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Google temporarily de-indexes Wix sites

Wix site owners have enjoyed ease of use, but with Google de-indexing them, many are reconsidering their position on virtually renting versus owning their site and their destiny.

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Wix users get hit with the Google stick

If your business website was built with the online website builder tool, Wix, you may be noticing a recent dip in user activity. In fact, it’s likely that you are experiencing a major decline in activity due to a recent issue causing numerous sites powered by Wix to drop off the Google index.

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The appeal of Wix lies in its affordability and ease. Wix’s easy-to-use site building process eliminates the need to hire web development experts, making it an attractive option for start up businesses hoping to save money. Unfortunately, because all Wix sites use one main platform, individual webmasters experience much less flexibility and control than they would with a personalized platform. And, when one Wix site starts having problems, all Wix sites are likely to suffer a similar fate.

Forums have been flooded on this topic

Google Webmaster Help forums have been littered with discussions over the last two weeks about Wix sites that have disappeared from the index. The search engine has issued an apology for the hassle, and told Wix users that they’ve taken another thorough look at the set-up of Wix sites. There may be a delay, but Google is working to resolve the issue on their end by reprocessing all affected sites.

For any Wix users unsure if your site has been affected, now is the time to take a look at your site’s search data for anything fishy. Ask yourself: Is there decline in index counts in your Google Search Console? Is there a sudden decrease in traffic from Google Search? You might also try performing your own Google search to see if your website can be accessed.

Don’t lose valuable business

If your Wix site has indeed fallen off the Google index, you are losing valuable business each day. Even worse—there is nothing to do but wait for Google to start reindexing, which they are in the process of doing.

Building your own platform through web management tools like WordPress is a great alternative to sites like Wix that hinder individualization and give you limited control. Even as new brands, its invaluable to have a strong website that allows you to own your own content, and your own destiny.

#SadWix

Hannah is currently a writer and student in Colorado Springs, pursuing her master's degree in Creative Writing at the University of Denver. Before becoming a Staff Writer for the American Genius, Hannah wrote website content and grant applications for a law office in central Minnesota.

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51 Comments

51 Comments

  1. Pingback: Google désindexe les sites WIX

  2. Jacobus Lavooij

    October 27, 2015 at 6:14 am

    I have no clue why business people use Wix. Yes, easy, but when you are doing business, keep to your core business and have someone else build your website. Anyway, Hannah, thanks for pointing it out. I hadn’t heard of the problem yet. Always good to know and another tool for the ones that sell websites to close the client to use something else (like WP).

  3. Pingback: How To Use Wix In Your Sales Pitch To Sell A WordPress Website · Wordpress Examples

  4. James

    October 27, 2015 at 10:45 am

    Can you post some of the sources to this? I’m not finding much else aside from this article.

  5. Pingback: Google temporarily de-indexes Wix sites - The American Genius - TAO Inbound Marketing

  6. Phil Simon

    October 27, 2015 at 11:50 am

    In a word, wow. That type of thing could puncture Wix’s business model, certainly for new clients.

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  8. Andrew Anderson

    October 27, 2015 at 1:59 pm

    The truth is Free Website builders are never free. They in fact can cost you your whole business. Get yourself a hosted WordPress site and be done with it. Why put your financial future in someone else’s hands like that? If you have a real business then you need a real website.

    Cheers,
    Andrew Anderson
    ContinualCustomer.com

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  11. Andrew

    October 27, 2015 at 5:52 pm

    Does anyone know specifically what caused the deindex, whether it was Wix’s actions or a fluke?

    Not arguing for them in any way, but the article does seem a little biased against them.

