---- Google Updates and SERP Changes - August 2013
Wilburforce - 3:04 am on Aug 20, 2013 (gmt 0)
I work in very competitive spaces, so maybe Google has paid a little extra attention to the results.
I think it goes further than paying extra attention: I think the algorithm changes are modelled on the areas where traffic volume is greatest (i.e. very competitive spaces).
Google's changes are probably most effective in those areas, as there are much larger bodies of data - both in general and from specific sites - from which to derive predictions about what is spam and what is not, and about what searchers are looking for.
In niche and less populated sectors, however, the current results appear to predict spam and/or manipulation very poorly. They return relevance and quality for short-term searches much less effectively than they did two years ago, and much less effectively than Bing does now. Approximately 1/4 of the content of the current #1 page for SpecificClass Service - anonymity of product/service/location aside, it is exact - is as follows:
If you need: SpecificWidget1 Service Mytown SpecificWidget2 Service Mytown SpecificWidget3 Service Mytown Brand1 Model1 Service Mytown Brand1 Service Mytown Brand2 Model1 Service Mytown SpecificWidget4 Service Mytown Brand3 Service Mytown SpecificWidget5 Service Mytown Brand4 Model1 Service Mytown Brand4 Model2 Service Mytown Brand5 Model1 Service Mytown Brand6 Model1/Model2 Service Mytown Brand7 Service Mytown Brand8 Service Mytown Brand9 Service Mytown Brand10 Model1 Service Mytown Brand11 Model1 or Model2 Service Mytown Brand12 Service Mytown Brand13 Model1 Model2 Model3 Model4 Service Mytown Brand11 Service Mytown Brand1 Service Mytown Brand10 Model2 Service Mytown Brand14 Model1 Mytown SpecificWidget6 Service Mytown Brand15Misspelt Model1 Service Mytown Brand15 Model2 Service Mytown SpecificWidget7 Service Mytown SpecificWidget8 Service Mytown Brand15 Model3 Brand15 Model4 Brand16 Model1 Mytown Brand16 Model2 Mytown Brand11 Model3 Mytown SpecificWidget9 Mytown Specific Widget9 Mytown Widget Activity1 Mytown Widget Activity2 Mytown Widget Activity3 Mytown SpecificWidget10 Service Mytown SpecificWidgetActivity1 SpecificClass Service Region SpecificWidgetActivity1 SpecificWidgetClass1 SpecificWidgetActivity1 SpecificWidgetClass2 SpecificWidget11 Service Mytown
It is hard to believe that this comes from an algorithm that is fulfilling its intended function, and even if Google is currently returning a lot of similarly poor sites in good positions it doesn't signal to me that I should apply the same style to my site. Good and bad quality haven't changed at all. Google has just spun all the signposts.