homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 54.145.183.126
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member

Home / Forums Index / Yahoo / Yahoo Search Engine and Directory
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: martinibuster

Yahoo Search Engine and Directory Forum

This 87 message thread spans 3 pages: < < 87 ( 1 [2] 3 > >     
Reasons for a Yahoo Penalty
What are they? Debate the merits of each theory
cabbagehead

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 7:13 am on May 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

There's no doubt at this point that Yahoo is penalizing a lot of good sites that Google wouldn't consider to be offensive in anyway. Moreover, it would appear that you stand a substantially higher liklihood of being penalized. Yahoo is currently sending a generic email to those that inquire about a penalty that outlines the following possible reasons:

- Cloaking (showing crawlers deceptive content about a site)
- Massive domain interlinking
- Use of affiliate programs without the addition of substantial unique content
- Use of reciprocal link programs (aka “link farms”)
- Hidden text
- Excessive keyword repetition

...These reasons are generic at best. What I'm curious to determine is where the lines are and what sort of techniques could trip each of these. of these, the following seem most ambiguous and potentially far-reaching:

1. Massive Domain Interlinking - what does this mean exaclty? What is you use various subdomains for different sections of your site? Does this trigger a penalty? Too many links between each of your pages? And, how many is too many?

2. Affiliate programs without substantial unique content - What exactly is substantial? If a car site uses the descriptions of cars from its affiliate program, as part of the catalog, but the site offers their own significant car guide section - is this substantial enough? Or is there some ratio in play here?

3. Reciprical Link "programs" - this is perhaps the trickiest of them all. Google has long-since banned link farms, but could Yahoo be looking beyond simply link farms to see if a site has too many reciprical links? In a recent quick search of a popular key phrase, I found a suprisingly small number of listings with links pages.

Aside from these points, several webmasters on these threads have pointed out the following additional theories:

1. Google Ads playing a role?
2. Did specifcally PositionTech Inktomi PFI submissions raise the penalties for everyone?
3. Are certain categories being hit harder than others? Many have pointed out travel, but I've seen other examples as well.
4. Are the hardest hit categories those that Yahoo eCommerce is competing directly with?

...so come on - let's throw some examples out there, debate the theories, debunk anything we can, and get this puppy figured out! Also, if you have had any luck with getting your site reviewed and incuded, please share!

 

soapystar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 7:08 am on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

sorry steve but you still make the assumption that he returned because a problem was fixed. You may be correct but i dont see how you can be as 100% sure as you are. For so many sites to come back at the exact same time as an algo change stil smacks of tinkering with a filter which would indeed be a penalised site if caught in that filter. You assume the reason sites came back was because of the redirect problem but since these sites have no idea if in fact that was there problem to start with how are you so sure cabbageheads sites werent penalised in one form or another? Also many sites that may be affected by the redirect problem did not return and there was no input from Yahoo_mike or Tim that a problem has been fixed which i would have expected since they have said they are working on the problem. If they were willing to keep us informed that they are working on it i would expect them to be glad to say it is now fixed if indeed it is.

crobb305

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 8:27 am on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

steveb said:
My comment to cabbagehead (about his specific comment) that it never was a penalty is exactly right and you should just admit that and move on. The thing he was talking about -- which is different than things others are talking about -- was not a deliberate penalty.

"The thing that he was talking about".....

He is not talking about ONE thing. He opened this thread with a list of possible causes for penalties. Not a single, clearly defined issue or "thing" as you refer to it. Among those POSSIBLE causes were:
- Cloaking (showing crawlers deceptive content about a site)
- Massive domain interlinking
- Use of affiliate programs without the addition of substantial unique content
- Use of reciprocal link programs (aka “link farms”)
- Hidden text
- Excessive keyword repetition

Steve, I doubt anyone here understands your point, because there doesn't seem to be one. The bottom line is: there are numerous sites that appear to have been penalized, for whatever reason. Cabbagehead mearly wanted to debate the merits of various theories. Your sweeping generalization that "there is NO PENALTY" has no merit. Perhaps you are the one who should move on ;)

steveb

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 9:01 am on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

crobb give it a rest will you. Suppose I told you someone from Yahoo told me they fixed a technical problem. If that was the case, I wouldn't care if you believed it or not, but I'd state my view. Whether someone did or not happens to be none of your business. Please curb your fascism. Not everybody needs to be waving their arms in confusion just because you are.

