|remember Google's unique selling point? Their indexing power - to be able to show you the ENTIRE internet |
I don't think Google care about diversity on the web nowadays. If they did, they wouldn't think host crowding is a good idea.
Host crowding : [ perhaps ] To severely cut off or curtail a brand that pays you is unwise aka "to bite the hand that feeds you". Providing 2-3 additional listing helps smooth that relationship.
@Tedster - the NEEDS issue is spot on IMO
It drives a perception that organic traffic drops can do damage to those relationships. Google would want to do all possible to ensure that they look after their brand customers and their associated users who use the SERP's.
By default, if you can't pay as part of your overall marketing mix, to drive brand signals you won't rank. There is an indirect link IMO with high volume market verticals IMO
|By default, if you can't/or don't/or won't pay as part of your overall marketing mix, to drive brand signals you won't rank. |
Adjusted it for you so as to be more "inclusive" ..even if it was only to shoot it down ;)
I don't pay..I rank just fine..above those who do..pay..
@Leosghost - are you talking ranking ( plus host crowding) in niche or carte blanche across "core terms" in a major vertical?
Core terms and associated long tail is reserved for brands in verticals I watch. I'm not seeing much intrusion into those top results by others and I am believing brands have a better resistance to penalties.
Do you see things differently from another angle?
Core terms ..major verticals..highly competitive..
English language SERPS..
In some of them I'm actually the domain that G uses for the "host crowding", which, whilst I'm doing well from that effect, if I put my "searcher hat" on, I really cannot see what benefit my domains, ( or anyone else's ), taking up the first 3,4,5 or 6 organic spots under the adwords, brings to SERPS..
And once you get out of English language SERPs..it is even easier to rank ..
@Leosghost - and you have no strong navigational searches and no signals that might provide you with an advantage?
Strange - but I only look at a couple of verticals closely. Why do you think brands are treated differently in the verticals you observe to others I look at, across all core terms? Does Google stronly engage it's own assett's in your vertical.
|Does Google stronly engage it's own assett's in your vertical. |
No..and therein , IMO , lies the secret..
|and you have no strong navigational searches and no signals that might provide you with an advantage |
....and this ?
Do you sense this will last and that you will be treated equally?
|and you have no strong navigational searches and no signals that might provide you with an advantage.. |
unclear what you mean by the above..
|Do you sense this will last and that you will be treated equally? |
Will G venture into my verticals..In English language they already are..But not in the "specifics"..
Identify what they ( Google ) are not your competitors in..that means your only competitors are the other sites..not also the indexer ..and the ranker..
....in non English ..no ..they would be / are ..afraid of the regulation that they would encounter..
|unclear what you mean by the above.. |
I mean the amount of times users type your brand name into search along the lines Tedster mentioned.
e.g. search: "yourdomainname widget red" without the TLD
If you're spending big bucks on advertising, there will be some some branding recognition by customers typing in your domain name with organic searches. If you have brand without paying then that's a big advantage.
|Does Google stronly engage it's own assetts in your vertical. |
They may, or they may not. While nobody can say with certainty, I believe that they do. On the other (or same?!) hand, I also believe that they *may* get their rankings from links from other Google properties.
|If you have brand without paying then that's a big advantage. |
|unclear what you mean by the above.. |
... so I'm clarifying, do you have a high incidence of branding of your own name in search queries?
I think you are saying "no" , but on the other hand you are saying you don't know why you and other sites are ranking well in the face of brands.
Tedster's theory seems to be that, amongst other factors, brand is recognised by the number of times the name is used in other searches as part of the overall branding signals.
To clear up a misconception..
I do have a "high incidence" of searches for my "brand(s)"..as measured by my logs and stats..and I know why :)
Amongst other things..a lot of people in my "verticals" or niches ( I don't discriminate or distinguish between those two words when discussing "the web" ) talk amongst themselves about my "brand(s)". even when they do not link to me ( not all visitors to sites / posters in forums actually know or understand how to "link"* ) ..that helps..
It may well ( I suspect it is ) be beneficial that some do not "link"..thus making their readers "search" ..and search engines ( Google in particular ) notice these specific searches..and boost their "subjects"..
Watch "autosuggest" as you type ( yes it is irritating..but it is what your visitors are using )..see what it suggests..see how that changes ( or not over time )..if, ( to leave aside the discussion of "brands" for a moment ) like myself, you also reg EMDS, then "autosuggest" is your friend when looking for "type ins"..
Watch what your target audience do..( don't try to "out think" them )..then work out "why" they do it, "what" they are looking for ( or to do ) or to buy..then make it simple for them to get or achieve..
I'd rather have people searching for me "on line" after hearing about me "off line" via "word of mouth" or mentioning me on line ( but not necessarily linking* )..than have a shed full of links..
