed to target different services

Questions

  1. Any ideas how we can get the title to correctly display the updated title … for their new website that has been live for about a month? And why would Google show their old company name in a title?

  2. Should we delete their OLD website from Webmasters or at least the sitemaps?

  • At first blush, it sounds like you have several things going on, however, your question is not exactly clear. Did you do a domain name change? If so, what steps did you take to change the domain name? Is the domain name the company name? I rather suspect your title tag is either too short or too long. Can you give us an example? I rather suspect you are missing quite a bit of the fundamentals and perhaps changed too much all at once- this leads to not being able to assess cause and effect well. – closetnoc Jul 9 '15 at 21:18
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Google likes to cache pages in search results to give users the option to view the cached page in case the real site goes down.

What you can do in every page that you updated that Google still reports incorrectly is add the following HTML code between <head> and </head> of your outputted HTML code that the web browser processes:

<meta name="GOOGLEBOT" content="NOARCHIVE">

That tells google not to keep old copies of your page in its index. Do that, then in Google Webmaster tools, update website settings to make google crawl the maximum pages per second (probably 2) instead of its usual 0.3 pages per second. Next, wait a few days to see if things improve. If they don't then change the meta tag code to this:

<meta name="GOOGLEBOT" content="NOINDEX,NOARCHIVE">

That will force google to literally clean out its database of all affected URLs. Wait about a week to make sure google complies and if not, then you'll have to try:

<meta name="ROBOTS" content="NOINDEX">

That will cause all search engines to de-index your pages. You want that to happen for about a week or so.

Once search engines have no more stale copies of info of your pages lying around then remove the meta tag you just added so that all search engines can begin indexing your new pages and Google will then cache only your new pages.

If you do this method, keep an eye on Google page indexing statistics in Webmaster tools at least once a day to see that the indexing levels are accurate.

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How many pages does your site have? Your second question happened to me too, it took Google about 3 months before all 10k pages were reindexed. As long as you 301 them to the new page, Google will pick it up soon.

About your first question, how long is your new title? If it's too long or if Google thinks it's irrelevant to the page, they'll use something else. (source and otherwise an interesting read: https://searchenginewatch.com/sew/news/2342232/why-google-changes-your-titles-in-search-results)

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