|Google SEO longterm?|
| 8:57 am on Nov 19, 2003 (gmt 0)|
I had a site, SEO was done, was in top rankings for about 2 months then overnight for no reason site was positioned way down the rankings. All practices were ethical and it seemed no point or logic to this what happend to me.
If you speak to all the best Internet Marketing Pros they tell you SEO is a waste of time longterm, everyone in the industry has lost their position at somepoint from what I gather - or am I wrong?
I want to hear from anyone who has had long term success with SEO say for 6 months or longer....
| 11:45 am on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Whatever happened to the long term of this thread? Current SERPS couldn't really matter less in five or ten years from now.
| 5:59 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
> I had a site, SEO was done, was in top rankings for about 2
> months then overnight for no reason site was positioned
> way down the rankings. All practices were ethical and it
> seemed no point or logic to this what happend to me.
Read around a bit. SE's often change the way they determine rankings. Google got away with the same basic system for almost 4 years, but even they had to ultimately make some significant changes.
If you survive in the top 10 under any keyword for more than 30 days - count your lucky stars, as there is a search engine that has just made a mistake.
The entire concept that you can remain top 10 with the same page under the same kw month-to-month is flawed. Google was a aberration in the grand scheme of search engines. The fact that sites remained in the top ten month-to-month under the same kw's is a testament to the fact that it simply took seo'ers longer to figure out the system and address the new wild cards.
> If you speak to all the best Internet Marketing Pros they
> tell you SEO is a waste of time longterm,
Of course most of us do - we want the "space" for ourselves.
We are content watching the new corporate sem clueless come in and produce results with their checkbook instead of their brain. Combining the entire set of seo's at the top 10 grossing marketing firms on the web today, could not match the top seos in this forum.
We are talking about folks we can marshall 70-100k backlinks in less than a week. Can your corporate "marketing pro" do that? eg: I've never seen an industry where more "pros" are more clueless about what they've done.
Case-in-point: I was recently at a conference where I was talking with a "top" PPC manager. I happened to ask him what his user agent name was while querying Overture for results. He asked, what's an agent name? That was from - a noted conference speaker - a noted seo book author - and a speaker that charges $400 per person per night. Utterly, clueless about this industry.
> everyone in the industry has lost their position at
> some point from what I gather - or am I wrong?
One site/page goes down in the rankings a month and the one that *was* down goes up - the cycle repeats itself. You are never penalized out of existence or even troubled by what happened this month. There are far more SEO's this month that made out like bandits than there are whinning in the update thread about their little ol lost index page. So what if you lost 1 index page out of as few as two - you do have two right?
Here is your sign for anyone whinning about this update: newbie. Learn to ride out whims of the algo with diverse content.
> I want to hear from anyone who has had long term success
> with SEO say for 6 months or longer....
How about since the first Google update in 98 just as they built the first 25million page index. Here, one of, or THE most often read doc in google history from summer 98: [searchengineworld.com...]
Long term SEO rocks on the net today because those that survived the purges, survived because of one simple premise: diversification. Build pages big, small, in between, high density, low density, multiple small domains, single big domains, lots a links, no links, deep content, shallow content, but content, content, content. Keep those users come back for more. Make the search engines your unwritten partners - even when you feel they let you down. Give the visitor what they want, when they come from an SE to your site.
Long term SEO? It is the ONLY kind of SEO that does work [webmasterworld.com].
| 6:09 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
good post brett
| 6:31 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
If that is true, it would create an enormous opportunity for anyone who could build a search engine that could produce relevant results for more than a month at a time. Fortunately, its just not true. I found the entire post to be rather condescending. I am certain there are many webmasters in this forum that followed the steps to a successful site with Google alone and were penalized. In fact, following those steps to a tee seems to be exactly what Google is penalising.
|If you survive in the top 10 under any keyword for more than 30 days - count your lucky stars, as there is a search engine that has just made a mistake. |
| 6:32 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
<Sorry you got your feelings bruised. >
Hehe, my feelings are not bruised. Thanks for your concern.
