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Google Launches Update Targeting Spam... Again? Penguin Update
netmeg




msg:4444832
 9:50 pm on Apr 24, 2012 (gmt 0)

Matt Cutts "In the next few days, we’re launching an important algorithm change targeted at webspam. The change will decrease rankings for sites that we believe are violating Google’s existing quality guidelines. We’ve always targeted webspam in our rankings, and this algorithm represents another improvement in our efforts to reduce webspam and promote high quality content. While we can't divulge specific signals because we don't want to give people a way to game our search results and worsen the experience for users, our advice for webmasters is to focus on creating high quality sites that create a good user experience and employ white hat SEO methods instead of engaging in aggressive webspam tactics."


[insidesearch.blogspot.com...]

Sites affected by this change might not be easily recognizable as spamming without deep analysis or expertise, but the common thread is that these sites are doing much more than white hat SEO; we believe they are engaging in webspam tactics to manipulate search engine rankings.

[edited by: Brett_Tabke at 4:31 pm (utc) on Apr 25, 2012]
[edit reason] added quotes - updated link [/edit]

 

marsattacks




msg:4446416
 7:11 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

Championing brands is the wrong road for Google to take, it is clear by reading how it is affecting many of the actual unbranded authorities that are writing in this thread. There needs to be a switch to let the actual users of the websites take more of an active roll in website placement as ultimately that is what it is all about.

Whitey




msg:4446444
 9:39 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

There's a thread opened here for that topic [webmasterworld.com...]

I'm not sure that potential manipulation of results belongs here.

Kenneth2




msg:4446449
 9:54 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

Great, I have just reported a few blogspot spammy pages using the link given by Reseller. Let us hope Google does something about its own branded properties before everyone jump on the bandwagon of brand abuse.

Imagine the day where the top search result is populated by blogspot pages, Youtube, spammy Yahoo question, hacked ORG/Authority domain. There would be no need for web hosting as google blogspot & Youtube would take care all of your ranking, marketing and BW needs.

fred9989




msg:4446452
 10:03 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I'd encourage you all to put action in place and report pages which clearly don't match up to Google's aspirations using the form above. If the results are as bad as the opinion here suggests, then do something about it.

jkdt0077




msg:4446465
 10:34 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

fred, Google is the search engine. Why should we have to do all the work reporting about their broken algorithm. We shouldnt, we should let the users find out for themselves and hopefully start moving to other engines.

We already spend all our time making our websites follow their guidelines to the letter - then they release an update that they have no control over and expect us to sort it all out for them!

No, Google. You did this, you fix it.

arikgub




msg:4446466
 10:41 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

They're obviously brands, but we regular beat them in the SERPs on these products, because my client is the *authoritative source* for them.


OK, that's nice. But technically, how does Google figure out it is your client who is an "authority" and not a larger brand like Staples. I mean, technically?

I think you guys are giving too much credit to Google. They are not capable to identify "authority", they do not distinguish between "brand" and "authority", and are not even trying to do that. Use an appropriate tool, and see for how many terms Amazon and Ebay are holding the #1 spot. Are they an "authority" on anything?

I follow rankings for highly technical keywords. The niches certainly have "authority" sites, but the SERPs has been long dominated by mega retailers selling consumer electronics, like Walmart, Best Buy or Amazon.

HuskyPup




msg:4446485
 11:35 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

No, Google. You did this, you fix it.


Amen...and I'm not religious.

MC you asked us to reveal our source codes, CSS etc...great, an Italian scraper which I can't get taken down is now ranking very high for thousands of keywords AND images...all MY images and which I have ranked #1 for years...mine have gone...pooft!

Just how the hell do I report and deal with this?

reseller




msg:4446487
 11:44 am on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

@Kenneth2
Great, I have just reported a few blogspot spammy pages using the link given by Reseller.


Great!

IMO we should help in reporting spam.

SeymourJames




msg:4446494
 12:16 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

netmeg: My opinions are much wider -

[webmasterworld.com...]

You may find the real-estate analogy interesting. Your issue seems to be that you believe Google to be altruist and doing a good job to weed out the spammers. That is your right. I say they have become increasingly humbug, less transparent and collectively arrogant.

