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Google Updates and SERP Changes - April 2010
wmxpert




msg:4107999
 4:48 am on Apr 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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

We are in the same situation, since March 15, 2010 our traffic is continuously declining with the average of 6% every week. In current week it gets worst, approx. 15% decline!

Overall, 30% to 35% traffic has been reduced compare to peak week of January 2010.

"site:" is also showing huge drop in index pages, though it only provide the avg. not actual.

Don't know what's going on, Is it really the effect of Caffeine roll-out?

[edited by: tedster at 9:46 pm (utc) on Apr 1, 2010]

 

SEOPTI




msg:4124652
 9:14 pm on Apr 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

@internetheaven: 99,9% of long tail phrases don't have any adwords ads so it does not count for my niche.

c41lum




msg:4124657
 9:18 pm on Apr 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

iv seen exactly the same as Clough72 main keywords have drop big in the last few hours. Its very strange.

Gorgwatcher




msg:4124798
 3:57 am on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Traffic is way down in last 24 hours...

Google was down too for 30 mins yesterday

Everything is down

Clough72




msg:4124850
 7:52 am on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

I am seeing many more sub directories being listed in results. Has/Is google made/making changes that will see relevency of internal pages increase? Results were previously my home page ranked, I am now seeing domain.com/widget. This is not exclusive to my site but in many results.

Has anyone made similar observations or shed any more light on this?

panicbutton




msg:4124898
 11:47 am on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

"That might be what Caffeine is all about ... ;) Matt Cutts is the organic spokeman isn't he? And while this Caffeine update is going on he's away on holiday."

Sage words

drall




msg:4124936
 2:18 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Cant get a bead on this thing, our big sites (pr7)are getting totally nailed over the last 2 weeks while our medium sites (pr5-6) have seen no changes at all.

All sites are mostly longtail dependent and follow basic whitehat seo.

Another oddity is as of yesterday Google has totally reordered what is listed via the site command for us and our comp and what is listed is really old stuff or stuff that is close to proximity to stuff with hordes of ibl action.

So in our case at least it looks like internal pr has been completely forgotten about and pages that are close to pages that have strong ibls are what is of the most importance.

This is going the exact same way for our comp. It's like they removed all notion of internal pr for us and our comp.

One good example would be a page we have buried way down that hasnt been updated in 7 years and has no ibls but is close to a page that does now outranks a major company for a single word serp. That page is not even close to that word except for a few vague references and should not come even close to page 1 let alone serp 1.

Im quite sure the seo team at this site we have now displaced is sitting around the table this morning scratching their heads going umm #*$!.

c41lum




msg:4125022
 4:10 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Im still getting different positions in safari,firefox and iPhone im signed out on all accounts and I have diasbled the history. Very Strange! anyone else still seeing this?

doughayman




msg:4125049
 4:39 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

IMO, it is a total waste of time to spend any energy these days on trying to figure out what Google is up to. Your efforts are much better spent on making money via PPC, and doing as many "healthy" things as possible for your site. Google has created an unruly monster. Let it go folks...

1script




msg:4125060
 4:51 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

@drall:

I would not worry too much about the example you've given: on any large and old site (as yours appear to be) you really need to sift through hundreds if not thousands of examples for the result to be of any statistically significant value. It may simply be a fluke. Else it could just be that neither G* nor Y! list a very good external page that sits somewhere in the depths of the old Internet and provides that seemingly abandoned page of yours with a link juice you don't know about. I have a few of such "accidentally discovered" links myself. This theory actually goes very well with the recent idea that G* is giving much more value to external links and discounts internal.

Also, I've been following your posts because I have sites in an apparently similar situation - long tail SERPs are deeply depressed for the last 6 weeks. On multiple occasions you talk about your competitors' traffic situation with such certainty as if you have a man on the inside. Unless this indeed is an insider info, you are probably going by third party data - Alexa, Compete etc. However, I'm looking at my own data from both of those sources - and they are approx. 50-60% off. Besides, they only catch up with traffic trends in approx. 2 weeks (Alexa) or 1 month (Compete). So, is there a better source of relevant traffic info about other sites in the SERPs one's interested in? Would be very nice if you can share.

drall




msg:4125118
 6:13 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

I am actually friends with 2 of our competitors, just sort of happened after we ran into a negative seo campaign that hit our type of sites with regard to redirect chains knocking out pages.

When we started talking to each other trying to figure out what was happened we ended up becoming pretty good friends. We have thousands of sites in our space now but used to be just a handful back 13 years ago and these guys are from that era as well. We share overall trends with each other and the trend amongst us all is not pretty.

I try not to use alexa and compete to much anymore because the data can be flubbed so easy but when I graph data I know is accurate along with my friends that are comp and 40 other sites that are comp and see that exact same trendline and moving averages I think it would be pretty fair to say they are seeing something close to what we are seeing.

You are right, the raw amount of data is so complex with higher volume sites it's hard to make out any real causality. Im not to worried about it, this is the first major hit we have ever seen though going back a decade. Through all of the major updates we never really saw a huge shift in things but this time is different.

When your raw log file for the week is 4gigs plus trying to figure out wth is changing with Google that is effecting so much of the site in so many ways is a great way to waste time.

Just gonna go back to focusing on content and my users and let the big G have her way with me:)

vstevens




msg:4125134
 7:00 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

"IMO, it is a total waste of time to spend any energy these days on trying to figure out what Google is up to. Your efforts are much better spent on making money via PPC, and doing as many "healthy" things as possible for your site. Google has created an unruly monster. Let it go folks..."

Doughayman, I couldn't agree with you more. Aren't you guys tired of being held hostage by G. Having no final control of your online business in the end, if G changes their mind? That's always been the problem with my current Biz model... too reliant on G, not enough cross media. Lesson learned.

