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Google Updates and SERP Changes - November 2010
indyank




msg:4224747
 5:50 am on Nov 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

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

Here is alexa's take on the the oct 21-22 debacle..they do see a significant shift...

[blog.alexa.com...]

but wait, there seems to be one more tweak that happened this friday, oct 29. This could either be a reversal or yet another tweak...google is enjoying the tweak game and one thing for sure, they are trying to achieve something for themselves via the tweaks...

[edited by: tedster at 2:18 pm (utc) on Nov 1, 2010]

 

scottsonline




msg:4235789
 12:33 am on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Mrguy we were trusting that what Matt Cutts said was accurate. Paid links are bad, content matters, google cares about spam. Do not run multi sites blah blah.

Google rewards those that disobey precisely what he says publicly.

WM reports google is down 50%. often we see the hits before many of you so hold on to your wallets a mega tweak is sliding through and it's vicious.

Results are a zoo. Can't find much of anything, results are as bad as the days after mayday. In one informational search on a medicine I actually got an amazon page for an unrelated product!

scottsonline




msg:4235848
 6:31 am on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

A lot of zombie sites in the rankings. On a term with 30k local searches a month #2 is offline and has been for months per iA. Site 3 is a demo store from a company that offers shopping cart software. The site doesn't work the pages are just examples.

Unless dr evil took over mountain view a major algo update is rolling through. I'm praying this is the typical first days but I see no way this will be neat for cyber monday. I see a disaster for many early next week.

Spencer




msg:4235849
 6:35 am on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

I agree Scottsonline, the results a mess and this should not be the case unless Google are openly admitting the failure of their left panel result splitter (i.e. Everything, Images, Videos, News, Shopping, Books, Places, Blogs, Updates, Discussions etc). It's obvious to any outsider that these sections are not being utilised by the general public, who prefer the format of the organic listings still. So Google cram in blogs, videos and news with advertising and occasionally even a regular research website ... and the result is the psychodelic mess that we are presented with these days.

Today we see the frustration in online marketers, eventually even the general public will lose patience with them and if the competition can create something iconic, effective and simple to understand ... then we may see the first signs of an exodus ... fingers crossed ;-)

ryanep




msg:4235861
 8:31 am on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

If this continues....wow...what a good time to "short" google stocks man. Imagine the stakeholder backlash.

scottsonline




msg:4235930
 3:10 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

I'm guessing today's nytimes article related to google is another initial volley in the coming onslaught. As usual when questioned google can't answer and sends the reporter to search engine land for advice.

Maybe some of you are right they've lost control. Today I'm seeing even more dead clicks ranking. Some have been down for six months per archive and they are still in the top 5.

The problem isn't that this eyewear firm ranks. It isn't that they has a bad reputation. When asked google sends a reporter to a 3rd party site for answers. Maybe they should outsource spam reports too?

mrguy




msg:4235937
 3:41 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Mrguy we were trusting that what Matt Cutts said was accurate. Paid links are bad, content matters, google cares about spam. Do not run multi sites blah blah.


There is your first problem.

How does the saying go, "keep your enemies close"? If you recall, MC was the one who told us all about page rank sculpting and using the no follow tag.

How did that turn out?

Just remember, MC is a paid employee of a public company who thinks they are a God and anything he says has to be taken with a grain of salt.

If you go back over the years and look through the archives of Webmaster world, you will see many other occasions where there are many post just like yours saying the same thing so what you guys are posting is nothing new.

There will never be a single algo running. That ended when flux was introduced and the monthly dance stopped.

Your best bet is to try and learn how to navigate these new waters or be left behind.

When Whitenight posted here, his post were always pretty accurate and he predicted much of what we are seeing all by doing his own testing.

Test, test, and then test again. Just don't do it with your bread and butter sites.

And just remember, Google is not the Internet as much as they like to think they are. There is no law against making numerous sites and running your own tests.

One thing Iíve seen over and over again over the years is people who only have one site, follow ALL of Googles rules and then suddenly they get hammered in the SERPS for no reason and they are posting here about having to layoff people and shutdown their business. Iíve seen posts like that more times than I can count.

walkman




msg:4235946
 4:21 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

My traffic is up but my money drastically down

martinacastro




msg:4235952
 5:17 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

@scott

when you say
Today I'm seeing even more dead clicks ranking. Some have been down for six months per archive and they are still in the top 5.


you mean for example dead sites, that are not running or have suspended their services?