I know in the Google forum some folks like to choose the most absurd possible explaination, but events like some sites coming back, after the Yahoo guys said a fix for some sites was being worked on, I guess that is just not exotic enough.

Maybe cabbagehead should have read more threads in this forum before posting. But then again, maybe I can just have my opinion that what he was describing is what we were told was a technical problem, and that a promised fix is at least in part been rolled out. If you want to disagree for whatever reason, fine.

helenp

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 9:11 am on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Well, to study the redirct problem I always use a big company as an example, they was out of serps but came back suddenly.
That company is in serps but with their title and description from yahoo directory.

If you search for their exact title of page that is:
snipped

before this algo update on top for that search an redirection to their page was on top, now after this update that redirection comes in 2nd place, that redirection was and is so high in serps though the site is an PR9 (snipped).

So I donīt think the problem is fixed, though an redirection shouldnīt be indexed as an page, they only given less importance to them.
That is what I think.

[edited by: DaveAtIFG at 6:51 pm (utc) on May 23, 2004]
[edit reason] No specifics please [/edit]

cabbagehead

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 5:45 pm on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

"Maybe cabbagehead should have read more threads in this forum before posting"

C'mon now Steve - Was that really necissary?

Of course I've been following the other threads. The purpose of this thread was to discuss all the different threads - not to assume one is right or that another was wrong.

4crests

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 6:21 pm on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Back in Yahoo now. Still out of AV and ATW. Last night, I was in, out, in, out, in, out......

Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Is this what happens when a site is on it's way out?

Am I doomed?

crobb305

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 6:27 pm on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Again, cabbagehead wanted to address the merit of the possible causes for penalties. Perhaps there is a "technical" glitch that is unrelated; but, that was not the intent of this thread.

Cabbagehead, the thread started with good merit and will hopefully steer it's way back to a positive, productive one.

twebdonny



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 6:36 pm on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

9,320,000 Yahoo pages in Google now with high PR, Most are travel or business sales type related duped pages. But hey, that's ok.

steveb

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 8:43 pm on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

"C'mon now Steve - Was that really necissary?"

I don't think you understand the comment. It wasn't meant as a criticism and if you took it that I way I apologize.
====

"Perhaps there is a "technical" glitch that is unrelated; but, that was not the intent of this thread."

But that was why certain pages reappeared the other day. Their return was unrelated to any deliberate penalty and that's what I pointed out. The return of those sites is "off-topic" to any thread about penalties.

crobb305

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 11:40 pm on May 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Steve,

I had two of my own sites that had old editorial Inktomi penalties. Both of these sites reappeared early last week for 24 hours, as if those penalties had been removed. Are you saying that you believe these sites (among others) reappeared only because of a glitch and that they are now gone from the serps for good? Or, are you saying that they reappeared, then disappeared because of a glitch, and will return once the glitch is corrected. Maybe our argument in earlier posts of this thread stems from my misunderstanding of your point. The glitch that you hinted at above is interesting and I am asking you to explain your theory a bit. I will search around to see if you have already done this.

C

steveb

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 12:17 am on May 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

"Are you saying that you believe these sites (among others) reappeared only because of a glitch and that they are now gone from the serps for good?"

No to both, I never said anything at all about such sites.

"Or, are you saying that they reappeared, then disappeared because of a glitch, and will return once the glitch is corrected."

Again, I have never said ANYTHING about any sites with Ink or other penalties. Nothing (except that such penalties do exist).

