Can changing WHOIS site info result in a PageRank drop?
 by Casey Markee

Can changing WHOIS site info result in a PageRank drop?

  • I changed my WHOIS information recently on a site that had a stable PR 6 score for the last several years. Within hours of making the change my site dropped to a PR 4? Can changing the legal information for your website cause this drop and what should I do to reverse it?

Answer: There have been many instances where a site that changed ownership had its PageRank reset by Google. But when this has happened the site was taken immediately to a PageRank 0. That would not seem to be the case with you since, as you stated, your PageRank suffered only a partial deduction from a PageRank 6 to a PageRank 4.

Note that Google has been doing a lot of PageRank updates during 2008. Before you assume this PageRank drop was due to a WHOIS info change, make sure that the PageRank decrease was not related to something else on your site. A site can drop from a PageRank 6 to a PageRank 4 for a variety of different reasons, some of which include...

  • Too many irrelevant, off topic backlinks

  • Buying or selling links that pass PageRank

  • Over-stuffing your pages with keyword-dense content to influence rankings

  • Cross-linking your various sites

  • Another Google penalty that had nothing to do with your WHOIS info (check out our recent Guide to Google Penalties)

  • Having existing backlinks to your site devalued by Google

It's worth noting that toolbar PageRank represents the tail-end of a PageRank change that Google has been implementing for some time. Your PageRank is continuously calculated internally by Google across many datacenters, with Google sending a simplified version of this data to the toolbar a few times per year.

That means any changes you see to the toolbar PageRank were actually calculated a long time ago. If you made this WHOIS change and then immediately noticed your PageRank decrease, odds are very good the timing was just...

Already a member? Sign in here

Read the rest of this article,
and get all this for only $1.

  • The Search Engine Strategies Updates for April 2021
  • SEN's Monthly Marketing Podcast for Strategies on the Go
  • Ultimate Guide to Avoiding Google Penalties
  • The Complete Site Audit Checklist
  • The Definitive Local Search Audit Checklist
  • 100's of Strategic SEO Articles and Q&As
  • The Internet Marketing Glossary
  • The Pro SEO's Local Search Directory List
  • 2019 Unfair Advantage SEO Beginner's Book
  • Pro's Ultimate WordPress Plugin Guide
  • The Vault: SEN's Internet Marketing Research Libraries
  • PLUS, as a Full SEN Basic Member, you'll be eligible for hundreds of dollars of discounts on SEO courses ranging from beginner to master on a variety of topics including organic search, local search, and social networking.

  • Your $1 Trial is good for 7 days at which time your card will be charged $29/mo unless you cancel before April 28th, 2021

 This form is encrypted for your security