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Less results searching for domain name - loss of trust/authority?



11:37 am on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member


When typing "mydomainname.com" as keyword, I used to have 140 000 results
but 2 weeks ago it went down to 70 000 and since a few days only 48 000 :(

Does anyone have an explanation?

I'm a heavy user of socvial bookmark, with my blog being updated every day, so actually i am creating more than 500 backlinks per day... But those backlinks generate awareness, andf most of te time give me back 3000 natural links (from users linking to my site on blogs and forums) Did Google flag my site for this?

Any other people suffering from the same disdain by Google?

[edited by: Receptional_Andy at 6:04 pm (utc) on Oct. 21, 2008]
[edit reason] Moved from another location [/edit]


6:48 pm on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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

Many people have recently noticed major fluctuations in the "numbers" reported for page counts on searches. This is an area where Google makes estimates because of the challenges in getting and exact count when data is sharded across their custom Google File System [labs.google.com]. This is no mysql database they use!

Unless you are seeing a drop in search traffic, I don't think that a change in results numbers means anything at all about your site being seen with either disdain or favor.

Receptional Andy

7:07 pm on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

To look at this very literally, what it means is that less pages indexed mention your site domain name.

Your mention of social bookmarking might be a clue, since those sites frequently include the URL as text next to a bookmark. Pages from social bookmarking sites may well be more likely to experience "churn" in terms of the total number of their pages within Google's index. Frankly, they don't seem like the ideal content for a search engine, since they are low on actual text and often of more use to the person that created them than the public at large. Frequently, such pages are also only linked to from the bookmarking site itself - which may favour new bookmarks over old ones, so the older pages get less valuable the older they are.

It could be that a minor algorithmic change has "cut off" a certain amount of such pages that mention your domain name. But as tedster says, unless you're seeing a performance hit, it's fine to speculate, but if it doesn't affect performance, then it's unlikely to be a factor worth agonising over.


8:08 pm on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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

There's another factor here. Many people have noticed that backlinks from social media sites are often short lived in their effectiveness. Google seems to treat much of the web 2.0 universe as a trendy, bursty kind of thing. If those links go on to stimulate solid editorial links from other domains, then the purpose was served. If that doesn't happen, the effect of those links fades away quickly.

The Historical Data Patent [webmasterworld.com] gives some inisght into these mechanisms.

Receptional Andy

8:24 pm on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

Granted :)

Note that it's indexed pages here rather than links, though.

I think if there's a drop in indexed pages mentioning a domain name, then it's very unlikely that is a positive thing, although it may well be entirely neutral.

If it was a site I was involved with, at a minimum I'd like to find out (or know already!) which pages were no longer returned, whether they be from the site itself or from an external network (which could be social bookmarking, advertising, or any other' batch' of pages).

And as you pointed out earlier, the indexed numbers are not a precise indicator of anything ;)


3:18 am on Oct 22, 2008 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Actually i feel the impact of this decrease: ranking on new keywords is more difficult than it was before although the competition is the same in my niche.

Probably the freshness factor mentioned by tedster: but I'm surprised because it happened all of a sudden 2 or 3 weeks ago.

Thank you to you both for sharing your knowledge. I appreciate ;-)


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