I don't know if I can explain it any other way than I have, but... there are different reasons some sites and pages have not been appearing in the serps. Sometimes the reason is penalties of one sort or another. A completely unrelated phenomenon of a technical nature has been effecting another group of pages -- usually "pages" and not "sites". Penalties normally apply to whole domains. The technical problem was usually/mostly something that effected individual pages. I certainly don't know ALL the reasons the glitch effected a page, but one is when another page linked to a target page via some sorts of redirects, the target page would disappear from the serps while the "linking to" redirect URL would appear. Notice how this will only affect one page on the target domain. Usually this would be the main page of the target domain, and interior pages would continue to rank more or less normally. Some whole domains might be effected by the glitch though if they had some all-encompassing redirect or duplicate issue that caused them to be mistakenly lost.

If Yahoo couldn't fully understand and fix the problem for two months, I'm not going to be able to describe it that well either. But the point again is that completely seperate from some sites having penalties has been a phenomenon where some sites have suffered from a technical problem. The technical problem may not be 100% "fixed", but some progress was made a couple days ago.

crobb305

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 4:28 am on May 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

I am fully aware that redirect/script urls pointing to the same page may be causing the original url to be eliminated from the serps. While this may be a glitch, I am not sure we can definitively say that this is not a penalty. Granted, it may not be the way Yahoo intended it to be, but the algorithm had to be instructed to do what it does; and, it was apparently instructed to remove target pages that have multiple url's pointing to it. Unfortunately this means that the Yahoo database is gradually becoming full of redirect/script urls at the expense of original urls. Obviously, this is illogical and likely a programming snafu. But, ultimately, it is a penalty since the human programmers have instructed the algorithm to remove pages if some pre-defined criteria are met.

I only hope they get this fixed expeditiously, if it is, in fact, a glitch.

[webmasterworld.com...]

grant

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 7:26 am on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Can anyone reference a thread wherein GoogleGuy or someone from Yahoo! validates the terms "filter" or "penalty"?

My experience suggests that algos simply change what they reward. They really don't "penalize", they just change their value system.

I'm not saying I'm right, I just want evidence of penalties and filters.

mbennie

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 3:44 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm not saying I'm right, I just want evidence of penalties and filters

Feb 2004: Was told by Tim that one of my sites was blacklisted (penalty).

April 2004: Was told by a different Y! Rep that the penalty would be removed in May.

May 2004: Was told by same Y! Rep that the penalty would not be removed.

There are indeed penalties and they are the severest possible (permanent blacklisting) for even the most minor infractions.

crobb305

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 3:51 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

My experience suggests that algos simply change what they reward.

Rewards or penalties, the end result is the same. It's just like in college when one professor may grade your tests by GIVING points for CORRECT answers. Another teacher might grade your tests by DEDUCTING points for INCORRECT answers. The end result is a single score. What difference does it make if you say you are "penalized" for doing bad or "rewarded" for doing good. In the end, you either pass or fail. I imagine that in the search engine world, there is a combination of both: penalties (hand/editorial and algorithm) as well as reward. The difference between reward and penalty is all relative. If you are heavily rewarded for some good action, then you might imply that you were penalized (perhaps not given any reward) for lesser actions. This is what I meant earlier by arguing semantics. The bottom line is that web pages are scored by the algorithms and the term you decide to give to it's methodology (filter, reward, penalty, etc) is up to you.

C

[edited by: crobb305 at 3:59 pm (utc) on May 25, 2004]

helenp

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 3:58 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

>>>My experience suggests that algos simply change what they reward. They really don't "penalize", they just change their value system. >>>

That could be fine IF the sites rewarded were better or less spammy than yours.

Iīm afraid that in all cases Iīve seen that itīs not the case.

cyberfyber

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 5:16 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

Considering the name of this topic I'd like to ask the following:

Do Re-directs affect one's standing in Yahoo's eyes?

I don't and have never used them. But in researching my recent dilemna, I came across one site that's been re-directing to one of my pages.

Also, is there a way to find any/all pages that are using a re-direct to my site? I tried Yahoo's Advanced search but it didn't work for me the way I wished.

I can't think of any other reason that my site's been doing poorly since yesterday afternoon. It was on top of the world since being re-admitted into Yahoo's Index 2 months ago. Now? It's god awful.