In my niche I have several examples...

GlitterGoth




msg:4235959
 5:41 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

It's sad to see that so many people who work hard to abide by Google's rules appear to be getting nowhere in the SERPS. I've only been playing the Google game for a year, but I'm increasingly frustrated by the number of my competitors who don't exactly keyword stuff, but write very inorganic content with high densities and get rewarded for it.

It's tempting to do the same, but I bet the moment I did I'd get a penalty, unlike those sites I've seen and reported, who appear to remain utterly unaffected.

I've yet to see any change in the SERPS for my little section today, but I'm still struggling to recover from a sudden slump in rankings (5th to 9th) after Google decided a category page ranked higher for a key search term than my main index page. No amount of adjustment appears to fix that, and reconsideration requests (a last, desperate hope for the terminally confused) appear to fall into a black void.

This did happen in late October though, perhaps something to do tieh the 21st/22nd issues?

maximillianos




msg:4236046
 9:55 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

GlitterGoth-- I would save any future reconsideration requests for when your site is missing from SERPS, not when you drop 4 places and are still on the 1st page of SERPS.

Many folks on here preach to use such requests wisely and as little as possible.

Mal_Jones




msg:4236050
 10:11 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

GlitterGoth-- Dear o dear..........A message to all in these forums:

Google do not owe you , your company , the company you work for, your mum who has a website or your dad that has a website... A LIVING !

If you want a guaranteed income from Google then use PPC, its up to you and your product or service to make this income profitable using ppc.

Alternatively instead of grizzling that your site has dropped in the serps get out there and experiment as to what may make your site appear higher again. Observe .....Experiment .....React....

scottsonline




msg:4236061
 11:22 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

@Martin yes.

One throws a php error that lists a bunch of faults. There is no page so it's ranking on the domain name and links. Site has been down since at least April when it was last Internet archived.

Another site went dead sometime in july. Cached pages are blank yet it ranks first!

This is a significant reshuffle or as John m might say a bunch of sites just had a different algorithm applied. Consistently at the top are link buyers. That googles spam team was tied up with other things is evident.

In one result set 10 results were taken up by one company selling the same product on seven sites. They mix up keywords so they can hit any combo.

Mal jones ppc doesn't guarantee anything other than a daily withdrawal by google. This is a monthly exchange where if you read between the lines one can see patterns to changes. The grumbling is good, it is information. Nobody said anything about being owed a living. The comments are related to google staff telling us what we should do in order to rank well and how they ignore all that for paid links.

brinked




msg:4236062
 11:37 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

Mal_Jones, Lets try not to get too off topic. PPC does not guarantee anything.

This forum is pretty much for webmasters to talk about what happened to their rankings and why they may have happened for better or worse, on the latter, there will be some complaining.

Glittergoth, dont get hung up on blackhat tactics that allows other sites to rank high. You will find out they will fade, and if you play by the rules, you will always be around, even if you arent the top 3, you will always be within striking distance

mickymar




msg:4236065
 11:47 pm on Nov 28, 2010 (gmt 0)

I think its awful as so many of you do, that Google has messed things up for so many. Lately my keywords have been so far out for the rankings, that its just depressing to even look at reports anymore.

I along with so many struggle with the marketing aspects of all this and when ones work just goes down the drain its truly depressing.

Heres wishing all that as we approach December that things turn for us all.

Michele

GlitterGoth




msg:4236150
 8:16 am on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

@Max - Yes, I think the reconsideration request was a hiding to nothing. Nothing for it but to continue to work hard and try and find out what caused the sudden drop of my home page from the keyword "Top URL" lists in google tools (and whether that's a cause, a symptom, or utterly irrelevant :D)

@Mal - My apologies for grizzling. The experimentation, tweaking and adjustments to improve the site's performances are an ongoing process. Thank you for your advice.

@Brinked - It's good to know that good SEO procedures should pay off eventually :D I deliberately don't look too hard at my competitor's sites any more, except to see that they're still there!

