Recently I’ve noticed, the latest algorithmic updates by Google have affected many sites significantly. The impact has been substantial; Google ranking dropped dramatically for numerous sites, including my own, my clients’, and also many of my visitors’ sites. So, I revealed it’s the right time to create a tutorial on Site Rank Recovery, which may assist in bringing your site back to life again.
So, welcome to the Site Rank Recovery Tutorial Series! It’s not a thing to describe briefly, so for your in-depth understanding, I decided to divide the tutorial into four lessons as highlighted below:
- Assessment: Understand the extent of the issue.
- Educate: Learn about the factors affecting rankings.
- Organize: Streamline your approach to site management.
- Action: Implement strategies to recover and improve rankings.
What You’ll Gain:
Upon completing the final tutorial, you’ll have the tools and knowledge necessary to rebuild and enhance your rankings.
Lesson 1 – Assessment:
In this first phase of the tutorial, we shall focus on the initial steps to recover your site from any sort of rank loss. Here, we shall conduct an assessment of the damage using some reporting tools at our disposal.
Why did your site’s Google ranking dropped dramatically?
Lesson 1 – The Assessment
After facing any kind of disaster, whether it’s a natural calamity, a personal setback, or a technical glitch, the first step is always to assess the damage. Similarly, as your site’s Google ranking dropped suddenly, it’s crucial for you to conduct a thorough assessment.
In this lesson, I shall guide you through some simple yet effective methods and steps to help you evaluate the extent of the damage and understand what went wrong.
Note: Despite the setback in your site’s ranking, it’s important not to pause your content creation efforts. Search engine robots are constantly at work, and they may interpret inactivity as a negative signal. So, while you’re fixing the damages, keep the content building on the forehand.
Lesson-1 for Site Rank Recovery is divided into 4 sections, for your easy understanding.
An Overview of Assessment with Rank Recovery: Understand the importance of assessment in the recovery process.
How to Tell Which Pages Have Been Affected: Identify the specific pages that took a hit in the ranking.
How to Export Data from the Search Console: Learn the process of extracting valuable data from the search console.
How to Use ChatGPT to Help You: Explore how ChatGPT can assist you in the assessment and recovery process.
By the end of this tutorial, you’ll have a clear understanding of the damage, insights into which pages were affected, and practical skills to utilize tools like Google Search Console and ChatGPT for assistance. Let’s embark on this assessment journey to pave the way for effective site rank recovery.
An Overview of Assessment with Rank Recovery
Once again, please keep in mind – even though your Google ranking dropped dramatically without any prior hints, it might not be your fault, unless you’ve been doing some spammy stuff like having tons of ads on your site, spamming everywhere (social media platforms), using too many fonts and colors and so on. If you do something like this, it might be your fault, otherwise NOT.
Google has a status dashboard — just to check the recent updates there. The one we’re focused on is the recent algorithmic update that happened in September 2023, called the “helpful content update.”
Google basically wants to know if your site is relevant to the keywords you’re trying to rank for and whether it’s helpful to readers or not. They’re into unique stuff, so they’re curious about what makes your content special compared to others on the first page.
Now, as bloggers, you’ve always been taught to do some detective work: check out keywords, snoop around your competitors’ content, and then write your own stuff in your own voice. It’s cool – no mistake there.
Often you look at what your competitors are doing, figure out why they’re on the first page, and then try to make your content even better and more informative. You try to add an extra layer to our content, like a cool table, an infographic, or some unique info. Right?
So, if you follow these rules, you are doing the right things as per Google’s SEO requirements. However, the AI bot of Google thinks it in its own way. There is the problem.
You see, here’s the scoop – after the helpful content update, there were a few more updates: a spam update (don’t worry unless you’re into spammy stuff), a few core updates, and indexing updates. It’s like Google shook the tree once and thought, “Let’s give it another shake!”
However, our major deal is with “helpful content update”, which can resolve the major issues related to website ranking drop.
