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Iíve looked through so many posts with people saying their sites have gone down, many mixed theories and speculation. I was searching today on my key words, and noticed that the SERPS were completely un-relevant from a corporate point of view. Nearly every site in the top SERPs was not a company page, but a page with general info on that particular key word/phrase.
I search for Monkey widgets and I used to get a load of companies offering Monkey widgets for sale. Now, I get a whole load of informative web sites with news, articles and helpful information on Monkey widgets. This leads me to think that maybe Google have changed their priority to informative websites and have dropped corporate sites - maybe to encourage the use of AdWords? - I don't know but this is what it seems like to me.
Like I said, I have seen many theories as to why pages are being dropped, and so far this is the only constant I have found. Your comments on this would be greatly appreciated, as I have not seen anyone else mention this theory before.
We just finished a review of recent site traffic. Fully 51% of traffic came from G in the last two weeks. But this is low relative to their current share of market (at this point, still way above 50%).
A review of keywords reveals all. Many interesting combinations of kw's, most being 3+ words. But many are oddball combinations, way off of our real site topic - hence our G related conversions are *way* down...
The attempt to offer more info related results is instead returning a bunch of very odd SERP's, where the words match up to our pages but the meanings often don't. It's like someone waved a magnet over the computer.
To illustrate, people who search on "medium aqua wodgets" are finding our page on "large blue widgets". Unfortunately, people searching on "large blue widgets" are not finding our page. Presumably they are seeing SERP's about "medium aqua wodgets"...
Currently, every other major SE, and some of the minor ones, are giving us traffic with higher conversions than G. Just the opposite of what G has been saying they want.
But maybe it has the same priorities it's always had and is now influential enough to push the public perception of the internet in the direction of its choice.
I read a book introduction the other day which contained the sentence:
"Despite the attempted hijack by dotcom companies, the internet will succeed."
As a user, I have never used the word "buy" when looking for a place to buy something on the internet. When I type in "blue widgets", I expect to find sites that sell blue widgets. Maybe it's just me, but I doubt it.
Note also that there are lots of site that do not have the word "buy" on their pages. So, how should I now tell Google that I want to buy rather than get information on a product? Should I type "blue widgets buy OR price OR $ OR purchase OR order"? Forget it!
It's easier for a shopper to type in "buy" or "dealers" than for an information seeker to figure out how to exclude catalog, ordering, and affiliate pages from the SERPs. And Google's mission statement doesn't leave much doubt about its role as an organizer and disseminator of "information" (Google's word, not mine).
The simplest solution would be for Google to split the index and give users two options on the search page: "I'm searching for information on.." and "I want to buy..." That would prevent commercial pages from cluttering information SERPs, and it would also keep information pages from cluttering commercial SERPs.
In the serps I get informational sites about blue widgets, how they work, which ones consumers like the best, etc... This is great info for someone thinking about buying a blue widget.
When I'm ready to buy, to the right are several adword listings where I can find a dealer.
What more could you ask.
Its time people face the music and stop complaining. You run a business. Businesses have to advertise. The good old days of free advertising are gone and Adwords should be your new best friend.
Yes Google has adjusted its priorities and its about time.
I am personally already using other search engines for commercial and non-commercial sites. Google is now comical at best in finding a topic.. for example, when you search for widgets you get informative sites & absolute junk off topic. well, when I search for No Doc, which is a financial term, I get subjects so far off base it's painfully sad to see it in a No. 1 engine like Google. It came back with several results with the word "no" and a website link that has ".doc" in it for a top 10 listing while the sponsored or adwords have the correct thing we're looking for...
Try Alltheweb.com, Hotbot, MSN, and Altavista from now on. I bet Yahoo switches to another search engine in a couple of months. With companies & people starting to shy away from google search results, I bet they never go IPO now.
And what's worse, you have in some searches "some" commercial sites still there who offer very little "content" or information for the searched term and the other 50% are just way off topic, just a word here and there. The fall of Google has started..like AOL...like Netscape... Yahoo coould be king again if it switches to Inktomi or Alltheweb or a combo of both.
I like the change.
Information sites on the left, commercial results on the right in the form of adwords.
I run a high quality directory that's doing great since "the change." This makes perfect sense in my view. Google is relying on the greater intelligence of the Web and serving up users smart bits of information about sites. It reminds me of what Pagerank was originally intended for.
When I type in "blue widgets", I expect to find sites that sell blue widgets. Maybe it's just me, but I doubt it.
Do you have an ecom site?
I don't believe what you say.
What you are saying implies, that you are using the internet more than 50% for shopping.
I doubt that many people share your habit :)
50% are looking to buy something.
Yes I beleive that half the people on the internet are purchasing or researching a future purchase. You bet. And growing.
That wasn't the question.
The question was if 50% of the time they are online only to buy something.
And if not, then they mostly want info sites and not spam.
No large medium that I am aware of ever succeeded without major commercial backing and content. So is google sticking to its roots and slamming the commercial world of the internet?
Let's take a look at large media like newspapers, magazines, TV networks, and radio stations. Do they mix editorial and commercial content? Do they give away ad space for free? Nope. They're what Google would be if it put only editorial (information) listings in the main SERP column and AdWords along the side. So, if you think Google should be like other large media, be ready to accept a lot more segregation of information and commercial content than Google has now. :-)
So, has Google actually categorized all the "kw" for business or commercial and put in only info, org. or govt. results sites? no! it's a mixed bag..and a bad unorganized one at that.