<<I found the entire post to rather condescending. I am certain there are many webmasters in this forum that followed the steps to a successful site with Google alone. In fact, following those steps to a tee seems to be exactly what Google is penalising.
This is exactly what I was responding to in Jak's post. Sorry, Jakpot, if your feelings were bruised :)
Thsi really wasn't in defense of my sites, which overall are doing better than ever as well. It is addressing the fact that many, many webmasters have killer content and they got spanked this week.
| 7:23 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
If anything deserves a penalty, that would be it.
|We are talking about folks we can marshall 70-100k backlinks in less than a week. |
| 7:46 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
>>>>70-100k backlinks in less than a week.
Awesome! Every day I learn I've got a lot to learn!
I do know what an agent is though :)
| 7:55 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
>>>70-100k backlinks in less than a week.
I don't think you care about any kind of penalty. Penalty don't work on the pro SEO
| 7:56 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
"If you have a page that survived in the top 10 under any keyword for more than 30 days - count your lucky stars, as there is a search engine that has just made a mistake."
There are authority sites on specific topics. If Google doesn't have those authority sites in the top 10 results, Google is failing. Google used to be pretty good at delivering that, that is why it was so popular. You typed in some search term and got relevant results.
People are pissed because they developed high quality sites and optimized those sites for Google. Google appears to be punishing people for this optimization. It's one thing to get knocked down from #1 for 2 years to #12 in a shuffle. It's another thing to get knocked to oblivion.
| 8:04 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
"marshall 70-100k backlinks"
EXACTLY the tactic that Google is now addressing with this update!
| 8:45 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
In real estate, they say "location, location, location."
In SEO, particularly since the latest Google update, some say "diversity, diversity, diversity."
Okay, I'll tell you what the long-term should really be about. It's "anti-monopoly, anti-monopoly, anti-monopoly." This is where nearly everyone in the SEM business has failed to see the light.
Let's assume the worst -- that Google has opted for having a non-commercial "white pages" for the organic SERPs, alongside a PPC AdWords strip on top and down the right side. How would they do this? Probably the best way is to do what they seem to be doing with this latest filter move. You start sniping at the optimized pages in the organic SERPs based on how well they overlap with your AdWords terms. This forces many sites from the left side to right side, and makes more money for Google.
Soon it will all be over except for the screaming from little guys who made their living off of the Web (who hears little guys scream anyway?). At that point Google pulls the plug on the commercial sites that remain in the white pages. By now they're all super-ugly, trashy, directory-spam sites anyway, and no one will miss them.
Can Google pull this off? Sure it can. The FTC won't mind at all; it's not something they'd object to. At most the FTC might object to nondisclosure on Google's part about what they're doing. But that little objection -- if it ever becomes an issue -- could be solved in five minutes with one press release from the Googleplex: "In response to the spam problem on the web, we are phasing in a new system whereby all e-commerce is on one side of the screen, and noncommercial results are on the other side. Everything will be clearly labeled." End of discussion.
Could Google pull this off if they didn't have 80 percent of all external referrals on the web? No.
Could Google pull this off if every journalist on earth except Mr. Orlowski and Ms. Olsen didn't slobber over Google at every opportunity? No.
Could Google pull this off if every time Google Watch was mentioned on Slashdot or other low-IQ forums, hordes of teenie geeks and script kiddies denounce anything anti-Google as "Unkool, Dood, cuz Google rocks!" No.
There's a lot of talk about not putting your eggs in one basket. But from the same mouths, I keep hearing Google defended at all costs. I think SEOs have, to a large extent, brought this on themselves by helping Google overhype itself. Now Google doesn't need them anymore unless they are willing to pay.
| 8:58 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
For affiliates and some types of SEO consultants, Brett's diversification point is crucial. I think that just about every successful professional affiliate I know is highly diversified. Trusting to luck is a far better prospect if you've backed every horse.
