Seeing Major Serp Changes
Is it just me or has there been a Yahoo update in the SERPs?
Seems my positions are fluctuating all over the place at the moment.
And, why can't we name Yahoo updates? Yahoo seems to be updating every couple of weeks now and it's spiders won't leave my sites! :>~
>>>that's happening to most on this thread.
This happens with every update, not just Yahoo's either. Pretty much a mirror of the Google and MSN update threads. What's interesting is to see some of the same complainers in the MSN and Google update threads complaining here, too.
I'll say it again:
It is not helpful to drop in and give us a weather update on your website without some analysis to go with it. Please tell us WHY you think your site isn't doing as well.
If your issue is not just Yahoo, but also with Google, it's a good idea to troubleshoot. It's rarely a coincidence that all the search engines drop a website within the same time frame. It could even be a web server blocking bot requests or any number of other issues that could be affecting site performance.
I'll repeat it once again: It is less than helpful to post a complaint without meaningful analysis of what may have gone wrong. Honesty is of the essence. If you have issues with your backlinks, then say so. But don't just complain, talk about the issues that may be causing your problems. It's when you are honest about the possible reasons that a general picture of what Yahoo is doing can be perceived.
A common perception is that if others are playing it fast and loose with their optimization it must be okay and can't be the reason for failing ranks- well, that's wrong. Be honest and say what you think is causing your issues. Please, don't just complain.
[edited by: martinibuster at 7:27 pm (utc) on July 25, 2005]
Well, I wish I could elaborate. My backlinks have remained the same. I am not complaining at all and I don't think you are referring to me but from what I am seeing and what I have come to understand from this thread is MAIN page is king in yahoo returns. Subpages are getting dropped. I think it looks like all index pages or main menu pages in the categories I watch. Yahoo, knock on wood, has always loved me. I am still number one in specific keyword phrases and seem to be moving up in less specific searches. Same with msn. I do well in both. I stink in google. I think it had to do with site structure and so I took advantage of this change in yahoo(since it appears to me no more movement) to change my structure.
I know what you are saying. I was responding to the question about number of backlinks. That is, despite the fact that I am losing pages (about 90% from its high water mark), I have actually gained backlinks in Yahoo.
The site used to get 90% of its traffic from Yahoo. Sandboxed in Google, did not rank well in MSN. Right after dropping from Yahoo in mid June, traffic started increasing from MSN and Google - in fact, just enough to keep things even for me.
You seem to be hinting that websites taking a hit are black hat or playing games of some sort. I assure you, that is not the case with my website. Since the site does not even rank for its own site name, I think Yahoo has a problem. The site is wrapped by Adsense, but I know better than to suggest that is the problem.
I am also hoping the update is not over, however, unless we get another wave of big changes things seem to have settled down.
|You seem to be hinting that websites taking a hit are black hat or playing games of some sort. I assure you, that is not the case with my website. |
I believe you, and thanks for your input. That's exactly what I mean about a meaningful update post. If more people can give an articulate rundown, just like BillyS did, then I think we would be much closer to finding answers.
Just a summary...
First night of the update: Dropped to 11 pages, and almost all referrals including from the 11 pages that were still indexed.
Second day of the update: Returned to ~2000 pages, and regained previous rankings for the 11 pages that were not dropped.
Through the last week: The main (11+ a few others) pages have increased in ranking across the board, but still no 'sub' page rankings. Traffic is almost what it was from the 11 pages that it was for all the pages. (I designed the site - a directory - to rank for very specific terms EG type of business in $state or $zip)
I used to rank very well for the specific terms, and since the update, rank for the broad terms EG type of business.
Also, through the last week, indexed pages have increased at the rate of almost exactly 10 per 12 hours.
Site is non-spam. Non-machine generated. BL count (w/o ROS links ~600). Listed in ODP and Y! Directory (free).
Ranks well in MSN and (now) Y! for broad terms. Still fighting the Box (or whatever it is) in G for broad terms, but ranks well for a good number of the specific terms it was designed for.
I lost major niche keyword rankings and lots of top 10's...
#1 My web site is brand new only 3 months old and had no backlinks as of two weeks ago.
#2 This web site does not link to any other web site.
#3 This web site was SEOed white hat no stuffings or coding frills
#4 This is a plain html web site.
#5 This web site lost traffic when either Yahoo updated or an unscrupulous SEO with 35 scraper sites backlinked me to death for no reason. I didn't ask for the links. I didn't signup for them yet I can find this SEO's primary marketing sites after careful parsing of over 35 scraper affiliate domains that have linked to me within the span of two weeks which happened to coincide with my loss of keyword rank.
