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Google.com SERP Changes - June 2008



8:24 pm on May 31, 2008 (gmt 0)

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

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

I've wondered too as to why some search terms are affected more than others and some result pages are changing around while other barely move.

Has anyone seen any relationship between how popular a search the term is and how much movement is going on?

As to when it will end I don't think we can predict as nothing quite like this has gone on before.

[edited by: tedster at 2:48 am (utc) on June 1, 2008]


1:17 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Hi Cson,

If you want a doctor to diagnose an illness remotely you have to describe the symptoms in far more detail than that.

Go and dig around to see what has happened to your rankings etc and report back.




11:25 pm on Jun 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I have seen drastic reduction in my traffic from the June 4 some thing happened on to G on June 4 that made all the difference.
Today is 19 and almost 15 days no signs of recovery .
There is a lot more to write about this event will enlighten in my next post


12:52 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

We all don't know what happend on June 4. It's probably time to go black hat.


5:47 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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After scrolling through at least 200 posts regarding the June 4 debacle about the SERP changes that took place it is almost impossible to track a conclusion as to what might have caused the sites to loose SERPs.
My site that got 500 US uniques per day was effected on June 4 and lost 90 % of the Google search traffic since with no signs of recovery till date.
My site runs on Joomla CMS, is hosted in Canada I have taken all measures to make this a very clean and user friendly site has 70 % affiliate content.
I am sure the SERP loss is not because of duplicate content because other sites that have same content have popped up on the first page of the search results now.. where my site has vanished for the same set of key words, with that said this could not be a Algo tweak.

[edited by: tedster at 10:47 am (utc) on June 19, 2008]


6:04 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

June 9 - 13th, my 10 year old white hat site finally came back but it was short lived. Now gone again. This is crazy.


7:30 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I read some where that the online ad spend declined this quarter first time in three years could this be an attempt by the Big B to shake the market


7:52 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

As the June 4 fiasco has affected a lot of sites with traffic then I thought that it would be interesting to compare the traffic profile over time as reported on a well known RANK website. I have looked at a number of UK centric websites - the one thing in common is that they all rank within the alleged top 5,000 most trafficked sites in the UK - the shape of the graphs of about 1/3 of the sites that I looked were very similar and show a clear effect on 4/5 June. The other interesting aspect to the shape of the graph is that virtually every affected site is showing a significant increase in traffic during the second half of May running up to the drop, so it is as if TOO MUCH TRAFFIC has been going to the most popular sites and then some sort of brake filter has been applied indicating an earlier algo change with the undesired traffic effect from Google's perspective and then a deliberate manipulation of search results as a consequence that some large advertisers were getting too much 'free' traffic.

So, for once we have an INDEPENDENT means that we can all use to see this effect - in fact, I see no reason why we should ALL not try to find as many examples of the graph shape for as many websites as possible and post them all over the web, just to grab Google's attention, as I believe there has not been one single word from them on what they did on 4 June.

Unfortunately, I am really starting to believe that this was a deliberate action to demote some larger sites in an attempt to increase lost ad revenue. Looking at the current advertising on Google it seems that there are more and more general ads from the large corporates and less and less from smaller businesses. Time for the hat change tomorrow.


8:11 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Well said ! When we are not able to draw a conclusion after 15 days of debate and technical examination of our sites as to what could be possibly wrong with the affected sites.
This could be the only the answer let us hope things get normal after the shakeout


9:23 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Our 10 year old site vanished from Google on 16 June and all our key phrases where we had enjoyed failrly good rankings for a while could not be found anywhere. Traffic was 70% down. We were gone for 2 days and I was getting worried. However this morning we are back where we were before. I just hope it stays. I have made no major changes in last few weeks apart from adding about 10 new pages and adding half a dozen links.

I see big changes in travel sector for UK results this morning.


9:48 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Our serp positions have gone again at exactly 7.00am (GMT) this morning (Thursday) after recovering from this months big ranking loss, it was also last friday at 7.00am exactly the site was hit after recovering again from a previous date (which was also a thursday.. but can't remember that exact time but it was early in the morning again)

uk site, uk targeted, uk host.

Martin Ice Web

10:02 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

As many of you my site has although been hit hard by the new algo serps. Site is 7 years old (germany)
I figured out that all the inurl keywords for widget, that where just working great, arenīt working any more.

1. Up to now is see more eb** and auv*** pages coming up in top ten serps.

2. Many of the pages do have a non seo url, like index.php?caterogry=#*$!&file=#*$!

3. all the sites in front of mine had been a life at page 3 and down at the serps or where never been seen before.

4. Many of the subdomains from my competitors do not show up in serps any more ( that is a good thing )

5. Many site in top ten serps are ->easy<- html pages with little links on it but text and picture ( this would speak for a stronger seo filter ? ) -> forums and price compare page are in top ten, too. ( trust rank ? )


10:12 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

confuscius - our site seems to fit with your idea on whats happening, its a large well known advertising site in the uk, has a uk alexa rating under 5,000 and seems to fit those traffic gains / losses around those dates.


