Categories: Crawling, indexing & ranking :

Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain"

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Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 9/30/12 10:37 AM
My blog, http://michaelcorder,com does not show up in any search results since the Friday EMD Update. However, I have a quest regarding webmaster tools.

In tools, under index status it shows "Total Indexed: 0" and "Not selected 396". A search with however shows 43 pages. This was like this before the update, when it was ranking well for Michael Corder (#1), and Chevy Van Project (#7) and Cat Named Luna (#5 or 6). And a few other keywords. - Since the update I cannot even find the pages that show up under the site:search.

What do these mean, and what do I do about the "not selected". My site has lots of photos, but only about 18 pages. I have read the help files over and over, and it says they are duplicates (they are absolutely not - except one, which is a copy  from my website), or I have teh wrong preferred domain. I tried Thursday to set my preferred domain to www, but the update came before I could see what effect that had. I don't understand preferred domain anyhow, and I have never set it for any other website. Also, It has a sitemap, and on that page it shows 21 indexed - same number as is in the sitemap.xml.

I am confused cause none of these match, or make any sense. As I said, what was in the SERPs Friday morning is now gone, including all the photos (I went thru all the image matches for some ones that were there, and they are gone).

I know I already posted about the EMD update, but this is confusing me. I have also been putting in an extremely large amount of work the last couple weeks creating stuff to post (Pictures, videos and articles). The wind has now gone out of my sails as it is no longer even listed in search. I'm defeated, so, this question may be moot. I may just abandon my websites...

Thank you if anyone can clear this up, even if my website is doomed, I would still like to know. Ends up my website has a similar situation with the index status in webmaster tools. (and lots, but not all of the pages on that are gone from search)...

Thank you again,

Michael Corder

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 9/30/12 10:56 AM
A little more info, then I'll shut up ;-)...

The domain is 2 years old. For a while it was redirected to my resume on my workshop site, then I put a little bit of resume stuff on the domain for a while. It was registered in Webmaster tools that entire time, but I didn't really care. The about 2 weeks ago, I redid the entire thing and started putting lots more content on it, including lots of photos. I still have a lot in the works, but.

The only "marketing" I have done is submit to search engines via, and I put the url in a "directory submission" site - I forget which, I stumbled across it late last Monday night. I also submitted the sitemap to google 2
weeks ago.

Now, I know for a fact that everything disappeared between Friday night and Sat Morningg, but I wonder if those two actions help ensure it's fall?

Thanks again.
Michael Corder

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 9/30/12 11:07 AM
It might just be the spam links. I'm sure people got filtered by the algorithm on the same day. It's just a majority of people posting here have a low quality EMD, but since you spammed, then it might just have been the sites undoing. I would check Webmaster Tools for any unnatural links warning message.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 9/30/12 4:40 PM
I have no warnings or messages at all in webmaster tools. I am really trying to figure out what the "index status" page is telling me. I've never looked at it before, and about 3 hours of reading Google Documentation didn't address it either. But it doesn't look right... Again though, if the site is doomed, that is moot.

As to spam links...

I did a "submit to search engines" via - I thought submitting to search engines was legit?

I also did a submit to about 170 web directories through Are directory listings bad? I certainly didn't think a listing in a web directory was spam?

Anyhow, that's all the marketing I have ever done. Prior to Saturday morning it had several key phrases (and not real common ones) plus my name in the top 5 of the SERPS.

I would just abandon it, but I would have to change my name...

Thank You

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 9/30/12 4:42 PM
Yeah, sorry, that's spam.
(unknown) 9/30/12 5:40 PM <This message has been deleted.>
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 9/30/12 5:46 PM
The directory listings are spam? Woulda never thunk it. I actually use a few directories - most of them special purpose. Really I thought spam links were forums and such. Directories are very useful.

BTW: What is to keep a "competitor" from plugging a domain name into that site, and getting their nemisis website shut down? That sounds like potential webageddon - as the new SEO is negative SEO, and eventually there will only be 4 websites in search. (Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and eHow)...

Anyways, any advice on what I can do about it? As I said, it's my name, and that is very important to me.

And why no notice from Google or Webmaster tools? I have absolutely no messages. Browsing this forum all day, it seems they give a message for "questionable links".
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 9/30/12 5:49 PM
PS - I was still hoping for some help understanding the "Index status" report, which does not match either the dashboard # indexed, nor when doing a

And what is a "preferred domain" used for. Again, hours of searching through help files leaves me in the dark as to whter to select one or not.

