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I do not post much but I have been visiting this forum for quite some time and I learnt alot from all the posts I read.
The last month we all witnessed strange behavior of google that lead me to thinking that google is on its way to losing its place as the no1 search engine:
Last month we witnessed:
- No update, instead old pages being reranked in a very bad way
- New sites not being added, index getting stale
- Backlinks removed
- Old spam techniques flourishing
I still can't get clear explanation of why this is happening. Even Googleguy is not making sense.. All i have been hearing was "patience... patience... google is emproving algo".
I find it very hard to understand why google would display very bad results in its www and distribute it to all
Its partners (yahoo, aol etc..) then say that they are testing and improving their algo.
why couldn't they test their algo on other datacenters (www1, www2...) and when it is done moving it to www.
Wouldn’t that be better for webmasters, users and google's reputation?
why shoot yourself in the foot? Remember Altavista? They started losing their status as no1 when their search results got worse and worse.
Google is victim of its own success:
- Google's monopoly of the search engine maket is hurting it: over the years and especially since google became the no1 for search services, the guys at google have been at war with thousands of webmasters that would lose arm and a leg to gain top positions. Every time they improve their algo, webmasters have found a loophole to beat the algo. (redirects, guestbook backlinks, hidden text etc...)
The current fiasco in search results only shows how worried they are at google. They have to realize that their algo will never be perfect and there will always be webmasters finding ways to beat the system.
- Big competitors (yahoo, MSN) are preparing as we speak to improve their search facilities at to compete directly with google. These big whales watched google grow to its current success and only recently they realized how lucrative search services could be. Yahoo and MSN are now determined to take big shares of this market. Google is big but not as big as these companies right?
I believe google has peaked as the no1 search provider and can only go downward from here... I have a feeling the second part of this year will be full of surprises and will witness many changes to the google and other search engines and which would reflect directly on us the webmasters.
I aint buying that one. I think there was an algo shift that went terribly arry.
I have no doubt they will recover in short order, but I can't believe this month was anything other than a mistake tantamount to a bump in the road.
Google would only be benefited by a market in which spammers had to divide their fire between multiple engines. Perhaps Yahoo can revive Inktomi enough to accomplish that.
MSN isn't in the race, and won't be. The corporate attitude of monetizing their own excrement (well, it's worked pretty well so far...) doesn't lend itself to delivering anything but paid results. One can imagine the Soviet Union breaking up; one can imagine an Iraqi Federal Republic with free democratic elections; but M$ providing good information for free? No, that rumble you hear is merely ice floes colliding in the chaotic seas of Hell.
They are not interested in the race.. so far, if they were they easily have the resources to compete.
F1 v Hill-Climbers at the mo, the hill-climber will lose on a race track.
You can work out which one is which
Hmm, I think perhaps this may belong alongside some other (in)famous musings ....
640K should be enough for anyone
everything that can be invented has already been invented
television is just a fad
if man was meant to fly, he'd have wings
I'm in charge here
(ok, ok, I'm guilty of paraphrasing.)
Yeah, it is conceivable that someday masses of peeps will speak of google in the same "remember when" tones currently used when AV is mentioned, but I'm not thinking that day is going to arrive in the next 6 months.
Although GoogleGuy can at times be helpful, you would be better off in this case to draw your own conclusions.
GoogleGuy said that Link pages have not been given penalties (PR0). Many most certainly have, while the other 20 pages on the site still have PR. You can wait and see or act now.
Reading through all of his comments, we see a lot of "over time, gradually, backlinks and new data will be added". Wow, what a revelation, my backlinks are gonna be added at some point! It really isn't useful info, and why would it be? Our job is to rank high and GG has no interest in helping us achieve this.
The point is, be careful when everyone says be patient, things are going to change. Whether it be GoogleGuy or anyone else, use your own 2 eyes. It may be this way for most of the summer. My recomendation is to spam freshbot until they sort this out.
We give far too much credit to G relative to their ability to maintain their leadership in search. Undercurrents are already quite clear. Search will be an afterthought to the revenue generation needs and intentions of G. G will fall from search. But G will change and adapt towards profitability. From idealism to realism in the world of big business. From Stanford to Wall Street.
G is no MSFT, G is no Y!. Y! market cap is 17 billion dollars and Y! earns triple in a quarter what G projects for this year. MSFT revenues are 8 Billion a quarter and their market cap is 267 Billion. Hello. G is no Y! or MSFT. Not even close. G is a viral phenomina and has a long way to go from the darling stage to a long-term force. Most companies never make it. They get bought first. G may make it, but they will *NOT* look the way they do now. The public market will never allow it.
