Sites that are narrowly tailored have been faring well (all other factors considered) for quite some time. Search phrases I tracked last summer showed that sites that were about the search phrase only could be out sites with more traffic or links.
It's tempting to build some focused sites for products I already sell, but have lost ranking for. As Jane_Doe said, it levels out some of these updates.
Been checking the Google webmaster forums and a couple of threads were about scrapers outranking original content. I find it very interesting that nobody seems to be replying to those threads..... Could be telling?
Wow reading the comments in the Wired article, even old time WebmasterWorld user EFV, the ever optimist, has been hit with 30% traffic loss. First time I see him complain.
|Gotcha. I guess the 2 billion dollar company part of it makes a big difference. |
No, YOU have to prove legally that they stole your content and what they did is so bad that they should be taken offline. Any idiot can fill in the blank and write an take down notice. Should they take Apple.com offline as soon as I write and send a bogus DCMA?
|No, YOU have to prove legally that they stole your content and what they did is so bad that they should be taken offline. Any idiot can fill in the blank and write an take down notice. Should they take Apple.com offline as soon as I write and send a bogus DCMA? |
I'm saying that if it's a legitimate DMCA, a big company probably has the resources to prevent the site from going offline.
I have 0 experience with DMCAs. All I've heard is that many hosting companies will take your site down without warning if they receive a legitimate DMCA notice.
Some animals are more equal than others and all that stuff.
|Wow reading the comments in the Wired article, even old time WebmasterWorld user EFV, the ever optimist, has been hit with 30% traffic loss. First time I see him complain. |
With some of these sites that got hit I don't think the problem is a lack of good content within the site. The problem is the presence of a lot of pages without any good content and the ad to content ratio. I had been wondering if EFVs site was hit when I looked at some of the other sites owners reported on the Google forum. Too bad for him, but his site does fit the same layout pattern as some of the other sites listed there.
That list on Google's Webmaster Central [google.com] is a gold mine of information.
I do feel for Matt Cutts and the other Google spam team employees. I think they are basically nice guys who would like to try to help people but at the same time if they give out too much information to people to fix their sites it just makes it easier for their results to get spammed.
[edited by: tedster at 7:45 pm (utc) on Mar 4, 2011]
[edit reason] added the link [/edit]
|... if they give out too much information to people to fix their sites it just makes it easier for their results to get spammed. |
There's some sites that have been using questionable techniques that have gotten a boost from this, and their techniques provide a possible "how-to" for spammers.
Example: a site that didn't rank well for a phrase for which I did (until last week) rank well. Now this site is in the top ten.
The URL is a keyphrase, "Acme-123.com", where Acme is obviously the manufacturer, and 123 is the model number. In another thread TheMadScientist thought that appearance could play a factor with some sites. Well, this one looks like Helen Keller designed it using some 1990's sites as a template.
There's only four pages to the site. The navigation menu links to other sites that are owned by the same company, and the links are anchor text ("Acme 456 widgets") and the URL's are keyphrases ("Acme-456.com").
There are no ads on the site, unless you consider the navigation menu as an ad (which I do).
As far as a link profile, the site doesn't have one, except for the network of links from the many sites--all of which look exactly the same--that the owner has created.
I think this is a good example of how to spam the new results, as I've seen similar schemes on other good-ranking sites.
I own 30 plus websites, and an odd thing is happening, I am starting to pick up a substantial amount of traffic from Bing that was not there until this update started. In some cases it is more than making up for what I lost from this update.
Why would Bing traffic go up?
I am also seeing some my traffic coming back (a little) from Google on some of the site that took a hit.
I am also got a direct email from a Google adsense rep for another one on one to show places to put more ads.. I am actually going to start removing some ads and go another route.
[edited by: kd454 at 5:59 pm (utc) on Mar 4, 2011]
|There's some sites that have been using questionable techniques that have gotten a boost from this, and their techniques provide a possible "how-to" for spammers. |
Someone on the warrior forum was all happy that his Wordpress auto-blog started getting traffic after the Panda update.
Clearly the pendalum towards, small focused sites has swung too far in the other direction this time.
I manage about 50 client domains all following Google guidelines, all hand coded, load fast, all different sizes and clear focus , some ecommerce, some not, traffic varies from 11 to 12,000 visitors per week, some update weekly and some haven't been touched in years, none have RSS feeds, and none of them were affected by this update.
My site and one other are the only ones with Adsense on them but usually only 1 ad per page either in middle or bottom of the page. The sites I design are all squeeky clean, so clean in fact I've been considering adding some grayness just to keep up with the crowd. In fact the sites I design have never been affected by any update and I've been a designer for over 11 years. I rarely have much to add to these update discussions.
I accidentally stumbled into google.co.uk, didn't realize I was on the .co.uk tld, and it is showing all my old ranking the week before this panda disaster.
Anyone else notice this? I haven't checked my stuff on .co.uk since the update, so it might have been that way this past week and I just didn't know.
Can anyone else confirm this or see it similar?
I would expect most people are seeing it Freedom.
The update hasn't rolled there yet, afiak...
Yeah, you might be right. It was probably that way all along.
|usually only 1 ad per page either in middle or bottom of the page. |
Same here, my site that suffered -30% traffic loss usually has one small horizontal banner in the middle and one adlinks. I make it a point for my users and my self respect not to have spammy sites. I usually ignore Adsense insistence on adding bigger ads. Only very recently did I started to use big squares on one site with declining CTR, which hasn't been affected by the update.
|The sites I design are all squeeky clean |
Same here, hand coded XHTML, CSS, no tables, clean and minimal code, thoroughly tested with all browsers, good and lightweight graphical design.
|In fact the sites I design have never been affected by any update and I've been a designer for over 11 years. |
Roughly the same story. 10+ years in the business of working on the web, about 5-6 making content web sites on the side. First algo update that hurts me like that.
