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Microsoft MSN Search: New SERPs Sat 8th July
I thought MSN didnt update on weekends!

 5:18 pm on Jul 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

Looking at MSN today and i see a complete change of the SERPs since yesterday.

The baby has been well and truely chucked out with the bathwater and im not convinced all these filters are doing them any good at all.

Certainly in the sectors we follow the serps are a mess, but its what i expect from msn to be honest and as they still have next to zero pull in the uk i cant say im that concerned.

It looks like if you have a basic static driven site bluewidget.com and get a few links to it that say blue widget you rank top of the tree. You can do this with a five page site, its very simple. The moment however you add any real content or have any dynamic pages or volume content you start tripping a few filters here and there and get knocked back in the serps.

Out of the sites we work on the detailed authority sites struggle to rank in msn meanwhile the low quality basic end rank superb. The only exception is .gov or uni .ac sites which for some reason rank for no matter what so i guess the filters dont apply to those.

I guess they still have a lot of fixing to do

Finally, i thought msn didnt update on a weekend on the basis they couldnt fix it if it went pear shaped - obviously this is no longer the case.



 5:24 pm on Jul 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

We made an exception this week. :-)


 5:29 pm on Jul 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

RichTC, ALL my fairly static sites with some links to it are down in the rankings in this update, so I don't think thats it.


 6:24 pm on Jul 8, 2006 (gmt 0)

Looks like thry turn on the add junk and non relevancy filter on!
Maybe they will add a reverse logic filter with a lemon twist next?

Can we go back to the old good results now that everone liked?
Don't see any reason to abuse mSN sufers with this type of results.


 12:57 am on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Some progress it seems, but a different sort of spam tactic is dominant now.... one that is clearly preferable to the subdomain and blogspot stuff, but still not good (still plenty of blogspot and subdomain stuff out there tho).

I'll call it generic/expired domains ranking for niche terms. These sites ranking does show less dependance on keyword left of the tld, but in general they are all what I call "piffle"... trivial sites built on blog spam that do have words on the page relevant to the query but it is very low quality and has zero niche authority.

Overall a small improvement though. The results just have little authority or quality, BUT the top 20 now will usually have maybe five results that are good results that are right on the money. Two months ago there would often be none.

Also looking at co.uk, no improvement i can see on the geolocation nonsense.


 1:03 am on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

I agree. Small improvement. I still don't think they're really weighting backlinks appropriately though.


 1:12 am on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

They should spend the weekends fixing the subdomain issue:

Many UK searches I do regularly show 40+ results in the top 50 that are auto-generated pages that are identical in descriptions and content apart from the goegraphical element (in the subdomain and popped into the content as required).

It's always the same (reasonably big) company, I would be embarrased if I had to stoop that low.

Pathetic (on both sides).


 8:52 am on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

I love it when they update on weekends. I hope they will update again today. I also hope that they will index my site for once.. ever since the last big update i find it hard to have my site indexed.. Some index without any problem but others won't be indexed for some reason. Ofcourse all legit sites that used to be indexed before June. They should temper their filter I guess.. if thats what prevents sites to be indexed.


 10:54 am on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sadly, I see no improvement and a slight step backwards into spam hell.


 11:31 am on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Update just happened again. All my sites are now indexed.

I guess eventually the new algorithm will index all sites, it's just a bit longer than we are all used to (used to be a few days).

One odd thing though, when i do "query 1", then the results display my site with today's date (new cached date) next to it. But when i do "another query", then it doesn't show my site with a new cached date next to it. I guess this means that on an update not all queries are updated, but only a few or something. Or not all queries use the newly updated cache of the site.


 6:17 pm on Jul 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Angelo: I'm happy your site got indexed. It had nothing to do with the recent software update, but I'm happy for you nevertheless.

Would it be reasonable to ask people to make a distinction between a software update and an index update? For us, making a software update is like shipping a product; lots of people are involved, there's lots of planning, testing, etc. A software update is a big deal.

An index update, on the other hand, happens automatically -- usually at least once a day -- and no one here pays it much mind unless they're debugging a problem that might be affected by it. An index update is nothing special. Kind of like breathing; you don't think about it at all if things are going well.

Anyway, I think there has been some confusion over the difference between the two. When I say "update" I always mean "software update." I think a few people have interpreted that as meaning "index update," and that might have left a wrong impression.


 8:51 am on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

Msn Dude,

Im not sure what happened on this index but its kicked almost all of my heavy content sites back 50 nodd places and left sites with very little to offer to the client in their places.

Not sure what you did but i dont like it much.




 9:44 am on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

Worst results I have ever seen on this search engine.

In the UK ranking seems to be primarily based on domain name.

The top of our sector now ranks two website with keyword1-keyword2.org and keyword1keyword2.info at the top of the results. There really isn't much else keeping them there in my opinion.

I know you're not supposed to quote specifics <removed>

Google places them at number 1 for that search.

