I'm not seeing any movement with any of my sites.
My serps havent changed dramatically, but i see ongoing flux, going from 1 to 2, sometimes #3, then always back to #1. This has been the pattern since mid June. Traffic is down by 50%, though, while the number of leads is down by 20%. I've chaulked it up to summer doldrums.
The theories are interesting though. I tend to buy into the one about more constant flux with datacenters.
I don't recall ever claiming invincibility. "Incredible stability"!= invincibility.
If you all read what is actually said, you might learn something.
I was talking about well rounded sites, that also rank high on their authority-like score. That score is not based on how good the content is, it is based on how much of an authority the site appears to be.
I suspect that my site is rating above average on that count, but certainly not invincibly high. From what I can see, EFV most likely has me beat by a large margin. Danny's site on the other hand doesn't do so well, though it is on its way.
Looking through Danny's site I don't see a linking pattern that would give it a high authority-like score. It is a good and useful site (I've been there before), but if it dropped, there was a reason. Getting pissed at me for "spewing" good advice won't help you find that reason.
Pay attention to who links to a site and how they link to it.
Oh, and by the way, if you don't consider the outdoor industry to be lucrative enough for you, Go to the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City next weekend.
Anyway, I also have pages up on sites that are ranking quite well in two of the most lucrative industries out there. Why are they ranking well? Because they contain good content AND they are on the right sites with the right links.
In fact, one of the pages ranks well in spite of what most SEOs would consider abyssmal site design, navigation and optimization, simply on the power of the site, and the external links from other authority sites to that area of the site.
Now, if you are in a field that is so lucrative that it is incredibly competitive, then there is a very good chance that you will not have a high authority score and there will be a lot of other sites that are pretty close to interchangable with yours. If you lose out one month, do something to improve your situation.
>That score is not based on how good the content is, it is based on how much of an authority the site appears to be
Why is this so hard for people to grasp?
I don't think it has everything to do with that, I have great content, and my links are on major million dollar sites that despite all of this are doing well, so why praytell have I dropped when some homemade about my reunion cruise site is number one?
and also, for the search I use to track things most, our most popular search, I happen to be the only site listed in the top 30 that actually does what the search is for, I used to be number 3, heck I was number 3 less than a week ago, then suddenly out of no where I am number 28? You explain it, cause I can't.
Google has said that they test several variations of the algo a week. That allows for alot of flux, more in some cats than in others.
If the reunion page beats yours for an extended period of time, only then would I be concerned.
I noticed on a couple of my search terms the pages that rank highly or are #1 are homemade pages with nothing but the keywords in the <title> and photos on the target page. No real content at all.
I am not saying this is happening for everyone - just some areas that I actually reviwed. What does that say about the authority theory or the content theory?
Please dont slam this post - its just an observation guys.
It demonstrates the importance of the page title.
Well I have the exact search phrase I am checking in my title on the main page and on a sub page. Guess it's not that important, I mean I have eveything intact, from last week to this a 20 position drop?
Ok, instead of talking about the effects, let's backtrack: what activity was everybody engaged in for a month prior to these swings?
For us, it was a major linking campaign. Single links and sitewides, from related and unrelated sites.
Anybody else want to proffer some info (confessions? heh heh)
Ive got more questions than answers Im affraid but here are a few things that occurred to me.
The Summer effect argument would only seem valid if people were seeing similar drops (in percentage terms) on the other key engines like Yahoo and MSN. Ive not seen this myslef and Ive not heard much comment about this, hence I believe we are talking about an algo change
This is a complex area we are discussing here and I doubt very much that the change is due to a single factor. Google no doubt tweaks all sorts of parameter and adds and removes all sorts of filters in an update. Hence I dont think it makes sense to say that a particular assetion is wrong because there are a few sites that contradict it. These sites may be affected by other google changes or changes they have made themselves - theres never going to be one golden rule.
Based on my portfolio of sites and the comments above heres what I'm currently considering as possible changes (for what its worth)
- higher page rank erosion for internal links (this would hurt a lot of database driven sites especially with several layers of subcategory)
- increased importance of keywords inurl
- possible penalty for a high concentration of adwords type content
- possible penalty for template based sites where the level of unique content is low
- continued importance of the length of time content has been indexed by google not just for the doamin but for the pages as well
Where I say "penalty" I dont so much mean penalty as more decreased importance
I have total of 4 websites. Two of them are totaly static and two of them are dynamicaly generated for which I use mod_rewrite to be "search engine friendly"
Well, here is the problem. The two "search engine friendly" sites were droped from G index totaly. Each one of them with over 15,000 pages.
The two static sites are doing much better now. So I am about to believe that the google enginiers found the way to cut the mod_rewrite magick off
Nice post H2B4.
WIth the exception of the key word bullet, what you are describing is a directory. It seems to me that Google may be trying to curb the proliferation of auto-generated directories by going after sites that display those characteristics.
The problem, of course, is if your site shares characteristics with those types of sites, it may be devalued as well...
I dont think there are any changes in importants of doman name, I see much more database generated sites
I think the problem is in the internal sites the most, but also the index site, but there has been a change here the last 3-4 days, my site is a very stable site, I dident have the problems with florida or other in this or last year, but now I see a little back drop of visits, about 30%, but as I said the results has not got better.
