diberry - 10:54 pm on Apr 3, 2013 (gmt 0)
Netmeg, but it's the SERPs that often determine who Joe User trusts, as in the case of eHow. If Google doesn't take steps to fix that feedback loop, then yes, they are handing an advantage to better funded sites. Even if the algo doesn't explicitly rank "brands" higher. That was my point.
Tedster, I understand that, but there are queries where people prefer small, independent websites. Like product reviews, opinions, Mommy blogging, non-mainstream social topics, etc. In these queries, I see a dismaying number of corporate sites lacking relevant content on the topics outranking the sites that actually know what they're talking about. In these cases, I think there is room for improvement.
Additionally, even in the medical vertical, a LOT of people are looking for "alternative" viewpoints because Western medicine has totally failed them and their only option is to search beyond what Mayo Clinic is reporting from studies. These queries tend to be topped by brands AND spam.