tedster - 9:58 pm on Dec 30, 2010 (gmt 0)
So very few people have been reporting this effect that it really makes me wonder if we got it right. As I mentioned in another thread, traffic turning on and off, taken on its own, sounds more like DNS Cache Poisoning [webmasterworld.com] than something Google is doing.
On the other hand, a sustained level of traffic with wide variations in country of origin, or even alternating between strong conversions and poor conversions - that might well be Google if it occurs over a large enough sample size.
There's a certain appeal to targeting Google in situations like this, but we really don't have a "smoking gun" so far - nothing that rules out non-Google explanations.
For some solid data, take another look at drall's account here: [webmasterworld.com...] for a site with a PR 8 home page. Yet even that could be accounted for by some black-hat DNS cache games.
As I see it, Google can't throttle traffic (clicks) unless they are also cycling a ranking position off and on - but not one of these reports has caught this happening. Does anyone have anything like that to report?