Thank you for any way you can enlighten me.

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 9/30/12 6:31 PM
Preferred domain is choosing whether you want to show www or non-www in the index. It's a personal preference and doesn't matter either way.

# indexed are the pages you have indexed.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 4:38 AM
I am curious as the webmaster tools help about the "not selected" item in Index Status specifically says that one possible reason is that I have not selected a preferred domain, or that I have selected the wrong one. I can find no other info on the subject, yet I can see no other reason for not indexing most of my pages/images, and de-indexing the images that were there as of last week...
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 10/1/12 4:41 AM
You won't get all of your pages indexed. It could be duplicate content, the bot doesn't like the quality or content, or just some issue with duplicate or no content on the page. It's normal for everyone.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 4:52 AM
But what does "preferred domain" have to do with it? And why last week a number of my photos were in image search, now they are gone. And they are most assuredly, 100% mine and not duplicates - as is all the content.

I am trying to understand this, and this is where Google told me to go to "learn more about it", and "get help".

I am also trying to make Google "happy" in any way I can. The loss of this blog was a huge blow to me - emotionally, and the effect it has on my desire to proceed. I finally have the ability to do so since quite a while, and I just spent a lot of money I didn't have on a camera (after much discussion) - mainly so I can make video tutorials. But I cannot fix something I don't understand.

My energy blog ( also suddenly has the same issues. Another pursuit I was finally in a position to resume, but am now totally discouraged. I posted another thread about that.


Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 10/1/12 5:00 AM
Have you gotten any notices in Webmaster Tools about unnatural links? You pretty much admit to spamming, so you should look up Penguin and Google to see that Google is cracking down on spammers. The only way to help resolve that issue is to ask webmasters to remove the spam links.

Make sure you aren't duplicating content.

The best way to learn is to go into the sticky threads at the top of the page and read the guidelines and starter guide.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 5:28 AM
No, I have NO messages in webmaster tools. And, I do not "admit" to spamming. I did one "directory submission" at what appeared to be a legitimate website, after being led there from some forum. It went to 170 directories, and I had Absolutely NO IDEA it was spam. I admit to"nothing". This is a legitimate blog that was shut down - not by the links I inadvertantly created a couple weeks ago, but by the EMD algorithm Friday. The starter guide does not tell me anything about this _I Read it< and the Google help forums specifically tell me to come here and ask. SO I DId. And I just get ridiculed. There is NO duplicate content. I created every single last piece of it.

What do you have a function key programmed with that answer so you can just dismiss people looking for real help?
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 5:34 AM
I have been using the internet literally since it was created (long before the www), and directories have always been considered a useful tool, not spam. If that has suddenly changed recently, then I did not see that. I am not a web designer, I am not an SEO consultant, and I do not have an IT staff to help me. I only want to create content, AND have some chance, a little bit of opportunity, to have some discussion and collaboration about it.

In those 30+ years, this is the nastiest group of people I have ever encountered - and you are the ringleader. And I have been in some pretty "far out" discussions...

I came here, politely and civilly, with legitimate concerns, and you have managed to piss me off so bad I can't see straight simply with your snarky prose and dismissal of everyones concerns. If you don't want to answer questions, (or even bother to understand them) because it is "too much trouble" then why are you here?

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" luzie 10/1/12 6:37 AM
The name left away, this is what your site is about to Google (the ten first title-tags of your site as listed by the search engine):

What I Do
Skill Set
Skills Summary
Obama Accomplishments
Workshop Services
Brainbench Exams
Network Skills
Assorted Pictures
Electrician Skills

I can't make much sense of that?

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" JohnMu 10/1/12 7:00 AM
Hi Michael

Thanks for posting -- I'll pass your feedback on to the team here!

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 7:00 AM
Hi. Thank you, and I am not trying to be dense, but I do not understand where this came from?

A search has 43 results.

I have a sitemap which webmaster tools reports has 41 entries with 39 indexed

I do a fetch as googlebot, and I get what looks like most of the page text and all the links to other pages, and comparing it to one done Oct 21 - when it was appearing for many search terms, and my photos were showing up in google images search - looks substantially the same.

But the "index status" page (Which is new to me) shows as "Total indexed: 0" and "Not selected: 403".
Here is a screenshot of that webmaster tools page:

But, as of Friday Night/Saturday morning, Nothing shows up in a google search that I can find, for "obscure" things that show in the index, as well as a number of searches which were on the first page before then.

