How to Remove Unwanted Search Results from Google (2024)

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Not every search result about your brand or name will be positive. Some results are wrong, outdated, and contain personal information.

Fortunately, there are ways that you can remove unwanted content from Google. Even if you can’t permanently delete something, there are other methods to suppress those results—making them less visible.

5 Steps to Remove Unwanted Google Search Results

Here’s what you can do to remove unwanted search results from Google:

  1. Start With the Content You Control
  2. Use an Online Reputation Management Company (WebiMax)
  3. Contact the Webmaster to Remove the Content
  4. Ask Google to Remove the Search Result
  5. Check If the Removal Was Successful

The Easy Parts of Removing Unwanted Google Search Results

Removing content from a Google search result is actually easier than it sounds. This is great news for anyone who wants to eliminate content from the web, including personally identifiable information, background reports, defamatory content, and arrest records.

The steps for removal are actually fairly straightforward. You can possibly do it yourself with a computer and basic internet knowledge.

Going through this process is even easier when you’re using a reputation management service like WebiMax.

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For business and personal use cases alike, WebiMax can provide you with a report showing all of the negative content about you on the web. Their experts will also give you a realistic timeline for how long it will take to remove each one, along with a blueprint for success.

WebiMax can delete negative content on your behalf, suppress negative search results, and even promote positive content to give you more control over your digital perception.

The Difficult Parts of Removing Unwanted Google Search Results

Some type of content is difficult or impossible to remove from Google search results. For example, content types like Sex Offender Registry Listings, government or law enforcement public records, and telephone numbers may be impossible to remove.

Equally, some types of content that can be removed may require extra steps. For example, you may need a takedown notice, legal request, or court order to remove Google results in some cases. You may also need to prove that the unwanted content infringes upon Google Policies, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, or other such policies.

Things can also get complicated when attempting to remove other people’s content, even if it is about your brand. At the very least, you’ll need to contact the site owner or webmaster with a request to remove the content. This process may require a lot of patience and back-and-forth with the site owner before you are successful.

You may need help from a legal expert or an online reputation management company in some of these cases. Regardless, removing unwanted search results takes time and effort. It may even take a few days or weeks before the result disappears from the search results after completing all the necessary steps.

Step 1 – Start with the Content You Control

By far, the easiest type of content to remove from search results is the one that you own and control. This content includes your social media accounts, website, blogs, YouTube channel, and other online assets.

Delete the Unwanted Web Page

Start by deleting the unwanted web page. The process may look slightly different depending on your content management system (CMS). WordPress is a popular option, so we’ll use it for this example.

  • Log into your WordPress dashboard.
  • Hover on the web page or blog you’d like to delete.
  • Select Trash.
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The deleted web page will be stored in the Trash folder and can be recovered. You can also delete the page permanently from the trash if you wish.

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Block the URL from Google Search Results

Deleting the unwanted web page is only the first step. The web page was already indexed by Google and probably linked to other pages on your site or externally. This fact can come back to bite you.

Crawl bots, including Google, will tag the page as missing once you delete it. This will harm your SEO efforts and overall rankings for the remaining content. A quick way to get around this issue is to use the Google Remove URLs Tool.

This tool will help you remove the web page from Google search results.

To do this:

  • Go to your Google Search Console.
  • Click the Temporary Removals tab.
  • Select New Request.
  • Select Temporarily remove URL.
  • Click Next to complete the process.
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This method permanently removes the URL from Google search results since you have already deleted the web page. You can also skip deleting the web page if you only want to remove it from search results temporarily.

This option removes your pages from Google search results for six months. That’s enough time to decide if you want to remove the search result permanently.

Stop Google from Indexing Your Content

There is also a way to stop Google from indexing your content in the first place, meaning your content can remain live without showing up in the search results. This is a good option if the content is still helpful, but you don’t want it showing up on the search engine.

You’ll need to use the noindex meta tag. To do this:

Go to the <head> section of the unwanted page’s HTML markup

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Insert the metatag: <meta name=”robots” content=noindex”>

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Please note that some CMS like WordPress doesn’t give you access to the source code. In this case, you can use a third-party plugin like Yoast SEO to instruct web crawlers not to index your content.

