Why and How Results on Google Disappear

4 min read
Mar 6, 2024 2:26:32 PM

Google's visibility matters—a lot. 

But what if you... disappeared from Google searches? You're playing hide and seek but didn't choose to hide. Google processes over 8.5 billion searches per day and has a market share of 91.9% as of January 2022, highlighting its dominance in the search engine market. 

It's a big deal; figuring out why it happens is key to fixing it.

This post breaks down the why and how. We'll look at common reasons you might disappear, share tips to regain visibility, and even show you how to clean up your online presence if there's stuff you'd rather keep off Google.

Why Do Google Results Disappear?

The disappearance of Google search results can disrupt the online visibility of both businesses and individuals. But what causes these results to vanish?

Let's explore.

Technical Glitches and Algorithm Updates

Google constantly improves its search results to make them more relevant and useful. Google updates its algorithm about 500-600 times a year. Most of these updates are small and will only affect rankings a little. However, major updates can have an impact on many keyword searches. During these updates, some websites may temporarily lose their ranking due to changes in how Google ranks them. There can also be technical problems with Google's system that cause temporary visibility issues.

Manual Penalties 

Google aims to maintain the integrity of its search results by enforcing strict quality guidelines. If a website is found to violate these guidelines (for instance, by engaging in keyword stuffing, cloaking, or using manipulative links), Google may impose a manual penalty, resulting in the site's disappearance from search results.

Security Breaches (Hacks) 

A compromised website can quickly fall out of favor with Google. If a site is hacked and begins to distribute malware or spam, Google may remove it from search results to protect users. This protective measure underscores the importance of maintaining website security.

Misuse of Google Tools

Tools like the Google Search Console can remove pages from search results. However, improper use of these tools, such as accidentally requesting the removal of important pages, can lead to unintended disappearances.

How to Fix the Issue of Disappearing Google Results

When faced with the issue of disappearing Google results, there are several strategies you can employ to address and resolve the problem, ensuring your online presence is both visible and impactful. Here's how to tackle this challenge:

1. Address Technical Glitches and Update Compliance:

  • Regularly monitor your website's performance and stay updated with Google's algorithm changes to ensure compliance.
  • Use tools like Google Search Console to identify and fix any crawl errors or security issues that could affect your site's visibility.

2. Resolve Manual Penalties:

  • Check the Manual Actions section in Google Search Console to see if your site has been penalized.
  • Address the issues specified in the manual action report, whether it involves removing spammy backlinks or improving content quality.
  • Submit a reconsideration request to Google once the necessary corrections have been made.

3. Enhance Website Security:

  • Implement strong security measures to prevent hacks and malware infections. This includes using secure passwords, updating plugins and software, and installing an SSL. You can use a tool online to check if your website has an SSL.
  • If your website has been compromised, clean it up thoroughly and take steps to prevent future attacks. This might involve restoring from a clean backup or seeking professional help.

4. Use Google Tools Appropriately:

  • Familiarize yourself with the functionality of Google's Search Console tools, especially those related to URL removals, and use them carefully to avoid accidental deletions.
  • If pages have been mistakenly removed, use the same tools to request reinstatement once the issue is rectified. Just simply include the word that has been changed and Google will recrawl the page to see the update.

These steps can help restore your website's visibility in Google search results, protect against future disappearances, and ensure a stable online presence.

How to Make Google Results Disappear for a Website You Don't Own

Sometimes, the need arises to remove Google search results related to websites you don't own, particularly in cases where the content negatively impacts your online reputation. If you need to remove a webpage from Google's search results, the most straightforward method is to delete the page if you have access. However, if deletion is not possible or suitable, you can use the noindex tag or update the robots.txt file to prevent the page from being crawled and indexed.

If the website owner refuses to add the noindex tag, here is what you should do:

1. Request Removal Directly from the Website:

Contact the website owner or webmaster directly and politely request the removal of the specific content. Provide a clear explanation of why the content is problematic or inaccurate.

2. Utilize Google's Legal Removal Requests:

If the content is unlawful or violates your privacy rights, you can file a legal request with Google to have it removed. Google provides a process for requesting the removal of such content, including personal information, copyrighted material, and other legally sensitive issues.

3. Online Reputation Management (ORM) Services:

For content that's difficult to remove or when direct requests are unsuccessful, consider using ORM services. These services specialize in improving your online presence, including negotiating removing negative content and suppressing unwanted search results by promoting positive content.

4. Create Positive Content:

One effective way to mitigate the impact of negative search results is by creating and promoting positive content about yourself or your business. Only 0.63% of people click on the second page. So, it's important to secure first-page visibility to increase your chances of being seen. Over time, this content can rank higher in search results, pushing down negative links.

5. Report Inaccuracies to Google:

If the content is inaccurate and appears in Google's search results or featured snippets, you can use Google's feedback tool to report inaccuracies. While this doesn't guarantee removal, it can lead to a review and potential correction.


We've looked at the various reasons you are dealing with disappearing search results on Google. It could be because of changes in Google's algorithm, direct penalties, or even simple website glitches. Knowing what causes these issues and how to fix them is key to keeping your online presence strong.

Learning to make content disappear from Google searches is a powerful weapon. It gives you more control over what people see about you online. Whether you tackle this yourself or hire experts in online reputation management, taking charge of your digital footprint is important. For expert help dealing with negative search results, contact NewReputation for a free consultation.

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