Here’s what went down behind the scenes – the helpful content update started on September 14, 2023, and took about two weeks to wrap up. I’ve got a cool link for you to check out. It’s a great resource, so bookmark it and read it carefully, okay?
If you want to keep an eye on Google’s latest algorithmic updates, head over to status.search.google.com.
You’ll see a graph that shows what’s happening – This graph describes the incidents or actual updates of Google, such as crawling, indexing, ranking, and serving, and you can tell anything with an eye that represents algorithmic updates. For the summary click on “View History”.
Note: there’s a checklist in the attached Google blog, so give that a look. You can also follow Google Search Central to stay in the loop about the latest updates. Stay curious!
How to tell which pages are affected
Alright, now let’s figure out which pages got affected when your site’s Google ranking dropped dramatically. We’ll use Google Search Console—it’s like a treasure trove that gives you straight-up info from Google about your website.
We have to export some data from GSC to find out the affected pages.
Let’s head over.
How to Export Data from the Search Console
Here’s how to do it:
First, check the performance data. It’s a graph showing the ups and downs of your site. Next, export the required data from Search Console:
To export the needed data from the search console; check out follow these steps:
- Go to search results.
- Click on ‘compare’ and select among 28-day to 18-month comparisons or pick the custom date range based on when you notice a significant drop in traffic.
- Click on ‘Export.’
- Select both Google Sheets and CSV file, and download.
(The Google Sheet is for you to check out, and the CSV file is for uploading to ChatGPT.)
See the pictorial example from one of my client’s site; it’s a new site, and didn’t face a major ranking drop issue; I’m using this just to provide you visual assistance.
Now, let’s peek at that Google Sheet! It’s packed with all your data—queries, pages, countries, devices, and lots more. You’ll also see a comparison to the previous period. Lots of data, right? There are thousands of keywords there.
Going through all of this manually and sorting it out is an option, but it’s a giant time-eater. Instead, let’s use the power of AI, especially if you’re using ChatGPT Plus. It has this cool feature that makes the job way easier and quicker. Time to put that AI magic to work!
**If you don’t have access to Chat GPT Plus, you can proceed with the manual process.
How to use Chat GPT Plus for the assessment of Rank Recovery
Alright, let’s break down how to use ChatGPT Plus for some data analysis. It’s the final step of Assessment if your site’s Google ranking dropped dramatically.
Step 1: Login to Chat GPT Plus
If you’re a ChatGPT Plus user, you’ve got access to something cool called advanced data analysis.
If not, try everything manually.
Step 2: Upload CSV File to ChatGPT Plus
You already downloaded the CSV file (it comes in a zip).
Go to ChatGPT Plus, find the advanced data analysis area, and upload your CSV file. Use the following command.
Step 3: Follow the next Prompts
ChatGPT starts unzipping the file and answering your questions.
It produces a table with the data you need.
It might suggest identifying the top queries with the largest drop in clicks— ChatGPT’s final command may be something like this, “I can identify the top queries that experience the largest drop in clicks. Would you like to proceed with this approach?”
So, in the next, you have to prompt:
Step 4: Get More Insights
Now, you’ll have some tables to work with, showing the 10 pages with the most significant click differences and the list keywords that lost positions.
Your next prompt will be,
Chat GPT will give you a reply introducing the list of keywords that lost their positions mostly.
Step 5: Get CSV file for a particular post
Now, from the table, pick a post that faced a ranking drop and copy its URL. Next, follow the following sequence to download the CSV file for the particular post.
- Go to Search Console “Search result”.
- Click on “New” just above the graph.
- Select “Page”.
- Paste the copied URL.
- Click on “Apply”
- See the result and export the CSV file.
Step 6: Upload the CSV file to ChatGPT Plus
Next, upload the CSV file to Chat GPT Plus and give the following command:
Step 7: Strategy Time
ChatGPT will take a bit, and give you a great list of 10 keywords related to your post that are ranking well after Google’s recent algorithmic updates.
Apart from that it presents some suggestions to re-optimize the post.