But what if you're trying to promote your main site in Google? In that case, your domain, your content and you branding are too important to try a whole bunch of high risk/reward methods. Some people need their primary domain to do well, month after month. That's when it all begins to look like Brett's 26 steps and it's why I spend more time telling clients what they should not do as what they should do.
Every so often there's a significant change at Google. There are always some webmasters who feel that the change is unfair, random or unfathomable; that SEO is some kind of witch craft and that no one has any answers. It isn not all luck, however.
Since December 2001 (please tell me that needs no explanation!), some people have taken the view that Google SEO has as much to do with avoiding penalties as it has to do with helping the bot acknowledge relevance and importance. It is possible to trip filters with or without aggressive SE promotion tactics, yet many people want to think of them purely in moral terms to be argued instead of software to be analysed. I'd argue that Google's current round is quite well focussed, but I'm sure I'm in the monority here.
I know at least half a dozen people who saw the new types of changes in Google before last weekend. The filters applied to far less pages over the previous month or so, but they were there.
What happens next? Google tested, now apply their new feature widely and after a while we should expect them to reign it in a little like they normally do.
Ask anyone who has an idea about these filters if AdWords is a factor and they'll laugh. Really.
| 9:41 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
When the cross linking penalties went into effect, did the serps lose relevance?
| 10:04 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Powdork, webmasters whose sites went missing saw awful SERPS, not just on their own phrases but others too. Their colleagues, wives and girlfriends couldn't find things as well as they used to on Google. Many webmasters predicted the end of Google and a switch to other search engines. They even cried foul about AdWords customers getting boosted or penalised.
Other webmasters quietly benefited from their gains.
The rest of the world didn't seem to see the problem, there were still widget stores and content sites listed on Google when they searched.
Change will happen again as change has happened before. It is part of the landscape we inhabit if we choose to take an interest in Google.
| 10:50 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
I hear what you are saying, but this certainly seems much more severe than ever before. Google is not bringing up quality helpful results for the user. Many people are pointing to the words on a page and saying "See, thats relevant." The experts in the fields where the sites have fallen are not just talking about their sites going. They are talking about their sites, and all their previous competition gone and replaced by lists of subdomain.worldweb.com type pages with little content. Previous authority sites that got to be authority sites by developing content and rendering it on screen in a way that Googlebot could easily find it are gone. Search for nfl. You get nfl.com, as you would expect. There are many queries where this just doesn't happen. People will notice this. In my field both my site, my competitors (.org- official association), and others, are gone. Maybe regular users don't know what is going on yet, but it is filtering down. The members of the .org are asking why they don't get referrals anymore. The webmaster just knows that Google doesn't like him anymore. So they go and look at the Google results, and as professionals in the field, they know the results are poor. In other cases, the pages that have replaced the subject authorities are the location authorities (search for location keyword and get location.com, instead of location keyword.com, as before) Many times the location.com does have a section on location keywords, but you have to follow a link to get there. This wouldn't be so bad if next there wasn't an indented result about about keywordb (unrelated). To top it off the first result on the second page is location.com/locationkeywords. From the users perspective THIS IS THE THIRD TIME THEY HAVE SEEN THIS RESULT if they followed the links to the relevant content the first two times. If they didn't follow the links, then they didn't find what they were looking for (=bad result). And of course there is the problem of sites that are in the top ten, and their only relevance is the link to you or your competition.
Additionally, in the past when Google has made adjustments, has the competition been so formidable?
|troels nybo nielsen|
| 11:17 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
I hope that this is not developing into one more update thread. One of the fundamental laws of life is that it changes. That goes for search engines too.
This means that as a webmaster you either have to adapt to the changes or get independent from them. You can collect lots of inspiration for both options here at WebmasterWorld and indeed in this single thread.
| 11:43 pm on Nov 23, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Well I am amazed, so many quality information and experiences.
