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MSN Search SERPs Latest Changes: What's Good and What's Bad?

     
12:20 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Never seen such garbled up nonsense, not "spammy" per say, but generally irrelavant and just bizarre. Someone pushed the wrong button over there.

Search for <snip> - 9 of the top 10 is <snip>.com....almost all serps seem to look pretty much this way...url only titles and just poorer than ever.

[edited by: Brett_Tabke at 7:34 pm (utc) on Feb. 16, 2006]
[edit reason] I bet even <snip> itself has bad results ;) [/edit]

7:31 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I would agree and rarely do I get pessimistic.

What I see can only be phrased as general clutter. Someone pushed a button down there to be sure.

While I do see some relevant sites when I search within my genres, I also see spot 1 occupied by a site that has nothing at all to do with the keyword at hand.

Many url only site listings occupying top spots.

My best is that they fix this mess fairly quickly.

7:35 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator incredibill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



MSN results have been horrible for a long time

Yes, but now they've taken horrible and made it an art form.

It's so bad it's good just for the amusement factor.

One thing I will say that I think is good about MSN though is they tend to give new web sites with fresh content a shot opposed to Google which is always the old boys club mentality that old web sites must be the best and most trusted results. Sadly, the traffic from MSN is negligible so in the end it's all meaningless although if it wasn't for MSN my wife's website wouldn't get that trickle of Ad$en$e money she gets which makes her happy.

7:36 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Looks like a rollback pending an update to me. - whew - those are some smelly results..

Wasn't this the mo last time too?

7:46 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Hey someone has to say something positive about the results.

But it won't be me. They blow. And I'm a MSN-apologist.

7:51 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



(sorry for putting those keywords in my previous post - I though they were vague enough)

For MSN's sake, I hope this most recent update isn't a sign of their how close they are to competing with G.

7:54 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



<something positive>it looks pretty</something positive>

I don't think that will be enough to get people to use it now that the results are so bad.

7:57 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



How about MSN references? Does anyone see any change in MSN traffics. There is no change in mine.
8:08 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member zeus is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



If they/we are lucky its just a start of a update and not every filter is in action yet, because those results can not be it and as said a few weeks ago I think there results where good.
8:08 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member caveman is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



At my company, we call this a Coffee-On-the-Keyboard Update. :P

Seriously, it's pretty bad.

Some of the more apparent issues:
- One site can occupy seemingly every one of the top 10 spots, if it has sub-domains.
- Is it just me, or are they actually giving weight to kw's-in-domain? :?
- All over the place they're showing footer type pages (aboutus/contact/privacy) instead of real pages...even to the point where both the main and indented listing are footer pages. Doh!

I could keep going, but tears are dripping off my face and into the keyboard, and I just don't want the same thing to happen to my computer as what just happened over there.

8:12 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator incredibill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Is it just me, or are they actually giving weight to kw's-in-domain?

It's not just you, i mentioned that about 20 posts ago.

It's crazy but if it stays like this I'm getting some keyword domains QUICK!

Look on the bright side, they bring the least amount of traffic so it's kind of a why worry IMO. It's like slowing down to look at the car crash on the side of the road type of thing, nothing you can do to help and it doesn't impact your life significantly.

[edited by: incrediBILL at 8:16 pm (utc) on Feb. 16, 2006]

8:14 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Laugh...Just break out the dictionary and brute force your sub-domains! :> You will own results 1-?
8:26 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Hmmz - hard, we have given feedback to MSN before and they dont take action.

Exactly. I can't tell you how many "feedback" reports I have made. Furthermore, MSNDude was in here a long time ago asking for feedback. NOTHING has changed. Just one big subdomain search engine. If you want to find a subdomain, use MSN search.

8:33 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



It's astonishing that someone could take something utterly useless, and then make it more useless. That is a mind boggling anti-accomplishment.

I see for one of my domains they have the site without the www, even though it has been impossible to access the non-www since before MSN launched its first alpha abomination a couple years ago.

Attempting to find a bright side, this is just about the first time they have had a massive change like this. Given the fact their results were humiliatingly bad before this, drastic change was called for so it is a positive thing to see it happen, rather than just see their useless dreck day after day.

The problem of course remains that MSN has the most incompetent, poorly conceived search engine ever invented.

9:12 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Ohhh, I finally thought of something positive.

The new layout makes it hard to find search box. Maybe that's a subconscious attempt to protect visitors from search results.

9:58 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Words cannot express my disappointment with MSN team (Andy Edmonds and Co.)

I’m not even talking about crappy results in a competitive niche where the #1 site has only 35 IBLs and no relevant content.