I realize no one here has a definite answer, right now as to the search results, but I am mostly trying to understand all the conflicting information, and what it means, and whether my setting a preferred domain (Which I did thursday to the non-www. domain) had any effect on this. My area of "expertise" is certainly not in SEO.

And, again, I have no messages in Webmaster tools (or email) about any problems. It says the site is fine.
It has just completely, totally, and suddenly dropped out of search results, and image search results.

Funny, I just had a friend on FB asking me what happened to a picture of my van overhead console that he had found in image search last week (and how he became a friend). Now it is not there...

Thank You for any insight you can provide.

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 7:11 AM
I want to explain one reason this matters so much to the "little people". My blog was showing up number 2 last week for the search "jump legal john sherrod". Now, I put that post up looking for others that had been "victim" as we are working on a lawsuit. In just last week, I have had three people contact me about that post that had also had problems, and had stumbled on my post while searching that term. These are important contacts, and exactly why it is there. Now, as of Friday Night, it does not appear in search results at all for that term, or any combination.

Just because a term is not big in the Keywords tool, does NOT mean it has no value...

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 8:44 AM
Thank you John,

I have no idea what that team is. It says you work for Google? Anyways, I will leave the same way I came here and not return. Looking back through, Lysis seems to be the nastiest, by far. She is  insulting to everyone, and rarely adds any useful inputs other than snarky comments. I think her response, as well as her somehow disabling and then deleting my legitimate posting (that another "team member" told me to post) that got me so mad. And neither did she even read the subject.

Regardless, Google has chased me off. One less blogger should make them (you?) happy, as I am over this stuff. I want to create, not try to figure out every change that Google throws out. I don't know much SEO, I don't care to know much SEO. And, I am also just one person. I don't have a "Web development team" although many response to a statement of "I do not understand this" are to "just ask your web developer". Again, if this is the "Help Desk" for Google, I think it could be a little more helpful, and a lot less dismissive. And, that includes not expecting everyone to be an expert on all matters search engine. I understand there are plenty of scammers coming here, but not everyone, and that should not be the overall assumption. This is not some "hobby" forum. This is where the primary arbiter of what goes on the web (or can be found), and the defacto judge, jury, and executioner of websites, TELLS everyone to go if they have questions.

As to why it matters to a petty little blogger? I posted one good reason in this thread. Another reason is no one has the ambition to create something, to paint a picture, make a video, or record a song, if there is no chance in hell of anyone ever seeing it. While there may be an exception or two, most people are not that idealistic.

The other thing this forum seems to have running through it is an intense dislike for anyone trying to make money on the web. They actively disdain affilates, even though that has long been a legitimate business model, even in the physical world, and berate people for even having an ad on their site. I guess the expectation is everyone on the "free web" should donate their time, effort, and the very real cost of tools. I am sorry, that is not going to happen any more than "Peace on Earth". It costs money, and most of us, especially in this economy, cannot afford to donate that.

Anyways, my thoughts, in what I hope was a civil and reasonable comment.

Michael Corder

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" luzie 10/1/12 11:48 AM
>>> Again, if this is the "Help Desk" for Google, I think it could
>>> be a little more helpful, and a lot less dismissive

I don't think you'd even recognize a helpful post, all we 've heard as of now are nebulous complaints about what I believe is - well, what, ranking losses? Are your sites made for Adsense? What' you do with them? What's the purpose of you being present online? Sell anything? Offer any service? It's things like that what we usually expect from a site. What do I do with them when I find them in my search results? (That's some of what the search engine itself may ask itself now).
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 1:59 PM
It is a personal blog. It is not made for adsense, nor to sell anything. And they are not nebulous complaints, they are specific facts, and I asked specific questions. But, as part of what I was alluding to, you didn't even bother to read the posts, nor look at the site, or you would not be asking "what is it for"...

As far as why am I "Online" It's a friggin blog. It is to share stuff.

I neither did not recognize help. When Lysis (of all people) added a little info for me, I thanked her. But I still have specific questions (That have to do with webmaster tools, the reporting therein, and what it means).

Forget it.

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" luzie 10/1/12 4:40 PM
>>> or you would not be asking "what is it for"..

I ask that because I don't understand what it is you wanna be found for. Is your personal blog (as you yourseld are calling it) of any public interest? If not, Google won't be interested in it in the long run. I believe it's for this reason that your site tanked.

I mean what kind of search phrases are these:

Chevy Van Project
Cat Named Luna 

... *sigh* ...

