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New Site - Screwed by Old Hosts

thepotato232thepotato232 Registered User regular
edited September 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
Got a couple of questions for any search engine know-it-alls out there. I just built a new website to replace an old clunker. As expected, when we switched the websites out, our search engine rankings took a hit. What we didn't expect is the magnitude of the hit.

For starters, our previous hosting company seems to have disappeared off the face of the earth, leaving us with a bunch of busted-ass old urls that lead to '403 Forbidden' errors. I know this must be hurting our search engine standings, but do any of you have an idea as to how much this issue alone would screw us? Obviously, this is something we need to fix now-ish, but our contacts from the last company are completely unresponsive. Assuming they've disappeared into the aether never to be seen again, any ideas as to how to solve this problem ourselves? Is there any way to inform Google et al. that these sites no longer exist and quit getting clobbered in the rankings?

My second big problem is that one of our keywords that shows up in the titles, body of the page and in the meta tags doesn't seem to be getting picked up at all by the search engines. We aren't just keyword spamming here - this phrase is more or less the core of our business. I would understand if we were just showing up low on the listing ranks, but analytic tools suggests the SEs aren't indexing the keyword at all. Anybody ever encounter this? The keyword was all over the old 403'd site, too - would that lead to the keyword being blocked simply due to interference from the old site?

thepotato232 on
Butt inquiries are completely fair game.

Posts

  • BoGsBoGs Registered User
    edited September 2009
    I am no seo master so take it with a grain of salt....

    your website being down will have a tremendous effect on your standing because now when Google spider goes out to find your website is liked by x amount of websites it will see that the website is giving errors so one of two things will happen. in my opinion you will get dropped in standings or when searching the tags it will not display your page title and just 403 error.

    If I am wrong please correct me.

    "It is the mark of an educated man to teach without a thought." - Aristotle

    "Thoughts are a persons imagination going rampid…" - ME :)
  • PracticalProblemSolverPracticalProblemSolver Registered User
    edited September 2009
    You aren't using the same domain for the new and old? I don't understand what your old host has to do with it. Just make a new site, point the domain at the new site, 301 redirect old links to the relevant new page. You should outline the steps you took better and post the addresses for us to take a look at.

  • ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User
    edited September 2009
    You didn't rent the domain name from the same company as you rented the server-space from, did you? That's a big no-no.

    If you didn't, what does your old host have to do with anything..?

    pokes: 1505 8032 8399
  • QinguQingu Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Æthelred wrote: »
    You didn't rent the domain name from the same company as you rented the server-space from, did you? That's a big no-no.
    Can I ask why this is a big no-no?

  • LewishamLewisham Registered User regular
    edited September 2009
    Qingu wrote: »
    Æthelred wrote: »
    You didn't rent the domain name from the same company as you rented the server-space from, did you? That's a big no-no.
    Can I ask why this is a big no-no?

    Hosting from domain registrars is usually a sucky deal, getting a domain from a hosting company is usually fine.

  • ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User
    edited September 2009
    It's usually not a good idea to put all your eggs in one basket. Hosting companies seem to disappear a lot - I wouldn't entrust a domain to them. If you end up wanting to change your host (if their performance degredates, or your site is growing a lot, etc), then you won't be held ransom by the hosting company.

    Also, if you're getting a domain name packed in with hosting, the domain might be registered with the hosting company. It should be with you personally.

    pokes: 1505 8032 8399
  • LautermilchLautermilch Registered User
    edited September 2009

    My second big problem is that one of our keywords that shows up in the titles, body of the page and in the meta tags doesn't seem to be getting picked up at all by the search engines. We aren't just keyword spamming here - this phrase is more or less the core of our business. I would understand if we were just showing up low on the listing ranks, but analytic tools suggests the SEs aren't indexing the keyword at all. Anybody ever encounter this? The keyword was all over the old 403'd site, too - would that lead to the keyword being blocked simply due to interference from the old site?


    Meta tags are no longer that important because of all the abuse. Search engines now base rankings on content for the most part. A good XML file does help. Also the age of the site is a factor so if you are starting over you will have to wait.
    Google Webmaster tools will tell you have any problems Google is having searching your site.

    Thinning The Herd
    http://thintheherd.info
    An H1N1/Swine Flu Pandemic Forum
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