Can anyone seriously tell me given the mess the SERPS are now in that Google have no quality control to undertake large scale pilot schemes and study the effect. I am struggling to to think of an industry in the world which is treated so leniently or is so under-regulated.

particleman




msg:4446495
 12:24 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I have 2 days of analytics data now, our traffic is 1/3 of what it was. Guess I'm stopping what I'm doing and doing a full site review/rewrite now. Great.

nickreynolds




msg:4446499
 12:43 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

quote - I have 2 days of analytics data now, our traffic is 1/3 of what it was. Guess I'm stopping what I'm doing and doing a full site review/rewrite now. Great.


So increasingly we stop giving people what we think they want and instaed give them what we think Google thinks they want.

They keep saying build great websites and they will rank well but when the websites that we think are great get clobbered, we are increasingly forced to spend even more time trying to find out what Google wants rather than what our customers want.

tigger




msg:4446506
 12:46 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

@particleman

I think its too early to look at the problem being at your end assuming you've build a quality site -

I'm waiting to see what happens and it may well take another Panda update to sort the mess, but I don't believe I've done anything wrong so I'm just getting on and working .....if its still like this in 4 weeks then I'll consider going through the site..but how do you fix something that you don't think has a problem

juiker




msg:4446508
 1:04 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

Quote migumbo: "I've been doing SEO for about 8 years and I'm stumped. This is the strangest update I've seen. We have only done the things we thought would help our sites. Most of the effort has gone into compliance, technical optimization and writing quality well researched articles that are useful to their audience."

I feel your pain, totally. I manage about 20 different sites, from small niche affiliate sites to large, high quality portals. I see my affiliate sites getting badly affected by this (and others agree with me that this is an affiliate whack and has nothing to do with link profiles, etc.) but I see none of the quality sites getting rewarded.

Same question I had elsewhere. How does this update reward "mom and pop websites", the people who are not doing blackhat crap?

fred9989




msg:4446513
 1:21 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

Well, it doesn't reward the Mom and Pop sites, but I have no doubt that fact is an irrelevance to Google.

If dismissing linking data and using only social signals or on page factors is the way they want to go, that's where they will go.

I think it's also sometimes good for me to remember that it is Gooogle's search engine, and they have the right to do what they want with it. They owe me nothing, and they are not there to serve me.

Every single person in these forums has been trying to game Google's search results in one way or another, and to that extent can be a victim of measures put in place to combat SEO techniques. Screaming about how evil or corrupt Google may be is not going to change this new landscape.

Reporting bad results on the forms referred to above might, however, do so.

And as for SEO - I see mass slaughter of the EMD type blogs, but not all of them. Does anyone have a clue as to which have survived and why (apart from those with 1000s of obvious spammy links from Chinese government websites, which Google seems to have missed. Oh dear. What a successful algorithm that must be.)

zeus




msg:4446515
 1:31 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I think its time to just do the thing you can, make your site for the users and let google on the sideline, just dont think about them. I also have started blocking google from spidering sites, which are then just available on other search engines, that way you automatically just focus on your site, be cause Bing dont hate webmasters :)

ohh and Im not even hurt by this update on any sites, but was hurt by Panda on one.

reseller




msg:4446516
 1:36 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

@fred9989

(apart from those with 1000s of obvious spammy links from Chinese government websites, which Google seems to have missed. Oh dear. What a successful algorithm that must be.)


If you know of spam sites I would strongly suggest you report them to Google via the link which Matt Cutts tweeted today [goo.gl...]

Matt Cutts also tweeted today: "we're definitely interested [in spam reports] and we'll be reading the feedback from the forms."

Brett_Tabke




msg:4446517
 1:38 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

lets stay on topic please. (we are not discussing - AntiTrust Issues - Instagram - Android, or other peripheral issues unless they directly effect this update)

tigger




msg:4446518
 1:44 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

att Cutts also tweeted today: "we're definitely interested [in spam reports] and we'll be reading the feedback from the forms."


Reseller "if" Cuts is looking at the forums he will know what a mess they have made - its time for G to do some housework rather than expecting webmasters to point out mistakes

bsand715




msg:4446519
 1:45 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

On some well known keywords, the first results leads you to a page with ZERO content on it.


I Also see that, one has NO content in source code.Is an exact match keyword.com site. Google using title plus sentence that is not found in code.

How is that Done?

arikgub




msg:4446520
 1:47 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I also have started blocking google from spidering sites, which are then just available on other search engines


It is somewhat irrational to give up voluntarily on traffic you can get free just by allowing the GoogleBot to crawl.

