Owner of 3 image sites here... page views down over 60% in the past few days and my livelihood is in severe jeopardy. I'm not quite ready to block either Google or Bing, but I am considering re-working the sites so people would have to actually visit the site to get the high-res un-watermarked version. Not sure exactly how that would work.
Before I go making changes I'd like to verify exactly how much traffic I'm not getting from image searches anymore. Can anybody tell me how to track it? I can't find it in Google Analytics anymore... nothing helpful in Webmaster tools... do I have to comb through my Apache logs, or is there a better way to tell how much traffic is coming from image searches?
If it turns out that I'm no longer getting ANY traffic of consequence through image searches then there is little to lose by either blocking through htaccess or a site re-work.
@ gbk666 and chrisv1963
Zimbio, PRphotos, TMZ will surely see decline in their traffic as they are depending a lot of images. Zimbio for sure has major share of image traffic. Also, askmen has it a lot.
Google has completely killed image traffic with this move. So, it will effect everyone. Small or big publishers, it will have impact on everyone. No one will be spared by this.
Google has actually gulped all that traffic itself with this move.
Its a different thing that this is copyright theft and as per my opinion,
It is only a matter of time when big media will start talking about this. I would be happy with NYTimes or some other major media company starts tracking this issue.
Google Employee Jessica Schwartz, who manages Google Images board has clarified that Google won't change this new setup.
|While we do not plan to revert to the old version of Google Images, know that we're reading your feedback to make an even better search experience in the future. |
Catia, you don't need to search for bandwidth info i will share my stats - I now have 25% of image search. 75% vanished.
Globally, I lost about 50% of visitors, bounce rate is +1%... and website is not image based but the images have a significant role in the presentation of what we write.
From graph you can see that traffic has increased 10 - 20% which is absurd, I lost 50% of visitors. I do not want Google, Bing and Yahoo suck traffic and in turn have nothing.
Very problematic situation... I need to resolve this that I could continue to operate normally.
People are becoming more visual, more often it is decided to search phrases with images, and more and more rarely through standard text search, there lies the biggest problem with the new way which search engines using for presenting out work in search. It is not impossible that they will take from our websites mata tags and content around the image and put the result. And absolutely no one will be willing to visit the original site, I'm 100% sure.
I think it is high time to set limits for their reckless and insolent monopolistic behavior. May request from us a quality product, that's fine, but they can not exploit us as slaves.
Here for me it went again a bit worse too. I was at 3200 unique visitors last thursday from than on it went down and down and did not even stop yesterday when i had only 1400 visitors.
Today its 10 am and i had only 430 visitors. My art related ..and non profit website is basically as small as four months after i started it in june 2011.
Threw out google image bot totally now and i continue to talk about the problem at many places.
[edited by: goodroi at 5:32 pm (utc) on Jan 30, 2013]
[edit reason] TOS [/edit]
I see the old layout for .fr and .de. Can someone from those countries confirm this. Any ideas why those countries don't have the new layout?
GA shows nice traffic coming from those countries. Just like it used to be before the update.
As mentioned, because stronger copyright laws here in Germany and probably France too, bet we get an own version
i searched for some images on google.de and found that they were showing a complete web page, which was having the image. They didn't even create it in background, as they were doing earlier here.
for google.fr, the things were same as we all earlier (worldwide). they are still showing page in background.
It probably means that google fears the copyrights trouble in Germany.
gbk666, all it seems to me that this would be something with the new TOS, which shall be of take it or leave it.
I accept that steals from me / I do not want to have my site appears on Google.
Lawyers certainly late in assembling the new TOS for France and Germany. Also, these are the two leading countries in the EU, it must be careful with them.
dhaliwal, I just made two screenshots
Screenshot from google.fr:
Screenshot from google.de:
I think that Germany version is minimum that should demand!
matrix_jan - why not block them you dont get any traffic from there, so what reason is there to stay. Dont count on something changes very soon, they will first battle this and if things changes you will quickly be on google image again.
Any got a httaccess solution yet, to show another image or thumb image in the big box as I have with bing.
@zeus on my (engl.) sites I just have traffic from google-images, but about 1/3 less then before. Earnings seems to be the same.
This is the problem - and I am sure Google calculated that:
we have less traffic and earnings, but it's still more than zero.
Ok, another guy in germany just checks this out: "cross-domain-#*$!ie-dropping" is possible with the new image-search. Another big injection problem, based on the "image loading from another source".
|to show another image or thumb image in the big box |
Be very careful with this. I did it the wrong way: by simply rewriting to a thumbnail of the same image. This was set up months ago as a supplement to my existing hotlink management, and it worked fine for that. But now it's got a horrible unintended result: Image Search displays the thumbnail with the dimensions of the real thing.
|Shell Of A Man|
While we saw as of now about a 7k reduction per day in traffic the results from not having people jumping on the page and stealing an image and leaving within a few seconds has made our stats jump much more positively and for the better.
I am to the point where I am half and half with the change, meaning I am happy that my stats are looking a lot better and I can get a better view of the people actually reading our sites, but I am still very angry that google and bing are just taking our images for their gain and making us shell out for the bandwidth and paying the licensee fees.
What about having a little bigger thumbnail in the search results and when someone clicks on the image it just opens the webmasters website without the miserable iframe and just shows you the article with the image in it as we meant for it to be shown? Oh wait they can't profit from that, whoops!
Oh well if they get away with this I can guarantee you that people will just start sites with millions of hotlinked images and a few links back because hey thats what google did and it will make the problem webmasters already have with people stealing images even worse.