For those of you who don't think in the end these changes are about revenue, that's funny. They are a business and in it to win it, just like you and I.

internetheaven




msg:4125150
 7:58 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Aren't you guys tired of being held hostage by G. Having no final control of your online business in the end, if G changes their mind?


Totally! And I'm sick of being held hostage by these pavements leading up to my shop too. They're all cracked and roadworks mean people have to twist and turn to get to me. I think I might boycott pavements altogether and only seek out customers that arrive via a teleportation device I'm willing to pay for - then at least I'm in control of my bottom line ... it will be smaller ... but I'll be in control of it.

I'm so tired of people walking up to my shop for free. Totally un-targeted traffic. Bloody browsers!

vstevens




msg:4125219
 10:02 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Internetheaven,

I see where your going but I think your missing my point, which is putting more reliance on mixed media for marketing.

You can control brick and mortar. You can put a great product out, find a good location, hire good employees.etc...Unless you have a fire or an act God or mother nature - your business will be there in the morning. Someone's not coming in in the middle of the night and going to move your business to no man's land on you.

Regardless of how many links you have/add, excellent content u provide or how old and trusted your domain is in the end you have 'no' control. Scary hah? Granted we never have full control of anything but there is no analogy you can use to this.

Im very fortunate and thankful for G. But I have learned valuable lessons in making improvements for the next business model and thanks to G for that. My store will be there in the morning and visitors will come regardless of caffeine, big daddy, Florida or whatever 'they' decide to do.

romerome




msg:4125227
 10:26 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

So I am trying to figure out what is different about caffeine as far as how its changed what sites G has a preference for. First off does anyone have any good signals that you use to determine if a set of results is caffeine or not?

For people that think they can detect what is caffeine or what is not caffeine what percent of the time are you seeing caffeine now 20% of the time or 80% of the time.

Or do people think we are just seeing different variants of caffeine at this point.

I am seeing two different sets of results rotating on an hourly basis. The one I see most often I believe is giving a preference to newer links. It also might be the case that the filter for paid links is off but I am much less confident about that.

I see another set of results much less frequently. It has more of a preference for more established sites. I like these results better but I think they are on the way out.

What are other people seeing. Not just a "My traffic is down" but what types of sites in your sector seem to benefit from the recent changes and what kind of linkbuilding are they doing.

tedster




msg:4125251
 11:28 pm on Apr 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

People who can accurately spot Caffeine results have already taken some baseline observations in their keyword areas. These observations were usually made last fall, when the Caffeine "sandbox" was available and you could know for sure what was a Caffeine result.

Google tried to launch the Caffeine infrastructure in a way that had minimal impact on ranking positions. Other changes in ranking have been ongoing, but they are due to changes in the algorithm itslef, and not specifically attributable to whether Caffeine is executing the search or whether the previous "Big Daddy" infrastructure is doing the deed.

There have been more reports recently of "rotating results" - even rankings that seem to change with specific hours of the day. It's not clear to me at this point if this is something new that we will live with indefinitely or perhaps just an artifact of nailing down Caffeine for a 100% permanent release.

guru84




msg:4125295
 1:16 am on May 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Maybe someone could give me an idea if this is caused by caffine. Very different results on different Google engines.

My site is about 4 years old. I have a 2 word targeted keyword. Results for that keyword are:

Google.com.au - 1st and have been for years

Google.com (non-US) - 11th, was recently up to 7th. Have been in top 20 for about a year.

Google.com (US) - Not listed at all. Been that way for about 2 weeks. For about a month before that was listed aroud the 200s. Before that I was around 30 for the past year.

Google.co.uk - Not listed at all. Been that way for about 3 weeks. Was previously in the top 10.


Having my site completely removed from the results for those keywords seems like a penalty, but why am I still ranking well for Google.com outside the US and .com.au?

I had a massive spike in Google crawling a few days ago as many people did. Can I expect to come back from this or what is going on? I'm confused and very worried :(

walkman




msg:4125308
 2:29 am on May 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Guru, nothing is for sure now. Caffeine is 'everywhere' but turned off IMO, meaning it gets very little live action. We need to wait until it settles down.

Right now for example I just got a bunch of great referrals /rankings, but it goes quick. I can hope this is caffeine and it becomes standard :)

Whitey




msg:4125309
 2:31 am on May 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

guru84 - what's the situation with your links , and which TLD are the authority links from ( assuming you have some )

guru84




msg:4125318
 3:55 am on May 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Thanks for replies

My links are mostly from non country specific domains, eg .com
I have some high authority links, and they are almost exclusivly non country specific.
I am steadily increasing non authoritative links as I have been working with a reputable, white-hat SEO company. They are also non country specific.

romerome




msg:4125344
 5:24 am on May 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the reply tedster. For awhile I could spot Caffeine. But now the variants I am seeing look nothing like either caffeine or what I was seeing before the sections I watch. So my xray caffeine detecting goggles got sadly smashed.

I guess what I am wondering is it seems that part of the purpose of caffeine was to have more real time results. What I am seeing in one of the variants (which I assume is caffeine) is more power to results with recent links. Do people think that part of the effects of caffeine will be to reward recent activity more?

Also what I saw during big daddy was certain results would show more and more often until they finally took over. This is what I am seeing now. One variant is showing up 80-90% of the time. I assume this is caffeine. To people that can still detect caffeine or you seeing it 20% of the time or 90% of the time.

I guess my impression is we are nearing the end of this update but I have not been paying as much attention to it as I did during big daddy.

< continued here: [webmasterworld.com...] >

[edited by: tedster at 6:27 pm (utc) on May 1, 2010]

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