- This topic has 10 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 1 year, 4 months ago by David.
July 14, 2022 at 8:51 pm #2283150Mark
From around 3rd July one of my sites has taken a nosedive in traffic and lost almost ALL rankings in Google. After much diagnosis, I discovered that Google Search Console showed many desktop URLs failing. I did make some tweaks in WP Rocket and the issue appeared to resolve. In fact for a couple of days, SERPS cache results showed normal, but for the last couple of days they show broken again.
Today GSC can often show the pages as broken intermittently when I “Test Live URL”. I have disabled ALL caching plugins, including WP Rocket, Perfmatters, Cloudflare APO and I even disabled our security plugin, but still see the issue in GSC when I go to “Test Live URL”. I have since enabled the security plugin, but have left the other plugins deactivated.
Can you please tell me what I should do? I’m worried we’ll never recover traffic/ranking if I don;t resolve this soon. I believe it’s either a bug in the theme or there is a setting that needs to change, but I have no idea what.
I have added a link to some screenshots so you can see what I can see. 1 is of the cached results, the others are from GSCJuly 14, 2022 at 9:04 pm #2283159Fernando Customer Support
Are there more details why the URLs are failing?
Is it performance-wise? It might be server related. Try asking your hosting provider with regards to your server response time.
Moreover, another point of improvement is to replace images with next-gen formatted images like WebP. You’re using mostly jpg. There are plugins that can do this for you as well.
Kindly let us know.July 14, 2022 at 9:32 pm #2283166Mark
There are few details. Sometimes on the “Test live URL” there are warnings for mobile because the text is too small or because the clickable elements are too close together. The reason that happens is because the rendering is a mess (in Google’s eyes) when I run the test. Of course, it isn’t an issue in “real life” because users see a normal page, not the mess that Google sees.
The issue is not performance related. I am on WPX hosting (an award-winning service) and other sites I have hosted on there do not have this issue. This is the only site with problems.
The reason why you are seeing jpg is because I disabled Shortpixel AI (it is still disabled) trying to diagnose if a plugin was the culprit. When I enable it again it will deliver in WebP format again.July 15, 2022 at 3:59 am #2283401DavidStaffCustomer Support
these kinds of issue arise when Google Bot cannot ( does not ) load the necessary stylesheets to render the page.
When they occur and result in the bad render on URL Inspection or Mobile Friendly tests, check the More Info tab beside the screenshot. They will list resources that could not be loaded. What you need to look for is primarily
.cssstylesheets that failed to load. And see what the error is.
robots.txt means exactly that – the files are block in robot.txt
Other Error – real ambiguous – but it commonly means Google did not have the resources or the patience to load them
Server errors eg. 403, 404
In this instance i can only see the issue on the webcache URL you provided. And that issue is 404 ing this stylesheet:
So that looks like Google has cached a page with the old stylesheet caches. It for whatever reason hasn’t felt the need to clear the page cache on its last test. You may want to check with the cache plugin author on how to mitigate that issue.July 15, 2022 at 9:57 am #2283802Carlos
I’m in the same situation, but I was thinking that maybe my website have some penalty issue or something like that, and the problem is generate press theme, because somethings Googlebot sent me a error in the live test, because it can access the page.
I make to many test, I did disable the cache plugin, I used w3 total chache, wp rocket, wp optimizer and the issue is happening, I don’t know what else I have to do.
y lost all the traffic too, because the page can get index it. Any solution please?
Carlos RodriguezJuly 15, 2022 at 11:11 am #2283869YingStaffCustomer Support
Can you open a new topic and link us to your site?
And please provide as much as information as possible regarding the Google error.July 17, 2022 at 9:38 pm #2285633Mark
I’ve set up a staging version of the site and disables ALL plugins with exception of GP Premium and GBlocks.
When I run the tests I see they aren’t as bad as they were (could be coincidental as the issues are intermittent, but I do still see issues. I added a URL into the private section. You’ll see the ‘menu’ button is the wrong color and the text window is narrow beneath. I added other normal looking results to compare. Of course, the [wpseo] code is related to Yoast (which is deactivated).
Can you give guidance? Should we be ruling out plugins now and focussing on GP themes/plugins? It’s either that or Cloudflare. The hosting provider doesn’t know what it is.July 18, 2022 at 4:44 am #2285993DavidStaffCustomer Support
So i ran a few tests on the
badURL, and got various results. From a complete fail ie.
URL is unavailable to Google for indexingto varying degrees between a bad render and this:
What i noticed was across the various test the request Google made ranged between 19 and 39. Which was odd, i would expect a little fluctuation maybe but no to that degree. So i took a snapshot of the HTML, of a bad and a good test from that same post:
Hmmmm…. righthand ( good ) has a lot more Meta in the head and the Title tag position is different, which is what Yoast would have done. And further down the code there are mire differences. Total lines on bad 289. Total lines on Good is 341.
Cutting to the chase, each page request google made resulted in different HTML being loaded…. sounds like a page caching / CDN issue. I would start with the latterJuly 18, 2022 at 6:30 pm #2286798Mark
Appreciate the thorough response.
I see the code difference in your screenshots. That’s quite worrying.
I am unable to replicate the differing code.
The only plugins running on this staged site are:
All other plugins have been disabled.
I have now also removed the “proxy” feature from Cloudflare so now that should not be caching either, meaning zero caching anywhere. Unfortunately, I’m still seeing the issue randomly.July 18, 2022 at 10:35 pm #2286910Mark
Hi David & Fernando,
Let’s put this on hold for the time being. I’m hearing that the screenshot section within these tests and GSC are completely useless. Thsi is what was putting me off.
The actual results come up good most of the time, kit was always the screenshots which looked off.
I’ll open up again if I find out any more.
I really appreciate the time and effort you both put into this.
CheersJuly 19, 2022 at 4:09 am #2287148DavidStaffCustomer Support
Yeah, the screenshots are arbitrary, ranking wise its only really an issue if Google says the URL fails the mobile friendly test. Which in most tests a bad render doesn’t actually fail.
More concerning for me was the fact each test resulted in a different page being loaded. And if i were to point a finger it would be at Cloudflare and or Server Page Caching.
I hope it works out!
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