ODP link and the opting-out meta-tags

Simon Williams from McKell Park, the UK sales lead generation company writes:

Hi BigMan, Picked up on your DMOZ and ODP opting out meta tag stories today - and it blew my mind! Why? Because I was pulling out my hair due to the inexplicable crash of a clients stable Google ranking from top ten (long term) to third page and then gone completely. Google was listing a title and description that didn’t exist either on the home page or in any previous version of the site home page - What kind of madness was this!

Lo and behold - I read your story, rechecked the ODP client listing, and yes the mystery is solved. I always thought a DMOZ listing was gold and now it appears to be a poisoned chalice - Do you think Google will re-index the page and reapply a more suitable ranking, now that I have applied the opting-out meta tag? - or is it a start from scratch, sandbox type battle to regain the ranking? Do the ODP opting out tags need to be site-wide? Is it still possible to get a DMOZ listing and is it really worth far more than any equivalent PageRank inbound link? Thanks!

ODP Links and Opting-out Meta Tags

So many questions! It’s been a busy day for questions from readers, 9 in all, although 5 asked not to appear in the blog and for me to answer them directly and two, I suspect, came from ten year olds trying to amuse themselves! On to the answers to Simon’s questions:

Glad that the you found the Google ODP opting-out and MSN ODP opting-out to be of benefit. You need only apply the ODP opting-out meta tags to the head of your index page, as that is the only page that is replaced in the indexes with the ODP title and description. My experience is that any sites that we have used the ODP meta tag on, after they have lost their positions, they made a very swift recovery - overnight in one case. This is assuming that it was only the index page being replaced with the directory listing that caused the drop and that the site isn’t under some kind of penalty.

An ODP link is still considered by all of the search engines to be a trusted link, so it’s still worth having an ODP link pointing to your site - just make sure that you use the ODP opting-out meta tags to ensure that it doesn’t jump up and bite you in the bum! 

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