We should hang out. lol.
I'm not going to do anything in the short term but it really, really sucks.
|I usually ignore Adsense insistence on adding bigger ads. |
It seems a lot of folks here see a relationship between AdSense and a big drop in Google rankings, but I gotta' think it's a coincidence and other factors are mostly at play. I have zero adsense and I've been nailed as bad as some of the other percentage drops being mentioned. I wish I could say what is the villian, but I can't figure it, and in any case it's almost certainly not as simple as one single thing.
But do you have any ads at all?
And if so, what kind, and how many?
I'm in the same position as Reno. Ecommerce site with no ads.
@supercyberbob... No AdSense, however 3 text links to affiliate related merchants within the text on most pages. So if that's the issue with Google, then there's no reason to even have the site, as those links generate the $ to keep the site online.
Reno Thanks for the reply. Very interesting.
they are still working on it.
since last night i saw some major changes when i search for the name of my website. Until last night, below my website, there were some scrapers listed. now my technorati, youtube, facebook etc. pages come up again. even though my traffic isn't any better, at least i see some normality around
Is the figure 12k weekly visitors for all 50 combined
|I manage about 50 client domains ... traffic varies from 11 to 12,000 visitors per week ... none of them were affected by this update. |
- if yes, then you're talking about 1k per month sites...
Here is my theory with this update. I see these sites like e#*$!how and sites like Wiki#*$! and etc... that are taking over rankings from authority sites on subjects and its just plain retarded (smaller publishers that deal with one main topic and not 100 plus different topics totally not related).
These sites that deal with 100 different topics have no idea on these subjects that authority sites deal with and they have articles that lead to dead ends (They talk about a subject and it just gives you the run around with no real info on what you needed to know because they have articles on subjects from every topic possible). For example, I look for something on where to get blue widgets and I get a result from a how to company on how I could obtain it but it has no real source of where I could go to actually find it.
Note: Not that it was any better before the new rankings and bing is not any better so dont think im just picking on Google...Hint Hint
Im writing this because Google cant give special treatment to one website just because they are a bigshot and they cried on a pr release like some of them did. (God forbid if they had enough money to get a lawyer or issue bad pr's)
I have not seen any real difference in search results on this change on what I searched for but Im noticing a lot of people that are small publishers and are really not happy with this change on this forum. Google changed their search results because of people whining, and they must know by now its at least 10x worse today.
Ill tell you what, in the good old days we had unions. Imagine if all these publishers ganged together and banned their content from Google. Id bet Google would have a customer service line then! Why dont you have one now?
Here is my advice to Google: Go back to when you were a small company and think that way. You have to be fair and not always think about profit margins. I still like your search results better than any one else, but I think your thinking is off course from your original intentions when you were a start up company.
[edited by: tedster at 8:40 am (utc) on Mar 6, 2011]
|Why would Bing traffic go up? |
Maybe your ranking on Google improved. That would be my guess. Surely you're not suggesting people are moving to Bing?
My only criticism of Google right now is that top 4 spots are dominated by Wiki and that e site. The latter is just awful and useless. Might force me to use Chrome so I donít have to look at them anymore.
|Im writing this because Google cant give special treatment to one website just because they are a bigshot and they cried on a pr release like some of them did. (God forbid if they had enough money to get a lawyer or issue bad pr's) |
Are you referring to Cult of Mac? I had a quick look at their website and they seem to now have all their ads in the right hand sidebar. I'm pretty sure this wasn't the case before, but my memory may be faulty.
I think one signal is ad placement, and G want the ads outside the content area.
BillyS: My profits increased because of the update, but from my understanding today from my stats is that less important keywords got sacrificed in exchange for more relevent ones leading to higher conversions (cant complain there). Also at the same time I lost some overall unique traffic (no big deal). PS: Im tired at looking at wiki and that esite also.
AlyssaS: I have at least 5% of my pages with large ads inside the content area plus large ads at the top and bottom of those pages and saw no loss to traffic to those pages after the update last week. However, these pages have a large amount of content in them. If there is a trigger there it might have something to do with the amount of content to ad ratio.
|If there is a trigger there it might have something to do with the amount of content to ad ratio. |
This strikes me as an important observation, worthy of further investigation.
I just did took a closer look at one site's stats and saw something interesting as I drilled down. Overall search traffic is down 16%, but the number of conversions is not affected. The lost traffic was coming in on an assortment of twenty 1-word search terms and then bouncing at over a 90% rate.
Now if the site were monetized by ad impressions, then they would have taken a hit. As it is, they are pure e-commerce and not really hurt.
Seems to me that losing an assortment of 1-word search traffic has something to to tell me about the Panda-Farm algo, but I'm not clear about what it is yet. It looks like something is happening right in this case. While those single words do appear on their pages, those pages would NOT be a good destination for the searcher.
|The lost traffic was coming in on an assortment of twenty 1-word search terms and then bouncing at over a 90% rate |
I have always observed the same thing. The one-word terms have always had a high bounce rate for me. I just view those rankings as trophy rankings, and never fret if I drop. The longtail always converts best for me.
For those in ecomm, I'm noticing one CSE over and over on top in the listings, often in spot 1. Doesn't seem to make a difference what I search for. I guess G has decided that the CSE is the source of the original content but they simply scrape their data off the merchant websites. This particular CSE seems to have lucked out. The others did not achieve listings like this.
CSE=Comparison Search Engine. Which one was it?