Common Reasons for Falling Traffic from Google

Published in SEO2022-08-0810 min read
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How to determine the reasons for the drop in traffic from Google and what SEO measures should be taken to increase the position of the site in the search results.

Ranking high in Google's search results is important to anyone who owns a website. Relevant SEO activities allow you to retain users or attract new ones. However, it happens that, despite all efforts, the visibility of the site drops significantly. What is the reason and how to minimize possible drops in traffic from Google?

Drop in traffic from Google after changes in search engine algorithms

A lower position in the search results may be due to changes made to Google's algorithms. The company says that minor improvements are made regularly. The two biggest changes were known as Panda and Penguin. It's worth noting that even small changes can significantly affect a website's visibility – actions that lead to an increase in the number of visits to organic traffic today can lead to an unexpected drop in traffic tomorrow.

A drop in your position on Google can significantly reduce organic traffic, page views, and therefore lead interest and sales results. Therefore, it is worth fighting for your site to occupy as high positions as possible in the search results for specific keywords.

Accurate algorithm updates and changes in indicators cannot be predicted. However, based on your own experience, you can draw conclusions and act in such a way as to adapt the site to the requirements of the PS as quickly as possible. Due to this, after a temporary decrease in visibility, the site usually returns to the desired position.

To find out about Google's plans, it's worth reading the latest information from the giant from Mountain View in official sources. They may contain announcements about future algorithm updates. It's also important to follow trends, read industry articles, participate in conferences and webinars, and have your own analytics.

Google's algorithm updates are more or less made all the time, despite the fact that the company doesn't always report it. Sometimes you can get this information by using advanced SEO tools and paying attention to minor drops in your Google rankings.

Manual sanctions imposed by Google

The decline in rankings, visibility, and organic traffic to your site can also be attributed to manual sanctions that Google employees manually impose on pages in search results that violate search engine policies. In this case, in addition to a visible decrease in site traffic, information about actions that do not comply with the established rules will be visible in the "Manual Action Report" tab in Google Search Console. The message often contains hints about which items need to be improved to avoid this filter or punishment.

In the worst case, we are talking about an algorithmic filter, in which information does not go to Google Search Console, but there is a sharp drop in search engine rankings and a lack of organic traffic.

Reduced impressions and traffic from organic search results, loss of trust, difficulty in restoring rankings are just some of the consequences of Google's manual or algorithmic filter. There are many reasons for this:

  1. Spammy content
  2. Duplicate content
  3. Suspicious redirects
  4. Hidden content on the page
  5. Hacker attacks

Here are just a few of the activities of so-called Black Hat SEO that Google definitely doesn't tolerate. Such manual actions on the part of Google are the result of unscrupulous actions of companies "positioning" websites.

This is probably the most vexing reason for a drop in page rank on Google when a business uses dishonest methods to get higher positions in the search engine.

Website positioning is the art of combining Google's principles and requirements with the communication of a particular company and the value brought to users. Therefore, before launching a brand website, read the search engine terms carefully. The page displayed on Google should not contain spam or low-quality content oversaturated with keywords.

Compliance with search engine rules is extremely important, as breaking them can lead not only to a drop in traffic from Google, but also to a complete blocking of your site, which reduces traffic to zero. If you want to avoid this kind of penalty, you need to make sure that the content is of high enough quality and is aimed at users, does not violate the rules and does not mislead people.

Links leading to a website are also critical to rankings. Using prohibited techniques, including the so-called link farms (sites whose purpose is simply to exchange links), you risk quickly being sanctioned.

How results appear in a search engine

The way Google displays search results can also be the reason for the decrease in the number of visits to a particular website. Often, after entering a question, the user receives a ready-made answer from Google at the search engine level. After receiving certain information, many people do not pay attention to the pages below. Moreover, with this method of display, the first page does not display ten links, but only eight, which also affects the visibility of some sites.

Search Console Manual Actions
Search Console Manual Actions

The visibility of a website in a search engine is closely related to the number of links that lead to it. It should be remembered that the latest Google algorithms take into account not only the number of pages on which a link can be found, but also the quality of the selected sites.

As mentioned earlier, if you use link farms or other sites that the search engine deems spammy, your site will rank low in search results or will be blocked altogether.

It is important that links to the site come from thematically related resources and places that generate more and more organic traffic. Ideally, these two factors should go hand in hand – then Google will be confident in your "trustworthiness".

Caring about the quality of a link profile not only shows Googlebots that a particular page deserves attention, but also helps to increase brand awareness.

It's worth remembering that after a while, you may lose some links. This happens as a result of the actions of moderators, the deletion of branches in the forums or the termination of the work of individual domains. This is an inevitable process, so you need to make sure that the site continues to gain as many new links as possible while losing old ones.