I had expect things like this and I think it will be worse when Google gets listed.
Can someone explain to me how G would take a chance on a major change like this during their IPO. I just cannot see G rocking the boat at this sensitve stage of the game.
I just made a few more seaches, it is packed with database sites php,asp bla bla forums.
Before IPO, hmm the thing Im afried of is that money will destroy Googles search, more focus on Froogle again and other things, then the normel good old SE will have alot of amazon like sites, forums org,edu sites, so thats what I think its the future og Google, where MSN will have normal search maybe not as good quality as google early this year, but ok SE.
vanderbolt - I think thats theres a huge difference between what an SEO focused webmaster would notice and what the general public would notice. While we are seeing some people saying the results are worse Im not seeing that many people saying they are worse.
I have to admit that in some of my areas while I have dropped, the results look better on the whole (except for omitting my site from the #1 position of course!)
Of course there will be exceptions but in the areas I look at Im seeing a lot less datafeed type affiliate sites and much more "final destination" shops.
h2b4 I almost never have any problems with Google, also not now, still no. out of 14mill, but I can see some changes for my internal sites and a little differece in the serps not for the better
>"Can someone explain to me how G would take a chance on a major change like this during their IPO. I just cannot see G rocking the boat at this sensitve stage of the game."
Rocking the boat? I'd say it's on the verge of capsize:
And that's just the tip of the iceberg... reminds me of the Titantic - "The ship that would never sink".
[edited by: bobothecat at 11:09 pm (utc) on Aug. 9, 2004]
I dont even think they want to isse a IPO, but in the USA they have to get listed when a company reaches a certaint size.
-- but in the USA they have to get listed when a company reaches a certaint size.
That's nonsense, unless you're talking about the number of shareholders.
Im pretty sure that Google had to get listed for a long time. Im not 100%, but almost.
G did exceed the max number of shares out.
Well there you go. Whenever I hear "certain size" I think MONEY :)
Ladies and gentlemen,
I notice a roll back of a sort at on google.com. Did several searches and compared them to yesterday and the day before. I'm now in the top ten on many of them, before I was way, way down. Still not in top 3 (where I belong ;)) but better. Traffic is still slow though, I imagine that it still has to be spread through the dc. One can hope, especially since we can't even bribe -- the soon to be minted millionaire-- GoogleGuy ;)
Here are two possibilities I can think of vis a vis my "rocking the boat" message.
1. G had failures of some sort (hardware, software, algo etc......) which created the problems encountered. It is working hard to fix the problem and that is why we are seeing (or at least I am) seeing significant improvements today.
2. G has intentionally rocked the boat to push more webmasters towards adwords. A small spike in revenue (or signups) would look good in floating an IPO. Now that they have scared some of us, they are reverting back slowly.
It would be madness on their part to introduce new changes in algos at this time. We should all take of our webmaster blinders and allow more peripheral vision.
The datacenters moving around is normal. A somewhat larger move than usual is not bizarre. I haven't found any serp that is drastically different than a week ago. Maybe some sectors have had major changes, but to think there is some ipo-related reason for some shift in the serps is fanciful at best.
(And there is no such thing as a generic www or "main google".)
"2. G has intentionally rocked the boat to push more webmasters towards adwords. A small spike in revenue (or signups) would look good in floating an IPO. Now that they have scared some of us, they are reverting back slowly. "
Unless Kenny Boy's team took over Google and wants to make as much as they can this month and then close the doors I doubt it. Google has plenty of cash on hand and messing up the results on purpose would the stupidest, most short sighted thing ever.
On the other hand, I wouldn't be suprised if Y! did it to make it's sites appear higher since search is a small part of their business. Search is everything for Google.
Perhaps we need to broaden our focus. My sites have remained reasonably stable re: traffic and rankings for months. About 7-8 days ago, traffic declined about 8-10% for one, with no significant changes to rankings.
What really caught my attention was that AdSense clicks and revenue nearly doubled for the same period. Don't get me wrong, I'm very pleased! :) FYI, I don't do AdWords.
My point is that Google is a web business, just like yours or mine. They are probably tweaking to maximize revenue, just like any successful affiliate site would. Perhaps we need to consider how AdWords and AdSense figures into Google's algo to effectively understand the algo.
I'm thinking their goal is to strike a balance between SERPs that are good enough to attract users and effective advertising so they keep their advertisers happy (and insure that Google makes plenty of money).
Are we mistakenly looking at one tree in the forest (the SERPs) instead of at the whole forest (the SERPs/AdSense/AdWords/advertizing system)?
It's a different way of thinking about an SE than what we've done in the past and I'm not sure where to start... Or if it's even worth considering... Any thoughts?
Google professes that they do not tilt the SERPS to benefit their Adwords or Adsense programs. I, for one, believe that.
Not everyone can have New York Times-like authority but those that do in their respective fields - and Google does in search - can make make the most money simply by being above the fray and uncorruptible in their intent. Their brand is built on authority and anything that detracts from that money-losers.
It's only the lesser newspapers (or search engines or whatever) that feel like they must compromise integrity for profits. And just like at The Times, I think there would be an overpowering institutional resistence within Google to bend to these more crass commercial tweakings to compromise the product.