Thanks for your advice everyone!

steerpikegg




msg:4236246
 1:15 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Just noticed my site has dropped from page 1 to page 2 for a large number of keywords as of exactly 12.00 noon today. Don't know if this is widespread or unique to my site.

steerpikegg




msg:4236247
 1:15 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Sorry, forgot to mention - this is a UK site on Google.co.uk

GlitterGoth




msg:4236266
 1:52 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

@steerpikegg

My site's a UK site on google.co.uk - not seen any changes yet but that doesn't mean some are not afoot. Have you checked webmaster tools to see if anything's amiss?

steerpikegg




msg:4236268
 1:59 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Can't see anything in WMT, no structural updates to the site for the whole of November. Everything was looking pretty good (down on last year, but the best we've had in 2010) and then bam, midday traffic just stops and I check quite a few of our keywords, some on page 2 from page 1 and others nowhere to be seen.

tigger




msg:4236274
 2:26 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

@steerpikegg

not seen any movement on the terms I monitor today - hope this isn't your only site

steerpikegg




msg:4236275
 2:34 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Yes, unfortunately my only site as per MC's suggestion. Completely tanked at the moment on supposedly the busiest shopping day here in the UK.

mkassets




msg:4236277
 2:38 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)


I'm guessing today's nytimes article related to google is another initial volley in the coming onslaught.


What's amusing is that this eyewear site is still ranking high, even after the piece was published. And one would hope that Google bury it, once the journalist brought the story to Google's attention while asking them to comment, but no! Google doesn't give a damn.

Good article in NYT. Deserves a separate thread here.

Jez123




msg:4236278
 2:40 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

@steerpikegg

If yours is anything like mine recently - you are not missing much!

mkassets




msg:4236279
 2:46 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Like others who report here I have lost rankings in the last few weeks, gone from #1-2 to #5-6 for many important keywords.

But in my case, I am overranked by amazon, bestbuy, etc - so I hope it's just the holidays SERPs and the things we'll be back to normal in Jan.

I don't see crappy sites ranking in my niche for the keywords that have any significant search volume (well amazon and bestbuy look crappy to me, and not as nearly content rich as my site, but they might well be just what the user wants in the holidays shopping season).

Joshmc




msg:4236334
 5:01 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

@mkassets my site is seeing the same things, being outranked by amazon, as well as the manufacturer pages. they have been low first page to second page all year and now they are out ranking me in the top 3 positions. Gotta love it. Back to testing and making changes...

scottsonline




msg:4236336
 5:02 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

Mkassets everyone is outranked by amazon. If they sold air google would rank them first.

The SERPS are in chaos today. The little guy is squeezed out because exact matches carry so little weight.

Not shockingly our ppc budget now rivals the GDP of a third world nation.

dickbaker




msg:4236480
 11:33 pm on Nov 29, 2010 (gmt 0)

If they sold air google would rank them first.


Last time I checked, Amazon doesn't sell guns, but they're showing up in searches for them.

scottsonline




msg:4236494
 12:25 am on Nov 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

@dickbaker the ny times should write another story. They should setup a shell company selling kidneys and F 16 fighters. I bet they'd rank in the top three within days if they signed up for amazon. I refuse to buy from amazon affiliates. Too many bad experiences.

Bing up double over last cyber Monday. The same pattern is cycling, whenever there is a goog shuffle bing goes way up over baseline which itself is going up. I can see why google is making so many changes they figured out bing had caught them.

indyank




msg:4236575
 5:06 am on Nov 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

i am not seeing any major changes in the serps that i monitor...I believe that it will be like this throughout this shopping season...

Yes, big sites like amazon are flourishing more this year...will have to wait and see if google reverses this after the holiday/ shopping season...

scottsonline




msg:4236588
 6:06 am on Nov 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

Indy in this niche the number one selling product for one supplier isn't in the first 3 pages of google. We all vanished. The name of the product is returned but in low
Positions when in quotes. A relevancy tweak. If they hadn't deprecated exact matches it may not be a problem. It shows how screwed up it is that a term that pulls 15k uniques is replaced by mismatches that drive 50.

mkassets




msg:4236688
 9:07 am on Nov 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

This is one of those days I am debating to throw in the towel and get back onto a corporate job.

In my niche, everyone has been pushed below the fold, outranked by Amazon, Walmart, BestBuy. Some Walmart pages do not even have a single word of unique content, and in my niche their selection is very limited and consists of the lowest end China made products. What a shame ..

I am the only small guy who is still holding to #1-#2 positions for at least a few popular keywords. But I am worried.

As I read the press about how the small businesses in America are struggling and the Wall Street execs are taking home record bonuses, I am pondering over the parallels in the online world. Just think how many small e-businesses will default this year ... And Amazon is doing better than ever. Will report record sales, make the shareholders happy and distribute fat bonuses to the management.

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