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Google Updates and SERP Changes - December 2013
Martin Ice Web

 1:31 pm on Dec 1, 2013 (gmt 0)

System: The following 3 messages were cut out of thread at: http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4620994.htm [webmasterworld.com] by aakk9999 - 3:08 am on Dec 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

@wilburforce, google says the the 404s are linked from a page that has been deleted two years ago. The links on this page are not up to date. google keeps this links in their robots database even if you 410 them.
Very big problem here.



 5:09 pm on Dec 18, 2013 (gmt 0)

But a lot of random queries I do as a searcher are bringing up results that are either badly mismatched or seem random.

I noticed the same thing a couple of days ago when I was searching for health-related information. Instead of the usual in-depth pages from the Mayo Clinic, WebMD, and other trustworthy sources, the top 10 search results were dominated by forum threads and pages written by amateurs or quacks. It was almost as if Google had turned the "subject authority" dial down to zero just to see what might happen.


 8:18 pm on Dec 18, 2013 (gmt 0)

A UK site I help look after has taken another big knock on many keywords in the last day or so. Google traffic looks like it'll be down 35% today.

Between manufacturers and the obligatory Amazon/Ebay/Argos/Tesco results (sometimes regardless of whether they even mention the actual search term on the page), it doesn't leave much room for anybody else who's in e-commerce. :-(


 10:15 am on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

My site is falling again since yesterday, a lot less visitors as usual....Not sure if it's Google or xmas....observing situation


 10:32 am on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

This morning I find a couple of Google referrals in my server log (from yesterday) with mis-spelt/synonym-based queries. On checking, my respective pages - in one case with no exact match for the most important word - come up on page 1.

It looks, therefore, as if they are again upping the relevance of assumed meaning over term-matching. It is obviously too soon to say whether this is testing or an update. Is anyone else seeing anything similar?


 11:27 am on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

For a few searches i saw results with no keyword in page source, but with synonyms.

Also, for one search I see many results from a single domain, most of them useless (repetitive or spammy/dupes pages from "authorities"). For different niches, only stackoverflow is useful with multiple results in top, but i would like to see other sites too.

Martin Ice Web

 12:41 pm on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Big Shuffle again this night. We see a sever drop again from what is left.
Some of our pages got a boost from #10 to #1 ! Major amount of pages got killed for unrelated brands or absolut niche widgets that are only touching the original query.
So orgnanics 1-2 out of 10 are usefull. Shopping ads are 8 out of 10 usefull.
Who ever would thought that they do something like that 8(


 2:48 pm on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

I will concur on yet another big drop in traffic over the past 24 hours. It's as if they just pulled the plug. Everything shut down yesterday afternoon. 47% mobile! That's a new record.


 3:50 pm on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

I have noticed shifts in my Google rankings. One of my primary keywords (that was ranked for one of my interior pages) was ranked #5 in Google last month. Now the homepage is ranked #8 for that same keyword and the interior page is ranked #13 on the second page. This shifts back and forth, so I will see the interior page ranked #8 periodically.


 10:34 pm on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

All of my sites drop down significantly over the last week and all of them is without any err in WMT, they worked very well over the all year.

For the other hand, a dozen of sites wich are doing black hat are going up significantly.

Any observations about that?

menntarra 34

 11:26 pm on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Well i may open a bottle of champagne , cause today i had the best day since August. Something definitely going on!
It's about 8-10% up in unique traffic.
I hope it stays this way.
ps.: My site has nothing to do with Christmas. So that is not the case for sure.


 11:31 pm on Dec 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

I've seen a nice jump today. (PVs are up nearly 20 percent over the same day last week, thanks mostly to better-targeted landing pages, with Google referrals up slightly as well.)

Martin Ice Web

 9:05 am on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

It is getting worse now. Refs from Google are now less then 95% then before this Quality update. My niche is now occupied by 5 big resellers on the first result page.
Every single search Shows them in a slight different order. All of them have only manufacturer description on their pages. Now extras or what makes a site "compelling". It is sheer linkpower and brandpower. All other ecoms are gone.

ecom, germany

carlos the jackal

 9:15 am on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

I have the same as Martin - all independent retailers are gone until page 4 now in our niche.

