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November 2007 Google SERP Changes
Komodo_Tale




msg:3493755
 4:44 pm on Nov 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

< continued from [webmasterworld.com...] >

As our intrepid heros left Oct. and entered Nov. they had just weathered a seige of Chinese domains into the rankings, Google's PageRank Massacre and the first signs of the annual Pre-holiday Sales Algorithm Change (a festive Google tradition)...

Chapter 11 - Holiday Hell or Heaven Sent?

Hee hee. Obviously I am having some fun starting the November thread. But seriously, this SEO is seeing some long-ranking web pages erode in the rankings. They're acting like icebergs. After a long time in good positions they have broken off of the glacier and are slowly drifting south. These are not stagnant websites sitting on their laurels either. The big concern is that doing the 'correct' relevant things do not seem to help.

Many of the replacements are soaking in a bath of external paid link-equity. One website I am watching appeared on the first page for a major two-word phrase and rose to #2 last month. The website has a reciprical footer link with a directory that has site-wide footer links to the ranking website using only the two-word keyword as anchor text. The directory has site-wide footers with 3 other directories. All three directories have site-wide footers to the ranking website. Oh, and the cream of the crop...one well known directory has a hidden link to this website. The link is in the markup with no anchor text. Other websites seem to enjoy link equity from lots of TV and radio websites (I wonder why? ;) ). For all of Google's bluster, Mountain View continues to have only sporadic combat success.

Boring business websites, the ones that have a hard time crafting compelling creative linkbait, seem to be the vulnerable to ranking shifts. I still see many verticles where reciprocal links still seem to be the deciding factor for which pages rank where.

Size does matter. The slow encroachment of big box retailers and Amazonian wannabees (you know who you are) continues to creep into the SERPs. Many domains that have spent the last year or two in the 20-40 positions have cracked the first page and are quietly moving up. These sites have lots of original content. Perhaps Brett needs to update the 26 steps to say, "Add 100 pages a day."

Does camouflage work? This makes no sense at all, but I have noticed in some keyword markets that domain names that contain popular domain names as a part of them are ranking. For example the popular well-known domain might be called THISDOMAIN.COM. The lookalike domain name might be THISDOMAINPRODUCTCATEGORY.COM.

Those are my observations. What are you seeing?

[edited by: tedster at 5:14 pm (utc) on Nov. 1, 2007]

 

lorien1973




msg:3493806
 5:33 pm on Nov 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

I'm only checking my niche, but I see sites that only get links through recriprocal exchanges floating up to the top when once they were buried.

I'm still seeing sites that get almost all their links thru counter link spam on top as well and ranking better than ever.

I don't have a clue what google did here. It seems to have no rhyme or reason at all. I'm just hoping its fixed before the holiday shopping season or its gonna suck for me :/

I'm confessing to a little sour grapes cuz I got crushed a few weeks ago (I'm getting like 15-20% of my normal google traffic) and I don't really have a clue why. Some of my content was scraped from me (about 200 pages - since replaced). Some sites that linked to me, I can tell, got devalued. One of my sites got hit, the other stayed the same (or improved).

Vimes




msg:3494280
 2:37 am on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

Hi,

I'm seeing a huge change in the amount of results returned on these DC's for all of the search terms i follow.

64.233.171.99
64.233.171.104
64.233.171.107
64.233.171.147

72.14.203.107
72.14.253.107
72.14.255.107
209.85.139.107

For some search terms of 4 million results on these Dc's they are showing 400,000.

I'm also seeing a fraction of my true page totals on these Dc's approximately only 10% of my site is indexed :S

Vimes.

Vimes




msg:3494368
 5:59 am on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

All have reverted back to showing a very similar set of information again I guess we are at the beginning of a data push…

Vimes.

loudspeaker




msg:3494375
 6:18 am on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

Some of my content was scraped from me (about 200 pages - since replaced).

So what - they stole your content, Google punished *you* and now you're rewriting it? I am not sure I understand how it works.

The thing is, I am having a similar problem with scraped content (which was stolen by spamers dozens times over) - suddenly, a few months ago Google just devalued me completely (I don't even rank well for my own content!) and I can't figure out what to do. Is rewriting everything the most sensible alternative? Do you think that'll restore the original positioning in Google - at least to some extent?

Vimes




msg:3494492
 11:11 am on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

Ripped or proxy hi-jacked if they are hi-jacked you might be able to defend against them, read this thread:
[webmasterworld.com...]

Ripped you have a more difficult problem when our content was stolen unfortunately the quickest solution for us to get back in G’s good books was re-writing.
I do believe that Google will eventually sort out the issue programmatically but that could be a long time coming.

Vimes.