Kirby

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 5:43 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

>A penalty is deliberate. A mistake is not.

Steveb, how would you catagorize the duplicate content issue, as a penalty or as a technical problem?

The way I see it, these are sometimes two sides of the same coin. Y!'s problem with redirects triggers a duplicate content penalty.

In my case, a similar page put up 18 months ago as a test for the impact of anchor text subsequently triggered a penalty by Ink for the original domain. I didnt care because I received little traffic from INK anyways, while always enjoying great positioning in Google and Google driven Yahoo.

When Yahoo switched, the test page appeared top 3 in Yahoo while all pages from the original site could only be found dead last for an exact title search. I deleted the test page and parked the domain.

Tim addressed the issue for me and was to have had the offending page deleted from Y!'s index. What then occurred was that the parked domain showed up at #3 with the title "Under Construction" and the snippet reads "www.domain,com coming soon! This domain parked FREE...".

That was over 2 months ago. Since Y! still hasnt fixed the "problem", I decided to quit wasting the page one positioning and now have the parked domain pointing to the original site. The title and snippet havent changed. Furthermore, the webrank of the redirected domain is 5 and the original is a 1.

In my eyes this is both a penalty and a bug. Your thoughts?

The_Hitcher

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 5:59 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

Certainly one of the reasons for these penalties (or at least trying to find out WHY and by whom) is due to lack of communication between Yahoo's new acquisitions

How often decisions are made from on high, with money being the primary driving force (of course) and how often such plans prove to be a nightmare to implement.

Comparisons with a certain postal delivery service that thought a name change (costing millions?) would turn them around. A couple of years later they changed their name back to the original one. I mean what was that about?

With glitches, hiccups, stuck penalties and spam, how on earth is the Yahoo thing to work? Yahoo has gone too fast, too quick, and without really addressing how it will all work. There are just so many loose ends. It would have made FAR more sense to let Fast, Altavista etc to run as they were for a few months and gradually merged each of their acquisitions, WITH a plan - not just a notion that "its a good move, lets go for it."

As for Site Match....(looks to heavens and throws up his hands in despair). Jeez Yahoo, you have to get a handle on this. The Inktomi thing seems to be huge black hole, the 302 bug abominable, and the review provision so slow, even a tortoise would leave it standing. Amidst that lot, you have to work out if you DO have a penalty and then zero chance of even discussing it with anyone if you do and paying for Site Match is like putting your $50 in a broken slot machine and crossing your fingers.

bbonline

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 6:24 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

Glad to see webmasters are lining up to fight Yahoo.

I signed up for 2 SiteMatch accounts and have got 4 clicks. Yahoo is holding the money deposited for the account and no representative has replied. It's been 8 weeks since I signed up. If some of you are thinking about signing up for SiteMatch forget it.

The penalty makes no sense and it is obviously a major screw up.

cyberfyber

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 6:31 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

<<If some of you are thinking about signing up for SiteMatch forget it.

The penalty makes no sense and it is obviously a major screw up.>>

Yes, I find it interesting how I received a promo yesterday for joining SiteMatch on the very day that things go awry for my biggest site.

I went from chastising Yahoo
....to congratulating them on following up with my problem
...and now? I've no idea what they're up to.

cbpayne

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 10:47 pm on May 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

> signed up for 2 SiteMatch accounts and have got 4 clicks

Thats probably because your site ranks poorly and not because of a penalty. SiteMatch does not give you a good ranking.

bbonline

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 1:55 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

> Thats probably because your site ranks poorly and not because of a penalty. SiteMatch does not give you a good ranking.

The site has performed quite well in Google with #1 positions for many keywords relevant to the page.

cbpayne

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 4:59 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

>performed quite well in Google with #1 positions for many keywords

Where is it ranked on Yahoo?

cbpayne

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 5:18 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

adding to previous message:
There is a big difference between not ranking as well on Yahoo (compared to Google) and a Yahoo penalty (which this thread is about). Your 4 clicks since joining Site Match is more likely to be due to a poorer ranking (and don't forget Yahoo ranks sites differently to Google) than a penalty (if you had a penalty, you may have had no clicks).

soapystar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 7:19 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

maybe its due to people being forced to search for his site by url rather than keyword because of the incredible position of Yahoo experiementing with building an index to suit their personal likes and dislikes rather than what users want or what an algo considers highly relevant...i have seen this myself....

makemetop



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 7:56 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

> signed up for 2 SiteMatch accounts and have got 4 clicks...

