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Google Updates and SERP Changes - May 2014
chalkywhite



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 1:18 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)


System: The following 17 messages were cut out of thread at: http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4659095.htm [webmasterworld.com] by brotherhood_of_lan - 11:06 am on May 1, 2014 (utc -5)


I know its Labour Day around the world but my god is quiet today, wouldnt be surprised if an update has rolled out also.

 

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 1:47 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

@chalkywhite

Where are you? I'm not seeing anything unusual here (UK), although a (PR2) gumtree.com page is now at #7 for my main key term. So much for quality...

simonmc

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 2:01 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

@wilburforce

The gumtree page is most effeminately the result of it being one of the least penalized for that search.

Google ranking is based on a sliding scale of penalization which means the best result for a search can quite easily be buried behind many others also penalized.

It would be nice if google would explain to itīs user base (the customers) that the position a page appears in the results has no baring on relevancy. That would be an honest thing for them to do.

Itīs OK to have your search engine ranking pages based on least punished but I donīt think it is fair to dupe the public who use the search engine into thinking that the position of the result is based on closest relevancy to the search.

If you ask anyone who has nothing to do with business on the internet but uses google to search, if they think the number 1 result is the most relevant to the search (without them actually rating the result)they would hand on heart tell you that google is the best and the number 1 result is the most relevant.

That is one hell of a marketing success for google.

Whether itīs true or not does not seem to matter. Thatīs the real tragedy in all this. The public are happy to be duped because in the grand scheme of things, a search engine is pretty low down on their priority list for giving a hoot.

Anyway, that explains why a gumtree ad is number 7 and also all the other sad results that are getting churned out. It wonīt change soon either because the public really donīt care.

chalkywhite



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 2:04 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

@Wilburforce

Im uk based but the site is worldwide, spoke to a few people who have the same dip in Analytics

ColourOfSpring



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 3:25 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)


Itīs OK to have your search engine ranking pages based on least punished but I donīt think it is fair to dupe the public who use the search engine into thinking that the position of the result is based on closest relevancy to the search.


I've seen this time and again over the last 3 years. Unpunished and brand sites make up most SERPs these days. It has no bearing on quality. Being unpunished has no correlation to quality of course - often it just means the site's not on the scraper radar, which in turn often means the site's not very popular.

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 4:18 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Unpunished and brand sites make up most SERPs these days.


Yes, Penguin in particular seems to have had this effect, but a lot of webmasters (including me) have done quite a lot to overcome it, and in my sector a couple of older page 1 sites have slowly regained position. My own site - for years dominant on page 1 - was massively penalised, predominately for wholly organic links, and a lot of remedial measures (including a BIG disavowal) seem to have gradually restored it to its current postion in the top half of page 2. One of my main SERPS and business competitors has also recovered to the bottom of page 1.

The current results in my sector are therefore comprised of some unpunished sites - mostly, as you observe, not very popular (lacking in both backlinks and content) - together with a few of the older, better sites slowly rising from a long period at the bottom of the SERPS. I think my own site's position has also been helped by the failure in January of a business that locally started infringing my trade mark in 2010.

Traffic and conversions are not yet reflecting the gradual SERPS recovery (my site is still at less than 20% of 2011 Google referrals), and it isn't clear where the traffic and the business is now going.

I'll be submitting another disavowal in the near future - if clients can't find me it looks like every spammer and his brother can - but other factors are also coming into play. In particular, I think we ignore the mobile-friendly movement at our peril, and this brings a whole host of design and content factors in its wake.

luckystrike

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 4:50 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

ok here's my finding

first of all i concur with MrSavage - my authority sites of 10 years or so have practically been demoted to nothingness and I've been suffering for 2 years now.

Yesterday I was searching for duplicate content. I found content on a page I have which had been pirated on some 100 blogger pages and I had to dig them one after the other to report them. My original page ranked first for the sentence I searched for, then came all the 100 google blogs and you can imagine the pain having to open and copy the URL one after the other to report them. At the end of the 100 blog pages I found a duplicate page with my content on a third party site (not blogger) - this was one I had authorised many, many years ago. For me this is flagrant proof that Google blatantly favours its own properties for ranking over third party sites.

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 5:15 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

@luckystrike

By far the greatest number of infringements of my copyright have been posted on Google-hosted pages of one kind or another (it seems to be one of the hallmarks of Google's "war on spam" that what is most worth stealing is penalised most heavily: perhaps it should be called the "war on content").

However, they have been very quick and efficient in removing any infringing material I have brought to their attention. In my case, the infringement has often been self-evident, as infringers often seem to copy and paste internal links along with the content (thus earning you a spam penalty in the process).

netmeg

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 5:42 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

(Why are the time stamps here all messed up?)


Mod's note: As I understand it, the server went down for a while and when it came back, it had the wrong time stamp, which took a few hours to reset.
.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 6:31 pm (utc) on May 1, 2014]

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 6:11 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Not in my case, if you mean an Unnatural Links notification in WMT. However, I was hit by the first iteration of Penguin, and it was clearly (algorithmically) link-based. I think top slot sites were a prime target, as many of these (my own included) attracted a mass of unsolicited links from people trying to gain authority by linking to them.

Shepherd



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 6:14 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

I am interested to know if everyone who's once top slot site now considered not worthy have all been hit with the unnatural links penalty?