The Contractor




msg:3494500
 11:29 am on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

Why would you rewrite your content? If it is yours, file a DMCA notice with Google and the hosting companies hosting the sites which have stolen your content.

con771




msg:3494509
 11:53 am on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

I went from having my best traffic day on Monday to one of my worse yesterday. I don't know what's happening but this rollercoaster is hard on the stomach.

lorien1973




msg:3494655
 2:50 pm on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

I'm rewriting the content because its the quickest out here. I never filed with the copyright offices previously so until a few days ago I didn't realize I -had- the option of doing a DMCA request. It's a little late for that now. It's not tough to rewrite - a little investment of money - but the topics are pretty low volume so it's not like major research is necessary.

The newer content is turning out much better anyways - since we have practice now! - so in the end, it's probably a good thing.

I had to do it in 2005 when stuff was stolen from me too; should've learned my lesson there. Unfortunately, that was a 3 month penalty for me. I hope this one doesn't last that long :/

lorien1973




msg:3494664
 2:54 pm on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)


Ripped or proxy hi-jacked if they are hi-jacked you might be able to defend against them, read this thread:
[webmasterworld.com...]

My sites are all yahoo stores. I cannot use steps 2 and 3 there - so I cannot even protect myself against proxies. Frustrating, right?

From my research, it looks like people just manually copied pasted my content. Some of them used spiders, I can tell that because when my writer(s) give me articles, they are done in MS Word which makes unusual characters for ' , and " when converted to a text file - so the spider stops when it hits one of those. Not sure why. But those, I can tell are robotically done.

Others, the text that was taken was in disparate places on the page, so a human almost had to accomplish it.


I can't figure out what to do. Is rewriting everything the most sensible alternative? Do you think that'll restore the original positioning in Google - at least to some extent?

This is my problem. A sentence from my pages, known to be copied, I am in the supplemental index. I have to click that option "click here to see hidden results" or whatever to see my page. While scrapers are on top of me. It blows.

I think just removing the copied stuff is the way to go. Sometimes, if you write it the second time, it comes out a lot better anyways, so I think it'll help out in the long run.

mahoogle




msg:3494699
 3:19 pm on Nov 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

One thing I've noticed is google is reporting about half of the links they previously reported with the link: command for our site. Our visible pagerank didn't change though. I'm also seeing about a 50% increase in page count using the site: command.

CainIV




msg:3495175
 12:06 am on Nov 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

From my research, it looks like people just manually copied pasted my content.

Most people would use spiders I would think. When you post articles make sure you link intuitively to other pages of your website that make sense for the visitor.

I have found that this helps Google to 'understand' that it is likely that the content is yours, although this does not work in all cases.

lorien1973




msg:3495182
 12:15 am on Nov 3, 2007 (gmt 0)


Most people would use spiders I would think. When you post articles make sure you link intuitively to other pages of your website that make sense for the visitor.

I do that. But when the article is copied the links are usually removed. And if they are not, I definitely replace the article on my site. Why lose the backlink, even if it probably is a little crappy.

gehrlekrona




msg:3495810
 12:49 am on Nov 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Once again there has been an update and as usual I lost another 30% of my traffic from Google. Soon it'll be down to nothing and that is without me doing anything except adding more pages, fixing some typo's and a few layout fixes.
I don't see any reason for dropping because of that.
I see a lot of paid links sites in the top positions and I don't understand why when GOOG was supposed to penalize sites for that?
Even though I rank on first page for "widgets for sale" it seems that not a lot of people are searching for that OR there are different results depending on where you are located (?), time of day (?), browser(?) or people are just not searching for widgets for sale anymore.
For the moment I am just trying to get links and maybe I should just pay for them since it seems to work fine for a lot of sites?!

zjacob




msg:3495976
 10:09 am on Nov 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yes, there definitely has been an update or algo movement yesterday. My first guess is that there has been some movement on dup content filtering measures.

foxtunes




msg:3495984
 11:12 am on Nov 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yep, saw some significant movement on two keyword searches I monitor on the 4th of november.

Vimes




msg:3496500
 5:55 am on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Why would you rewrite your content? If it is yours, file a DMCA notice with Google and the hosting companies hosting the sites which have stolen your content.

yep in a perfect world this works, unfortunately when the server is in a country that 'maybe' isn't as strict with its copy right laws, that just doesn't cut the mustard....

if these guys were in the states thats exactly what i would have done.

Vimes.

potentialgeek




msg:3496649
 12:13 pm on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Google has just cranked up the dial for domain name relevance, it seems.