Just to put things in balance, I've now put in 7 sites into SiteMatch and have had a few hundred highly relevant clicks so far. It's not all bad - but it is risky unless you know for absolute sure that your site is squeaky clean for the Yahoo editors.

I understand people's frustration - I, too, have clients that have seen the wrath of a Yahoo penalty. Some have spent thousands only to be given the boot. I've spent months on trying to get the penalties lifted and trying to understand both sides of the argument.

Site owners are often unwilling to change things that work well on Google to suit Yahoo's interpretation of a good site. Often I have to ask them to remove whole swathes of related and cross-linked sites, block Slurp from indexing pages etc., etc., and I'm trying to get these people into large Trusted Feed programs where Yahoo stand to make a lot of money by accepting the feed. So, believe me, the rules are being applied to anyone who volunteers for paid inclusion.

I have seen evidence of the redirect problem being addressed - and, significantly, I have also seen evidence of an automated algo penalty being lifted automatically.

To be precise, Yahoo sometimes has a problem of misidentifying text as being hidden if the background colour in 1 table is the same as the link text or text in another table. Last week I submitted a client site to SiteMatch, the pages were accepted but got an immediate penalty. On examining the site, I saw that the designer had used tables and used the same font colour in one area as the background colour in another. We changed this and the pages went to their anticipated positions 48 hours later.

Previously, when we have had this problem we had to appeal manually for a re-review - so this is a very recent change.

soapystar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 8:33 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

On examining the site, I saw that the designer had used tables and used the same font colour in one area as the background colour in another.

Incredible! Using a colour for a background that is used for a font somewhere else is coded into the algo has a penalty? wow! I guess css visiblity:none sails through?

markd

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 8:33 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

MMT - how did you tell that the site had 'received a penalty'?

Were you informed after your Site Match URL's had been accepted or did you guess at this being the problem?

makemetop



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 8:41 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

>MMT - how did you tell that the site had 'received a penalty'?

I'm sufficiently arrogant enough to assume that I will appear in the top 20 for at least some of the targeted phrases! I didn't. In fact, I didn't appear unless I put in an exact obsure search term in quotes! Classic signs of a penalty.

Changed the code and - hey presto - on the first page as per normal :)

Don't knock Yahoo too much over the table confusion, Google used to do this too. They recovered from it by the simple expedient of rolling back the detection of hidden text to the extent that (IMO) they barely bother to check for it now! Yahoo does normally get it right however and this glitch does not occur on every site. The fault (in my latest example) appeared to be caused by some extraneous code inserted by Dreamweaver!

helenp

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 2297 posted 10:54 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Makemetop:
I'm sufficiently arrogant enough to assume that I will appear in the top 20 for at least some of the targeted phrases! I didn't. In fact, I didn't appear unless I put in an exact obsure search term in quotes! Classic signs of a penalty.

Changed the code and - hey presto - on the first page as per normal :)
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

That meant that the site was spidered by slurp, not only robots.txt?
The site ever was completely banned, just lost in algo penalties?
mine ever been spidered by slurp except robots, but been spidered by yahoo vertical crawler (homepage) and scooter got an 206 for an page.

Actually I use css, and donīt think yahoo read .css, so html code donīt have any backgroundcolor nor textcolor, Could they have problem with sites completely in css?
Slurp stopped spidering my robots.txt for 3 weeks, yahoovertical crawler came by and suddenly slurp started again to go for my robots.

This 87 message thread spans 3 pages: < < 87 ( 1 [2] 3 > >
Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  
 

Home / Forums Index / Yahoo / Yahoo Search Engine and Directory
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved