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July 2007 Google SERP Changes

     
11:38 pm on Jun 30, 2007 (gmt 0)

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< continued from [webmasterworld.com...] >

I am the owner of a large < specialized topic > news website. We have seen continuous good traffic from Google ever since we started, 5 years ago. However, on the 27th June 07 our Google referrals dropped suddenly to around 1/7 of what they had previously been. It has remained the same for each day since. We are still number one for < our main keyword phrase >, but all our article rankings seem to have vanished.

We have staff, who we pay each month with revenue earned from Adsense. Obviously, with the drop in traffic our Adsense revenue has gone through the floor. So now we are faced with the possibility of not being able to meet our costs in the coming months.

I guess it is possible, if this happened at the same time last year to other people, that Google may just be using the holiday season to make some alterations to their servers (taking them offline?) or something like that. It really makes no sense, so that is all that I can come up with.

It seems as if this has happened to a lot of other people. So, my question is, for those of you who have seen this before - do the rankings come back? If so, how long does it normally take?

Thanks

A Worried Webmaster.

[edited by: tedster at 4:36 pm (utc) on July 1, 2007]
[edit reason] make specifics more general [/edit]

9:56 pm on July 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

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""If you have to place repeated keyword combinaisons, that don't make much sense to users below your footer - then what a search engine sees is not what a human sees >>> therefore it should be penalized, this is just another form of spam.""

detecting repeated keyword combinations that don't make sense is child's play to a search engine programmer. I've no doubt whatsoever that this is already factored into G's algos.

11:21 pm on July 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Still after 13 days of being published, with adsense...

An AdSense link is not going to help you get indexed at all.

11:28 pm on July 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Man I got hit big time. I was getting quite a lot of traffic for being ranked for a certain term and they removed me completely. They did this in the past for another term only to relist me I think a month later. I hope they don't continue to leave me out of the SERPs. This sucks!
2:18 am on July 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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The algo is as follows

If not wikipedia randomize ...

1:12 pm on July 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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detecting repeated keyword combinations that don't make sense is child's play to a search engine programmer. I've no doubt whatsoever that this is already factored into G's algos.

I wasn't talking about a silly keyword, keyword, keyword....
Was referring to whole sentences and paragraphs that are written speciafically for SE, but sound stupid to users.

Yes Google has factored in such things for a long time. But it is still a software.
At the same time I don't think that Google automatically penalizes based on 1 factor, only combinaisons but I could be wrong. There are sites ranking well for fairly competitive KW with significant repetitions onpage.

Still, my stand was about those with content below the fold / below the footer links.
I'd like to hear some GG guys about that. Given the CSS possibilities it's probably difficult to discover but I wonder what a human review would conclude as.

1:42 pm on July 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I'd like to know how long Google will still go on in the summer mode? New sites are going -950, all supplemental or not getting Page rank from backlinks. We need a backlink or pr update.
7:02 pm on July 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Backlink and PR updates are something like junk food - there's no nutrition involved. They are reporting features only and not hooked into the algorithm calculations.
7:13 pm on July 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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>>Backlink and PR updates are something like junk food - there's no nutrition involved

And they're made public AFTER ranking updates. Focus elsewhere...

9:59 pm on July 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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BillyS

Btw, is your site which has recovered recently still doing well.. 4x traffic?

12:39 am on July 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Ive been keeping an eye on these SERPS changes topics since april which I think was a major G update? On April I think I got penalized and was not removed completely from google but i was way down in the SERPS for terms/keywords that I previously ranked number 1 for or in the top 10, even searching for my site name, an abreviation which is unique, brought up other sites and not mine, I was way, way down the results.

Like most webmasters i panicked, adsense revenue dropped as a results of less traffic from google and general visits to my site where lower, thankfully though to reading this forum I got some good hints on what could have went wrong, alot of good hints actually and this month I searched for my site and my once popular terms and low and behold I am back on top, eitehr number 1 or in the top 10 or 5 for lots of search queries including obvious ones related to my subject and broader obscure searches.

I had almost lost all faith in google until this month, as since april alot of spam and scraper sites which had copied me had replaces me in the serps but now everything is back to normal and perhaps even slightly better, and hopefully it will stay that way for a long time.

I did several things, not sure if they helped, maybe it was just good luck but I thought I would share.

I blocked all print.php pages with robots.txt so no duplicate(or very little) content, my main index page was basiclaly just a cliock to enter thing which took you to the main site which is a CMS, i changed that to have more content and more links to the main site and made it look like part of the main site to.

I also filed a reinclusion request and explained to google that scraper spam sites had copied me and where replacing me in the serps I also filed several spam reports after searching out the worst offenders who had copied my site title and other content.