My Google Images referrals started to drop way back when, when the image-hover iframe thing was instituted.
I simply hadn't noticed because I didn't look in my stats for the effects of this measure.
I'm repeating myself, but I've gone from 10,000 referrals per month to 150 - most of the damage coming from the image-hover.
150 referrals is just piddly stuff.
The world is changing, folks; Pinterest has opened the doors wide to grand scale image plunder. Bing and Google are fighting for their share of the loot.
Desktops are becoming a thing of the past, the music business has imploded... the image business is being dispossessed from its rightful owners.
Who will sue Bing/Google/Pinterest for copyright infringement, and establish a legal precedent?
I hate this new setup. It just produces more clicking for me when I'm searching images, because I'm always curious to see the image in its original context. FWIW, I don't sell or make money from my website images, so this isn't hurting me - in this context, I'm just an ordinary person who occasionally likes to search for pictures of things for fun and learning.
(Disclaimer: I don't have but a handful of images across all my sites, and I don't care about the ones I do have, so this change isn't doing anything for me one way or the other)
#1 - Google's not going to change back (even if they get a bunch of flack about it, or end up in court, it'll take years) so start developing your alternative strategies NOW. Hope for the best, but expect the worst.
#2 - You already know the argument they'll use, because it's the same one they used when newspapers complained - if you don't want the images in Google, then block them. You won't get the free traffic, but that's the deal. If most of your traffic was coming from images, and is gone now, you might as well block them.
#3 - The FTC just basically said that Google's previous changes were not harming the consumers and completely ignored website owners - don't look for THAT to change any time soon. They're not particularly educated on all the issues, and so far, they haven't cared any more about other websites and publishers than Google does.
#4 - I reiterate - you are very unlikely to see any changes that will help you in the next few months to years, so the time to change your model is now.
Google Employee Jessica Schwartz say to all webmasters:
"While we do not plan to revert to the old version of Google Images, know that we're reading your feedback to make an even better search experience in the future."
[edited by: goodroi at 8:37 pm (utc) on Jan 30, 2013]
[edit reason] TOS [/edit]
We need to set date ie 1. April 2013 and block images 7days for google and tell all people that webmasters exist and that behind every image which they see on image search is not coz of google but coz of our websites.
Im in for 7days block all images ...just set date 1-2 month ahead so all webmasters in world can hear about that action...google need to know that we also need food, water, pay rent, grow kids....they need to know that they must respect us not to treat us like slaves
I doubt we can organize such a protest. I've been chugging for a decade, it's a dog-eat-dog world on the internet.
We have three options:
(1) Plead with Google AND BING (Bing and its scraper-facilitating API is worse) to give us an opt out of large image display.
(2) Look at the data, and Image search doesn't pan out for you anymore, check yourself out of it.
(3) Register your work with the US copyright office, and organize a class-action lawsuit. Don't wait for someone else to do it.
Please remember to keep your comments professional and respectful of others AND focused on Google search optimization. Thank you in advance from your overworked volunteer moderators :).
So far today AdSense earnings down 80%, surely the AdWords team should be noticing lesser income OR are all the scrapers cleaning up, again?
I know what to do to resolve this debacle however whether I have the will to reconstruct those sites is altogether another question.
I am sure google calculated that there will be less adsense earnings.
When will webmasters start to fight against the worst search engine on the planet ?
They forgot not to be evil...
Oh I got <snip> :) <snip> <snip> :)
Don't be fooled ...and think they will suffer from AdWords cutting down..nop...they just will give more to BIG PUBLISHERS and rest to them...until they will make ad space on image search...and then they will keep much more to they...Don't you see that they wanna be a GoogleNET ...no more internet guys...soon
From their point..future is:
Google Mobile device ... Chrome ... and nothing more..just look where this goin...they wanna to shutdown whole internet and to became internet...who need small sites..when everything they can make and offer to customer and keep all earnings to they..just think about that.
When this statement webmasters understand, will be too late to react.
It was mentioned before, but the only thing we can do and really should do is to have multiple image folders, one for thumbs and one for the bigger images and maybe add watermarks to the smaller images + clear words that the big images can be found on site xx
And removing all older images from the google search if possible. What else can we seriously do?
If your business model relies on a constant flow of free traffic from Google you might want to rethink your business model. I don't like to rely on charity traffic nor do I like wasting time complaining when things don't go my way. I prefer to resolve issues and find new opportunity when change inevitably happens.
For example with this new image change I am trying a new experiment with some high res images. Having a larger preview image should make it easier to attract click-throughs for these higher res images.
For all the upset webmasters out there, I encourage you to keep complaining instead of working on your site. It makes it easier for me when my competition isn't working on how to make their online business stronger.
The real problem is that google has to much power on the internet
|What about having a little bigger thumbnail in the search results and when someone clicks on the image it just opens the webmasters website without the miserable iframe and just shows you the article with the image in it as we meant for it to be shown? |
It can only work if you set your images to no caching at all. And you probably don't want to do that.
The operative word is hotlink. The user's browser "thinks" it has already downloaded the image (when the user looked at it in Search), so it doesn't download it all over again when the user goes to your site five seconds later-- even though this time around you would have shown a different physical image.
"For example with this new image change I am trying a new experiment with some high res images. Having a larger preview image should make it easier to attract click-throughs for these higher res images. "
Good luck but it won't work.
Times have changed, not the other webmasters are our main competition... google is. And as long as dont have a international lobby we are easy fodder for big G.