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Florida is good for us all
Why?
yowza




msg:102162
 9:56 pm on Dec 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Most of you are probably wondering why I believe this. Unlike many of you, my sites have not suffered in the rankings; however, that has nothing to do with the reason I believe Florida is good.

Why is Florida good?

Because it is not in our interest for a SEO method to become standardized.

If Google kept its algo the same, then the whole world would figure out how to get high rankings. If everyone knows how to get high rankings, then we are all out of jobs.

We don't ever want a SEO method to become standard enough that software, or the kid next door, can reproduce it.

If Google decided that its pre-Florida algo was perfect and would never make any changes, then in 10 years everyone would be producing highly-optimized sites.

The only way that we will have high-ranking sites is if search engines continually change, so that we can figure out how to use the changes to give us a temporary advantage.

To be in the SEO business you have to expect and embrace changes. You also have to be willing to learn and do research.

The good thing for us is that there are many people out there that don't want to do the research to figure out how to stay on top.

I, for one, am happy to see an update. Because of our participation in this forum, we will adjust quickly and get our sites back to the top. The typical web site owner won't even know there has been a change in Google by the time we have recovered.

 

jaylark




msg:102163
 10:52 pm on Dec 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

I don't know if Florida is good or not, only time will tell on that one. I think there already is one method of SEO that is standardized. 1) Good quality content for your visitors and 2) good well-formed HTML. This is the only SEO needed and this is what Google is striving for. Florida may or may not be a step in the right direction, but building a quality site is the only sure fire method to build a website for the long term. Some good sites took hits from Florida, but over time the good should rise to the top, and if it doesn't, some other search engine will take Google's crown.

DerekH




msg:102164
 11:23 pm on Dec 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

jaylark wrote
I think there already is one method of SEO that is standardized. 1) Good quality content for your visitors and 2) good well-formed HTML.

Good comments!
But I think that isn't one method, I think it's two... 1), and 2)...

Joking apart, it has served me well. Good well-formed CSS is important too, for separating wheat and chaff, content and format...
DerekH

Pomos




msg:102165
 11:50 pm on Dec 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

<<I, for one, am happy to see an update. Because of our participation in this forum, we will adjust quickly and get our sites back to the top. The typical web site owner won't even know there has been a change in Google by the time we have recovered.>>

No need, google's days or rather months are numbered. Mark these words. Remember word spreads out fast. Website owners are informed by webmasters and the word has spread quite deep in the webmsterword.com site.

bekyed




msg:102166
 11:50 pm on Dec 2, 2003 (gmt 0)

Totally agree Yankee,
We have been doing seo for 5 years now and when we started the main players were altavista,lycos and excite and a small company called er! thats it google which wasnt really important, the way they are going now is where they started 5 years ago as a nobody - for ecommerce sites anyway.
This algorithm cannot possibly stay like this as it is making highly relevant sites irrelevant by penalising certain money keywords that they are optimised for.

Bek

quotations




msg:102167
 12:12 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

The Screwglle site is providing some very interesting insight.

It is not only money terms which are being hit - technical competence is also a victim.

The most common technical search term for a specific technology is not being filtered with the special filter but the second most common term which is often used by non-technical people is being filtered heavily.

83 out of the top 100 "normal" results are missing from the lay person's google results. They now get only the scammer's shopping sites and no useful reviews or competent technical information. The useful sites are all missing.

On the other hand: The number one non-adult/non-drug/scam-free money term for the past month is not under the special filter at all.

Global Wayne




msg:102168
 12:56 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

I'm with jlark and DerekH - content reigns, always has and with Google always will. 'Bout time a few of you folks moaning took a look around the other engines.... more emphasis on sell than SERPs that mean anything at all.

My guess is that those complaining in the forums are those that maybe spam hardest and got badly bitten by the update/refresh.

At our end of the travel business we saw heaps of big time scammers and spammers removed to page 70 (where they belong) - BAM SERPs that actually have meaningful content.

For the record this happenned across 80% of our travel site destinations with the exception of one spammer. His case is different! He has spent almost a lifetime buying domains and setting up a spam cluster of 90 domains that really is a sight to behold - brilliant to say the least!

We're not moaning - he will be moved as our legitimate cluster gathers momentum and ranking with content... content... content. Our guess is that this scammer (and many more like him) will be suffocated on the next major refresh/update. Bring it on!

At the end of the day all you have to do is build solid sites with real content, link it well with clear and easy HTML navigation and Google will do the rest... Couldn't be easier as I see it!

I don't wish to revert to the days gone by where every webmaster had to build 50 gateway pages to out scam the scammers. Google simplifies this entirely.

If everyone put the same effort into content as they seem to in manipulating search engine results the world would be a wonderful place!

As for Google dying from bad publicity from grumpy webmasters I think not! Google has gotten on top through brilliant technology that is all about the BIG picture - not a few meta tags in the head of a document! Google actually represents a whole new era in search engine technology. If you don't like it you had certainly better get to understand it as it will not be going away!