#6 On the SEO's primary keyword white hat domains there are no links to his scrapers nor do they link to him. I was able to identify him with a special ID he uses for affiliate links on his primary white hat domains and his scrapers.
#7 This SEO's affiliate keyword stuffed generic linked scrapers do not dominate the SERP's. Instead they use negative backlinking influence in some way to create a condition by which I am loosing listings. Not one of those scraper sites have PR in Google and appear to have negative impacts in Yahoo when they link to your domain using your title and description.
#8 The scraper sites link to almost all of the top keyword positioned domains in Yahoo along with mine using the same title and description as found on Yahoo's SERPs. Although not all of those top listed sites have suffered the same loss and I'm investigating that as we speak. They probably have a lot of legitimate backlinks to fall back upon that I do not I just got lucky :)
#9 I lost keyword rank several days after the update.
#10 Those are the best guesses I can hand you ATM.
All replies honored and respected
A niche market site, over a year old, no advertising of our site, no tricks to pull in visitors, building traffic slowly through old fashioned business tactics of networking, presenting ourselves as the "experts", providing a service, offering quality content and being responsive.
Our business plan - yes we even have a business plan - for the internet! - is in the early stages (in stage 2 of 4) and we're right on track.
It's taking a long-time, but on Y! we're finally number #1 for our main keyword searches and have a few more positions on the first page for most searches.
I can only hope that the way that got us there will also mean longevity in staying there. We're noticing other dead sites dropping down the list or falling off completely.
BTW: I can also say the same for our site on Google. In fact I will prolly cut and paste this comment into the Google forum.
check the k size of the serps.
take a look at the returns that do not have a k size.
look for directory listings of the top sites, they will not always show their directory listing in serps even though they have one.
use the linksite:xyz.com within the yahoo seach to explore these.
Send me a check in the mail.
Is Yahoo still dancing?
Yesterday i had slightly different position than today.
Posters on here claim that the update will be ongoing over the next two weeks.
It would be Perhaps a good idea if the Yahoo results were marked up as beta so that users know whats going on and that the results were back under development.
The results produce 2% relevent return in my sector currently with over 60% from the same website using thousands of area-keyword-domain site pages to control the index. Alternative directory pages dominate the new serps also.
Not sure how long it will take Yahoo to fix the problem but if the posts here are correct we are looking at a two week period
Are you done yet?
Are you proud of your new results?
Are there any managers over age 23 at Yahoo that now understand why the old large scale I.T. departments spent so much time testing?
Do those same managers still think the web is built for instant implementation where testing is too slow, unnecessary and unimportant?
Nice job -- you certainly showed Google, MSN and Teoma who has the best and brightest people.... lol
I do not see a revolution.
I see new sites coming.
I see sites that are gaining ranking thanks to link exchange.
|Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet? |
Sigh... it's going to take two weeks.
Google took an entire month last month. MSN took a couple weeks last month. This is nothing endemic to Yahoo.
except MSN has an excuse as its New to the search engine business and when Google did an update its results were reasonable to start with and were slightly adjusted.
For Yahoo to produce these results at this stage sets them back years imo.
Yahoos results are currently a junk yard - now before you edit/remove or adjust this post im telling it as it is. Im not bothered about traffic from yahoo but would like to see a quality alternative to Googles strong hold and i genuinely thought Yahoo had a chance prior to this mess.
Now, i can't give examples on this thread because of the rules here, but i can prove without doubt that the Yahoo results are currently less than 3% effective and if anyone wants to sticky me i can give hundreds of examples from Yahoo UKs serps.
The results contain, re-directs, spam pages, poor directory sites ranking high, non relevent content, multi listings from same sites and lots of general poor quality site pages. Yahoo had a first move advantage over MSN but have just put results out that set them back years.
Sorry but if Yahoo required to do more testing they should have done this prior to changing what previously was a reasonable set of results.
Best policy for now imo is to stick with Google and check on Yahoo in a month or so.
Rich, I agree with you that the serps aren't everything they could be. No disagreement whatsoever. I also agree that a strong alternative to Google would be wonderful.
It's a valid question as to why any search engine can't test a virtual index prior to rolling it out. I think that's a question we should ask the search engineers next time we get a chance. It's certainly a question many here would be interested in hearing answered.
That said, even a more established company like Google has rolled out an index over a period of weeks, slowly changing their filters so that they push out the rubbish and reinclude the good. One of my sites languished in position five for an entire month until regaining it's #1 and 2 listings. In fact, there were a number white hat sites that lost their positions for an entire month on Google. Anybody who remembers Florida will recall how horrible things can really get. Even the BBC got into the act interviewing mom & pops who were losing their shirts because of the slow Florida rollout.
