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This 34 message thread spans 2 pages: 34 ( [1] 2 > >     
Lowest Earnings In Two Years!
SERPs mess up doesn't help though

 6:54 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Ok, many of us expected the Xmas period to be lower, much lower with how the holidays have fallen, however with the major problems many are reporting in the Google SERPs, my earnings are at their lowest in more than two years.

Xmas Day 2005 is looking positively huge compared to what I am seeing today, Xmas Eve, and the past two days have been a couple of my lowest on record ever.

I guess Santa G ain't bringing me any pressies tonight nor in the New Year?

How are your metrics looking?



 7:14 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Traffic from google is reduced to half.
Although rankings are same.


 7:25 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

I hope they sort out your ranking problem before too long.
If sites like yours cannot survive the vagaries of the Google SERPS, then there's little hope for the rest of us.


 9:16 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Indeed, it's not as if your business is MFA!

Goodness, how many m^2 of marble does it take to differentiate your business from a scraper! B^>




 10:11 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Goodness, how many m^2 of marble does it take to differentiate your business from a scraper!

Hahaha...anyway, the interesting thing is that me, nor my competitors are being replaced by MFAs or scrapers.

90+% are now Alibaba-type directory sites of one genre or another.

I've come to a rationalisation about this tonight (UK time) therefore consider this about any keyword and the way the algo may be working right now in my sector for which there are thousands of producers world wide and tens of thousands more wholesalers and retailers.

Site 1 has all the information about the keyword and apart from great SEO includes images, technical information etc etc, the usual accepted authority site.

Site 2 has hundreds, if not thousands, of independent 1-10 page sites all using the same keyword, similar keyword images however not much more information other than contact etc etc...

Now if you were to select which sites you were to present as results would you choose:

a) The authority site
b) The site with loads of seemingly similar pages with loads of different offers

I can see what's happened, can Google?

Joe Surfer will soon click away with his mouse if they don't rectify it unless, of course, you actually want to trawl through all those similar results!


 10:20 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

I just had a 4 yr old site disappear completely from the index for 30 days in November, and there was nothing shady or broken that caused it on my end either. The bad thing is that there is no way to communicate with these people either. But, since this past November, something has been amiss with G for a lot of people.


 11:40 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

I somehow managed to post this in another thread by accident, so here goes again:

Traffic is fine. No problems with Google SERPs. EPC for December is down somewhat compared to the same period last year, though. Could the dollar's fall be partly responsible? I'm thinking it may be a factor for sites that have a lot of international advertisers and traffic.


 11:48 pm on Dec 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

All of the metrics here seem to be within a reasonable range taking into account the expected diminution in traffic during the holiday season. Relative traffic trends for December 1-23 are graphing in a similar fashion to last year.

The only metric which is a bit out of sync is ECPM. ECPM seems to have softened a bit towards the end of this month - and is significantly lower than last year when ECPM was unexpectedly strong. Earnings are, however, stronger this year because lower EPC has been more than counterbalanced by increased traffic.

I have not experienced any Google SERP problems - at least not yet.


 12:02 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

efv & calman

Good to hear your metrics have been holding up. Undoubtedly Xmas occuring after a weekend has had an enormous influence on traffic levels for businesses that do not focus on Xmas business and I bet even they have done nothing either

Keep an eye open for any sudden reduction in traffic however since it's been four days now from the very weird 20th "update", you are probably clear of any damage.

Whatever it is they're doing I'm glad they're doing it at my quietest time of year!


 12:18 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

November and December have been really odd, which seems to be normal for my site. This year my eCPM is up more than my traffic is down, so the money is fine, not great, but ok.


 1:26 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

Since yesterday, my site experience almost 35% drop in page display, and it came along with the revenue also.

Maybe this is due to year end holiday.


 2:16 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

Opti I feel your pain. My earning are down 79% on the same period last month. I was hit by this current SERPs debacle on the 28th November so I have had nearly a month of this now.

During times like these it is apparent that Google control a disgusting share of worldwide search and this scares me now more than ever.

To make matters worse no PIP has been posted yet either for November Adsense earnings.

I can honestly say that current events have darkened Xmas celebrations. No over reaction... a fact.


 3:42 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

Geez, for a change I am not feeling any pain. All my adsense metrics are pretty stable and earnings up over last year by about 15% (crossing fingers and toes), maybe more.

