So many times I’ve been asked: “How can I remove a website page from Google“?
Well, this is actually quite easy to do. As long as you own the website or you have legal reasons to request such removal.
1. Removing your own website content from Google
This is the easiest operation. If you wish to remove unwanted pages from Google (e.g. an out of date page) or a page containing sensitive information, all you need is to sign up with Google Webmaster Tools.
Google Webmaster Tools is a free service that offers several tools to website owners. One of them is the “page removal request“. Here’s the exact process:
Sign up with Google Webmaster Tools (GWT)
Add and verify your website on GWT.
On the GWT home page, select your website.
On the Dashboard sidebar, click Optimization.
Click Remove URLs.
Click New removal request.
Enter the full address of the page you want to remove.
Click Submit Request.
GWT can also be used to remove your entire website or website directory, and unwanted images (read more about image removal here).
2. Removing third party website content from Google
Do not expect to be able to remove unwanted bad reviews or competitor websites. In the first case it’s your fault (bad reviews), in the second case there is nothing you can do – and believe me, it has been asked before!
So, if you believe your copyright has been infringed, or if a website has published objectionable content, here are your choices.
2.1 Contact the website owner
On paper, this is the best option. Hopefully the website has a contact form and email address. If you can’t manage to contact the webmaster directly, you can access the “WHO IS database” and contact the domain owner. Simply enter the domain in the search box (link to WHO IS website) and if the domain information are public you will get at least 1 email address.
If you’re unable to reach the website owner, you could also try contacting the website hosting company for assistance. You can find the website hosting company by using the WHO IS tool mentioned above.
2.2 Report unwanted content to Google
If you think some third party website content is offending you and attacking your company reputation, you can report that to Google. The hope is that, upon checking the applicable copyright laws, Google will get back to you with a final decision.
Via this link (third party content removal from Google) you can ask Google to remove unwanted content from the Web Search, but also from all the other Google Products e.g. YouTube, Google Ads, Picasa, Blogger, etc.
The only requirement: being the copyright owner.
2.3 Dominate page 1 of Google
Actually, this might be the easier solution. If you know how to rank well in the search engines (SEO), all you need to do is creating new content in order to “relegate” the unwanted content to Page 2 of Google Search. In fact, only a small percentage of internet users go beyond Google Page 1.
Trying to rank well in order to “hide” unwanted content has been used quite a lot in the last few years. This applies also to unwanted pages containing bad reviews or legal and sensitive content. Ranking at least 10 pages based on the same combination of keywords that trigger the unwanted page is not that difficult.
A few tips to take over Page 1 of Google:
You should come up first when googling your own company name.
Facebook, Twitter, Google+ & LinkedIn pages get usually on page 1.
Other good directories that rank well may include Fyple, Boards.ie, Yelp.ie
Have you ever reported anything to Google? How did that go? Leave a comment below!