Google will normally remove content from the search results automatically when they see the content has been removed or altered on the originating website. This can take a week or two, it all depends on how often they check the website for updates.
Sites like cnn.com are updated in the search results very often. However, your friends obscure blog may only be visited once every few weeks by the Google bots.
You can use the removal tool to expedite this removal process, although in most cases you must first remove the content from the original website.
There is an option in the tool to report inappropriate content that appears in the search results when the Safesearch filter is activated.
This option does not remove anything from the main unfiltered search results.
There are several options in the tool so please read it carefully:
Has Your Removal Request Been Denied By Google?
Here is a link to my removal tool troubleshooting guide. But for a quick overview of the most common reasons why Google will deny a removal request, see my list below:
- You entered the wrong url into the tool (perhaps of the search results page instead of the actual website)
- The page reads “404 page not found” but in reality the server is responding with “200 okay” or ” 302 found”
- There is a redirect in place and Google can’t determine the content of the page
- You asked the site owner to remove your name but it (first or second name) still appears on the page somewhere
- You contacted Google via one of their contact forms but they refused your request (these are mostly manually reviewed)
- You reported a site that contains adult content – best to use the removal tool rather than the “report images” link.
My troubleshooting guide has more info but also feel free to explore the links to the right of this page, there are plenty of guides and links to official resources.