I haven't seen any radical changes in serps for my site, but I can offer this advice:

I was dropped during the Bourbon update and I screamed at Google loudly and often that my site was unduly penalized and that it should return #1 for certain keyphrases. The title for one page in particular was an exact match for the search term and highly relevant and an authority in the field - it was completely dropped out. After numerous complaints, many emails, and some pretty serious accusations of incompetence, my site was returned to the top of the search engines for most relevant searches and has stayed there. My traffic came back, as did my adsense income.

So, in a nutshell, my advice is to contact Google and insist that they straighten out their mess. It makes no sense that a site ranked in the top 5, say, should completely fall out. Make your case and don't give up. If a highy relevant page was near the top and now it's gone, specifically point it out to them. My experience proved the old adage about the squeaky wheel getting the oil.

Good luck and be firm. They make money off your site, as it is, so it's in their interest to get it right.


 4:22 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

the old adage about the squeaky wheel getting the oil.

yep, but keep in mind that if the wheel squeeks toooooo damn much, it might just get thrown out!


 7:16 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

I have a 6 year old site and ranks many valuable keywords on G first page in my nich. Beginning several days ago, suddently all those keywords gone and my traffic has dropped more than 50%, my adsense earning drop from $200~300 per day to about $50 per day. I have been through serveral major google updates before yet manage to recover eventually. This time is definitely worst I ever see, not sure will be so luck to get back like last several times!


 8:37 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

I have a sinking feeling this CHRISTMAS. I hope New Year will be better. Last 7 days have been BAD. Things are picking up very very slowly.


 9:11 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

Traffic is fine. No problems with Google SERPs. EPC for December is down somewhat compared to the same period last year, though. Could the dollar's fall be partly responsible? I'm thinking it may be a factor for sites that have a lot of international advertisers and traffic.

I have similar tourist sites to efv, and my results are similar for December.

Out of interest anyone in same niche as efc having problems with this "shuffle" on Google?


 9:22 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

Traffic from Google is down to less than 10% of last month, earnings are also lower.


 9:52 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

This is really weird. The only site showing a traffic dip since last week is my biggest site. It got its usual 35% drop that will last till January 2.

About half my sites got dinged last month, so maybe the just started crawling back enough to offset the holiday.

Doesn't matter either way in the grand scheme of things. I've taken the last 2 weeks of the year off anyway, so I never got paid this time of year. Everything I get from AdSense is a bonus.

John Carpenter

 11:28 am on Dec 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

November 20 brought us -50% eCPM and position in Google SERPS had nothing to do with that (we're still #1 for our keywords).


 5:34 am on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Don't see many SERP changes except a Black Hat competitor was just knocked down a few pegs, from #2 to #5, in the last few days. He misleads Google to believe his site has some 60,000 pages, when most all these "pages" are search strings for everything and the kitchen sink. My SERPs are stable.



 11:41 am on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

I can confirm that traffic and earnings are low for my site also.

At the start of December I thought it was due to seasonal factors, but upon comparing last year's December figures to this year's figures, I now see that the drop has been much worst during this December.

John Carpenter

 11:57 am on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Many people have confirmed that something "unusual" happened to eCPM Nov/Dec: [webmasterworld.com...]


 12:17 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Either one has been affected massively by the 20th December on-going update or one hasn't seen any effect whatsoever, it's as simple as that.

One of my 10 yr old authority core sites has been decimated by whatever is still occurring, down at least 66% in direct comparison to my others sites, whereas another core site hasn't seen a single movement.

In my sector a lot of Alibaba directory style sites have appeared and some old, useless pages from heavens knows where have been dragged up.

Considering it is a holiday period the search forum has seen an unusual amount of activity over the past 3-4 days, there were several threads running and they've now been merged and the latest Part 2 thread can be seen here:


If you're in the clear, fine, if you believe your figures are way down then you'd better catch up on what seems to have happened.

Oh, and of course, Google say very little has happened, just normal index updates!


 1:18 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

I believe mostly bad Adsense results comes from bad Google Search results; mine drop down the last Dec 20.

Joe Surfer will soon click away with his mouse if they don't rectify it unless, of course, you actually want to trawl through all those similar results!

What I heard from Joe Surfer is that "Internet is very scrappy lately". Not Google, but Internet.


 3:19 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)


I'm getting clobbered the same way. Somewhere between oct and november, my traffic dropped to a third of what it was. December's average per $$ day is below what it was in 2004 even though I've added more sites and content.

I'm noticing that for some of my day to day searches (unrelated to the topic of my sites0 , the serps are ok but for others they completely useless and filled with MFAs and scrapers.

