Google: The Sitelinks Demotion Tool Didn't Work For 6 Months Prior To Removal

As we reported a few weeks ago, Google removed the Sitelinks demotion tool from the Google Search Console.

But did you know that the tool did not work for about 6-months prior to that? So since around April 2016, if you tried to demote a sitelink using that tool – it may have not worked.

John Mueller of Google said this in this mornings webmaster hangout on YouTube at the 5:17 mark into the video. He said “the effect of this tool has been dialed down to almost nothing in the last half year or so.” He added that “if you have been using this tool to kind of maintain your sitelinks, then probably we haven’t been taking the input from your submissions there into account and we have been using our algorithms anyway.”

Here is the video embed:

Here is the transcript:

I guess as a bit of background with the whole sitelinks tool that we had there.

This is something that we had been experimenting with over the last couple of years and essentially the sitelinks use normal rankings. So there is nothing special around the sitelinks there.

And also the effect of this tool has been dialed down to almost nothing in the last half year or so.

So that is something where, if you have been using this tool to kind of maintain your sitelinks, then probably we haven’t been taking the input from your submissions there into account and we have been using our algorithms anyway.

So nothing really changed there, outside of us not providing a tool that doesn’t change anything in the search results.

Forum discussion at Google+.

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Author: barry@rustybrick.com (Barry Schwartz)

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