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It’s also worth noting that this method is not foolproof. It is better to delete and block the content if you don’t want it to appear on search results.

Don’t Forget to Remove Related Social Media Posts

If you are someone who promotes the content you generate on your personal or professional social media accounts, you’re not alone. This is one of the best ways to alert people who are interested in you and your business about new content when you post it.

However, if you later delete the blog post or webpage because you no longer want to make this content available, you will want to delete any related social media posts as well. Google will return results for YouTube when someone performs a search, for example. Simply deleting your original webpage, but leaving the related YouTube post active, may allow people to still find the content you now want to remove.

You also may want to delete any related posts on Facebook or Twitter, as Google sometimes archives those posts and makes them available in its search results.

Step 2 – Use an Online Reputation Management Company

Removing your content from Google search results is the easy part. However, things aren’t as straightforward when the unwanted content belongs to someone else. Your best bet is to use an online reputation management service like WebiMax.

WebiMax mainly uses content deletion and promotion. The company can help you delete unwanted content for search results, as long as there is proof of misinformation.

WebiMax will also create new positive content to suppress the harmful content where deletion isn’t possible. The negative content is pushed past the first page, where people are unlikely to find it.

Get a Free Audit and Proposal from WebiMax

Ask WebiMax for a free audit of your internet reputation. Don’t be surprised if WebiMax discovers unfavorable content that you didn’t know about.

Next, a representative will create a custom proposal and quote. You can opt-out of any services you don’t want. Either way, the rep will let you know what the company can do to get rid of any unwanted Google search results. They’ll also give you a time frame for the removal.

The great thing about WebiMax is that it doesn’t matter if the content can be removed or not. The company will devise and implement a strategy to push content that cannot be removed down to lower search result pages. Since most people never make it past the first page of Google’s search results, this often equates to removing the content.

Explore WebiMax Services

You might prefer that unwanted or harmful results don’t show up on Google in the first place—or that future negative results that may show up get handled immediately. To assist with this, WebiMax offers reputation management. The company will monitor your digital presence and take appropriate action if negative information pops up.

Other WebiMax services include:

  • SEO reputation management
  • Reviews
  • Web design
  • Social media marketing
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC) marketing
  • Online PR
  • Digital marketing
  • Lead generation
  • Local marketing

Go to the WebiMax website to see how they can help you maintain your online reputation now.

Using a reputation management company is the fastest and easiest way to get rid of unwanted Google search results. However, this option isn’t open to everyone. If that’s the case for you, you may try to contact the webmaster to take down the unwanted content instead.

Request for Content Removal

I want to give you a fair warning. This strategy requires a bit of work, and your efforts may not always pay off. With that said, it’s still worth trying.

Start by looking for the webmaster/site owner’s contact information on the website. It might be on the About or Contact page or buried in the footer. Alternatively, you can use tools like DomainTools or to find the webmaster’s contact information.

Always be friendly and professional when you’re contacting a site’s webmaster. Threats and confrontations likely won’t get you anywhere and will just make matters worse. The site could publish more negative information about you or your brand, which Google would recognize as fresh content and elevate it even higher in the search results.

So, keep your emotions out of this interaction. I find it easier to speak with people on the phone, especially when it comes to something like this.

Here’s why: If the webmaster has a vendetta against you, anything you put in writing might be published and used against you. They could screenshot your texts or emails and publish them, which just adds more fuel to the fire that you’re trying to extinguish.

I also prefer phone calls because it’s harder for your tone to be lost in translation. Emails and texts may be interpreted incorrectly and harm your chances of getting the content removed.

If the webmaster is willing to cooperate with your request, the content will disappear from search results a few days or weeks after they delete it.

It’s worth noting that many site owners use WHOIS privacy settings to hide their contact information. If this happens, you may not be able to contact them directly.

Working with a reputation management company can help remedy this situation. They have the tools and experience required to track down site owners easier than you can do on your own. Reputation management companies also have plenty of tricks up their sleeves to track down even the more elusive webmasters.