So in terms of Yahoo doing it too, well they're in good company. Doesn't excuse either Google or Yahoo, but it's valid to point out that Yahoo is not alone in the practice, and there is precedent for it from Google.
I know that martinibuster is looking for more than weather reports, but for those that think this thing is over, I assure you as of today the show is not over. I say this because my website continues to drop pages from the Yahoo index. From its high of 700 pages, I am now showing only 48. Only yesterday it was close to 70. To me this is significant because this latest count is lower than that pre-April update.
I still see the same pattern for the remaining pages. Those pages with a cache were taken pre-April.
I have noticed that Yahoo has slowed way down on indexing pages from this site. For example:
Googlebot - 3368
MSNbot - 2484
Slurp - 1737
Googlebot - 2256
MSNbot - 2039
Slurp - 777
Since the site has around 900 pages, Google and MSN gather enough each month. Slurp did not so far this month. Also, if Slurp is going to recache the index (as suggested by another), I would think we'd have more reports of the type "slurp gone wild."
>>I have noticed that Yahoo has slowed way down on
>>indexing pages from this site
yahoo seems to be extremely slow at spidering / indexing sites - and not very good at deep spidering - or is it that google / MSN are just very fast?
i launched a site in december - approx 6500 pages now. google has 6400, msn has 5000+, yahoo has 1500
i launched another site (200 pages) on thursday, and on friday afternoon, google was listing 60 pages, now listing 120 pages. MSN has spidered a few pages today. no sign of yahoo yet - it'll happen one day, but better not hold my breath!
I am not seeing any big changes in SERPs for my website rather SERPs going down for some of my kw.
How long update will go on and when it will be stabalised? Any idea?
In the Y blog they mentioned about two weeks. I think it's one week today, that leaves one more.
|It's a valid question as to why any search engine can't test a virtual index prior to rolling it out. I think that's a question we should ask the search engineers next time we get a chance. It's certainly a question many here would be interested in hearing answered. |
It will happen - surely it must - when one considers what is at stake. And that it can surely been achieved.
|From its high of 700 pages, I am now showing only 48. Only yesterday it was close to 70. |
I am happy to report quite the contrary. I have been asking advice and sharing my experience in webmasterworld (without fruit) as to how to improve Yahoo indexing.
Now mysite’s indexing is growing - jumped x 5 on the initial update, and since then has gone up a page or five every day.
It's interesting to see how people like to dictate how companies should run their businesses. Public release of beta serps is nothing new. It seems that every time this happens (every two months or so), we get the same people saying they need to test. There job is to test the mechanics of the engine and not the results.
IMO I think Yahoo is getting much more relevent and are actually starting to resemble a real compititor to google. In my sector they have managed to get rid of 99% of the spam sites with top ranking sites having many links over time.... This tells me that they put some advanced link aging filter and natural anchor text filter in place.
When I hear that results are not relevent and in the same post I hear that your sites dropped, then I ignore the entire message. Who's to say that your sites are the most relevent? The people who have replaced you also post and state that they are the most relevent results to date. My sites are nowhere to be seen there where they used to rank in top 5. I cannot complain as I can see that the sites that replaced me ARE more relevent. They have more links over time. And natural anchor text patterns. The algorthm IS NOT broken. It is just fine.
I believe the results today during this update are the best to date with Yahoo. Anyone who says different really hasn't been a webmaster long or really has not seen how spammy yahoo used to be before the last two weather reports (updates). I challenge anyone to argue that the results before the last update were better. How many doorway pages are you guys seeing now? I used to see at least 3 in top 10 of all my keywords and now NONE.
My inputs to this update:
- A more robust link filter was put in place
- Anchor text variety is key
- On page seo along with diverse links over time gets you on page 1.
I agree with you JaySmith, the effect is relative among us because everyone of us claims to be right. And there is nothing wrong with that. But the deciding factor is that Yahoo has been in existence for years, and through time, their technology, as well as their algorithm, developed. Like Google, they also have bounce of researchers and developers who are experienced in this kind of field. So its hard for every one among us to claim that we are right and they are wrong, when it comes to the SERP.
|When I hear that results are not relevent and in the same post I hear that your sites dropped, then I ignore the entire message. Who's to say that your sites are the most relevent? |
Uh, my website's unique name is the most relevent result, not someone linking to my website. I'm not complaining about the results, Yahoo can push out whatever they want. But the fact that I used to rank #1 for my website's name and I no longer do, well that's a problem.
I often write articles and sign them with my name - my last name is not very common. I used to rank #1 for this "term" too, but no longer rank for my own name. However, scraper sites that have ripped off my articles do show up.
I'll go along with the idea that the Algo is still not baked, but to suggest that sites that dropped are dropping because they are of low quality is a statement that is not supported by facts.