Now, all you have to do to work with those 10 keywords and the top 4 suggestions as per guidance of Chat GPT. This may boost up your post’s ranking within next few days.
Top 4 suggestions by Chat GPT for Site Rank Recovery
Content Optimization: Re-optimize your content as per requirement
Keyword Optimization: Use those keywords and queries; make sure they’re in your content, meta tags, and URL if possible.
Note: Sometimes it’s hard to put all these keywords in the content, so that’s why you can put them in alt tags as an alternative.
Internal Linking: Ensure relevant internal links point to this page. here I’m not talking about from this page to another page. Just reverse it. From another page to this page.
Building Backlinks: Consider high-quality backlinks via Medium articles, Pinterest, Facebook, or YouTube.
You may consider building high-quality backlinks to this page via guest posts, collaborations, or reaching out to bloggers with same niche. However, I personally am not a great fan of guest posting because it’s like you are running your business on the leased land, they can remove your post if the owner changes; instead I can suggest you some easier ways like create a Medium article, pinterest pins, Facebook post, youtube videos with links in the description.
Note: This is a lot overwhelming; Even though you are optimizing only the top ten, you still have to go to each post. So, it’s best to take the data and do one post at a time.
You can watch the recommended training video delivered by Jay Neill:
Final Note: This is all about the Assessment part, Lesson 1 for site rank recovery tutorial. Repeat this process for all the top 10 pages for which Google ranking dropped dramatically. In the next lesson, we’ll delve into what Google expects and how we can educate ourselves to meet those expectations. Stay tuned!
How do I realize whether my content is helpful or not?
Let’s break it down. Imagine you have a health-focused website. Would you trust it to solve health issues for you or your family? If the answer is yes, chances are it’s helpful to others too. This applies to any niche—be it internet marketing, travel, pets, fashion, electronics, or anything else.
Check out this article for more insights: Creating Helpful Content.
How to deal with Search Console data if I don’t have ChatGPT Plus for Advanced Data Analysis?
You have the option to perform the same task by examining the Google sheet that you can download from Search Console.
The purpose of downloading both Google Sheet and CSV file is to utilize the CSV for ChatGPT Plus and/or employ Google Sheets to review the data.
Investing in ChatGPT Plus and utilizing it’s Advanced Data Analysis facility saves time.
On the other hand, if you choose not to invest in ChatGPT Plus and use Google Sheets, you can still extract the same data, but the process takes longer to sift through.
Bing Chat runs on GPT 4, so can you use Bing Chat for these things?
Sorry, you can’t use Bing Chat for this process. It doesn’t support it.
I can’t locate the comparison tab on Google Search Console.
Open Search Console, go to “search result”, click on the “data compare” just above the graph box, then select; a new tab opens on-screen, then click on “Compare”, select the date range you want to compare, press “Apply”.
What about Medium?
It’s like a hub for articles. You don’t need to pay to publish on Medium.
But don’t post duplicate article on Medium, this may harm your own site. Instead, you can rewrite your article using GhatGPT and post that on Medium.
Can I comment on others’ Facebook or Pinterest post and link back to my own website if relevant?
No, it’s a kind of spam activity, which may penalize your website. Don’t do that.
When your site’s Google ranking dropped dramatically within a short period, it is crucial to understand the reasons first. Once you perfectly realize the issues, you can effectively proceed to your site rank recovery.
This basic tasks can be done by utilizing tools like Search Console and ChatGPT Plus. You can download Google Sheets and CSV file from Search console to get the full data. The next step is to analyze the data by yourself or utilizing the advance facilities of Chat GPT to anylize it automatically.
You can invest in ChatGPT Plus for a time-saving advanced analysis or relying on Google Sheets for a thorough but time-intensive approach. It completely depends on your mindset.
Finally, the importance of creating helpful content aligned with Google’s expectations cannot be overstated, as it builds trust and relevance.
See you in the Next lesson of Site Rank Recovery Tutorial.
If you have any further queries don’t hesitate to post it in the comment box below. I’ll be happy to help you.