How Do I Remove a Page From Google?
As a business owner, when somebody publishes something online about your business which casts your business in a negative light for everyone to see it can be quite distressing. Especially if that page talks about an unhappy experience received by a past client. For most people, the first thing that comes to mind is, “I want this page removed from Google!” and that leads to the question, “How can we get this page removed from Google?”
Contrary to popular belief Google does not own the internet, so when you search using Google you are not searching the whole internet you are searching Google’s stored version of the internet. Therefore even if Google does remove the page from its index then it will still be publically available from other search engines, social media sites or other links that people may have saved elsewhere.
3 Tips on Removing a Web page From Google!
1. Contact the person who wrote the negative piece and ask them to remove it.
If the negative comment is in the form of a review on a local business directory site or a review site then you could reach out to the person who left the review and try understanding exactly what their issue is and more importantly what you, as a business can do to make it better. Quite often people leave negative comments and reviews out of sheer frustration. If you or someone from within your business can reach out to that person and take ownership of the situation then work toward a resolution, that person may be willing to remove their review. You may even get the reviewer to edit the review to reflect the way the situation was handled, how they are now a satisfied client and they would recommend you.
In some cases this may not be possible, the reviewer may have chosen to remain anonymous or there may be action for recourse. If this is the case then you may want to look at the next option.
2. Contact the website owner
If the reviewer refuses to remove or edit their comments then your next step will be to contact the website owner and ask them if they will remove the content.
If the contact details of the website owner are not available then you can use the whois utility. to look up information on domain names. This includes contact information as well as some technical information such as the domain’s name servers (DNS), to try to uncover details such as the web host and contact them putting forward the reasons why you would like the content removed.
Again this might prove tricky as many website owners are reluctant to move content, especially if the content is true and is supported.
Another reason why this approach may prove counterproductive is that the website owner may publish your request to remove the content. This will mean something that could have been years old will now get fresh content added to it which will increase the relevancy of the content in the eyes of the search engines.
3. Be proactive with your reputation.
Clients and consumers have more and more ways to publish their experiences about your business online. Whether you agree with that or support that it doesn’t matter because that is fact. It is not difficult for a consumer to open a web browser on their phone, sign on to Facebook, Twitter or Google+ and tell everyone they know and the entire internet about your business. It happens each and every day to businesses up and down the country. So rather than sitting back, thinking that everything is hunky dory and waiting for a disgruntled client to talk about your business online and then go into fire fighting mode – “How can I get this page removed from Google?” “Can I sue this person?” – be proactive about your online presence.
The more information you provide the search engines that is relevant about your business the better. Why? Because when someone says something negative then the searching public, your prospective customers and your existing business partners know that the comment is out of character and will simply dismiss it as a one off, especially when they can see all the great work that you do.
Testimonials for satisfied customers, news about the charity work you are doing, stories about new employees, business growth, accreditations; all of this information can be provided to the search engines and if other searchers find it relevant they will like it, comment on it and share it so the search engines will pick up on the relevance and include the results when people search on your business name.
One negative comment, review or web page among 10, 20 or 50 positive stories won’t be something to worry about; it will simply show your business for who you really are. The sooner you start to think proactively about your online reputation and less from a defensive stand point the greater position you will be in when the negative review turns up and the question “How do I remove this page from Google?” may not even need to cross your lips!