SEO is an abbreviation for "search engine optimizer." Many SEOs provide useful services for website owners, from writing copy to giving advice on site architecture and helping to find relevant directories to which a site can be submitted. However, there are a few unethical SEOs who have given the industry a black eye through their overly aggressive marketing efforts and their attempts to unfairly manipulate search engine results.
That is Google's own words, why should anyone doubt what they are saying. I know they are only protecting their client but the easiest thing would be to warn people against SEO. There is no doubt in my mind SEO when done correctly is a good thing not just for Google but for website visitors and the Internet in general - there is a lot of things gonna be coming in the future all running over this thing you call an Internet. Google is only one part of this, I think it is really important everyone communicates.
Google have made an effort to add a page, I have seen the page change a few times over the past 6 months. It is adding more information to the page and has already been moving up the SERPS.
Im my opinion why would a search engine who can benefit not from profit but from an extensive database optimised by professional people like everyone here be against such undertakings? It does not make sense for them to upset this valuable resource short term nor long term, the benefit from a business point of view is too big. The market is vast and varied, Internet Advertising/Marketing does not have to compete with Optimisation they all have pros and cons. If Google is getting a better database and capitalising on Internet Advertising just like Overture who cares? When SEO is performed, the client is happy, Google is happy and the people doing the work is happy (if everything runs smoothly) And the person doing the work is making the search engine better.
Why can't we make the search engine better?
Just because we have had problems in the past does not mean things can not be done for the better in the present or future. Can Google learn by mistake? Can we learn from mistake? In my opinion DMOZ are struggling with the amount of requests they get, they have a huge job on there hands.
This is due to the fact they are a closed shop in the sense that they work on their timescales and on their method of thinking. Google can't take this chance, they are the market leaders in search engine services for a global market. My conclusion therefore is SEO longterm can not be a waste of time, I do not have the history some of you guys have but I have a fresher picture of the future.
Is flash a good thing? Is multimedia a good thing? Is the Internet a good thing? Is SEO a good thing? In MHO the answer is yes...It would be a good time for someone in Google to make a formal announcement to the SEO community. If we all work together from now on everyone wins.
Am I just being naive? Is Google to big for SEO?
| 2:38 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
>People are pissed because they developed high quality sites
>and optimized those sites for Google.
No no no no. There is ZERO evidence that many of the pages that took hits in this update were quality. Far far far from the truth.
We really should walk down that famous "gift basket" site that wound up because it got booted out of the serps in that NY Times article. Go look at that site. Google is generous to even list it, let alone in the top 1000. We will leave that investigation as an excersize for the reader.
The bottom line here, is many people believe their site is worthy and ready for the big time near the top of the power keywords. Fact is, very few are. It takes many years to get a site well positioned in Google and most just don't appreciate that.
Most of the fault belongs to google for sticking with an algo that generate such stale results for 4 years that they trained a whole new generation of webmasters to EXPECT and almost DEMAND undeserved rankings.
Starting to make sense why the 'dance' is over? eg: trying to unring a bell is never fun.
| 2:47 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
All I want to ask is,
1)When will this become stable?
2)In the past I used my kws in
-link (anchor text)
,I did that as I heard these things will help to get a good listing and my site is of good qualify, more than 100 pages of quality information.Am I getting penalty for the stuffs I mentioned above? With or without the title,link,density,.... I believe I am a good site. I want to ask whether to keep the above said, so called SEO tricks?
| 2:54 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
"The bottom line here, is many people believe their site is worthy and ready for the big time near the top of the power keywords. Fact is, very few are. It takes many years to get a site well positioned in Google and most just don't appreciate that."
I don't know what you consider "power keywords" but new sites can break into competitive search terms on Google within weeks, not years. Even without using any spam techniques whatsoever.
I launched a site and was #5 for a 6,000,000 two-word phrase within weeks. No spam, all organic links.
This new update may make this more difficult, but that just means Google will be less fresh and relevant.
| 4:12 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|70-100k backlinks in less than a week. |
With that many backlinks pointing to me, I wouldnt care if Google existed at all.
| 4:31 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Gift basket spammers
I think there may be a few webmasters here who don't fall into that realm.
