Original Poster
Brian Hede

Huge drop in ranking - could it be wrong SSL migration ??

Hi all,

I sincerely hope that someone here can point me in the right direction. We have been running our commercial site for the past 9 years and have recently in may changed from http to https.

The site is structured to always use www, as well as languages is in subfolders. Each subfolder has its own search console registration. All hhtp and https versions of the site is also in search console. All http pages are redirected in apache to https, so that should be correct as well.

The migration in may to https went well in may, and we kept our rankings, at least until around 20'th june, where we simply dissapered from google. At the same day, our google shopping campaigns were disapproved as well as google mybusiness removed our web address. You cannot not even find our index page, unless you search for it using info:search.

We contacted google shopping, and they could not find any problems with the site and re-approved our shopping campaigns as well as google my-business manually reinstated our web-address. Our rankings actually went back to normal for a week, until around 1'th July, where they dropped back. We again got notified by the google mybusiness that out web address was removed from mybusiness, however our google shopping did not suffer.

Since then, again, even our index page is not showing up when searching for just the company name. However if you search for squashgearpro.com it seems to come up as normal, as organic number one as I would expect?!

Looking at our index pages as an example, searching for our company name: squashgearpro usually results in our index page showing up in the organic results as number one. Now a random product may show up somewhere in the end of the page or on page two.

We see the same with all our significant keywords.

Please look at the attached pictures. This shows the rank of squashgearpro/da/ with http, where the searchterm squashgearpro is showing as number one, until the migration. The https is taking over the ranking, until 20'th June, where it drops significantly. After that, we see a week with normal ranking, and then again we disappear.

We had different companies looking at this, and got really no explanation. We have no messages in search console or manual actions?! We are using both google shopping and addword.

Any hint would really be appreciated - so really hope someone has seen this before...

Community content may not be verified or up-to-date. Learn more.
All Replies (31)
I'll recommend to check following checklist when you have added an SSL Certificate to your website-

  1. Firstly, you need to verify your HTTPs website in Google and Bing webmasters tools.
  2. Implement the SEO friendly ‘301 Redirection’
  3. Once the website is upgraded to the HTTPS version, you need to update all the main internal and external links.
  4. Update all links on Social Media Platforms.
  5. Configure a new sitemap with HTTPS links.
  6. Update your Robots.txt file and resubmit to webmasters tools as well.
  7. Configure canonical tags and make them point to the HTTPs version.
  8. If you also work with Adwords, please update PPC landing pages with HTTPS version.
  9. Better to keep both version in Google webmasters tool or keep backup of Google Webmasters tools for future comparison and analysis.
  10. Also update your Google Analytics Setting.
  11. If you have a newsletter, please redesign or update links in newsletters with HTTPS URLS.
  12. Check images, CSS, javascripts URLs
  13. If you are using any plugins or extension, make sure that they are working with HTTPs URLs.
  14. Evaluate the Mobile version as well.
  15. Check out your website and page speed.
  16. Update your blog links.
Original Poster
Brian Hede
Hi and thanks so much for the input. I sincerely appreciate this. Actually all on the list should be fine, except for us not having a sitemap as well as the facebook page did not redirect to https by it self, but that is of-course taken care of by apache with the 301 redirect, however now corrected. 

All our links are indexed correct by google, and that happened at the switch, so we should really not need the sitemap, at least that should not be a factor in the problems we see. I attach a graph of our index status, which match the old http site.

So what confuses me is that one month after the https migration all is good, and afterwards it goes down?? I trust that should be related to something else ? But nothing really makes sense?!

I don't think that an SSL Certificate can cause your ranking. It's a security factor and its a part of Google ranking algorithm now. I'll recommend to check your on page again and your promotion activities. 

Looks like algorithmic markdown alright...

Have you checked your Search Console for error messages, malware messages, and such?

I'll try to look more closely at the site later today. Stay tuned.


What I find odd is that the site squashgearpro.com 301 redirects in 2 hops to https://www.squashgearpro.com/da/ on a first access.
If I change the language to English, a subsequent attempt at accessing squashgearpro.com results in 301 redirect in 2 hops again to https://www.squashgearpro.com/en/.

So something is not behaving properly there.  Such redirections based on language should be 302  not 301. Even better would be javascript redirections.. And best would be to just allow the user to pick the language, not redirect them at all IMO.