I understand the game is played using Yahoo's rules - they get to pick the winners. BUT if the result stick, then the Algo is "broken." I should at least rank for my website's name - not someone that has a couple of my articles pointing to my website.
yeah exactly. this is totally bonkers. wonder if any yahoo administrators frequent this forum. sigh. my traffic ain't picking up at all and it is terrible.
When Yahoo says one more week, does this mean that the results will fluctuate greatly through this week?
Yesterday I saw 100 percent rise in my traffic, today it's down to normal.
How to interpret I don't know.
Just noticed another big shake up in some categories we watch. First time I can remember seeing Y take out a bunch of generally relevant pages on 3+ word terms and show a bunch of more generic pages from mega-YP sites and the like. Sorta like when G was showing a bunch of Amazon and CNN pages after Florida. G got it fixed; hopefully Y will also.
Your post was just amazing, i had to read it three times as i could not beleive what i was reading.
The results are utter, utter cr@p. In fact they are the worst results i have ever seen from yahoo. Full of spam, doorways, poor directory sites, non relevent sites in fact i dont ever remember Yahoos results being this bad in their entire history. We have same sites with multi listings, sites with no on page content other than a keyword matching meta title and loads more directory sites ranking high.
If you would like to sticky me i will give you at least 10 popular search terms on Yahoo UK and prove without doubt why the results are currently about 3% relevent to the search term.
Yahoo is a Junk Yard currently. Now im not saying they cant get it right over the next few weeks but currently the results went back to that of a start up search engine.
Standing back from this and using the search engine to get results it now fails to deliver and that is a dam shame.
|Yesterday I saw 100 percent rise in my traffic, today it's down to normal. |
How to interpret I don't know.
don't interpret it, just ignore it for now - no point worrying about fluctuations during an update - wait until it's over - spend the next week or so writing more content etc .........
|The (yahoo) results are utter, utter cr@p. In fact they are the worst results i have ever seen from yahoo. Full of spam, doorways, poor directory sites, non relevent sites |
you wouldn't be saying that if your site was ranked top ............
you have to bear in mind that yahoo search is still a system under development - a couple of years ago yahoo was powered by google - then yahoo bought inktomi / altavista / fast and started merging technologies etc
i reckon they are still working hard to get better (more relevant) results than google and hence gain more loyal users - after all, search engines need loyal users to recommend / promote them
if they get it badly wrong, they lose users pretty quickly
and don't forget that google is also full of spammy junk sites - and most search engine users don't realise this ...........
Well, FWIW re my post 206 above: A few friends told me that they did not see what I was seeing. So, I turned off my anon proxy but still got the same (new and far less specific) results (agagin, a lot fewer targeted subpages than before; mainly homepages and sub's from big YP sites, etc).
SO, I took another step, and opened a new browser with the anon proxy still off now. Sure enough, all the old subpages were back.
So then I cleared my cache and cookies on the first browser and the old results, with the subpages, were back there too.
My anon proxy mainly routes me through non-US contries.
So, either they were serving up new results to me when they thought I was from overseas today, or they were giving me different SERP's based on a cookie for whatever reason.
Unfortunately, in trying to capture screen shots with the anon proxy back on, I can't find the new (worse) SERP's I was seeing earlier, which makes me think that perhaps what I saw was cookie related (as opposed to realtime proxy). But maybe the cookie stored my geo location as overseas.
Whatever the case, the new SERP's I saw were considerably worse than what's mainly being seen in the US right now, sans anon proxy. ;-) I say "worse" because if you take away topical subpages for 3-4 word searches and replace them with homepages (far more generic) or subpages from Yellow Pages sites, that's not an improvement
Food for thought: Maybe for overseas searches, many subpages of US-centric sites no longer fit into their new international algo, if there even is one.
Sorry I don't have more here. Wish I'd captured screenshots when I first saw the bad SERPs, but by the time I'd sorted out what was happening, I could no longer get the bad SERP's back again. :/
You have a point, however in a number of keyword search areas i follow i find a number of situations where the same site can control 60/70 out of the first 100 results by using area1-domain, area2-domain, area3-domain etc and Yahoo is daft enough to rank each one, one after the other. The pages all link back, so Yahoos new algo rates the pages as having good anchor links. I dont think i can ever recall google having this kind of problem. And as for pages with no content but a metta title thats relevent to the search term ranking high well that takes the biscuit.
When the results are less than 3% relevent its time for Yahoo to say, "Sorry we messed up here big style, we will revert them back to what they were and try again once we have worked out the problem."
Oh and one last point. If you are number 1 in Yahoo and all around you are dross you have to wonder how long its going to be before visitors go elsewhere to search.
Search users want quality, relevent results with lots of choice.