  12. Kansas City

    October 27, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    Proof positive that you need to own your own asset as much as possible. WIX, Weebly, these could go belly up at any time (and Wix has, essentially). Only your own site can prevent these kinds of penalties (unless, of course, you use spammy SEO tactics)

  13. Bryan Rempel

    October 27, 2015 at 11:43 pm

    Great article. I have been talking about this for months after learning WordPress, and still having about a dozen sites on a similar website builder to Wix. I have been with this unnamed company for over a dozen years (starting with Home and ending with Stead), and they have been punishing their customers with an upgrade over the last two weeks, making thousands of sites un-editable. If you are with such a company you cannot migrate your years of work and hundreds of hours of development to a new website service provider. You are a “renter” not an “owner” of your website. I have replaced about half my sites over the past year with WordPress sites that I can pack up and move to a different host whenever I want. I now “own” my work and can control it. These so-called free websites are like Hotel California, “You can check out any time you want, but you can never leave.” I am now working on the rest of my sites to get them out of website purgatory.

  14. ryan

    October 28, 2015 at 12:01 am

    Ive always hated wix. It ruins businesses as people are cheap and always go for whats cheap and easy. But, like most things, you get what you pay for. Maybe our industry will get a bit busier now 😀

  15. Pingback: Problème avec les sites Wix

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  17. Alexis Kasperavicius

    October 28, 2015 at 7:38 am

    You kind of made the argument for using Wix: Google is paying attention, they will fix it. Do you think Google would fix a bug in their ranking code, much less respond to you if it was only affecting your site?

  18. arun

    October 28, 2015 at 9:49 am

    sometimes im fear because iahve one site in wix

  19. Pingback: Google désindexe les sites WIX

  20. Pingback: Montou site Wix

  21. Pingback: Google Temporarily De-Indexes WiX Websites

  22. Tyler

    October 28, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    I’ve transferred a few client sites from Wix to WordPress so I got a chance to see the backend of Wix. It is actually a decent platform for simple sites, but falls short when it comes to complex CMS, advanced services, and complete customization. One problem, as seen today, is all these sites are squeezed onto the same servers. I’d imagine it has to be quite a task to keep that server clean from spammy sites.

  23. Pingback: Sites em Wix desaparecendo do Google - PCN Informática

  24. Pingback: Google temporarily de-indexes Wix sites – The American Genius | Gregg'sDomains

  25. Pingback: Updates coming: Google Indexing Schema skipping Wix | Entrepreneurship & Wealth

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  28. Larry Launstein Jr.

    November 6, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    Not a fan of Wix at all. Too limited in design options and a SEO nightmare. Prefer WordPress and HTML-CSS better. Even with so many templates in each format, you can take them and call them your own, especially the premium templates.

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  34. David C. Brandon

    December 18, 2015 at 3:52 pm

    Wow, thats a huge hit right there. Why would G specifically target these?
    Generally speaking and regardless to this ‘update’, Wix users are not thrilled with their online presence on search engines.

  35. Pingback: Internet Marketing Blog - DigiSavvy — Los Angeles WordPress Developer and Digital Agency

  36. Pingback: 5 Reasons you should never build a website with WIX - Directory of Real Estate Agents

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  38. Pingback: Criar sites com Wix tem gerado problemas com o Google | BUSSOLLA

  39. Pingback: Google De-Indexes Wix Sites on Search Results - Dilan Design

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  41. Pingback: Websites Created with Wix get the Google Ban Hammer - Geek News Central

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  43. John

    February 22, 2016 at 11:25 am

    Although it’s odd that Google would penalize Wix user sites as a whole, I can tell you from dealing with users of free website builder services like Wix, there has been a decline in user satisfaction as a whole.

  44. Pingback: Sites feitos com Wix são desindexados pelo Google | #LCBRblog

  45. Pingback: Build a website with WIX?No way!5 Reasons to not build a wix site

  46. Pingback: » Google de-indexes Wix sites!

  47. Michael

    June 1, 2016 at 8:11 am

    Where is the truth in this I have 20 wix sites and none have suffered any penalty.

    • Lani Rosales

      June 1, 2016 at 12:22 pm

      You’re right – it was a temporary de-indexing, and many felt no impact whatsoever.

  48. Pingback: Should I use a website building program? - The Web Idea Shop

  49. Pingback: Wix's new acquisition lets users create in more ways - The American Genius

  50. Pingback: Sites feitos com WIX são desindexados pelo Google - Rabisco Comunicação

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Social Media

Red flags to help you spot a bad social media professional

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Social Media is a growing field with everyone and their moms trying to become social media managers. Here are a few experts’ tips on seeing and avoiding the red flags of social media professionals.