Can't speak for everyone but in our case, yes. WMT unnatural link manual action coupled with penguin.

RedBar

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 6:43 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Im uk based but the site is worldwide, spoke to a few people who have the same dip in Analytics


Add me to that list

first of all i concur with MrSavage - my authority sites of 10 years or so have practically been demoted to nothingness and I've been suffering for 2 years now.


It's been the death slide to obscurity for a totally unknown reason(s).

Whatever it is I shall remember long after Google has gone and never trust anyone or thing like them ever again...how's that for your legacy Google, total and utter untrustworthiness?

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 2:43 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

@Shepherd

How far would you say the Unnatural Links notice was justified?

Try a scale of 1-10 where 1 = no link building/posting at all, 10 = masses of self-posted/paid links or exchanges.

Anyone else's input would also be informative.

In my case I would put it at about 2: I had created links in a couple of industry-specific directories plus a couple of "usual suspects" (e.g. BT and Yellow Pages), but of thousands of links I had direct responsibility for less than 10.

IanTurner

WebmasterWorld Administrator ianturner us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 4:01 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

UK Based - Global Interest - Traffic slightly lower than usual - but nothing I think couldn't be put down to 1st May holidays.

simonmc

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 4:16 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Outside of running an internet business, nobody cares what google does. Like you say it is just a search engine.

On a scale of 1 to 10 of important things in peoples lives, google would not even register. Itīs a wonderful business they have when you think about it. They have built a brand based on a positive marketing message and then flipped it on itīs head without anyone batting an eyelid. That is really clever. Honest and ethical? You be the judge but the Jury went home suffering from apathy.

EditorialGuy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 7:22 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Getting back to the topic at hand, it's early to be judging Google updates and SERP changes for May, since the month is only a few hours old. Still, I'm pleased to see that our traffic for today is running almost exactly the same as it did on Thursday of last week, despite May 1 being a holiday in so many countries.

It will be interesting to see what, if anything, May brings in terms of "Google updates and SERP changes." It's been quite a while since the last big Panda or Penguin update.

BlueDanube



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 9:15 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Seeing a site slapped by G just after 9pm GMT tonight. Site still #1 for brand term but all inner pages slapped between 40 and 200 places. Could be an early sign of something roiling out (UK).

GreenDog18



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 10:43 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Something seems to be going on... Everytime I run a ranking report I get dramatic changes. US info site.

Jez123

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 8:19 am on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

something roiling out (UK).


Penguin perhaps? Seems like it's due. I'm not seeing anything though

Shepherd



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 10:08 am on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

@wilburforce
How far would you say the Unnatural Links notice was justified?

Try a scale of 1-10 where 1 = no link building/posting at all, 10 = masses of self-posted/paid links or exchanges.


10 (ten)

andreiut



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 10:10 am on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

hello, seems that my website also disappeared from first page on multiple keywords.. so something it's going on :( .. this is very strange, 1 month my website it's on first page.. then next month vanished...and i have a clean website, no penalties.. what could it be? thanks

simonmc

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 11:25 am on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

@andreiut

How old is your site? If it is new, sounds like the honeymoon is over.

andreiut



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 11:32 am on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

2 years old.. and this happened several times on panda updates or refreshes.. sometimes the website was back again on first page and sometimes vanished.. so i don't know why. :|

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 1:06 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

@andreiut

Have you any new/recent backlinks?

andreiut



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 1:18 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

hi, i think i have like 10 new backlinks from other sites.. could that be the issue ?

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 1:44 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

hi, i think i have like 10 new backlinks from other sites.. could that be the issue ?


Probably not if it is only 10, but a lot will depend on the links themseves. Matters for concern would include:

1. All using identical or very similar anchor-text
2. Low relevance on the linking page
3. Links being cloaked or hidden on the linking page.

If you achieved your first-page position without them, it will be fairly to disavow them, but if they have caused the drop it will be some time (months) before disavowal has any effect.

If multiple keywords are affected it is likely to be a site-wide condition (rather than something simple like a keyword-density issue). If you have made any recent changes you may need to think about those.

andreiut



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 2:07 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

thanks, as i didn't made any recent changes to the site it must be the backlinks. i can now find the website on page 10, but not the main domain.. it just shows a different page on the domain like domain.com/article as i'm using wordpress..

Mentat

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 4:35 pm on May 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

Since 27 April I saw another down spiral.
It seems that I have wildly different position for terms in local searches.

I've tested with the main culprits: google.com/google.de/google.fr/google.co.uk

It's like different search engines.

My site is english, with international target.

Now, I cannot get any conclusion, as 1st of may means a 4 day long weekend for half of the world!

Wilburforce

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 5:02 pm on May 4, 2014 (gmt 0)

It seems that I have wildly different position for terms in local searches.


I have noticed that for some time. The problem is that the results do not seem to differentiate well between businesses that are very locally-based (e.g. plumbers and carpenters), those with almost no local component (e.g. ecom or tourism).

samwest



 
Msg#: 4667620 posted 1:37 pm on May 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

Anyone else notice a huge drop in search queries (as shown in webmaster tools, Search Traffic > Search Queries) starting on about 4/21/2014? I was at 6k+ / day, but since have plummeted to 1.4k /day. Hardly worth having a dedicated server anymore.

This 434 message thread spans 15 pages: 434 ( [1] 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... 15 > >
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