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It seems that a major google update is under way. I just checked www.google.com with the normal set of keywords that I generally use to monitor any changes and found what I believe is a major update. Now its back to original results. Its kinda on and off.
One of my site had a 50% increase in the number of pages crawled.
I hadn't much chance to check out whether the update spells good news or not, so lets keep our fingers crossed.
The changes are visible on 184.108.40.206
[edited by: ciml at 2:15 pm (utc) on Dec. 16, 2004]
[edit reason] Addition [/edit]
I'm seeing that when it comes to uncompetitive, info type searches (say hypothetically "kangaroo genetics") very little difference. The main thing about these SERPs is that over a fairly short period of time, not many new pages come online, or existing pages disappear. Nor is there much change in sites linking to each other. Most of the webmasters around here run commercial sites, and change things around for perceived SEO benefit.
Thus my speculation is whatever Google has changed is targeted at the sites people around here tend to run. Dunno what this might be. Could it be perhaps Google is favoring sites that have been up a while, and content tends to stay stable? Or perhaps that Google has tweaked the algo to better identify which sites are commercial, and which aren't? Google would have an incentive to making commercial SERPs change around a lot. This would mean commercial sites would need to buy Adwords to consistently stay visible.
Google it seems is sucessfully filtering out everyone that knows how to tweak thier sites for the engines, but are they throwing the baby out with the bath water? Makes me wonder how people are actually supposed to find these servies or compete?
Yahoo is acting up as well... we've jumped to the top of their SERPS again.
I guess everyone is doing their best to get ready for the arrival of Mr. Gates.
I'm seeing that when it comes to uncompetitive, info type searches (say hypothetically "kangaroo genetics") very little difference.
The educational part of my site ("info type searches") was as badly hit as my commercial pages. And I've got at least 10 times as many educational pages as commercial pages.
Perhaps Google today identifies whole sites as commercial, rather than just individual pages, and ranks lower info pages on commercial sites? Or, Google is identifying what is "commercial" based on keywords? Thus, if you sell widgets, your info pages on "widget safety" look commercial, as people searching on "widget" often are looking to buy one. *Something* different in the algo has to explain the changes you are seeing.
That's my one minute assessment anyway. I can't say I spent too long looking, other than allaying fears of my own demise!