10:42 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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topranker - thanks for confirming that you can 'see' what I can 'see'!

As far as I can recall, I have never seen a Google change where you can 'see' the impact on OTHER websites graphically. Just hoping some SEO / Google guru 'sees' what we can 'see' and runs with it!

I have revisited quite a few of the sites that I looked at and added some sites that I know have a mix of membership traffic and natural search traffic. Yet again, I can see the pattern repeating on them (increasing traffic late May which must be from natural search) followed by a drop but not as large because their traffic rank stats have the underlying membership baseline traffic as compared to the large drop on my site which is purely natural search traffic.

Some of the really big UK boys have taken a hit and the graph is continuing downwards. I think that it won't be long before they notice that they have a problem.

Looks like this is the 'Houston' update as 'we have a problem' that we can SEE!


11:10 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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confuscius - Same here large .co.uk. well know site over 8 years old, PR6, top 30k in alexa, Massive drop in traffic / positions in line with the 4th July. Uses Adsense and affiliate links to earn sever costs.

Server is hosted in the US. 90% of the traffic from the UK.


11:40 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Are any of you guys using Google Analytics?



11:54 am on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Sid - no Google analytics used by me.


2:17 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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No google analytics used by me


2:38 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I use analytics.


2:52 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I use analytics as well.

May was my best month ever. My experience has always been a surge in traffic from Google before a massive decline.

Seems like affected sites are all long established. Could it be that G has just lowered the importance of site age & sites are affected to the extent they were relying on age for rankings?


3:14 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

As mentioned in the other thread, I'm quite sure this is the -950 penalty. The difference is they refined it so you will not see all of your URLs at the end of results.

This is just the same -950 critter as it was before but with different positions, I think the patent used is the same.


5:10 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I do not believe that this is -950 penalty! I do believe that this is a new set of search results including many new sites on the UK results, at least.


6:52 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Believe me, this is the -950, have you also made a few thousands queries?

One point:

Pagination, most sites which are not affected use a letter based pagination. Most sites which are affected use a numbers based pagination.

Alphabetical (letter based) pagination is more user friendly.

[edited by: SEOPTI at 7:37 pm (utc) on June 19, 2008]


7:33 pm on Jun 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

Believe me, this is the -950, have you also made a few thousands queries?

I don't believe so, I am seeing very confused geo-targeting results.

G is trying to learn to where a site is focussed and making a right mess of it at the moment.


9:17 am on Jun 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

confuscius - Can't see any reason not to agree with you. My site fit the high-traffic scenario and the traffic boost from mid may.For the first time i hit 20k uniques on 2th of june. But no uk based/targeted/hosted.


11:31 am on Jun 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Can you explain the pagination thing a bit better? I have heard the term used for page numbering or the grouping of list items on a page but I don't think that is what you mean.


12:01 pm on Jun 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

we now have sites disappearing AND coming back again in the SAME DAY.

i really think its likely we have arrived at the google of the future

a tweak here and then one there will not disrupt services for the punter but will make everyone else have a long hard look at their models and chge or die accordingly... we cant blame google for trying to improve thier profits...isnt that what we are trying to do?


1:06 pm on Jun 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

My observances since June 4th, with sites disappearing and reappearing are as follows:

- Web Page gets spidered.

- Web Page disappears from index shortly thereafter.

- Web Page re-appears in 12-24 hours of disappearing.

- Web Page that normally appeared on Page 1 for a given keyword
term, is now appearing on Page 3, 4, or 5 for me.

- This cycle is repeatable.

Some other nuances of the above:

- Frequency of spidering of the effected pages has increased
dramatically. Whereas I was seeing a typical page get spidered
once-a-week, I am now seeing excessive spidering of 1-2 times
per day per effected file, 4 or 5 days per week.

- The disappearing/re-appearing sequence noted above occurs
regardless of whether or not the physical file has changed or
not. As a matter of fact, in my case, 90 % of the time the
file has NOT changed. This leads me to believe that Google thinks
my page has changed, when in fact, it has not.


8:20 pm on Jun 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

a june fourth victim. I am noticing several of my keywords are stuck at position 11 through 14. It is like a -10 penalty. Anyone else noticing this or experience this in the past?


12:18 am on Jun 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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

I am noticing several of my keywords are stuck at position 11 through 14

Are you a "thin affiliate" using a lot aggregated content. I'm trying to picture the amount of original content factored into recent algo changes.


12:51 am on Jun 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I'm sure this update is not about thin affiliates. I have checked tons of sites which still perform and most of them could be seen as thin, but they have not been hit at all.
This 212 message thread spans 8 pages: 212

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