/Wayne

yankee




msg:102169
 1:02 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Wayne,

No one is denying that a huge amount of spam is now gone. But what you don't realize is many good content sites got wiped out too. You may be next.

Kirby




msg:102170
 1:07 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

At the end of the day all you have to do is build solid sites with real content, link it well with clear and easy HTML navigation and Google will do the rest... Couldn't be easier as I see it!

Did that. Been doing it since 1998. Been top 10 since 1998 with main site. Keep content current and add new when I have something worthwhile to add. Only SEO change I did in last 12 months was <h> heading, appropriate for the page and also a focus on anchor text since January. Been jostled some in updates this year, but back to #1 and #3 pre-florida. There aint anybody whiter than me! Now #1 is at #70 and #3 is sub 500.

Florida is good because it serves as a reminder that things change and one shouldnt get comfortable thinking being #1 is always a given. That applies to both me and Google!

bekyed




msg:102171
 1:28 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Wayne.

My guess is that those complaining in the forums are those that maybe spam hardest and got badly bitten by the update/refresh.

Your guess is wrong, we have never used spam and i run 5 ecommerce websites 3 adult 2 lingerie have done seo for five years now bring in over 1000 visitors per day on most of the websites
We have followed googles strict rules but they have still dropped the money sites - i think this is adult related keywords that have been hit the most as those are the ones that spend the most on adwords amongst others.

At the end of the day all you have to do is build solid sites with real content, link it well with clear and easy HTML navigation and Google will do the rest... Couldn't be easier as I see it!

Dont you think we do this already, believe me wayne you have a lot to learn, I used to think like you at one time but i learned that you cannot rely on google as it is everchanging and one minute your at no1 and the next your at no 301 for no reason. Remember the search engine makes the rules not us and next month it could be you.

Bek

Jesse_Smith




msg:102172
 1:41 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Not all e-commerce sites got dumped. I got 479,201 e-commerce listings in Google, and there geting more page views than ever, all thanks to Google.

Global Wayne




msg:102173
 1:50 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

No one is denying that a huge amount of spam is now gone. But what you don't realize is many good content sites got wiped out too. You may be next.

Agreed we are up there and as such are open to being hit as well. However we rely on our structure and linking which to be honest falls within the basic Google guide lines.

This latest update will sort itself as Google tweaks the algo and webmasters develop their content into something that Google is happy with.

There aint anybody whiter than me! Now #1 is at #70 and #3 is sub 500.

Sounds like you may have been over jealous with your keywords (an area we have ignored and now been rewarded for). Not knowing your circumstances we can only comment on our own experience that is based on a very large site. We have an excellent case of keep on working and then watch how Google responds.

If you have a white site - you now have 69 other sites that Google must be determining as whiter than yours with better content? In that circumstance we would start pulling the new top 5 apart and looking at their structure and back link relevance.

Florida is good because it serves as a reminder that things change and one shouldnt get comfortable thinking being #1 is always a given. That applies to both me and Google!

I absolutely agree that no one can take any positioning for granted ever! This is one lump of technology that has not settled down by a long shot!

/Wayne

Dave_Hawley




msg:102174
 2:03 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

believe me wayne you have a lot to learn,

LOL! Wayne has a lot to learn? *He* is one that is weathering the Florida storm and offering VERY GOOD simple advise. I would advise you listen instead of preach.

Dave

troi21




msg:102175
 2:06 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

This word "content" is really starting to irritate me. Alot of my people are talking about building content, content, content. Fair enough. But let's be honest. This update has been completely random. Some sites have been scr*wed and some have not. The SERPS I monitor show spam sites still reigning and many honest sites completely disappeared. End of story.

Dave_Hawley




msg:102176
 2:12 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

has been completely random

It might appear that way but there is NO WAY it would be.

The main reason content (sorry stick with me) was/is/well always be king is because you are feeding Google more spider food. I site with 1000 pages will have some pages move up and some move down. The overall effect will be minimal. A site with less that 100 pages is only a miniscule % of the 3 billion plus pages out there.

Dave

DRGather




msg:102177
 2:13 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Along the content front... other than getting more information into the index, does it really help you? Internal backlinks, etc? I've heard it said that internal backlinks are worthless and discounted. What IS the benefit of content exactly. From a purely scientific perspective (we all know already that visitors like fresh content, so that's a given and not worthy of mentioning.)

Dave_Hawley




msg:102178
 2:19 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Internal backlinks, etc? I've heard it said that internal backlinks are worthless and discounted

No not true all IMO. It may not mean much to spiders, but who cares! Link to help the person that finds your page. Links like "See also...." and always link back to your home page and possibly the contact page.

Dave

Stefan




msg:102179
 2:28 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

The benefit of content with all the SE's is that there are many words to be found. The kw1 kw2 kw3 approach might not be the best. As Brett famously said, "50 pages with 1 hit each are better than 1 page with 50 hits".

Content gives you not only lots of kw arrivals that you might not have thought of, (and if the page they arrive on is interesting enough to move them further into the site you win), but all those pages, with all that content, gives you many titles to tweak for every kw you can think of.

