How to Tell if Your Site is Banned / Deindexed from Google and How to Get It Indexed Again

A lot of times someone will see the traffic figures to their blog drop and they automatically assume that their site has been deindexed from Google (and they go on to have a heart attack and curse the gods).  But before you assume your site has been deindexed you should do a simple check.  Go to Google.com and search for this:

site:YourSite.com

So, if your site was Cars.com you would search for…   site:cars.com      If the Google results show URLs from your site than your site is not deindexed, you probably took a Google slap across your cheek and dropped in the SERPs.  This happens and it is much easier to deal with this than to deal with a deindexing.  If your site got deindexed there are a few popular reasons that may have caused this:

1.  Has your site been hacked recently?  Did someone put some malware on your site?  If you’re not sure you can do a free and quick check from Securi found here.  If Google sees something on your site that shouldn’t be there that can lead to a quick deindexing of your site.  If you do find malware or something more evil on your site  you should remedy that problem by getting it removed and then you can ask Google to add your site back to their listings.

2.  Do you use duplicate content on your site or spammy articles?  If so you could get a delisting from Google.  Sometimes (if your site is hooked up to your Google Webmasters account) Google will send you a message and tell you that your site has a problem.  Remember, content is king, and using crap content that they don’t think has any value could result in your site getting the ban hammer.

3.  SEO tricks from the 90’s.  Do you keyword stuff or use doorway pages or put stuff in the text the same color as your background.  Using some shady SEO tricks that were invented 15 years ago can definitely lead to your website pulling a disappearing act from Google.

4.  Do you have content that would violate the DMCA laws?  Violating the DMCA can lead to the copyright holder contacting Google and asking them to remove your site from the search results.  You should get some sort of email or notification if this happens, but if your Whois email is not valid than you may not get anything except a swift punch in your traffic’s ribcage.  If you do violate the DMCA you can fix your site and remove the infringing content and ask Google to reindex your site.

5.  Maybe you bought the domain and it was already deindexed in Google.  This blows, point blank.  It happened to me before because I didn’t check the domain prior to purchasing it in the aftermarket… lesson learned on my end.  If the prior owner did something naughty and got the domain banned from Google and then dumped it on you it now is your problem.  You could reapply for indexing in Google but you would need to explain to them that you just purchased the domain.  If you bought the domain and the site, it may be tricky to get reindexed because Google would not be able to tell that the site truly changed owners.

6.  Do you have some shady code on your site that shows one set of things to Google’s bot but another set of things to people?  If so this can lead to your delisting from Google’s SERPs.  Doing something shady like that and getting caught would make it very difficult to get your site reindexed in Google.  It may be time to move onto a new URL for you.

If you confirmed that your site is removed from the Google SERPs and you want to get it back in there here is what I recommend you do.  First you figure out why it got removed from Google and second you undo whatever issue caused this.  Once you finish your clean up you submit a Reconsideration Request to Google through Google Webmaster Tools.  If you aren’t signed up there it is free to join and you link your site to your Webmasters account.  From there you can submit the reconsideration request and off it goes to Google for a review.  They’ll tell you that it could take weeks for the review to occur so make sure you have plenty of beer and cigarettes handy to pass the time by.  And then Google will either reindex your site, or decide not to (in which case your site is a goner and you need to decide if your should move to a new URL).  If you do move to a new URL it would probably not be a smart thing to do a 301 redirect from a banned site to your new site.  So you may be starting literally from square one.  Good luck with that!

Incoming search terms:

  • is my site deindexed
  • how to check if a site is deindexed

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Comments

  1. My website got hacked a few weeks ago but we managed to solve the problem in 5 hours.. will this hurt my rankings?

     — Reply
    • I doubt this will hurt your site as you were able to recover pretty quickly. You can check your logs to see which spiders crawled your site during that time and just make sure your site is appearing normal in those search engines.

       — Reply
      • How do you recover from rankings dropping as a result of the hosting pausing service from too much traffic? I already got them to get the site back up.

         — Reply
  2. This happened to my website got deindex, after repair and try to google to ask for reconsideration, it has not been successful.

     — Reply
  3. nice article, i have the same experience which buying domain that already deindexed by google, i’ll try what you tell it may help my domain can be indexed again

     — Reply