Google changed the rules, folks will adapt, the spammers that didn't make the NYT are still there. Like a casino, the house always wins.
| 6:05 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
, mine is three months old, I know how I managed 100.
|70-100k backlinks in less than a week |
Nothing is in our hands now. Our sites have become a football, jumping from one extreme to the other.
| 9:33 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
I don't think this changes anything for the long term-- as long as the search engines utilize a method to calculate results, there will be those whose job it is to harness these methods.
I'm intimately familiar with the markets that I follow closely. I run several non-profit informational websites, two commercial sites, have been a consultant for many, many more over the last three years ( both design and SEO ).
In certain areas, there is a 20% relevancy on the top ten search results. That is 8 out of 10 irrelevant websites in the top ten. I was able to exactly identify the problem with the new filters in one key niche market, and yes I've reported this to Google.
I think those claiming that these search results are the new and improved ones would be embarrased if they studied different markets.
The confusion comes in when there are too many variables at play; it can be difficult to isolate exactly what is happening. However, find a market with fewer players with key terms and phrases triggering a filter, and it becomes easier to track what is happening ( with larger markets, it is difficult to account for PR and link anchor text ).
This has nothing to do with commercial vs. non-commercial websites. One of my non-profit websites has remained untouched through the whole update, and one has taken hits via filtered word combinations. Both will weather any Florida hurricane due to content still being king.
In one case, a site ranks #1 out of 3.6 - 7 Million search results for a two word combination, but isn't listed for a four word combination containing the first two ( the second two being a specific demographic location ). The website triggers a filter based on the demographic location ( I'm sure this only happens in extremely popular tourist destinations where there are companies literally writing content all day long every day to try to capture all key terms that reference the location )... The point being, is that the site is more relevant for the four word combination than the two word combination, and the four word search results now return a 10% relevancy ( 8 out of 10 pages are not relevant to the topic, and the two relevant pages are directories ).
The Florida update is point and case for the need for SEO professionals. I've seen posts of at least two businesses ready to go out of business because of the recent update. I've seen other posts where people are rushing to redo their websites. Any professional website architect worth their salary would be handling all of this with calm, and any company that has listened to a qualified professional would currently be diversified enough to weather the storm.
I'm personally making very small changes to compensate for where I see Google going. These are good changes, as the methods used have only been because that's what its taken to move from number two to number one. I'm happy to see the new direction, but there is no getting around the fact that major adjustment are needed to Google's current calculations.
These changes will come, or Google will begin to lose search engine market share. They will be eaten alive by the press if this continues, as there are some absolutely halarious results which would make wonderful satire articles.
I have three articles I'd like to write in fact, concerning specific search results and the Christmas Season Shopping Season ( and these are with search queries of at least four words, not single or double keyword combinations ), but I've only written one out of respect to Google's long standing excellence and dedication to the freedom of information via quality search results.
I put up 12 more organic content pages over the weekend to compensate for some loss of traffic for three websites ( which means I've been sitting here all weekend ), and drew up two "I told you so" proposals for clients who now, amazing at it seems, are willing to take content development a bit more seriously.
This is not exactly how I wanted to spend my weekend, but I've enjoyed following all of this over the last week!
| 10:05 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
I've read through this thread and the other massive thread over the last week and am still not any further ahead as to what specific changes I need to make to get us back under our two main regional names (two word search terms -name of the area).
Can the experienced members of this forum please offer some specific guidlines as to what we need to do. It seems that GG has encouraged us to build sites with content, get backlinks and indicated that we would be OK. This is not now the case. Is GG here to offer any guidlines (or hints) as to what is causing the problems? In the last upheaval he at least calmed everyone by giving us guidlines as to when things would return to normal. If this is now normal what do we need to do?
| 10:41 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Tropical_Island if it's the site in your profile what I notice is you main page is a doorway. You Title is nothing more than keyword after keyword seperated by commas. This should include keywords BUT should ALWAYS be readable by humans. You also have very few incoming links.
| 11:03 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|It takes many years to get a site well positioned in Google and most just don't appreciate that. |
I really don't see why time should be a relevant factor in an algorithm. If a site has content relevant to the search term then it should be ranked well. The only way time is a factor is the growth of page numbers within the site that are related to the subject, and the number of backlinks that accumulate. Both of these factors can be done in a very short space of time, rather than organically.