I’m disappointed because I truly bought into this notion of a “learning genetic algo” that MSN search team feed us with for the past year. Now I can see it is all BS. No genetic algo can turn around 180 degrees overnight! Or it means that what it has learnt so far was no good and they had to pull the plug and start over. Which now puts into question the validity of the whole concept.

I was using MSN search for the past 6 month and up until yesterday I actually thought that MSN was OK – not perfect but OK. I was hoping that they would eventually figure out that not every blog on blogspot deserves high rankings. Instead they did precisely the opposite. Maybe from now on I need to host my sites on blogspot.

10:42 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



This has to be glitch. Only an erroneous code could create such a disaster.
10:52 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Yeah its almost as bad as yahoo now.
10:56 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Well, I am of the opinion that the results won't stick like this for long. It must be a mistake.

My first thought was to jump in and do an in depth analysis, however I think that would be time wasted. Something just isn't right.

11:01 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator incredibill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



My first thought was to jump in and do an in depth analysis

No need to jump headfirst into a cesspool to figure out what it is as you can see it's crap from a glance.

11:03 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



"learning genetic algo"

Now that is a dam good laugh - if they had a data base of some size perhaps they could produce an learning genetic algo that would work. Its learning off such a small sample of the nets data that it cant possibly work!

I suggest before they continue with this joke they scrap it, go back to the drawing board and start work first of all on a quality search bot that will at least start deep indexing sites and gathering data.

Then in six months time they could work on improving the order of what it displays.

I did state in my post last week here that they should return to the beta tag and i stand by that - msn = a waste of time and effort currntly if you ask me.

11:05 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>It's astonishing that someone could take something utterly useless, and then make it more useless.<

That pretty well sums it up! I guess they're following Google's lead. Once you trash the results it pretty well guarantees an increase in PPC revenues.

11:12 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I think every one of us should drop a comment in the official MSN search blog:

[blogs.msdn.com...]

Perhaps it will help them to notice what they did.

11:14 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member caveman is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Well the thing is, the market needs at least a third decent sized SE. And MSN still has enough traffic to be very important. So let's all hope that this gets sorted sooner rather than later.

For now, flipping the switch back and testing something on a limited basis might make a lotta sense. There are too many problems that are very evident for them to keep it this way for long, so I'm with pmac; just watching and waiting for now. Currently, the only thing that we're doing is taking snapshots. Those often come in handy later. ;-)

11:17 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



IMHO, msn was just "pretty bad" before this. Now, they are downright disgraceful. Yesterday they had some things right and some things wrong. Today, I see very, very little right. It's all the more sad to see given Yahoo decided to stop updating and using 5 month old data - looks like it's gonna be all google all the time...
11:30 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I just worked it out

The "learning genetic algo" is producing cr@p and is learning how to make that Cr@p even worse by learning from what its already f@cked up and doing a great job at continuing to do more!.

This update is its best ever as far as the learning genetic algo in concerned - just wait for the next update, by then it wont recognise anything at all, it will just shuffle up any site pages left in its index that it hasnt already deleted and serve them up anywhere!- or is it doing that already?

On a positive note at least we can all have a bl@@dy good laugh

11:33 pm on Feb 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



The subdomain glitch is BAD!

Something nice about MSN...My site is fairly new so I get most of my search traffic from MSN. People find me using broad search phrases and select keywords, so I won't complain.

I'll see how my logs look tomorrow with this new "update."

1:20 am on Feb 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



It does not look like MSN has rolled out this algo 100% quite yet. I think it will get much worse before it gets better.
1:37 am on Feb 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



MSN is actually paying folks a salary to produce this stuff? Give me a break.
3:05 am on Feb 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member billys is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



I dont get much traffic from MSN and stumbled on this thread. The results are bad right now. I'm surprised given the rollout of their contest.

This can't stick - domain spam is ruling right now.

3:06 am on Feb 17, 2006 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member steveb is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Interesting some people are seeing more subdomain stuff. I see less. Where all of the top twenty used to be the same duplicate subdomain garbage, now only a dozen or so are. The other eight sites usually are pathetic too, but I'm thinking the results just got more consistent across niches.

Some site: searches just crack me up. For a 100 page site with the word on every page it will first say "of 853 pages" then you click to the second page and it shows 57 results total. This is incompetent on so many bizarrely contradictory levels that it just makes me think MSN is a search engine for someone on an acid trip.

===

I'll add that I do see a TON more of blog subdomains, so I guess that may be what most others are refering to.

[edited by: steveb at 3:19 am (utc) on Feb. 17, 2006]

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