Ecom, UK.

Martin Ice Web

 10:43 am on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

It very quiet here for this massive changes to the bad.
Maybe you are confident with the current serps?


 11:07 am on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

Nothing has changed much in my (UK niche service) sector, but there are no big retail chains in it. The odd occasional search term does bring them in, however (usually with almost no relevance at all).

WMT is still finding "first discovered" December 2013 internal 404 link errors for referring pages that haven't contained the offending link since January, and a competitor who ceased trading in 2011 is still doing better than I am in the SERPS (I'm not quite sure why the site is displaying at all, but nothing on it has changed in over two years).

If (very) obsolete data are being factored into the current SERPS, it is impossible to get any clear idea of what accounts for them.


 11:08 am on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

I'm not seeing any huge changes on my SERPs apart from one competit9or has dropped a bit for one of his terms - and only one as far as I can see.

Martin Ice Web

 12:08 pm on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

So it must be our niche or our site. We are down to 5%! within two days now. Changed nothing. Only Thing we notice is that a silly Domain put 159 links to us. But MC said that coundīt hurt your site. HA!


 4:29 pm on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

Since about Dec 9 I've been seeing big fluctuations in our keyword positions daily (massive increases and decreases for the same keywords changing each day). If Panda is still a 10 day rollout, then maybe this roller coaster will be coming to a stop soon.

Although I haven't liked the overall downward trend I've seen in our rankings. The past few days many our demoted positions have been slowly creeping back up, but not quite to where they were.


 10:22 pm on Dec 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

my site is education and so naturally I'm getting hammered right now. not related to google I am sure


 7:15 am on Dec 24, 2013 (gmt 0)

I also found fluctuation in my serps since 19th DEC. Initially in the second week of December we were ranking good for some of our keywords, but now that keywords aren't appearing in Google search. The strange thing that i found is for some keywords Google shows only main domain in all 10 pages in the search. While before 19th same keywords were showing interior pages for many competitors with main domains of others. And I've seen this type of search result first time in my search career.

I don't know whats wrong with Google. Is there any problem with tracking tools or Google is having some hidden update?


 4:30 pm on Dec 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

The SERPs for my niche are still a complete mess, and more so this week in some cases. For some of them, where before the SERP was completely e-com sites, there are now informational sites mixed in about the product. And not just news, but other sites as well. These SERPs are now even worse than six months ago.

I am absolutely bewildered about what's going on. Google is either trying to de-commercialize these SERPs to some extent, is "cleaning house," or the algo is just borked.


 6:08 pm on Dec 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

Things have been pretty steady for us, but Googlebot has been on amphetamines lately, and we've been getting thousands of Google referrals each day from Google.com, Google.de, Google.co.uk, Google.co.in, and other Google domains. (These appear to be bots of some kind, since the average visit is only 7 to 8 seconds with 12 to 14 page views.) More details here:



 6:30 pm on Dec 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

or the algo is just borked.

Almost completely in my sector, Google seems to be in love with one of their near-door, start-up neighbours and is delivering their site for most searches even though most of what they deliver is completely incorrect.

And when I write incorrect I mean as bad as someone searching for "white widgets" the SERPs displays "white widgets" yet when clicking through it is "black widgets", "red widgets", "green widgets" etc and even when eventually locating "white widgets" both the information given and the images shown are totally and utterly incorrect ... farcical, this would be the worst "knowledge engine" ever.

And, of course, this misinformation carries on into their image SERPs. For my widgets Bing gets their results pretty accurate but now I have to say that their image SERPs are just as bad. Google's image search used to be fantastic, these days it seems to be anything is delivered but the correct results.


 2:46 am on Jan 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

The following message was cut out to new thread by aakk9999. New thread at: google/4634995.htm [webmasterworld.com]
4:37 am on Jan 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

This 174 message thread spans 6 pages: < < 174 ( 1 2 3 4 5 [6]
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