What type of removal request should I submit ?

One of the biggest causes of failed removal requests is submitting the wrong type of request. Before you proceed, understand the difference between the options offered by the removal tool so that your request has more chance of success the first time.

The main request types are page removals and cache removals. (Other requests types are directory removals, site removals and safe search removals)

Follow the paths in the chart below to see an overview

(Click to Enlarge)

Url removal flowchart
URL removal flowchart

NB: In the above flowchart, the box mentioning clicking 'Full size image' needs to be amended to reflect the current Google Image search results. The full size image will be reached by clicking the Share button, copying the goo.gl url and accessing that goo.gl url and then copying the image url by right-clicking it. A bit roundabout, but effective nonetheless.

Cache removals

Cache removals only remove the snippet shown under the title and the cached page which can be seen if you click on the ‘cache’ link in the search result. This does not remove or stop the entry from appearing in search results, it will appear anyway, but minus the search snippet and the cache.

Page removals

This will remove the whole page from appearing. This is always the better option, if the criteria for removal are met. This procedure may also be sued to request removal of other types of indexed documents, such as pdf, Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, xml files, txt files, etc.

Before you submit a request
Check to see whether you are requesting the correct option. If the page has been blocked in a way suitable to Google then you should request a page removal.

NB: A cache removal does not apply to pdf documents, nor to images or any non-text based files. Note that an Excel document (e.g. .xls ) is not text-based, but a .csv file is text based.

If the page is not eligible for removal then you might be able to submit a cache removal. Whilst this does not remove the page, it can reduce the visibility in search results until it is naturally recrawled. But some content on the page must have been modified since the last time it was cached and you need to identify a single unique word which was (in the webcache) but is no longer present on the live page.