There's only one single person on this planet (probably constantly) searching for that (you), so why the heck should Google list that at all in the first place?
(unknown) 10/1/12 5:56 PM <This message has been deleted.>
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 5:59 PM
Actually before it was removed from search Friday night, I got a lot of visitors about my chevy van. I have made a couple friends that are also working on their vans and found my info about. I also have a lot of history about the Associated Press that had gotten about 40 visits in the week it was there, and I got two emails out of that, one from a former collegue.

I also, as I noted earlier, have received three people who contacted me about Jump Legal and the article I have on them. We are instituting a lawsuit against them, and these three have also been "taken to the bank" by Jump.Legal.

I know my video of Luna on Youtube has gotten a couple hundred vies this month, so someone is searching for it.

My Navy article has gotten many views, and it is also one of the few artiles on the web about DDG-2, and the only one from someone who has actually been on her. I know at least one site that has linked to it (together we served) already.

I also have a large collection of more articles photos and videos I just spent the last two weeks creating. Many of them of historical interest, and technical in nature. And, I was planning more. But, like any other author, artist, or creator, there is very little motivation if no one will ever see it. So, yea, it is not at all important to you maybe, but it is to me, my friends, and future new friends and acquaintances.

Most of that content has only been there for a few weeks when I decided to pursue the blog.

My name also used to be in the 1st or second spot, and I used to show up as an engineering technician in COlumbus on the first page. Since I am looking for a job, having a little exposure could be useful.

I have no ads on the thing. I don't know why this group has a problem with it and will not even answer simple questions.

My Energy Blog was also hit by this update, badly, as in search traffic went to zero. And that blog is also popular, and has a number of very good reviews.

Why are people on social media? Why do the post things on Facebook? To communicate and interact with others. That is what a blog is for, and not too many years ago it was the ONLY form of social media. But, just like all the rest, if no one ever sees it there is not much point, or use.

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 6:04 PM
I do not know why this group is attacking someone who is legitimately trying to use the internet for it's original purpose.. To communicate and spread information (especially obscure, as there are still people interested). I also don't understand why Google would shut down a perfectly legitimate website/blog, and let so much actual crap stay.

I also got a FB message from someone in Britain who found out I worked on M-15 Teletypes, and wanted some advice about fixing his. He is a radio amateur, and now also a FB friend

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/1/12 6:11 PM
BTW - If you would bother to look this post is not even about the site, it is about webmaster tools (Which told me to come here). Specifically what a preferred domain is, and what it does, and why, oh hell. Maybe read my original post, no one has offered any kind of help on that, just been sarcastic and dismissive...

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/3/12 3:45 AM
OK, I have contacted SEOProfiler (where I inadvertantly submitted spam). They tell me that since I had a free membership, when I "created the project", nothing was done except some of the reports. Regardless, I went to every directory in their list and did a search for my domain. I found it in three of the sites (Anoox, FyberSearch, and Yahoo)  but they were apparently submitted by the "Submit express" which said it was only submitting to search engines to ask to be indexed. Anyways, those are all removed.

Webmaster tools shows 25 backlinks. 18 of those were from my old wordpress blog (it was linked in the sidebar). I have removed those links. The rest are all valid.

I had an article with one link to an Amazon product that I had gotten, and thought it was neat. I have removed that. That was the only ad on the site.

I really don't understand about "sitewide links", and if they are bad.  The latest posts widget has links to the other articles, and is on every page. I also have a bookmark list on the sidebar linking to my linkedin, facebook, reddit, etc, and my other 3 websites/blogs. Do I have to remove those?

I have used a number of html checker tools, which found nothing wrong. I did update wordpress to the latest version (3.4.2), updated all the plugins, rebuilt the sitemap and re-submitted it to webmaster tools.

I have removed all the links I could find on Facebook, and, although they are not listed in webmaster tools, I emailed the four sites that have asked to put me in their blogrolls, and asked them to remove those.

I cannot find anything else to do. I have read through here, the webmaster tools help, and the Wordpress Codex looking for other problems I might have. I have also asked for help in some of the blogger and geek forums I belong to.

Please, if there is anything else I can do. The loss of this blog and my Energy Blog has been devastating to me. I have also removed all ads, links, and as many backlinks as I can find from my energy blog. I have emailed several websites to have the energy blog  removed from their blogrolls, and weblinks.

Please help?

