Cursed Google. A Fickle Beast Again.

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May 27, 2012 by Brian Rock

Curse you, Google.

A little over a year ago, my then fledgling digital photography blog was penalized by Google, I think because it had been hacked and it had some naughty links in it.

But, after I cleaned up the blog and asked to be reconsidered, life was good. Since last July, the blog has been growing very steadily. I went from 5,000 monthly visits last July to over 20,000 visits last month in April.

Lately, the search engine rankings have been jumping around a bit, what with Panda and Penguin wreaking havoc in the SEO community. Although there were some effects on my site (for example, my series of posts about downloading and installing Canon utilities went from first page to waaay down).

I built the site with a mix of white hat and gray hat SEO (ok, maybe a dash of black hat to be honest), but through it all the site seemed to be doing just fine. When one series of posts fell in the rankings, another climbed, and visits from Google (along with revenue) continued to grow.

Until… this morning. I checked my Amazon account to find a disturbingly low number of clicks. A check on Google Analytics showed a disturbingly low number of visits yesterday. And a check of some rankings showed that my main post (click here) had dropped significantly for many (but not every) keyword.

I’ve read that some people had rankings disappear yesterday and bounce back today. So I’ll keep my fingers crossed. But, in the meantime, I’ve already started doing some new backlinking (with new, post-Penguin theory) to hopefully bring these pages back. Until this hit, the site was approaching $500 / month in revenue, and I’d really hate to see that disappear.

At the same time, I’ve neglected to do any link building to my other website on elliptical trainers and treadmills. I suppose it’s time to do that, and hope it’s success negates any losses I take on the photography blog.

*sigh* Thanks Google. You make life so much fun.

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