garyr_h - 8:04 am on Jan 24, 2012 (gmt 0)
I think it was Panda on Jan 4 and Jan 19.
Jan 4: Duplicate content recalculation/modification.
Jan 14: Link value modification.
Jan 19: Above the fold ads taken more into account for ranking.
January 4 was a huge change for my site. January 14 went by like another day. And January 19 seemed to help a little bit.
Here's what I'm seeing after January 19 for a very competitive keyword:
Rank 1: Homepage of the same website that has been there the past 2 years. Two large ads (160x600 and 768x90) above the fold. Content is all user generated (at least, there's different authors on just about everything). Not sure how the owner got it, as there's no where to enter the content.
Rank 2: Same website as site 1, just an interior page.
Rank 3: Homepage of a website that has been bouncing around for the past year from page 3 to page 1. This site has about 99% of pages as user generated. The owner seemed to take off their large ad at the top and place a smaller ad in the middle.
Rank 4: A homepage. I have only seen this website over the past 2 months in the first 4 pages. Uses the 800x600 resolution for their design and yet still has 2 large ads (768x60 and 300x250) above the fold. Very little actual content.
Rank 5: Another homepage. This one also has two large ads (although one of the ads is about only 3/4ths showing) both 768x90 and 160x600). Site has been on page 1 for 2 years.
Rank 6: Interior page of site 5. Same ad structure.
Rank 7: Another homepage. Two large ads with another one 9/10ths off the side of the page (design mistake that the webmaster hasn't bothered to fix). Very little actual content, less than 10% when you take away logo, search engine, logo.
Rank 8: A homepage. This website appeared around the same time Panda did last February and it's been on the 1st page ever since. No ads above the fold, but also no content besides links with anchor text and text-images.
Rank 9: A homepage. The first time I have ever seen this website anywhere, even Google's PR box says it has a PR of 0. It's a blog (the only one). It's been around for about 1 1/2 years. It's *extremely* keyword stuffed and is virtually unreadable. Looks like they just stuck a bunch of random words together and included the keywords in. I actually don't even know the point of this blog. It has no ads and nothing to sell. But yet, it is ranked here in a highly competitive keyword.
Rank 10: Finally another interior page. Designed for 800x600 resolution. One vertical ad box in the middle of 120x600. Content: 50%. Site is 7 years old and is rarely updated.
7/10 are now homepages. 2/10 are secondary listings. 1/10 is an interior page.
7/10 have the exact keywords in the domain. 9/10 have at least one word from the keyword phrase in the domain. 1/10 have no keywords in the domain.
No duplicate content on any of the websites.
I've been seeing the first two on basically all my keywords. Strong domain name presence with the homepages always ranking high.
I'm seeing some signals which don't match up, such as rank #9. I have no idea what to think about it.
This is a huge money keyword (at least for this particular industry).
My website dropped out of the top 10 during 1st Panda, went to page 4 for the homepage and then dropped off to page 10. Went back to page 4, and now a completely different webpage is ranking around page 5 in the SERPs.
Is anyone else seeing anything even like this? Homepages seem to be taking over and it definitely isn't the best thing to rank for these keywords. Users will have some clicking to do on these sites.