freejung - 9:53 pm on Jun 10, 2011 (gmt 0)
I think the Panda algo can tell who is making solid attempts to shore up their foundations, and make solid sites..and who are just throwing over a tarp and painting it to look like roof tiles
That might depend on whether you had solid foundations to begin with.
I think you have to start by taking an honest look in the mirror and deciding whether you are a false positive or a true positive. Nobody likes to admit that their content is "shallow" but you probably know that it is.
In my niche, that involves an aesthetic judgment call as to the quality of my own work, which is hard to make. My visitors seem to like it, many give me positive feedback. I'm going to assume for the time being that I'm a false positive, because otherwise I may as well get out of my niche altogether, and I'm not ready to do that yet.
If you're a real positive, then yeah, you'd probably better rework your site and your business model from the ground up, as if you were starting over from zero. Keep the domain for the link juice, but essentially build a new site on it. Otherwise, maybe you can find some trick to get around this particular algo change, but the odds are good that sooner or later G will find a way to correctly identify you.
But if you're a false positive, what do you do? I can't just re-create my content, it took years to accumulate what I have so that idea is a non-starter.
However, I have to admit that because I use adsense and get lots of search traffic, I've adopted a number of tactics commonly used by MFA sites. There's a reason those sites use those tactics: they make more money. I had ads above the fold and content below. I fixed that and a few other things of that nature.
However, that's exactly the sort of superficial, cosmetic change that MFAs are probably making to try to escape the net. So by your logic that won't work.
So what to do? I have a plan to radically revamp my URL structure, but I'm not ready to pull the trigger on it yet. I've thought about it a lot, and the structure I have now actually makes sense. I have separate URLs for each item and it would be fairly easy to consolidate them onto the category pages -- but they should have their own URL, particularly because of the Facebook Open Graph, which expects an "object" to have its own URL. Most of my items have "likes," some have quite a few -- do I just ditch those and delete the URLs in a possibly vain attempt to please Google? That seems silly, and it won't do a thing for my visitors, they probably don't even notice whether each item is on its own URL or not and I can't imagine them caring even if they did notice.
I said before that I don't like making changes just for Google that don't help visitors. So for now I'm going to sit tight and see what happens.
The only other thing I can think to do is post a lot of new content. I can do that, I have content in the queue. It'll take time, but it's worth doing in and of itself so that's probably the way to go.