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 10/3/12 4:25 AM
I suggest pulling the blog off of typepad and installing a blogging platform on your own domain. This way you are getting the benefit of the content on your own domain. Don't copy the content (it will make duplicate content), but either 301 redirect to your domain (you probably can't do it with that platform) or at least delete the blog and move it to your own domain. Just make sure you aren't running the same content in both places.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/3/12 5:02 AM
Thank You. That is a good suggestion, and one I have considered for years. I was actually in the bidding for a few years ago (when I had money :-). Guess it's good I lost. As you say, Typepad will not allow a redirect, and I think the url is everywhere, I was very active with in the energy world back then.

I am still trying to search out and eliminate any backlinks I can find. I submitted a reconsideration request. In your opinion do I have any chance of being re-instated? Or should I just get rid of the site, the bill is due on the tenth. I am soon to be in a position to resume writing for it, but not if it is dead ;-)...

Thank you for your thoughts.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Lysis 10/3/12 5:33 AM
You don't want to eliminate *all* backlinks. Just the spammy ones, which might be difficult for someone who doesn't know what to look for. A good rule of them is if you put the link there or asked someone to put it there, then it should be removed or nofollow'd. Any link that submitexpress company did should definitely be removed or nofollow'd.

For instance, I would remove facebook links. Those aren't really bad. But if you have links on then you should probably get rid of that.
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Pelagic 10/4/12 10:04 AM

Hi Michael, you stated that you had no ads on the site>

"I have no ads on the thing"

However, the site did actually contain ads just over a week ago !
(unknown) 10/4/12 10:04 AM <This message has been deleted.>
Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/4/12 10:57 AM
The energy blog has always had ads on it - till I removed them all yesterday. You are right, my site did have an adsense unit on it for 3 days. Which I guess was Sept 27-29. Oops. Is that possibly why it was banned? When I made that statement, I guess I was thinking more about a site plastered with ads, didn't think about the one. (So, as they say in congress it was “not intended to be a factual statement.”). It is not intended to be for profit.

I got a reconsideration response that there was no manual action taken. I don't know if it was the EMD, Panda, or the advertising, or all of the above. I am thinking now that all the sitewide links to internal pages (the menu, which is the same on every page) made it look like duplicates. I am researching what to do about that. I use a page menu plugin for that, and I cannot find any that are nofollow. I have, however, found tons of wordpress sites that have the same types of links as mine.

I am at a complete loss, and I have lost any ambition to continue. I am likely just gonna delete the sites whenever the bills come due, and forget about it.

Thank you for your response. I am sorry I have caused so many problems here...

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Pelagic 10/4/12 12:14 PM
No Mike, that is certainly not the reason and its definitely not an MFA site, I was just correcting what you previously stated ;)

You have not caused any problems whatsoever in the forum, so absolutely no need to apologize. Please be patient and hang around for a while, sticking to one thread (per site) would be great though.

I understand that your site has been passed on internally within Google, so lets give that some time also.

Looking at your site, its very small, the content of it is quality, however its also very disparate in its topics, I would imagine that any search engine would find it extremely difficult to work out what its mainly about. 

In addition, there are little or no links to it that I can see, and by your own admission a fair proportion of the site has only been added very recently.

Keep motivated and continue adding more of the same quality content to it ;)

ps get rid that Goobye page !

Re: Webmaster tools, Not selected and "preferred domain" Michael Corder 10/4/12 12:52 PM

Thank you for the response. I've been running hot&cold, but I'll give it a chance. I had posted different threads about the two sites, but I didn't make it too clear, and they somehow got mixed up with the responses. (Maybe 1 site per month or something). I had finally worked up the ambition a few weeks ago to work on them again, and then this happened... I have a lot more in the works on the history of AP, the Navy, Airplanes & some  of the projects I have been involved in, my own projects, places traveled, the rest of our critters,  and lots of pictures - which I am working on scanning. Anyhow...

The domain has been up two years with just my resume, and it was ranking #1 or 2 for my name. (I would tell people to "google my name, and I'm not the dancer" instead of hunting for a pen). When I posted a couple of the articles it was also soon ranking for (a little obscure) keywords in them. I actually got a total of about a dozen people contact me after finding them (Mainly after looking up our former attorney, part of the "plan" Bwah Ha). As well all the photos were ranking fairly well. Till the drop to oblivion Friday night. And traffic to my energy blog (an older blog that was well indexed, and was #1 for "The Energy Blog) plummeted to zero, where it remains. So, that was a big part of my upset-edness.  Sorry to mix sites up again 8^(

Anyways, thank you again. I'll keep my fingers crossed, and try to keep "Que Sera Sera" in my mind...

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