Lost links are a kind of chance to find new places where you should promote this company. Thanks to this, even after there are a few links left, there is to maintain high positions in the SERPs and solid traffic from Google.

When diagnosing link problems, professional tools are useful to help you determine exactly how the link profile on your site is changing. You can use, among other things, Google Search Console, Ahrefs or Majestic SEO.

Changing the website address or redesigning it

It should be borne in mind that changing the address of the site sometimes also reduces its visibility. This can be avoided by using a 301 redirect that will redirect the user to another domain.

Without taking this into account, a situation may arise where previous site visitors with organic traffic will begin to think that the page has ceased to exist, and Google will consider this site as completely new. Then what's at stake is not just a drop in position, but building an entire SEO strategy from scratch. Such changes also apply to the created link profile - if possible, it is worth changing the addresses of the received links.

Changes such as the introduction of an SSL certificate or the transition to another CMS can also be the reasons for the drop in traffic. It should be borne in mind that even minor changes in appearance can reduce the visibility of the site in search results.

Subpages are also very important, as deleting them often leads to a decrease in the number of site views. Therefore, before making changes to the site, it is worth consulting with an experienced SEO agency and carefully analyzing how the implemented actions will affect the number of visitors.

The Impact of Competitive SEO Activity on Organic Traffic

If you want a website to appear in search results, you should always monitor the actions of competitors. The decline in your rankings and organic traffic may be due to the fact that your competitors are only a few steps ahead of you.

Properly implemented SEO activities on other sites of similar subject matter and the lack of a quick response to them can reduce the number of visits to the site. Therefore, at the very beginning of SEO-promotion of the page, it is worth determining which resources are benchmarks for it. By checking them regularly, you can much more effectively counteract the decline in traffic from Google.

You should pay attention to the actions of competitors, first of all, when the site loses its place in the search results after entering a given phrase in Google. What happens on sites of similar subjects should be monitored and analyzed with the help of appropriate tools, paid or free.

This will allow you to more accurately determine what needs to change in a particular strategy and which competitive practices give you an advantage. Quickly performing the correct actions often avoids reduced visibility in the SAR.

Seasonal decrease in interest in the site

The decrease in the number of visits is not always directly related to your position in Google search results. It is worth remembering that the interests of users change depending on the season, trends or what is happening in the world.

For example, a bathing suit in winter is sought much less frequently than in summer, unlike, for example, skis. In turn, vegan products have gained popularity along with the fashion for a healthy lifestyle.

When analyzing visits to a particular site, it should be borne in mind that depending on the products affected or sold, the number of visits may vary significantly even from month to month. You can easily check the popularity of certain phrases with the help of special tools.

It also happens that the decrease in interest in the site is not due to seasonality, but to the brand itself. In such cases, it is worth trying to strengthen the company in the market or look for ways that can awaken user interest in a particular product.

Is it worth outsourcing SEO-promotion of the site?

Website promotion is an ongoing process. You have to devote a lot of time and effort to it. Imprudent or incompetent actions can quickly lead to a decrease in the visibility of a website, which means fewer visits.

If you want to be sure that the site will be adapted to the most modern Google algorithms and the content displayed on it will not violate the rules of the PS, entrust this issue to search engine optimization professionals.

It is also recommended to use software tools that not only allow you to find popular keywords, but also help to identify problems that contribute to a decrease in organic traffic and the visibility of the site in search results.

Thanks to modern SEO software tools, it is much easier for website owners to regularly monitor the actions of their competitors, which, as already mentioned, can also contribute to changing the position of the site in the search engine.

*requently Asked Questions

Is it possible to predict changes in Google's algorithms?

It's impossible to pinpoint exactly what changes will occur in Google's algorithms. However, by tracking trends, scraps of official information from Google, industry articles, and relying on tools, analytics, and expertise, you can predict some of the upcoming changes with some probability.

What is the importance of quality links to a page?

Links can boost a site's position in search results. However, you should make sure not only that there are a lot of links, but also that they appear only on quality pages. Maintaining a quality link profile can help increase a website's visibility on Google and increase brand awareness.

What tools to use when looking for the reasons for the drop in traffic from Google?

Using appropriate tools allows you to diagnose the problem faster and more accurately and find a solution. Site owners will find some of the features of Google Search Console useful. A professional SEO agency has more extensive sets of tools to analyze results and draw conclusions.

Google Console, as one of the main tools for SEO-promotion of sites, can give you signals about a decrease in visibility or attendance. Even if Google imposed a penalty manually, the console gives advice on what needs to be improved.