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This 43 message thread spans 2 pages: 43 ( [1] 2 > >     
► Arrows taken out in G results

 5:49 am on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

& #9658; I am seeing results for sites that the Arrows and Other Character EYE CANDY are not being displayed. The ones I have noticed gone are in the beginning of the Title, not sure if it makes a difference.

This was atleast at the time of posting.


michael heraghty

 3:29 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

I noticed that, in some instances, Google uses? instead of non-standard characters, but on other occassions they show up fine.

The other downside of using the solid arrow character between title tags is that it won't display properly in your title bar -- in fact, your title bar won't display anything (in IE at least), just the filename.


 6:33 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

ya, i noticed that too


 6:34 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

Are you saying they have removed the sites - or changed the titles to remove the special characters?


 10:44 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

I still see the happy faces and arrows in the titles listed. I guess it depends what keywords you are looking up.


 10:50 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

One competitor that is currently #1 for some keywords uses the arrow in the title tag. So far, he is still there.

I was thinking about doing the same, but I don't want to risk my rankings.


 10:50 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

I've said this before in other threads. Google returns different charcter encodings I believe dependend on the query_string options.

One is an ISO character set which doesn't support the special cahrs, and the other is UTF-8 which does. Always been like that.



 11:33 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

The Listings are(actually were now) still in Google but the EYE CANDY is/was not displayed in the listing.

Eye Candy is back now for me in all DC's


 11:40 pm on Dec 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

I would think people would misunderstand the titles to think that google was pointing out their websites as recommendations. I wonder if GG considers this bad or not.


 12:04 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

>I would think people would misunderstand the titles to think that google was pointing out their websites as recommendations. I wonder if GG considers this bad or not.

If Google is concerned about this, just filtering out these characters makes a lot more sense than penalizing. Some of the webmaters using these may not even thinking about SEO. Think here a teenager who add these to her page title because she saw her girlfriend do it on her site, and just thinks it "looks cool."


 1:35 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

I'm still seeing the eye-candy.


 3:00 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Still showing for me. Check out the first 50 results for web hosting... shows both ★ (large star) and ► (arrow).

Also, I just checked one of my websites that I had put ★ on a couple days ago to see if it was still working... freshbot picked it up and it's now showing in SERPS.

Premature announcement?


 5:12 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

I dont think, an arrow or a star before a title has any effect on rankings in Search Egines. It has nothing to do with SEs' algo. I still see the sites in SERPs on the top with such characters. The only thing is, it eats up some space and makes title a bit longer.

The intention behind it is making ultimate users to misunderstand as Google's recommendation.


 6:53 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Premature announcement?

It was not an announcement and it was not displayed for a period of time. It may be similar to the Stemming when it appeared for a time then dissapeared and it is now with us.

I don't know if it will come back but we like to keep everyone up with our observations. How I new it was gone is I keep track of a couple sites that also have the arrow.


I don't think for most it is to be construde as Googles recommendation but to attract the viewer to see your listing rather than your competitor. I could see that it could have that assumption though it the listing is at or near the top.


 7:14 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

One of my competitors uses a double arrow at the beginning of his title and he comes up #1 for about 90% of the search term related to our product. I've been trying to figure out why Google likes his home page so much for every term to the point that I wondered if the arrows were actually helping him. So, it's obvious to me the eye candy is still there and not hurting their rankings. I find it very annoying that this guy not only gets the #1 spot but also grabs a little extra attention with the arrows. If we all start using this junk, the results will look like a bunch of spam!


 8:09 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Out of the displayed symbols I think only the star is really focusing user's attention to that particular result (a star has always had many connotations). The rest look like muck and can't be very effective (don't have the proper height and shape to make a strong impact) ;).

creative craig

 9:15 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

One of my site uses arrows on nearly every page and they are still showing in the Google results.


 9:32 am on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hmmm, in a way, we begin to associate specific patterns with a specific domain. If I see two double dots at the start of a title, I know whose web site it belongs to without looking at the domain. I use it as a filter to skip the web site ;) but it could also have the opposite effect if the site is known for its quality.


 2:10 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

My computer has not shown them for some time. I remember seeing some after I got back from London but that is the last time I saw one work.


 2:21 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

just filtering out these characters makes a lot more sense

I agree. Do you forsee any technical difficulties? I wish this could be implemented.

Even filtering all CAPS titles to non-caps would make the SERPs readable.


 3:01 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

I am still seeing them appear on multiple sites.


 4:18 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Rather than an arrow or a star in my title tag I just use a dash like this:-

-Level 80- Computer game cheats, hints & tips for the PC, Playstation, Playstation 2, N64 and others

Do you think that - Level 80 - or -Level 80- is more eye catching?


 4:19 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Even if Google get rid of the arrow you could still see the following:-

-->Level 80<--
--> Level 80 <--


michael heraghty

 4:31 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

I agree -- Google can't really remove eye candy, as people will just come up with more and more inventive ways to create it.

This is just another fascinating aspect of the "co-evolutionary" relationship between site designers/optimisers and Google.

Google urges web designers to ask themselves "Would I do this if search engines didn't exist?" -- but to adopt such an approach would be naive. The fact is that search engines not only exist, but sites depend on getting listed in them.

The real trick is to find a balance between usability and findability.


 6:06 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hey if I knew of a way that I could have my website displayed in Google's SERPS in flashing bold multicoloured text with an audio file of click here when the visitor hovered over my link I probably would. ;) No, but seriously, yes I agree with you. There's always a finite amount of SEO that can be done - after that it's all how eye-catching/ innovative you can make your site look in the SERPs. Nobody can rank #1 for every keyword/ keyword combination but making your result stand out increases the visitors to it.


 8:57 pm on Dec 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

"Would I do this if search engines didn't exist?"

take it one step further
Would you do this if there was no G penalization


 4:21 am on Dec 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

The eye-candy has not gone (100% certain, ‘cos we use it!) it merely depends on what version of Google is used. If a SERP is coded as UTF 8 then it appears, if not then it doesn't. This applies to its affiliate searches too.

So if the code &oe=UTF-8 is in the URL the eye-candy will show, if not it will be?.


 6:24 am on Dec 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

I would like to hear what GG has to say about the arrows. They make the SE look cluttered when several websites use the arrows.


 10:24 am on Dec 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

I am seeing them back again .. It kind of highlights their listings, making them stand out .. as if this site is recommended by google.


 2:03 pm on Dec 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

Those using eye candies are actually spam in the broad meaning as they use some not really ethical means of promoting themselves like making inexperienced users believe those links were somewhat "recommended" by Google.
In other words using eye candies is not what I would call ethic SEO.
eye candy = not ethic SEO = spam
=> it's got to be axed
simple as that
In google's place I would filter them out in some way for cheating people.

This 43 message thread spans 2 pages: 43 ( [1] 2 > >
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