tedster - 4:19 pm on Mar 5, 2011 (gmt 0)
I can not accept that my serp drop has got anything to do with my site's content, design, code etc. The only reason is not paying Google for my traffic.
It's very easy to have that reaction when your site loses traffic. Webmasters began "taking it personally" in this way pretty much since the Adwords program was launched.
My experience tells me that it's just not true - the various departments in Google do not coordinate in this way. In fact, they sometimes accidentally work at counter purposes, for instance when the organic search team first tried Ajax results and broke the tracking that Google Analytics depends on.
But more than that, any short term gains that this kind of "muscle" would generate would hurt Google in the long term. Google prefers long term thinking more than most companies do. Organic search is the key to Google's current success, and they don't sacrifice that for short term gain.
My current take is that we have a new algo that IS misfiring in many cases - more than we've seen in any update I can remember. Google apparently knows that, too. They are asking for examples of false positives [webmasterworld.com] - a rather public admission that the new algo has problems.
I've worked with a lot of websites. There's not one that couldn't use some more work. This is a good time to hone your skills at analysis and tune up your site - even as you hope that "layer 2" of this new algo gives you back your traffic.