Our site, geared to people who want to put lights on their heads and crawl around underground, pulls in people on about 50 different pages a day... some of them click through and end up spending a while at the site on many pages. Some of them actually click on the "Support etc" link and give us funding.

Content supplies a lot of crawlable text, and thusly more arrivals, and more funding, if your visitors like what they read.

DRGather




msg:102180
 2:34 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ok, I agree with all of that. So what about those that believe that all these interlinked pages are actually hurting their PR and SERPS? If (as some have supposed), anchor text is to blame, aren't all your nav menu's/bars/whathaveyou, doing irreparable harm?

oodlum




msg:102181
 2:43 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

[/quote]A site with less that 100 pages is only a miniscule % of the 3 billion plus pages out there[/quote]

Dave that's true, and a lot of pages with a lot of content certainly equals a lot of Google traffic, but massive amounts of content is simply not appropriate for many sites.

I'll be buggered if I could/would/should write 1000 pages about My Downtown Plumbing Business. It would just be junk contributing to all the noise out there and be another form of spam.

DRGather




msg:102182
 2:47 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ok, so how about this. I have a member area with news content. About 500 pages at present and lately has been growing by a steady 30 pages a week. It's offlimits to big G as its in the members only area. If content is king and having more pages = better ranking, more traffic, better links, better PR (the list goes on) then I should take the oldest of these articles and set up an archive section and make it publicly (and Google) accessible?

TryAgain




msg:102183
 2:48 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

I, for one, am happy to see an update. Because of our participation in this forum, we will adjust quickly and get our sites back to the top. The typical web site owner won't even know there has been a change in Google by the time we have recovered.

Exactly why I hate search engine optimizers.

For the Google user out there, what matters is quality content, not quality optimization.

(And this Florida mess is ultimately caused by SEO, forcing Google to do something. SEO will always exist, don't mean we have to like it or condone it.)

oodlum




msg:102184
 2:48 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

DRGather

Bingo - excellent idea

Stefan




msg:102185
 2:50 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ok, I agree with all of that. So what about those that believe that all these interlinked pages are actually hurting their PR and SERPS?

Wrt linking, it might be interlinked sites rather than pages... dodgy linking somewhere, at any rate.

I still don't buy the anchor text thing... I think it's being focussed on to the exclusion of the link patterns themselves. Many people went on massive linking campaigns to get PR, then suddenly "Poof!"... if that's the problem, it's the links, not the text, man.

Dave_Hawley




msg:102186
 3:01 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

I'll be buggered if I could/would/should write 1000 pages about My Downtown Plumbing Business. It would just be junk contributing to all the noise out there and be another form of spam.

Could you? I believe you could. Surely you could add a tips section for little things like how to change a washer, why these taps are better than those. Also a FAQ index on plumbing issues. This would NOT be seen as spam by Google, in fact just the opposite.

Why not start a monthly newsletter, send it out to an opt in/out list and then post the content on your site.

Should you? only if you want more traffic.

I should however point out that NOT ALL businesses are well suited to the web. If your customers can only be local then you might do better to focus on just that, 'local'.

Dave

Liane




msg:102187
 3:02 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

We used to be able to find specific pages for specific queries. Now we get directories that have the keywords, not keyphrases on them.

Bingo! The fact that we could be very specific with our searches and find satisfying and targeted results was what separated Google from all other search engines and made them top dog.

Global Wayne ... can I hire you to "fix" my site? I must have been one of those who "spammed the hardest" and didn't bother with quality content. ;) Just pulling your leg Wayne, I'm glad your site is doing so well. I hope that continues for you.

Ah well, I still like Google and am hoping beyond hope that the SERPS will bounce back to some semblance of order ... soon!

I'm suddenly feeling a lot older, a little wiser and certainly less naive. Unfortunately, my Google flag is looking a little worse for wear. I probably shouldn't have used it as a hanky all last week!

We will all survive and learn from this experience. The question is exactly what will we learn! ;)

TryAgain




msg:102188
 3:09 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

The question is exactly what will we learn!

That Google 0wnZ J00. ;)

frup




msg:102189
 3:10 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

This content mantra is so silly. I have tons of content. If you search a single keyword you'll get it #1 listing on google, use two keywords it isn't anywhere. So I need one kind of content for Keyword1 but another kind for Keyword1 Keyword2? Or my content is real content for Keyword1 but not Keyword1 Keyword2? Even though it was 3 weeks ago?

Google is dumping sites with incredible content along with sites without any content. It is largely indiscriminate.

Dave_Hawley




msg:102190
 3:14 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

This content mantra is so silly. I have tons of content. If you search a single keyword you'll get it #1 listing on google, use two keywords it isn't anywhere

"it"? If you have lot's of content pages there be no such thing as "it". Each content page should aim for different search terms and keywords. Simply changing theme will ensure this.

Dave

oodlum




msg:102191
 3:15 am on Dec 3, 2003 (gmt 0)

Why not start a monthly newsletter, send it out to an opt in/out list and then post the content on your site.

I concede that's a good idea

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