These results are really quite bad.

[edited by: jatar_k at 2:42 pm (utc) on July 10, 2006]
[edit reason] no specifics then thanks [/edit]


 12:57 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

"I know you're not supposed to quote specifics..."

When you see the spam/keyword abuse in their tags I would say this a point for using MSN and dumping google!

Having said that I do think the results were better before this last update.

[edited by: jatar_k at 2:43 pm (utc) on July 10, 2006]
[edit reason] and again thanks [/edit]


 1:22 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

I actually found them at the number 1 spot for that search...


 1:26 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

In canada, but using msn.com, they come up first.

[edited by: jatar_k at 2:43 pm (utc) on July 10, 2006]


 1:32 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

MSN dude,

Thank you for your updates.

We are a large news reporting site, but for some reason are never in MSN Search News index.

How does one go about it?

We have submitted the site many times.

Could you please provide some venu please?

Thank you.


 1:42 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

Erku - you'll have to go through Moreover, they supply to MSN, but it's a long process - good luck, anyways.

I just have to give the promps to MSN - they have done pretty good job the past few months cleaning the engine, plus the constant presence of MSNdude is great - Yahoo and Google used to have guys here, but they gave up for some reason.

In the sector I monitor the index updates are daily, so I am always floating up and down 2-3 spots, so nothing new here :)

Now if you can only solve the blogspot problem - it will be the most clean engine ever.


 1:49 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

The serps look a little better overall, I'd have to agree with that, but emphasis on little. You have some massive sites who are legitimately leaders in their industries missing from search terms that are pretty much synonymous with their names (yet they still rank on terms not-synonymous with their names).

Seems lots of sites using a specific technique (most often associated with spam but also has MANY legitimate uses) have been hurt by it. And I'm talking "huge" sites too (as in power and authority, not size).

One of MSN Search's biggest previous problems seems to have been brought under some sort of control (though not complete) with this update.

You guys still seem to be having certain issues with redirects of certain types.

All in all, cleaner than the last update, but you still have a lot of work to do.


 2:02 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

MSNDude, I'm happy how I show on your new results pages. You managed to get rid of the wannabe blogger who has always managed to sneak his spam filled crap ahead of me on the major indexes.
See how weekend work pays off? :-)


 2:18 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

I see a little difference, but still to many blogs and subdomains, so Is till like the results better for, hmm 3-4 month ago I think.


 2:21 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

>>You guys still seem to be having certain issues with redirects of certain types.

I'm seeing some problems with 301's for pages that have been moved/redirected within sites.


 2:23 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)


That's actually the misconception that I am trying to refer.

We are in Moreover system and get fair traffic.

But moreover does not suply MSN Search News

Moreover suuplies MSNBC News.

I had been back and forth with Moreover and MSN with this, but still no results.

I refer to [search.msn.com...]

Moreover says that they do not supply the MSN Search News index.

So the question remains: if sites publish news, how do they get into the MSN Search News (I mean when you search something in MSN and click the News tab to see the news index on the searched keyword).



 4:45 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't see that SERPs are worse than usual. In some searches it provided nice results to me. I still don't like MSN designs. I think that green colors titles are distracting to the eyes. That is the main reason why I would use MSN currently just to check SERPs I'm interested in.


 5:04 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

"I'm seeing some problems with 301's for pages that have been moved/redirected within sites."

Seeing the problems here with 301's as well.


 5:10 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

"I don't see that SERPs are worse than usual"

You might be right, they were dire before and not relevent..ohh and they are still the same.

What i dont understand with this is that you can take a popular search term and see very quickly that the results are plain garbage yet msn are happy to continue with them - thats what i dont get?.

I have sticky mailed msndude with a specific example of one such search but you can see the problem in almost all search areas. They must see these problems?

IMO the search results when msn first went live, whilst not 100% were not bad to be honest. Every update since the results have got worse imo, its like they are learning mistakes and then doing more of the same - are others here having the same experience? In the end all the large quality sites wont be anywhere to be found but bloggs and junk sites will rule ok by the looks of it.

Whilst i think the results are dire i genuinely would like msn to get this right, gawd knows us webmasters need some real alternative to googles strong hold but currently it doesnt look like we have any alternative - sorry but even with Googles problems they are still at least 70% relevent, msn on the other hand i would say are at about 10% - im finding ASK and Gigablast a better search facility currently than msn - it doesnt look to good.


[edited by: RichTC at 5:16 pm (utc) on July 10, 2006]


 5:37 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hmm why does search.msn.co.in still provide the best results, which also was the case at the last software update.


 6:13 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

A little better. Keep turning the authority knob.


 7:11 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

Ok, new results
I see one good site now on each search results I guess thats and improvement?

I also see international results are getting worse also?

Could this be a plan to give bad results and take over the world?


 7:50 pm on Jul 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

I agree about the search.msn.co.in, brazil, singapore etc
returning the best results. By far...

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