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Social media professionals, listen up

If you’re thinking about hiring a social media professional – or are one yourself – take some tips from the experts.

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We asked a number of entrepreneurs specializing in marketing and social media how they separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to social media managers, and they gave us some hints about how to spot whose social media game is all bark and no bite.

You can tell a lot from their socials

According to our experts, the first thing you should do if you’re hiring a social media professional is to check out their personal and/or professional social media pages.

Candidates with underwhelming, non-existent, out-of-date, or just plain bad social media pages should obviously get the chop.

“If they have no professional social presence themselves, that’s a big red flag,” says Chelle Honiker, executive director at the Texas Freelance Association. Another entrepreneur, Paul O’Brien of Media Tech Ventures, explains that “the only way to excel is to practice…. If you excel, why would you not be doing so on behalf of your personal brand?”

In other words, if someone can’t make their own social media appealing, how can they be expected to do so for a client?

Other taboos

These pros especially hated seeing outdated icons, infrequent posts, and automatic posts. Worse than outdated social media pages were bad social media pages. Marc Nathan of Miller Egan Molter & Nelson provided a laundry list of negative characteristics that he uses to rule out candidates, including “snarky,” “complaining, unprofessional” “too personal” “inauthentic,” and “argumentative.”

Besides eliminating candidates with poor social media presence, several of these pros also really hated gimmicky job titles such as “guru,” “whiz,” “ninja,” “superhero,” or “magician.”

They were especially turned off by candidates who called themselves “experts” without any proof of their success.

Jeff Fryer of ARM dislikes pros who call themselves experts because, he says “The top leaders in this field will be the first to tell you that they’re always learning– I know I am!” Steer clear of candidates who talk themselves up with ridiculous titles and who can’t provide solid evidence of their expertise.

How do you prove it?

According to our experts, some of them don’t even try. To candidates who say “’Social media can’t be measured,’” Fryer answer “yes it can[. L]earn how to be a marketer.” Beth Carpenter, CEO of Violet Hour Social Marketing, complains that many candidates “Can’t talk about ROI (return on investment),” arguing that a good social media pro should be able to show “how social contributes to overall business success.” Good social media pros should show their value in both quantitative and qualitative terms.

While our experts wanted to see numerical evidence of social media success, they were also unimpressed with “vanity metrics” such as numbers of followers.

Many poo-pooed the use of followers alone as an indicator of success, with Tinu Abayomi-Paul of Leveraged Promotion joking that “a trained monkey or spambot” can gather 1,000 followers.

Claims of expertise or success should also be backed up by references and experience in relevant fields.

Several entrepreneurs said that they had come across social media managers without “any experience in critical fields: marketing, advertising, strategic planning and/or writing,” to quote Nancy Schirm of Austin Visuals. She explains that it’s not enough to know how to “handle the technology.” Real social media experts must cultivate “instinct borne from actual experience in persuasive communication.”

Freshen up

So, if you’re an aspiring social media manager, go clean up those pages, get some references, and figure out solid metrics for demonstrating your success.

And if you’re hiring a social media manager, watch out for these red flags to cull your candidate pool.

#RedFlag

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Social Media

Instagram re-posting can get your company into deep trouble

(SOCIAL MEDIA) This blowup over a shared Instagram pic is why many companies are doing their due diligence to not land in hot water.

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Can’t ignore it

The perfect Instagram shot is social media gold.

For a business, this is especially true if that shot demonstrates a product or service of theirs. Many of us walk around with the attitude of “Eh, it’s out there” and don’t give serious consideration to the sharing or tagging of our pictures by celebrities or businesses (heck, I think it’s rather flattering).

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Sharing is caring?

Entrepreneurs and small business owners should embrace that the best advertising is free: real people sharing real successes that cost no money to produce. I certainly understand and support any business who wants to use smart social media skills to make money and expand the customer base.