No idea how Googlebot sees the site, what if any 301 redirections it experiences.

Original Poster
Brian Hede
Hi Sasch, thanks for your input. As well as all, very much appreciated. I have checked for messages, malware and all other, but no problems reported by google?! We have some pages not found (404) with old addresses. I guess they will not harm. We had 2 soft 404 which is fixed, but they should not really be a problem. I have one warning, with a link that for some reason is indexed, but blocked by robots.txt. So from that point of view it looks healthy enough I guess? And hope :)

Just attached the messages if any use?!

Original Poster
Brian Hede
Hi Webado,

You really should not be able to access the site squashgear.com - that will always redirect you to the language subfolder. I just checked how google sees this, and that is indexed with the cannonical https://www.squashgearpro.com/da/

So i think that is why you get the 2 redirects, as the first one puts the https on and afterwards you get redirected to the language subfolder.
Ok the first time I requested squashgearpro.com I ended up 301 redirected to https://www.squashgearpro.com/da/ .
But after picking English as my language while on the /da/ page, the 2nd time I requested squashgearpro.com I ended up 301 redirected to https://www.squashgearpro.com/en/ .

This is a weird behaviour. 301 redirections must be consistently the same.
I see the same as Webado --> /da/ and I am in the UK.

I just checked how google sees this, and that is indexed with the cannonical https://www.squashgearpro.com/da/

If you do a fetch as Google on your home page URL squashgearpro.com, which page does Googlebot see, crawling from the USA? According to the Mobile Friendly test (which uses Googlebot), it is /da/ for Googlebot as well. If you do a fetch as Google on any of the other hreflang versions, does it see them? Or do you redirect it? Can Googlebot actually crawl and index all these different international sites? Geotargeting and hreflang obviously need to be compatible and working correctly alongside one another: you can't have a Google search result sending you to a page in one language and then the server promptly redirecting you to somewhere else.

But after picking English as my language while on the /da/ page, the 2nd time I requested squashgearpro.com I ended up 301 redirected to https://www.squashgearpro.com/en/ .

Cookie setting?
Original Poster
Brian Hede
Hi Webade, I think I now see whet you mean. Do you mean when clicking on the logo - it sends you to https://www.squashgearpro.com with no language, and redirects you back to /en/ ? 

That I can see, could be a problem somehow and need to be corrected. It has been like that for years though :)
Original Poster
Brian Hede
Hi Ets,

Yes it seems to have fixed itself, for now. But as mentioned, we saw that earlier, going back to normal for a week, just to go back, so for now I am not too confident. I can see that I have 4 errors on hreflang implementation out of 10.000 hreflang tags, and that is due to some canonicals not giving reference back.

E.g. they are from addresses excluded in the index, but where google chose a canonical.

I am also not confident that is the root cause, as you really should be able to find the specific pages, just in whatever random language, but is is for sure an input I will look at.

I will update this thread with whatever conclusion I get to, or when/if anything happens.

I am sincerely grateful for all the input and time given by all, and I do hope I can exchange that favor at some point.

Br. Brian 
Were these replies helpful?
How can we improve them?
This question is locked and replying has been disabled. Still have questions? Ask the Help Community.


Some community members might have badges that indicate their identity or level of participation in a community.

Google Employee — Google product team members and community managers
Community Specialist — Google partners who help ensure the quality of community content
Platinum Product Expert — Community members with advanced product knowledge who help other Google users and Product Experts
Gold Product Expert — Community members with in-depth product knowledge who help other Google users by answering questions
Silver Product Expert — Community members with intermediate product knowledge who help other Google users by answering questions
Product Expert Alumni — Former Product Experts who are no longer members of the program
Community content may not be verified or up-to-date. Learn more.


Member levels indicate a user's level of participation in a forum. The greater the participation, the higher the level. Everyone starts at level 1 and can rise to level 10. These activities can increase your level in a forum:

  • Post an answer.
  • Having your answer selected as the best answer.
  • Having your post rated as helpful.
  • Vote up a post.
  • Correctly mark a topic or post as abuse.

Having a post marked and removed as abuse will slow a user's advance in levels.

View profile in forum?

To view this member's profile, you need to leave the current Help page.

Report abuse in forum?

This comment originated in the Google Product Forum. To report abuse, you need to leave the current Help page.

Reply in forum?

This comment originated in the Google Product Forum. To reply, you need to leave the current Help page.