One of my main sites was getting about 20% of its traffic from search engines until the last update.
55% was from Google
25% was from Yahoo
15% was from MSN
Since the last update, the numbers have gone to
65% is from MSN
15% is from Google
10% is from Yahoo
It looks to me like Google is putting MSN back in the race.
For one site that I watch:
Top visitor referrals
1/1/02 to 31/12/02:
1/1/03 - 1/4/03:
1/4/03 - 5/6/03:
I won't mention numbers but Yahoo uniques are actually up slightly but Google uniques have shot up much more.
But these numbers are meaningless unless you are looking at a static site that has had no SEO or marketing promotions taking place.
There will always be "spammers" who will find ways to beat any search engines algo. In fact, most "professional SEO's" are nothing but glorified spammers.
Yet despite the mass whinning, I always thought Google did well against "spam."
The irony is that if Google loses market share and spammers target other indexes, this should in turn help Google. Either way, the reports of the death of Google are premature.
None of my Search Positions have shifted- they've actually improved. But I don't think I've ever seen a month go by where someone wasn't a casualty.
I went to the bar last Monday, and nobody was talking about how Google doesn't work anymore. So it must not be widespread.
Someone accused me of having a mullet, but I'm just trying to grow back my ponytail. I guess it depends on what angle you're looking at it from.
[edited by: martinibuster at 5:30 am (utc) on June 5, 2003]
M$ has publicly announced it wants a larger percentage of the search market. It didn't say this would be via MSN search though!
There are many ways M$ can take a majority stake in the SE market, it controls the OS...a huge advantage. It has a huge cash surplice, another huge advantage.
Y! has also publicly stated it intends to be the one upfront and is now starting to throw the $$$ at it.
I don't see Google's demise happening overnight, but over a year or three the whole picture could look very different.
I just looked at the latest stats I use to monitor SE popularity, Google is less than 1% down this month, Joe surfer hasn't started voting with his feet yet.
Contrary to popular belief I'm far from convinced it is Google's search results that will determine future SE popularity, Joe Surfer can live with the occasional bad result, but he may be persuaded to go elsewhere for other reasons.
It all goes back to the age old argument of whether Mickey D's burgers are better than the Kings, or is The Sun a better news source than The Times....etc, etc,...often "quality" is not what determines popularity. Sam Walton created the world's largest retailer, quality was not the angle he played.
Maybe an SE showing half naked girls on the home page will be the final popularity winner...."honey I have to use this SE, the quality of results are much better than anything else available" ;)
In my opinion if we look at it with open eyes, Google are the most independant engine at the moment. They have their own brand name behind their sponsored site campaign, search technology, and in part the directory and this is the only area I think if they took the iniciative they could make the better directory. All their competitors are still reliant on other people to provide these services. Yahoo and MSN arguably have the money to join the party. And it is true that these 2 might have money to burn but google have demonstrated their savvy by makin the right buys eg. Applied Semantics. Say no more!
Then if one looks at MSN's reliance one can see that it is not that stable. Looksmart in my opinion sucks badly and Overture has made purchases in what looks like an attempt to develop on their own to become a good SE.
Yahoo bought Inktomi which was a big move and I think cemented their position as big competition.
To round off I would like to say that these 3 players will always be in competition which is healthy and will only increase in the rise of better technology. Also who is to say that in 20 years Microsoft will still be who they are. And that applies to Google and Yahoo. We have seen more development in the last 7 years than any other industry and a point that I would like to leave you with is who is going to rise out of these fledgling years to take the helm?
Happy Surfing and "Guesstimation"
Top visitor referrals
1/1/02 to 31/12/02:
1/1/03 - 1/4/03:
1/4/03 - 5/6/03:
For everyone who has google referrals going down there will be someone else who is seeing an increase. This does not point to google losing a share of the market. It basically points to the fact that individual sites are not ranking as well. Most of the people in here we see complaining about dominic are not going to be the ones with increased visitors this month. Update dominic has taught most of us a valuable lesson (even though it is hopefully a temporary glitch/error/algo problem which will be rectified in the next up date). To survive on the web we must diversify and look to different sources of traffic, whether it be overture, adwords or inktomi. Google may not be gone but the days of concentrating solely on Google are!
ps If no one has named the next update can i suggest update Jude (Saint Jude is The Patron Saint of Hope)