I have a fairly new website (about a year old) in a very competitive area with millions of search results. The site has only about 100 pages. PR2. Hardly any backlinks. No link campaigns. No optimization. But it's a single-word dn in .net, e.g., widgets.net. (I bought it in the aftermarket hoping search engines would dig it.)

It's now top 5 in SERPs for a clean search of widgets! (Out of nowhere.)

I can't think of much that would get it that high other than the dn. Having said that it's not entirely unreasonable for Google to estimate some inherent authority in domains which are one word.

(I don't know that the dial has been turned for other domains which have more than one keyword, although I have some early indication it has.)

Anyway, now that I have this free gift from Google, I better go and do something with it. Time to build!

p/g

reseller




msg:3496845
 4:21 pm on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Any of you folks have noticed today a backlinks update on most of the DCs?

reseller




msg:3496993
 7:30 pm on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

At this moment, I see the old backlink number on very few DCs as for example:

[66.102.9.104...]

while the new backlink numbers could be seen on most the DCs, including for example:

[72.14.207.104...]

Atomic




msg:3497043
 8:32 pm on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

I'm seeing some of my missing caches return and with recent dates depending on the DC.

gehrlekrona




msg:3497141
 10:17 pm on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Seems like thay have old cache, "chinese" spam sites are back, and old SERP's are back.
I see pages I haven't got any hits on for about 3 weeks getting hits again.....
Wish they could make up thier mind. Was it just a test for 3-4 weeks?

lorien1973




msg:3497175
 10:48 pm on Nov 5, 2007 (gmt 0)


I see pages I haven't got any hits on for about 3 weeks getting hits again.....
Wish they could make up thier mind. Was it just a test for 3-4 weeks?

I'm seeing this as well. I'm not in total recovery mode but it seems like pages that vanished 3 weeks ago are appearing again. Traffic is up about 40% right now too - not back to old levels but certainly an improvement.

What boggles me -still- is that I keep getting chinese adsense ads all over my site. Adsense is written in chinese. The ads are in chinese and I'm not sure why.

blueskypartners




msg:3497337
 2:49 am on Nov 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

Lorien1973,

For the adsense in Chinese, check your character encoding. It should be US-ASCII - and use a lynx browser to check how google sees your website. There is a firefox extension for viewing sites in Lynx - called yellowpipe lynx viewer tool.

Hope this helps,

Tad

indias next no1




msg:3497398
 4:47 am on Nov 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

reseller : yes, there is difference in backlinks, but the SERPS are similar on both

hotgoanna




msg:3497601
 10:52 am on Nov 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

I am heartbroken, devistated and destroyed. I have been happily working away at our sites .com.au and .com/blog for months and months. I have been watching page rank, building content and links, alexa and all the visitors we get from all our marketing. The main .com.au site manged to get up to position 7 yesterday on a search for adwords in pages from Australia. I was wrapped! Then today, with nothing changed from yesterday, we are now on page 2 in position 15. What happended! Well, we have done this right with site registration, xml sitemaps, google sitemaps, content, all the usual hard work on algorythmic work, and in a flash, overnight, we have disappeared……. SEO strikes again. Fortunately we have OLD RELIABLE at the top of the page in position 2, just under Google’s ad (I admit, they do have a slightly bigger budget than we do) I know I am a recidivist in the ways of SEM, via Google, but this is evidence that only supports my position even more. SEO is great when it works, and then, in a heartbeat, you have to start from scratch again. Give me PPC and a budget anyday.

SEOPTI




msg:3497656
 12:30 pm on Nov 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

hotgoanna, I know it's not easy but try to design you content for long tail searches, this way you will not need to monitor positions.

kamikaze Optimizer




msg:3498365
 3:32 am on Nov 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

Where is the big November "Holiday" update that we see every year?

My bets were on this past weekend, but nothing happened.

zoth




msg:3498544
 8:58 am on Nov 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

I have a strange and sad experience with my 10 years old authority site.

Twoo weeks ago, one of my page ranked in the TOP 5 in Google.
The keyword was "dark blue widget 4". My page contained the latest and most relevant information about the topic. I get lots of traffic, because other competitor sites (in the first 3 places) gave information about only "dark blue widget 3".

I get at least 30-40 links from blogs, other sites etc. also.

One week later my page vanished from SERP. The page is in the Google
index, but do not rank in first 1000.

BUT, some of the blogs who linked to my page are in the TOP 10!
Other sites, who copied my content (or rewrited) also in good position.

And this not for the first time ...

GIANT, multinational sites in this sector always get a good position
on any keyword in a week.

How can I get back my position? Any ideas?

Vimes




msg:3498713
 2:18 pm on Nov 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

Where is the big November "Holiday" update that we see every year?

Last Thursday of the month if its gunna happen.

Vimes.

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