That being said, there are some times you need to really consider the use of your photos, and certainly a lot of businesses are giving thought to asking users about them.

This post captures a bad experience with a company who shared a photographer’s image and didn’t particularly care for that photographer’s response.

tl;dr: Max makes a most excellent case (Instagram’s terms of service would demand that you are responsible for paying the royalties of any image you post, after all).

Take action

A majority of companies are asking before using media for a few reasons because it’s not just the polite thing to do, it’s the legal thing to do. Whether or not you’re a professional photographer or a creative professional, you own the content of that post to Instagram, with some small concessions to Instagram itself.

Now, you need to exercise that right, but copyright privileges are not an exclusive power of the MPAA or any major media company.

You have some leniency as well. You may choose to let one company use your media and charge another; it’s within your rights to decide how you want that media to be shared. If someone is using content on Instagram and not crediting you, or using an image without your permission,report it.

This is another consideration if the production of photos or videos is part of your job. Making money off of content that you don’t own without permission is illegal, and small time photographers or image creators should be vigilant about ensuring their content is providing for them, not just someone else. The law is on your side, and for some additional information about registering your copyright for artists, here you go.

A lot of businesses are doing a great job using social media posts from customers, and that’s a trend that no matter how big or small, the businesses will and should continue.

Don’t be lame

Key rules here: respect and follow the wishes of the person who created that media. Whether it’s about money, or even something more intangible, businesses should respect social media convention and talk to their customers about how they want to use their media, how that person feels about that media being used, and of course, always crediting the original creator (unless you sell them the image in a contract).

Following the law, social media terms of service, and online decency is a trend everyone should be on.

#sharesmart

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Social Media

Don’t let your Instagram vanish without a trace – have a backup plan

(SOCIAL MEDIA) In a weird glitch, multiple Instagram accounts vanished out of thin air. Don’t be stuck up the InstaVanish creek without a paddle… or at least a backup in place.

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Poof, gone

Can you imagine being locked out of your own Instagram account for no rhyme or reason? Well, dozens of people just found out, and they are PISSED.

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Thankfully, we’ve got a solution to make sure you don’t lose out if it happens to you.

First, some context

According to coverage from Consumerist, “Several Instagram users began complaining about the disabled or deleted accounts on Twitter today [July 6], noting that they received no warning or explanation for why their accounts were no longer active. The affected accounts appear to cover a wide range of users, from business owners, to fan and personal accounts.”

Via Twitter, Instagram did acknowledge a known bug causing the issue and said, “we’re working to resolve this as quickly as possible.”

However, the response came hours after complaints began, possibly because the issue allegedly affected a very small number of user accounts.

Furthermore, while Instagram gave instructions to users on how to reconfirm their identities and recover their account, they aren’t guaranteed to work.

So, bearing all that in mind, we here at American Genius recommend backing up your entire account in order to preserve your content.

Use what they give you

If you still have access to your account, you can utilize Instagram’s recently-launched Archive function. This lets you take photos off public view without removing them from your account; only you will be able to see them.

However, this does you no good if you’re already locked out, nor does it save posts that are publically available.

For that reason, we recommend a third-party backup option for your profile content.

A’int no party like a third party

You have a few different options. Our favorite one utilizes IFTT (If This, Then That). Using this automation tool, you can write a conditional function that says if you post a new photo to Instagram, it will automatically be sent to a cloud drive, such as Google Drive, OneDrive or Dropbox.

Along with the benefit of multiple storage options, we love this solution because you can set it and forget it.

That being said, it is not a complete solution; IFTT will ONLY backup up new photos, instead of old ones. To backup your entire collection of old memories, Instaport seems to be a crowd favorite.

Instaport is a free service that lets you download a backup of your entire account.

Once you download this backup, you could upload it to your preferred cloud storage provider, then set IFTTT to send future backups into that same folder.

Better safe than sorry

Using these tips, you can avoid being a total victim of an Instagram screw-up. Hopefully, this recent one will resolve shortly.

#InstaVanish

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