|New Google page 2 over-optimization penalty|
First post in this section for years but thought I would share this one :)
I am playing with some super competitive niches now and have noticed a new penalty on my site and those of my competitors.
What Google has done is basically fill up page one with the authority BBC, CNN, Wikipedia nonsense sites so maybe 2 or 3 commercial sites with enough trust can get to page 1. With these niches you keep on having to build links, of course keeping exact anchor down to a minimum. Then at any given moment you can be in the top spot and be thrown to the top of page 2 and remain there. Whatever you do from then on will not help, it will even hinder your progress.
This is not a coincidence as after the latest authority site update I have seen this on quite a few sites. The only way around this penalty is to 404 the page and start a new one. If you have a source of many backlinks, good for you but if you have to beg your linking partners to change URLS, then it is tough.
The good from this is that instead of penalizing whole sites now, Google does individual pages. A move that is welcomed. The only way to get a site whacked completely now is exact anchor and the dreaded WMT message.
Crush - Welcome back to the forum.
|...at any given moment you can be in the top spot and be thrown to the top of page 2 and remain there. Whatever you do from then on will not help, it will even hinder your progress. |
Your observation that whatever you do "will even hinder your progress" rings a bell. It describes what I'd expect, if...
a) Google's rank modification patent were in place and...
b) you were tripping it via something that looked marginally spammy.
Discussion about that patent here...
Google's Rank Modifying Patent for Spam Detection
It's as if what you've done to boost your rankings has gone over a fuzzy line, and Google, to get a handle on whether you're trying to manipulate rankings, may be testing you to see what you'll do next.
I'm guessing that the best thing to do is to leave it alone... though that in itself might be enough of a departure from previous patterns that Google might guess it's playing chess with someone who's read the patent. ;)
I'd also build some content, and do some brand building and "buzz", and let the links take care of themselves.
Hi there, Crush:
|"What Google has done is basically fill up page one with the authority BBC, CNN, Wikipedia nonsense sites so maybe 2 or 3 commercial sites with enough trust can get to page 1." |
I don't know if this helps, but I have seen this with non-competitive terms.
I have also seen people rank in the top few results when they have a "personal" page on ebay or on amazon with a username made up of the keywords.
I have also come across a few examples where a site with authority would rank for a term with EXCEPTIONALLY thin content that LINKS TO a page with good content.
So imagine if someone wrote a great article on a particular topic. It would rank number two, below a BBC page that said: Joe Schmoe wrote a really great article about an excellent topic. You can read the full article here [link to Joe Schmoe's article]
Seriously, I have seen several of those, and I have not even tried looking.
It seems that AUTHORITY is cranked WAY UP in the algo, and content value is cranked way down...
I'm not convinced that you are sent directly to page two when this happens, I believe you are sent below the sites that have been hand picked and grandfathered in which *may* be anywhere from 2-3 sites to 10+ depending on niche popularity.
I continually see this in one niche where my newer pages bounce from top spot within 2-4 days of reaching it to then linger in positions 4-6 regardless of effort. I do make a concerted effort to get new pages a lot of attention which is how they rank so well with little history but the drop is expected without fail.
If it helps, my site is informational and I do not attempt to compete with product buy search terms. In my case the 'big brand' sites are well known including wikipedia and two wall st listed companies that produce medium-low quality guides. I can handle automatically being behind wikipedia to a certain degree but the other two... not so much.
JS_Harris, pretty much. I think you continually need to make newer pages. One guy who I spoke to last night in the same niche said interestingly his new pages rank best. Probably best to leave the old ones alone.
"One guy who I spoke to last night in the same niche said interestingly his new pages rank best."
Have to admit that is interesting and disheartening - at the same time.
I am having a bear of a time getting newer pages to rank... which ain't good news because my older pages are dropping like rain...
We have a similar issue, older pages have dropped out of site and whats worse is scrapper sites are picking them up and getting full credit.. A huge bug in google if you as me. We have published the date on our pages.
As for the page 2 penalty I have setup a link to us page and i think too many people took me up on it, I Sit #1 on page 2 for both terms. For my article section which is getting hammered right now.