Ask The Web Admin to Add a No-Index Tag

Asking the site owner to remove the unwanted content might be a tall order. There’s likely a good reason why they created the content in the first place. You can compromise and ask for a no-index tag to keep it from being indexed by Google.

Here, the webmaster will add the <meta name=”robots” content= “noindex”> to the header of the HTML page. This metatag instructs crawl bots not to index the content so it won’t appear on Google search results. Before the content disappears from Google search results, it might take a few weeks.

You can also ask the webmaster to remove identifying search phrases from the page. For example, your brand name may appear in the page description or title of the HTML page. However, simply removing the brand name from the page means people won’t find it in the search results when they Google your brand.

Step 4 – Ask Google to Remove the Search Result

There are limited instances where it is possible to remove content directly from Google. You can ask Google to de-index the unwanted content. This effectively removes the content from Google’s search engine. If this step is successful, Google doesn’t need to contact the site owner or publisher to de-index the content.

Find Out If You Qualify for De-Indexing

De-Indexing isn’t a silver bullet. But it can be a great option if you qualify. Some of the types of content that can Google is quick to de-index include:

  • Sexually explicit information
  • Identity theft or financial harm
  • Legal issues
  • Digital Millennium Copyright Act violations
  • Right to be forgotten

It’s worth talking to an attorney or reputation management company about your options. For instance, an attorney may be able to spot copyright violations or other legal grounds to substantiate your removal request.

Submit a Removal Request to Google

Google offers a few removal scenarios on its support page. Simply scroll through the options and click the relevant link to your application. You’ll be redirected to a new page with the application steps and more details about submitting your request.

Step 5 – Check If the Removal Was Successful

Any one of the steps outlined here should work in most cases. Also, consider using multiple removal methods until you find one that works. Finally, check if the unwanted result has been removed successfully.

Enter the URL into the Search Bar

Type in or copy/paste the exact URL you attempted to remove in the search bar. Next, check if the unwanted content still appears on the search engine results.

Remember that it can take up to two weeks for the content to disappear from the search results. After that, you’ll have to wait for Google to re-crawl the pages before the result disappears.

Lastly, the URL is case-sensitive. So Google identifies different cases as different pages. Therefore, you may need to repeat the removal process for all the URL versions you’re attempting to remove. Be sure to check in every few days to see if the removal was successful.

Wait it out

It’s not always possible to remove unwanted content from search results. We mentioned suppressing the unwanted content. But, you’ll have to wait for Google to index and rank your new content.

The process can take a few months or up to a year. Eventually, the unwanted content will be pushed down to the second or third page or beyond, where people are less likely to see it.

If you don’t like the idea of waiting for years, get in touch with an online reputation management service like Webimax. Come up with a plan for moving forward today.

How to Remove Unwanted Search Results from Google (2024)


How to Remove Unwanted Search Results from Google? ›

Fastest: Contact the webmaster directly

If they do, Google will generally remove it from search results within days or weeks. In our experience, a webmaster will often not remove online content because, after all, they put it there in the first place for a reason - but sometimes they will.

How do I remove unwanted links from Google Search? ›

To temporarily block a URL from Google Search, or update Google's view when a page has changed:
  1. The URL must be in a Search Console property that you own. ...
  2. Open the Removals tool.
  3. Select the Temporary Removals tab.
  4. Click New Request.
  5. Select Next to complete the process.

How long does it take for Google to remove a search result? ›

Fastest: Contact the webmaster directly

If they do, Google will generally remove it from search results within days or weeks. In our experience, a webmaster will often not remove online content because, after all, they put it there in the first place for a reason - but sometimes they will.

How do I remove myself from public searches? ›

How to Remove Your Information From People Search Sites
  1. Check to See Which Sites Have Your Information. You may want to look for your information on some popular people search websites. ...
  2. Find the Opt-Out Pages. ...
  3. Submit the Opt-Out Request. ...
  4. Repeat the Process and Continue Monitoring.
Feb 28, 2022

How can I remove search results related to my name in Google? ›

#1: Go private on social media

If you have an account on any of them that features your name, Google will find it. Not only will they find it, Google will display the account(s) highly in any search for your name. A quick way to clear those results is by making sure the profiles on those accounts are private.

