How to: Fix your tiny site:domain.com results in Google.

13 comments

If you've had tiny results when you search for site:domain.com since May-July, you might be able to change that. To find out if you can, first make a site:domain.com search in google.com. Then do the same thing at any datacenter, for example http://72.14.207.104/

If google.com shows tiny results like in the hundreds, and the datacenter has a huge number in the thousands...or millions, you can change the results on Google.com.

It's not site: that's messed up, it's Google having trouble with the preferences. Go to http://www.google.com/preferences

If you have it set to...

Search Language
Search only for pages written in these language(s): English

you will get tiny results, like

and this is even if the whole site is in English.

If you have it set to...

Search Language
Search for pages written in any language (Recommended).

it gets a much bigger number, like

This is why google.com shows tiny results on google.com and high results in datacenters! Because our search preferences are only set on a Google.com cookie. Google doesn't need to fix site: but needs to relearn what English is. If there is anything wrong with the site: results...the number is way too big!!!

Will this be fixed when Google does it's next major update, that can be seen at http://72.14.207.104/ ? There's probably no way to find out. When you go to http://72.14.207.104/preferences?hl=en on any datacenter, you get a message that says...

Your cookies seem to be disabled.
Setting preferences will not work until you enable cookies in your browser.

For now it might be a good idea to have

<meta http-equiv="content-language" content="en">
<html lang="en">

on your pages, and maybe even

LanguagePriority en
ForceLanguagePriority Prefer

at domain.com/.htaccess just in case Google does use them.

Comments

Nintendo, the lower numbers

Nintendo, the lower numbers are more likely to be accurate. I think all those changes in your preferences/cookies are just routing you to the older infrastructure that isn't as accurate on site: results estimates. I'll ask someone to check for sure though.

Good thinking tho.

Will check things for myself too :-) To be sure hehe. Luckily I have my prefs set to "Any Language" anyway and ALWAYS include the lang="en" attributes nowadays. Can't be too careful, right?

BTW thanks for the .htaccess thingies Nintendo. They might come in handy.

P.S. Nintendo, which site

P.S. Nintendo, which site are you seeing this for?

P.S. Nintendo, which site

Quote:
P.S. Nintendo, which site are you seeing this for?

if that's not a thread killer I don't know what is ;-)

Nah. Someone was taking a

Nah. Someone was taking a look at it and said when they did it, they got the proportionate amount that they would expect going from English to all, and they asked for a specific site showing any weird behavior. I didn't see the site mentioned in the post, so I relayed the request for the site..

No worries, Matt. No

No worries, Matt. No worries. We know you're a good guy. It's just fun, eh? :-)

Results 1 - 10 of 362

My cookies were completly deleted yesterday, which is when I noticed the major change, and then I messed around with the search preferences because I suddenly got the huge results after the cookies were deleted.

Results 1 - 10 of 362 English pages from forumpostersunion.com
Results 1 - 10 of about 16,400 from forumpostersunion.com

On the search that shows 16,400 results, it goes to...

Results 901 - 995 of about 17,000

and it stops there. So the 362 results number might not be exactly correct.

No pharmacy links on this domain!!!!! The whole domain is in English.

If you can, if they get about the same numbers with both settings, post the number of results that they get.

See this...

*** Results 901 - 995 of about 17,000 ***

This was covered a few weeks ago. The short list is often caused by having multiple pages with the same title and/or meta description... http://www.threadwatch.org/node/8222#comment-43372

*Takes out the meta tags*,

*Takes out the meta tags*, which were mostly the same, except the name of threads being there.

Only question left is the

362 vs 16,400 results based on English or 'all languages'.

Hopefully the Google programmer looking at this will see the same results I get!!

Quote:
I think all those changes in your preferences/cookies are just routing you to the older infrastructure that isn't as accurate on site: results estimates.

Preference change and Cookies are what generated the low numbers. With no cookies, I get the high numbers, which is now I noticed this after my cookies got erased. So it might be on Googles end that's making me get such a huge difference in results.

I passed on the site name

The site name got passed on for someone to check out, Nintendo. I'll let you know if I find out anything new. But I'd assume the lower numbers are the correct ones.

No.

* * Takes out the meta tags * *

I wouldn't do that. You run the danger that Google just uses the first 20 words of page content for the snippet - which (probably) being the nav bar takes you right back where you were.

Make every title tag and meta description different, and make sure they represent exactly what is on that particular page.

Hmmm

Quote:
...uses the first 20 words of page content...

Not if the keywords (that people searched for) appeared prominently on the page found. Meta description snippets are most often thrown at SEOs doing site: searches without adding a relevant keyword. Part of people's punishment for being a SEO ;-)

Does any one else get

Does any one else get different results like that when doing

site:forumpostersunion.com

and messing with just English vs. all languages in the search preferences?

Even for google.com I get a big difference...

Results 1 - 100 of 5,460,000 English pages from google.com
Results 1 - 100 of about 17,500,000 from google.com

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