You're making blanket statements about the quality of sites that have bombed in the SERPS for keyphrases without actually looking at the data. Smacks of arrogance to me. Making 'I'm alright, so you lot must be spammers' statements isn't the kind of utterance I would expect from someone who is supposed to be an authority.
I have new sites bordering on the spammy that are doing well for their major keywords after the update, and I have established sites wearing big white hats, lots of pages, lots of relevant content, that have disappeared for not particularly competitive terms.
This to me makes a mockery of this update as an improvement of the algo. Fair enough if my spammy sites dropped. Thats the risk you take. But I'm not seeing that pattern. I don't see any pattern really. Quality sites are not winning in this update. It all seems pretty haphazard.
| 11:12 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|I'd argue that Google's current round is quite well focussed, but I'm sure I'm in the monority here. |
Things look perfectly OK with the Google SERPs to me.
My web pages are the same or up in the SERPs and traffic from Google is up resulting in more cash flow.
But what do I know, I don't have more than 500 posts to my credit. Perhaps my time has been spent developing web sites
using Brett's Guidelines rather than extensive "searching for the truth" on this Forum.
| 11:19 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
>> There is ZERO evidence that many of the pages that took hits in this update were quality <<
I've disagreed with Brett very frequently.... but never more fundamentaly than now.
Do you imagine that all these complaints, and on every webmaster board (not just here), are simply people whinning because they have lost placement? Don't you think it is strange that totally different people on totally different boards are all quoting exactly the same symptoms in terms of poor quality results?
They are quoting them because they are there. Low content inner pages, with little value, all over the place. Focused niche sites, leading industry information sites, gone. And as quoted by a number of people, even adult sites returned in mainstream searches.
You may think Google should update their algo, but the SERPS speak for themselves. The bottom line is the quality of what is delivered to the user... and in this respect Google has blundered big time. I wish it were not so, but it is.
| 11:38 am on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Quality SERP's your joking!
I have not taken a big hit, one or two terms across a range of industries from one man band sites to full affiliate sites, so not too bad.
Try searching content management uk
| 12:39 pm on Nov 24, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Whilst I agree that such depth of feeling is unlikely to be caused by irrelevant SERPs alone (I mean, who on Earth could really care about that?), I do think they are irrelevant enough to be a problem for the wider searching community - and not just for those of us whose sites have taken a hit.
I've actually been surprised by the number of my clients who tell me "it's ok - I know you're not to blame - the results on Google are obviously a mistake right now. They are totally irrelevant." etc, etc...
Here's my analogy (never a stickler for sanity):
When you grow a beard, it goes through this horrible-looking stage. Unfortunately this is a necessary stage on the way to possessing a full, flowing, luxurious velvetty beard.
Current SERPs might resemble slightly overgrown wispy stubble right now, but give them time and they'll improve. Hopefully. PageRank has been abandoned. Totally. A brand new system for ranking pages was never going to hit the ground running, but I do think it looks like a step in the right direction.
Many SEO techniques will no longer work. It has become much harder to game the system I think. This is great news for the searching public, and horrible news for most people here at WW. Other forums are also aimed at webmasters, so that explains the current torrent of dissatisfied posts and threads for sure. Joe public, whilst maybe confused at Google throwing up irrelevant results, probably won't care too much.
If Google continues in this vein, people will naturally gravitate towards Altavista, or another engine. That will happen naturally. I for one prefer Altavista results at the moment. However, I believe Google will get better over the ensuing months, so will ultimately remain at the top.