I do find "kw" searches adwords ads to be more relevant?
The pay per clicks ROI will not last forever, it has become too expensive for some people but not for corporate america.
I guess soon enough we'll see that Google's monopolistic search results on the other search engines decrease in the coming months....supply and demand people...less demand for Google searches b/c of relevance equals less demand for Yahoo searches etal. So, hopefully Yahoo will use someone else.......fingers crossed....thank goodness
PS - maybe if I put some keywords in here it'll come up now. Yup, our search terms come up in forums, web classified ads that have expired...ho hum..
Good point. Most commercial sites will have the most accurate scoop on a product. Many times as in our case when it is a contracted product line the dealers site is the only place for accurate info. The info sites are mostly linked to people hustling knockoffs. With inferior content as well. So if google is looking for "ACCURATE INFO" then that will require commercial sites.
That hasn't been my experience. If I'm looking for information on Widgetco digital cameras, I'll find the best information on Widgetco.com's own Web site and review sites like Steve's Digicams and DP Review--not on a dealer or affiliate's product page (which is likely to be a duplicate of 100 or 1,000 other pages anyway). Similarly, if I'm trying to decide whether to spend my Paris vacation in the Hotel Whatsisse, I'm likely to find better information on the Hotel Whatsisse's own Web site or in a review at Frommer's or TRAVEL & LEISURE than on one of 1,000 affiliate pages that include a boilerplate blurb, a single stock photo, and a list of cribbed bullet points that say things like "Phones with modem jacks" and "Air conditioned."
Maybe your category is an exception, but in most of the consumer categories that I follow, there's very little useful information on commercial pages (unless you define "commercial" to mean the manufacturer's or importer's own Web site and not sell pages on e-commerce sites). I can think of a few exceptions, but not many.
Let's assume for the moment that you're right, and that commercial sites are cornucopias of useful information while most editorial and other so-called information sites consist of "inferior content." If Google were to split the index and let users choose between "information" and "buying" results, users would be able to peruse all those incredibly useful commercial pages without being distracted by inferior results from noncommercial sites. Wouldn't that be a good thing for users and for owners of commercial sites?
When the directory was full of crap and I complained GoogleGuy slipped me a sticky mail and asked what my complaint was about? It took 3 months for the algo to absorb the spammers trickery - but wham he has all but disappeared with his spam gateways and domains.
So to me G is still number one - still the broadest approach to content - whether it is shopping or info!
At the end of the day G rates content - how the content is dished up determins the outcome. If you try to burn G with spam you will be bitten though it may take 3 updates of the algo to do it...
Business is good if you have the info the customers are looking for.
>>>this is the only constant I have found
My business sites are logging right along, but my info sites (quality content & AdSense, no recips, but 6-months-old) have been temporarily flogged by Austin. Not many constants in process, just patience & hard work.
PS: 2 new business sites built on the quality and simplicity of the current fashions have been gobbled up & catapulted in record time.
And, what do you enter when you want information on blue widgets? The query is ambiguous. I hardly ever buy anything on the Internet, and that is true for almost everyone I know. Sure, on occasion they may search to buy something. However, 99%+ of all searches are for chocolate chip cookie recipes, info on music stars, etc. I suspect you are the exception to the rule.
>Note also that there are lots of site that do not have the word "buy" on their pages. So, how should I now tell Google that I want to buy rather than get information on a product? Should I type "blue widgets buy OR price OR $ OR purchase OR order"? Forget it! I'll use another search engine.
Simple. Froogle is --> way.
That is what I suggested earlier. I will agree that there are bad commercial sites. But the current index is bringing up a lot of bad info sites soly on links and excluding commercial for the most part and I would hope that since they have made the move they will perfect it. And open a channel for the rest of us.
As a user, I have never used the word "buy" when looking for a place to buy something on the internet. When I type in "blue widgets", I expect to find sites that sell blue widgets.
I'm sure you are correct that many people may be looking to purchase a "blue widget," but I don't think they are looking to purchase one online. I for one am never looking to purchase. I'm looking for information that will help me make a decision. Once the decision is make, I drive to my local store to make the purchase. The last study I saw indicated that this is pretty normal behavior. So, information is more important than finding a site that sells the product.
I don't expect to find sites quoting a newspaper article about Mr. Blue injuring his widget or about Widget Motor Credit and their Blue Carpet Leasing. That's the quality of the searches I'm seeing now.
Whatever Google's goal was for the changes, I don't believe they have acheived it. I think what we are seeing is out of control unintended consequenses.
Does Google want an index that contains mainly informative pages at the top? IMO no. If they did they would have to implement the "I'm searching for ()information ()products" selection. Does Google still want the most relevant content - informational or commercial? Yes absolutely.
You cannot over-optimise with good relevant information on the page. As such no true OOP exists. IMO you can over-optimise without backing up your titles, descritions, and H1s, with non-SEOed looking through a bot's eyes paragraph text.
The combination SPAM filter / information promoting feature looks very effective from my seat.