You can rank very well with just one or two href links.. the rest of your "branding" and reputation or buzz ( I dislike that word, but it conveys the meaning here ) need not href link to you at all..
|By default, if you can't pay as part of your overall marketing mix, to drive brand signals you won't rank. |
Hmm... it sounds more like this to me: "If you don't invest in marketing for your business, it will rarely do very well."
That principle holds true in almost all business, but for a decade or so things were a lot easier on Google and it took a much lower level of investment.
The term "host crowding" as Google uses it has the opposite meaning to the way that many webmasters have started using it. Host crowding means LIMITING the number of results from any one web host or domain name. It's something Google introduced in their second or third year, but recently relaxed in a big way.
I feel like a lone voice on this topic - but if we hope to decipher what Google has said on the issue, it's important to keep the terminology straight.
In their early years, Google would return however many documents theer algorithm kicked out as relevant to the search query - no matter how many of those results came from the same host (domain). Then Google introduced "host crowding" and that limited the total result from any domain to two (usually). Google was "crowding" all the URLs from a single given host into just two results, no matter how many were relevant.
This means that what a lot of webmasters are wishing for is actually a return to some kind of host crowding. The limit could be three or even four results from the same domain for some queries as far as I'm concerned. Just not wide open SERP dominance by a small group of businesses.
IMO.."Domain cramming" would have been a better term for when one domain gets more than the top 2 slots..
Then G could have just said that they were "limiting domain cramming"..but as they love to speak in "cryptic"..that would have been too easy..
Ted..yes they have definitely "relaxed it"..I have one domain taking the 4 top slots in a two keyword search term..great for me ..makes for a crappy SERP though IMO..
I know what you mean. Back before Google introduced host crowding, I once had 10 out of 10 for one query. To be honest, that was not a very good thing - it actually brought a good bit of negative attention, and business was better after the two result limit went in.
As I understand what Matt Cutts is saying here, it's that the algorithm does not directly promote "brands", as in building a list of brands and then boosting those sites. However, they are doing their best to measure the qualities that make a good brand, and the algorithm does reward those qualities.
|IMO.."Domain cramming" would have been a better term for when one domain gets more than the top 2 slots.. |
How about domain spamming? When I see 3 or 4 pages where 90% of the results are from one domain, it seems like an appropriate word. If someone is clicking on page 2, 3 or 4 just to see the same domain, they'll either try another search or give up. The reason they are clicking onto page 2 is that they didn't want to click on the "host crowded" domain - yet they get presented with it again on page 2 (for many searches).
Sometimes I feel that the statement of Matt Cutt is wrong that "Big brands do not have the upper hand" because I have some examples. I was optimizing a website and my site is not very new and also not a Big brand. I don't want to use the Big brand name here but yes search "Bali tourism" on Google India and see the first 5 results and there landing pages. You can see the difference. So as a user I can say that the result is not good.
I have many more examples, will show you later
BIG brands don't have the upper hand, but BRANDS have a natural upper hand - because they are brands. And you don't have to be big to be a brand, I'm pretty sure we've had this discussion over and over.
If people are searching for 'netmeg' because they are looking for my expertise and authority in some area, and I can give or sell them whatever information or product or service I am offering based on their trust of my expertise and authority in that niche, then boom - 'netmeg' is a brand.
Brand is perception of trust and authority. And people naturally want to interact and transact with entities they trust and feel are authorities, and the more that happens, the more people search for them by name and the more they appear to rise up the SERPs.
It's not too difficult to become a brand in your niche (if you've picked the right niche and bust your butt to become the best in it) but it can be pretty difficult to dislodge one that's already there. You have to offer *something* they don't, and you have to tell your audience that you're offering it, what it is, and why they want it.
Only big brands who are PARTNERED with G have immunity and special treatment. I won't name names, but anyone who knows how the adsense network works knows these big names and can see how they get preferential position with their thin, ad ridden "answer" pages that otherwise wouldn't rank. I spent an hour on the phone with a helpful, yet tight lipped G Adsense rep yesterday and even the little they let slip by was quite revealing...and somewhat troubling.
What about that "big brand" sites that hire writers to scrape and hand rewrite others peoples content in a HOW to fashion? It seems to outrank the source article almost every time, even though it throws the source a "bone" in the form of a nofollow link in a resources section of the article. Brand bias seems a likely explanation.
netmeg, I agree with your last post 100%. However, you can be a brand but you will not get the exposure that big companies (I won't use "brand" here) get - they get onto Google's radar via news stories and therefore get dealt with a lot quicker than smaller companies. The word "brand" is a bit confusing when discussing big and small companies. I know a lot of very very small companies (one mand bands) that are successful brands for their target audience. If they got penalised by Google and stopped ranking for their own brand-name, their only recourse would be to submit a reconsideration request and wait at the back of the queue. When Digg or BBC or Interflora have a problem, it becomes news and then they get some Google action much faster. It's not so much Google "favouring brands" in a sense - more that it's simply putting Google in the news and it becomes perhaps an opportunity to show how fast they react (when in reality, any site that has trouble with Google and doesn't make the news can wait anything from a few days to a few years).