How do I remove suggested URL from search bar? ›

How to Remove Past Link/URL from Google Chrome Address Bar
  1. Mac: Shift+FN+Delete.
  2. Windows: Shift + Delete.
  3. Chromebook: Alt + Shift + Delete.
Oct 22, 2021

How many times has my name been googled? ›

There is no way to know if you've been Googled, and you can't know how many times your name has appeared in search results. However, you can use Google Alerts to find some answers. An alert looking for your own name might seem somewhat self-absorbed, but it's the first step in playing it safe.

What companies can remove your information from the Internet? ›

The 5 best companies to remove your personal information from the internet
  • Incogni, at $0.03/data broker Incogni packs the biggest punch at the lowest cost.
  • Kanary, good value but does not offer weekly progress reports.
  • OneRep, offers only PSS removal. ...
  • Removaly, offers only PSS removal.

How do I get rid of search suggestions on Google Chrome? ›

Go to the upper right corner of the Chrome browser and click the three dots. Select "Settings" from the dropdown menu. Go to "Sync and Google Services" and select it. Toggle the "Autocomplete searches and URLs" option off by scrolling down.

How do I get Google to stop showing previous searches on laptop? ›

To pause saving your history:
  1. On your computer, go to your Search history in My Activity.
  2. On the left or at the top, click Controls.
  3. Under "Web & App Activity," click Turn off.
  4. Click Turn off or Turn off and delete activity.

Will someone know if I search them on Google? ›

If you search for someone's name online, they won't receive a notification that you Googled their name, nor can they find out that you searched for them.

Can anyone know what I search on Google? ›

You're in control of what information you share with Google when you search. To browse the web privately, you can use private browsing, sign out of your account, change your custom results settings, or delete past activity.

What name is Googled the most? ›

Who is the most searched person on Google in the US? According to a variety of sources, Queen Elizabeth II is the most searched person on Google, followed by Damar Hamlin.

How can I remove my personal information from the internet for free? ›

In short:
  1. Opt out of Data Brokers and People Search Sites.
  2. Remove your personal information from Google.
  3. Optimize Google privacy settings.
  4. Delete your social media accounts.
  5. Optimize the privacy settings of the social media accounts you are not ready to give up.
  6. Delete any apps you don't need.

How much does it cost to remove your personal information from the internet? ›

You can hire an online service like Delete Me or Privacy Duck to do that for you. Be aware, it's not cheap. Delete Me costs $129 per year, while Privacy Duck starts at $500 per year.

Can something be permanently removed from the internet? ›

No matter what you do, you can never guarantee that something has been entirely scrubbed from the internet. The cookies, caches, and people's ability to screenshot and screen record means that it almost doesn't matter how quickly you take down a post, the chances are someone has spotted it and nabbed it for the future.

How do I block a link in Google search? ›

Step 2: Specify URLs Chrome users can visit
  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console. ...
  2. In the Admin console, go to Menu Devices Chrome Settings. ...
  3. To apply the setting to all users and enrolled browsers, leave the top organizational unit selected. ...
  4. Scroll to URL Blocking and enter URLs as needed: ...
  5. Click Save.

How do I clear links? ›

Press Ctrl+Shift+F9.

How do I delete copied links? ›

Option 1 to Clear the Clipboard

Open the clipboard, tap and hold the item, and click on delete.

How do I block a specific search? ›

Blocking Google Searches

In order to block specific Google Searches, add *search*term* to your policy, where "term" stands in for the search you would like blocked. For example, adding *search*snake will block the search for the term "snake", but will still allow sites that contain "snake" in the URL.

Is it safe to delete links? ›

There's no risk involved in the act of not linking to a post or page. Removing links is safe. The dangers of deleting content, on the other hand, do exist.

How do I delete quick links from my Iphone? ›

On Safari tap the bookmark icon, tap favorite, slide the name of the site to the left and tap delete. On the homepage delete it like you would any other app. Do you mean on your Safari or home page ? On Safari tap the bookmark icon, tap favorite, slide the name of the site to the left and tap delete.


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