I think that the MFAs are trying to game the system so much that google can't keep up on the serps end. Google's attempts to rectify things seem to be causing scattered collateral damage to honest sites.

Some people like EFV and others seem to be OK. There is something that google doesn't like about my sites now probably as a result of an algo change. Previously they were doing well and traffic was constantly improving.

As long as Google allows the blatant MFAs and scrapers to profit from adsense, then the MFAers and scrapers will continue to find ways to game google's serps. Google will try to stem the flow by applying algo changes that cause collateral damage. Until google addresses the cause of all this - namely that their tolerance of the MFAers and scrapers is the underlying problem, then things will spiral downhill.

I don't think that the answer for google is to keep trying to work on this as a serp issue. They have to be a little more selective in who they allow into adsense. My guess is that the bonuses for the adsense people are based on the wrong metrics. They are probably going to get their 2006 bonus based on overall adsense/adwords dollars. That's easy to measure. What is harder to measure is the longer term effect on the serps, honest publishers and adsense/adwords in general.



 4:45 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't think that the answer for google is to keep trying to work on this as a serp issue. They have to be a little more selective in who they allow into adsense.

Pandora's Box was opened in June, 2003, so it's a bit late to put the lid on. Plus, tougher entrance standards won't necessarily accomplish anything: What's to keep Samantha Scraper or Monty MFA from cobbling together a small but useful site, getting approval, and then adding a pile of made-for-AdSense pages? It seems to me that the real solution is to be less selective about who gets dumped from the AdSense program.

Example: Google could have a rule forbidding click arbitrage, and any publisher who was identified as a click arbitrageur could be dumped from the network with no ifs, ands, or buts. (Mind you, that sounds simpler than it would be in real life, because click arbitrageurs can buy traffic from any number of sources, not just from AdWords/AdSense.)

Collateral damage is another weakness of the punishment approach. Let's say that Google bans scraper sites. How does Google differentiate between a scraper and a site that's making legitimate use of, say, DMOZ data?

Google's philosophy seems to be that it's less risky (and less controversial) to starve out MFAs, scrapers, etc. than it is to ban them altogether. (It's obviously easier--and more "scalable"--to let algorithmic improvements rescue a site that's been smart-priced or pushed down in the SERPs than it is to reverse "your account is closed" decisions or manual search bans.)


 5:50 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Whilst I don't disagree with your synopsis EFV the problem is that who is going to bother investing in more time and research uploading valid and relevant pages only not to have them featured or clobbered by some whacky algo?

I appreciate it's not easy but at the same time I do not comprehend what has happened to one of my core sites on 20th December, for instance the following has happened to just one of my many pages:

1. keyword1keyword2keyword3 - nowhere to be found in the SERPs
2. keyword3keyword1keyword2 - #1

The problem that Google is now creating is that my trade advertisers don't know which sites to target because in example 1 AdWords is not available, plus I'll bet that site's wondering why they're suddenly getting so many hits for an extremely poor page!

Since my trade advertisers already appear in the general SERPs Ads it's not exactly driving Google any further traffic OTHER THAN possibly taking 100% of the revenue rather than myself earning the publisher's cut or Google trying to ramp up the CPC.

I sincerely hope that they sort out this mess soon since I can tell you this, I for one have started using other search engines because my sector is a darned joke.


 7:25 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

Traffic and earnings for December 23, 24 and 25 were all down about 50% . The good news is that todays earnings have already surpassed all those days totals so perhaps whatever happened to cause the drop, it's over.


 8:43 pm on Dec 26, 2006 (gmt 0)

perhaps whatever happened to cause the drop, it's over.

Nope, my other sites are performing as expected in comparison to each other, granted the traffic has been well down however this specific site has been hit by an "algo" or "bad data push" update.

To put it into context Core Site 1 and Core Site 2 have tracked each other for page impressions almost identically for 7 years and since 20th December Core Site 2 is 66% down on Core Site 1.

I'd say that's pretty significant.

FWIW, if I were getting the regular amount of daily visitors my earnings would be excellent, no loss in EPC nor eCPM for that matter, just that Core Site 2 has been hammered for an unknown reason.

And, of course, according to Matt Cutts on behalf of Google:

I know for a fact that there havenít been any major algorithm updates to our scoring in the last few days, and I believe the only data refreshes have been normal (index updates).

Yeah, it's completely "normal" for my site to lose 66% of it's traffic!

I also notice the inclusion of "believe"...:-)

Should we change that to "insofar as I have been informed"?

This 34 message thread spans 2 pages: 34 ( [1] 2 > >
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