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Agree -- I'm seeing the results as you describe when searching by country name -- eg Elbonia, but am seeing pretty good and relevant results when searching for XYZ place or city in Elbonia. Also agree that unfortunately the www.user-submitted-trashy-travel-content.com type sites appear to have done quite well out of this.
We've slid on some destination names, stayed the same on others and improved considerably on yet others -- a bit of a mixed bag overall.
I'm still seeing a lot of different results across the DCs at the moment though -- some look great, others less so - fingers crossed they go with the former
PR7 Home page, tens of thousands of organic inbound links, all unique content, 6 year old site.
We've lost more than 80% of our G referrals.
It's not any narrow group of keywords that has decimated us either - on a typical day we'll get referrals from more than 10K different queries, with no single query accounting for more than 1%.
No panic over here (yet), as I've seen this happen before. Things have always recovered within 30 days or so when Google relearns that it's a quality site - no logical reason to think that after 6 years, G would suddenly wake up one day and decide the site is crap.
wattsnew...not sure if that was laced with sarcasm.
fearlessrick...yours is an epiphany I had along time ago. Google is bipolar...not a SE to entrust your livelyhood with. G opened pandora's box with adwords and adsense...the chickens are coming home to roost so to speak. The end result is google always changing the rules of the game to eliminate the "gamers".
I think what is really going on now is that inside google they also are aware that the Yahoo and MSN serps have been of much better quality lately. This is a no-holds barred re-shuffling...seems to me they are desperate to improve the quality of their results so as not to lose the competitive edge they once had.
I'm not sure it is possible right now. Yahoo and MSN have pretty good serps. The best they can do now is be a "me too" search engine. Bourbon will make or break Google. Hmmm..maybe it is time to unload some of my G stock.
The interesting thing is the percenatge of people complaining about odd/unjust/unlikely changes who don't have the www/non-www issue consistent, or have inconsistent linking like relative links or some links to "/" while others go to index.html or default.asp?
That percentage is close to 100%, if not literally 100%.
That stuff is childs play and not at all relevant to any serious SEO discussion.
Google dropped ONE of my many sites during this update. The sites are built and SEO'd by me, all to similar standards. They are all on the same IP.
This isn't a penalty for poor SEO -- this is Google not being able to manage their database properly. They are randomly dropping entire sites -- not dropping them in the SERPS but dropping them (effectively) out of the SERPS.
To quote Google:
Our spiders regularly crawl the web to rebuild our index, but keeping tabs on eight billion pages is tough work, and they may miss a few. As for the sites they find, updates to the content of pages often result in ranking changes. Normal changes include, but aren't limited to, the addition of new sites, changes in the ranking of existing sites, sites falling out of the index or getting dropped for particular keywords, and fluctuation between old and new webpage content.
At least for this update, this statement seriously understates the scope of the problem.
I live in a hamlet of about 600. Google has never done well on small town searches, in my experience. MSN zeros right in on local business and things of interest. G has real estate, singles clubs, etc.
But, back to the update. I inhabit a small niche. From what I have seen in the past few updates, changes to the SERPs begin long before reports show up here on WW. I was seeing movement about two weeks ago, though the top 4 sites on most of the terms I track were pretty solid. My niche seemed to firm up a few days ago, unless we are still waiting for the BIG changes that everyone else is reporting.
I know it sounds trite, but I am a believer in the "content is king" mantra. SE's exist to serve the interests of the surfer. It is only logical that they want meaningful content. So, I just keep plugging away.
While I do still use G as my primary SE, I have found myself using Google Scholar for serious informational searches, and I have been using MSN more also. I guess they each have their own role to play.
Sure don't hear much about Ask/Teoma anymore...
The above DC seems to be showing the best results and has also been very consistent over the weekend (in my area at least)
Other DCs I look at seem to be a halfway house with some of the new and some of the old.
Personally I hope the above DC is a sign of what we'll see across the board once everything has filtered through
>well some how we have to "try" and get people using Y again, I've had top rankings for months/years on Y but it only sends a fraction of the traffic G does, or should I say DID<
Agree. For most part, it was us publishers, marketers and SEOs who promoted (through writing and word of mouth) Google to the public since the begining. Now when Google is killing our sites, its about the time to promot Yahoo and MSN. Lets help those who send us traffic.
But every update should teach all of us that we need to find other avenues besides search engines to get traffic. You really can't depend on any search engine. I believe most successful websites have branched out so that they can weather updates like this. If you are in it for the money you have to.
This update seems to make sense to me. I see alot of trash removed from the first page of many keyword searches that I watch..
I am in the UK and every other Google index accessed from here shows similar results to those we have had for the past several months.
It seems that people here are presuming that the results from the two dc's above are the 'new' results.
I hope they are not!
It looks like the original source is not an authority in G's eyes :(
I feel baffled with this. My traffic is very reduced, but everyone else using my feeds are probably happy.
 Cleared sentences [/edit]
Anyway for my sites on localised keywords Im seeing...
DCs 126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52
- New SERPs
- All sandboxed sites released
DC 184.108.40.206 and 220.127.116.11
- New SERPs
- Sites still sandboxed
- Pre 'Update' SERPs
One thing you learn with the years, is that you can never be cynical enough.
Clearly, natural and obvious authority sites are being targetted out of the SERPs.
Why? A tragic, unintentional error in the algo?
Or are authority sites often the "rich sites" that can afford AdWords? Mmm...
People, it's really time to unite. Praise, promote and support Yahoo. Take off your webmaster hat, wear the shoes of a search engine user. Compare the results if you need to convince yourself you're promoting the right SE.
Try with "enough keywords to take you to the site you're looking for with surgical precision." Google is now completely baffled. Yahoo will take you there immediately.