Im not sure if any of those things helped but I would like to think G listened to my problems and saw fit to rectify it.

It certainly is a sigh of relief to be back on top of the serps instead of buried in google no mans land.

2:11 am on July 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

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>>Btw, is your site which has recovered recently still doing well.. 4x traffic?

Sometimes it's like waiting for the other shoe to drop... But yes, we're still seeing that 4x increase in traffic from Google. Remarkably consistent traffic pattern since June 13th or so.

9:16 am on July 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

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A change to the algo sometime early in the morning on 9th July UK time has dropped my site from the SERPS. Is there anyone else affected? I will be waiting this one out.
11:58 am on July 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Wibfision: all our UK traffic is up 35% since yesterday the 8th - just checked some of our remaining 950+ pages and these seem to have been lifted out of that zone. Traffic growth still continuing today.

However what Google giveth...

6:19 pm on July 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

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What has been happening today looks like the normal data refresh / data push which might affect ranking of some sites.
8:11 pm on July 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Ok I'll just wait it out and let you know when my site comes back, as it undoubtedly will :-)
5:00 am on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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hi i have a site which was ranked 4th on its phrase but from yesterday the rankings of my site dropped considerably.When i put the site command my home page was not showing but my other pages were. Then i check my home page there was a development error and i think google have taken it into hidden links.

Any thoughts

5:18 am on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Then i check my home page there was a development error...

Such as?

BTW - your answer might require a new thread post.

6:56 am on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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such as there were some hidden links created by mistake not intentionally.
7:15 am on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Lots of sites reappearing after penalties. SERPs have been better but as always what is good for some is bad for others. Cannot believe these will last, but have said that before!
7:56 am on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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such as there were some hidden links created by mistake not intentionally.

If they were only there for a few days or so, do not worry.

If you had hidden links and other questionable stuff going on, then worry.

But in general, Google is very forgiving to honest mistakes.

8:01 am on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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we are back and back on top - hope it stays this way...
1:31 pm on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Kidder - Congratulations! Were you -950? how long?
5:14 pm on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I have no complaints about results, number one in Google, Yahoo and front page x3 in MSN but where is the traffic?

I have been in the SERPS since 1998 ( amazing how many engines have stalled and died!, found a Fast t-shirt the other day.) and this months traffic is the LOWEST combined total for any period since about 1999.

I ask is SEO worth the effort? Anyone else got any long term logs to share trends?

Thanks

6:10 pm on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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A change to the algo sometime early in the morning on 9th July UK time has dropped my site from the SERPS. Is there anyone else affected? I will be waiting this one out.

I feel your pain! I have a site that has been in the top three results for the last two years (I know, that's lucky) and yesterday I noticed it drop down a few, then today it was gone. All terms, all gone.

I have not touched the site for at least a year because I was afraid I would mess something up, so there is no reason why this should have happened.

The idea that it might come back inspires me. I have been with Google long enough to know that if I panic and make changes, I'll mess everything up, so I'll just let it sit for awhile and see what gives.

It is a horrible feeling though - visceral would be the term that most applies.

7:49 pm on July 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

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If you know your site is good, just wait it out. From past experience it will most likely be back in its previous position within a few weeks.
5:12 am on July 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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almost 100% of my pages have been visited by Googlebot today. And I did get about 20% more visitors from them too. Anyone else?
8:54 am on July 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Confirm that. Heavy crawling since a few days and traffic at least quadrupled...

Not that I would care anymore...

itloc

2:38 pm on July 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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One historically stable set of serps I watch has results #2 - #10 changing constantly. Its the same urls, but their positioning within the top 10 results changes.

Matt has also said that this time of year is when Google likes to play a bit more with algos, etc.

My rule is never make dramatic changes when serps are volatile.

3:37 pm on July 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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i realise that small changes happen all the time. indeed, it pisses me off when people post on here '#*$!, my site has just moved down 1 place: UPDATE!'..

but..

since this morning i see a quite dramatic change in UK google serps for the main keyword i monitor, for which i have been intimately connected for almost 10 years..

cleaner serps (clarification: removal of indented dual results, new titles for sites previously having 'this browser does not support frame' title..) and much more than usual rearrangement..

anyone else see anything?

no change on any dc's.. this is purely on google.co.uk search.

apologies if i am crying wolf unneccesarily!

[edited by: tedster at 4:55 pm (utc) on July 11, 2007]

3:50 pm on July 11, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Kirby,

I'm very much seeing the same thing, except in some industry the #1-#15 are fluctuating daily...a little annoying, but otherwise fine. A couple of the sites that are higher now are questionable, but I'm curious to see what G is tweaking for.

Cygnus

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