@rish3 - check out Google Ad Network partners, you'll likely find the site you refer to in that list. I wouldn't say it's so much brand bias as it is to just being a company with the means and knowledge to play the game they way they want it played. Talk to a G Adwords rep and they will pretty much verify that.
Every passing day I'm learning to accept the mantra of "resistance is futile" more and more.
|As others here have observed (but in different language) big brands have an advantage because GOOGLE NEEDS THEM in addition to their need for Google. |
I just can't understand why Google doesn't do what Yahoo did: Kick all but the home page out of the index. Site is penalized for all but navigational queries.
Back in the day, Google was the great equalizer. A small mom and pop who didnít have deep pockets could get their site noticed by doing all the things Google told people to do at that time. Develop great content, develop relationships with other related sites and get links, and keep your content fresh.
These days, that is not the case. A mom and pop can no longer get their site noticed unless they spend a good amount of money (depending on the niche of course) either on Adwords or a professional reputation company. SEO companies that are any good have changed with the times and are now reputation companies which includes, PPC, Social and the ever decreasing organic.
The free ride has come to an end with Google. If youíre lucky enough to still be getting free traffic, you should count it as bonus and never ever depend on it because Google is in the business of making money just like you are and they donít when people click organic listings to commerce related sites.
Big brands most differently have an advantage in the fact that they have very deep pockets and when things go askew, they get preferential treatment from Google because things get fixed much quicker than if they were just a regular mom and pop business.
As much as Iím sure Mattís a good guy, saying that big brands donít have an advantage is him being naÔve and living in his own ďqualityĒ world. Perhaps in his area, they donít. But his area is not the only thing that affects the SERPS any more.
|big brands have an advantage because GOOGLE NEEDS THEM |
Best thing I ever saw Tedster write. He nailed the subject in that one statement. Google doesn't NEED SMALL BUSINESS all is rewired to pleasing the big brands.
|big brands have an advantage because GOOGLE NEEDS THEM |
Absolutely agree, which leads to the question: What algorithmically establishes a "big brand" as opposed to Mom & Pop?
When you've answered that question, then, in my opinion, it becomes much more possible to build one.
I didn't post this in the update thread cause I didn't want to make anyone feel bad, and I've seen a ton of posts here over the years as a reader about how people lost everything due to a change at Google but the post that really stuck with me is recent and is to the effect of how someone spent years building an authority website, and I really had to restrain myself from posting "It's too bad you didn't spend years building an authority brand..." and I'm almost certain I'll get "blow back" for this post, but there's a big difference in my opinion between an "authority website" and an "authority brand", because to paraphrase tedster, "Google needs authority brands...", but do they need every "authority website"? In my opinion, that's another story, so back to the first half of this post and the question I think many who want to stay in this business need to answer rephrased a bit:
How do you build an authority brand out of your website?
Matt Cutt always say benefits Google, he always defending what Google does. Why his word have value anymore and why waste time discussing what he says? He no more than spin person.
Google love big brands because big brand spend big money on Adwords. We see that Google say that sites that pay are more relevant, and Google is making more money, always. [searchengineland.com...] Pay to play, but no waste time to discuss what Cutt say, zero value for me.
|Best thing I ever saw Tedster write. He nailed the subject in that one statement. Google doesn't NEED SMALL BUSINESS all is rewired to pleasing the big brands. |
Well, I already commented about this, but I feel if this idea keeps getting reiterated, then I need to keep replying to it.
Google is currently winning the search engine market because its achievements are hard to copy. It has a HUGE unique index - it has a superior breadth, depth and indexing speed to any other search engine. It HAS this, but it seems to be shrinking it down as each month goes by (shrinking it certainly for commercial searches). If Google refine commercial searches down to the top 10,000 biggest e-commerce stores (with the odd small business site tossed in), it loses its USP - it becomes a search engine that's a LOT easier to copy for commercial searches - indexing the top 10,000 biggest e-commerce stores is far easier than indexing the entire internet (from a competitor to Google's perspective). Google are suddenly easier to copy. And worse - easier to copy for COMMERCIAL searches (their cash cow). That's a scary prospect for Google. And yet, Google still index far more than what they present in most one or two keyword commercial searches. So they're putting in those efforts and expenditure, yet presenting us with an ever-shrinking internet.
I'd argue that it's the smaller businesses that are more important to Google than the bigger ones. The smaller businesses are the proof that Google are superior to Bing and Yahoo! - when you find that boutique store that would have been impossible without using Google, then you realise how great Google is. That's the JOB of a search engine. To scour the ENTIRE web and give you relevant results. When you're presented with big and well-known e-commerce stores for generic one or two keyword searches each and every time, that experience is SO much easier for a Google competitor to copy.
|They look at value add, etc. Faster, better, better UI, content, etc. |
Positively applied to niche's, how many folks can see opportunities to beat brands within these words?