But you know what, i have been considering doing that as well, at least on the new site I am working on. As a therapy. As a way to cure my ranking checking and backlink analysis addictions. And as a way to force myself to build a profitable online business that would finally not need Google to survive.

Leosghost




msg:4446521
 1:49 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

How is that Done?

G could be taking the "clue" from associated text on inbound link(s)..we've seen stranger..

particleman




msg:4446525
 2:05 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I think its too early to look at the problem being at your end assuming you've build a quality site -

I'm waiting to see what happens and it may well take another Panda update to sort the mess, but I don't believe I've done anything wrong so I'm just getting on and working .....if its still like this in 4 weeks then I'll consider going through the site..but how do you fix something that you don't think has a problem


We can't afford to wait four weeks. I will say though with the method we have taken optimizing our site over the last 3 years I am not surprised we are getting hit for an over optimization penalty. Our primary keywords are used A LOT on our site, but THAT IS WHAT WE SELL. Which makes this tough to strip down, but if that is the reality of the situation we need to accept it and makes changes accordingly. Without a doubt though this is the biggest impact we've seen to our SERPs.

backdraft7




msg:4446527
 2:05 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

Matt cuts could get his fill of rage on these forums, but it seems there is rage against Google EVERYWHERE over this, their latest and most destructive "Penguin" update. I would have called it Bulldozer.
Here's more rage against the Penguin - [searchengineland.com...]

Oh, and on a serious side - please don't commit suicide over this as one commenter reports.

reseller




msg:4446528
 2:08 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

@tigger

Reseller "if" Cuts is looking at the forums he will know what a mess they have made ...

I recall in the good old days, GoogleGuy use to visit us here on WebmasterWorld and contribute on threads discussing Google updates. I wish to see Matt Cutts doing the same.

armondhammer




msg:4446531
 2:10 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

Here is my simple theory on how Penguin is getting it wrong. There's a bit of a common thread that's starting to emerge.

For sites in a questionable niche, there seems to be a negative correlation between quantity of content and rankings. There are way too many reports of very thin content sites or social network profiles ranking for very competitive terms.

Links, especially those that weren't nuked by the private blog network shakedown, seem to have been given extra weight. Link and domain age also seem to have extra value.

It's almost like Google said, hey how many articles could a real site write about autism or EDmedicne. If you have too many it must be wrong. And we killed all of those spammy blog network. So lets turn up links and down on-page content.

I think it makes no sense to most of us, because it's actually the opposite of what they are saying. Depth is being punished in many cases.

And for the record, I'd consider myself a beneficiary of Penguin, but I still think they got this one wrong.

nickreynolds




msg:4446532
 2:11 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

point of accuracy - did Cutts say they were looking at the forms or forums - the reported tweet in the earlier post said "forms" which I would take to mean the spam forms

tigger




msg:4446533
 2:11 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I recall in the good old days, GoogleGuy use to visit us here on WebmasterWorld and contribute on threads discussing Google updates. I wish to see Matt Cutts doing the same.


agree..but that was the old Google

netmeg




msg:4446535
 2:17 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

He still sticks his head in every once in a while, but it's rare.

fabulousyarn




msg:4446536
 2:18 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I have long believed that there needs to be separate areas for "shopping" and "content" if google wants people to stop gaming. Which essentially means going back to the more traditional model of 'advertising' vs 'content', ie, there will be no free ride based on content if you are simply selling stuff. I think this is where they are going - unfortunately, the way systems are setup, the only ones that benefit from this separation are the behemoths, like amazon. Sad, but true. I am getting whacked as well - after a few days of back to normal traffic, I'm down today. I think. Who knows. Going to unpack some yarn and think about more multi-channel selling..:)

bsand715




msg:4446538
 2:20 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)


I'm waiting to see what happens and it may well take another Panda update to sort the mess, but I don't believe I've done anything wrong so I'm just getting on and working .....if its still like this in 4 weeks then I'll consider going through the site..but how do you fix something that you don't think has a problem


I saw these no content, no page sites working to the top last fall. Then I noticed a return to normal around Feb. Now these sites are returning and sticking.
I have made no changes.
How long do wait?

tigger




msg:4446541
 2:25 pm on Apr 27, 2012 (gmt 0)

I saw these no content, no page sites working to the top last fall. Then I noticed a return to normal around Feb. Now these sites are returning and sticking.
I have made no changes.
How long do wait?


I'm not making any changes until the next panda roll out - if G has its head screwed on will be soon

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