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2: Google MAYDAY Update - SERP Changes May 2010

     
10:22 pm on May 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



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

Puh, this is really strange: I still see 2 resultsets - and after 7 days I can say that SERPs #1 are shown from right at 0am to about 5am local time and SERPs #2 the rest of the day. I thought this was some kind of dancing around again but it seems to be quite stable now for 1 week.

Funny thing is: SERPs #1 are better then before, SERPs #2 are worse (in rankings of main keywords).

Google is no longer following my robots.txt file. It has indexed hundreds of pages that I have disallowed.

Same here, got a complete set of new pages with robots=noindex in the index.

Generally it's best to make any changes when SERPs are stable, never within an update due to panic!

In general I would agree, but I haven't seen something like "stable SERPs" since January... This makes it quite hard not to panic ;-)

[edited by: tedster at 7:43 pm (utc) on May 13, 2010]

7:01 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



Another thing i have noticed, GA used to be 24 hrs behind for us so you could see the previous day first thing the next, it seems to be taking longer now & this info it not available until later in the day or until 48hrs have elapsed. Just looked & Monday saw a massive peak for both sites(expected) but then a slight drop with a flat line on the graph. Usually we have a peak on Monday which decreases slowly each day until the next Monday.
7:33 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



It's a month since my traffic went down by about 20-30% (but 50% on revenue) essentially wiping out dozens and dozens of great links I got in the past 6 months. Traffic levels are at 6month ago as well.

It's extremely frustrating, especially since there is a dataset where I must rank very well given the referrals I get from Google. I just want one good year then I'll buy a cabin somewhere :)

Things are changing
8:02 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



Really? Are you referring to the meta description? Mine are "indexed" just fine. Perhaps you meant this is no longer a ranking factor?

I fully understand the use of description meta but I meant what I said as a reply to the OP whom I had quoted. The OP said "Where searching for description tags in Google doesn't even bring my site in the results." That is because Google does not use this for ranking. A search for any meta description text will confirm this.
8:06 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



Off course I HOPE something different but Google is changing (on many points EACH day!)... it would be stupid to think they are caring for the hard work of other companies unless they pay.


Thats sums it up perfectly. Never lose sight of the fact that they owe us nothing outside of Adwords.
8:18 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



For what it's worth: I suddenly saw a MASSIVE increase when using site:<domain> for one of my domains... it now is back to the same depths again but it was the first time I noticed a big increase (almost 2.5 times the amount of which is indexed now). Anyone noticed this too?
8:31 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



BeeDeeDubbleU The description tag has not been indexed for a loooong time. They tell you this in websmaster guidelines.


Where exactly does it say that?

This is very interesting. If I search for the first 10 words of my description meta in inverted commas my page doesn't rank but if I remove the quotes I'm #1.

I use a tool at Go Rank to analyse my pages vs competitor pages in terms of density, repeats, prominence etc. If the description meta is not indexed in the same way as page content then this analysis is fatally flawed.

Perhaps a discussion on indexing of description should be in another thread.

Cheers

Sid
8:47 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



While accurate meta descriptions can improve clickthrough, they won't impact your ranking within search results.

[google.com...]
9:08 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



Just noticed on today's refs: About 40% of my Google visits come from non-US, never seen that before, my site is as American as apple pie
9:13 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



BeeDeeDubbleU Thanks! I'm off to upload some test pages.

Cheers

Sid
9:13 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Did anybody get quality back links during the last 2 weeks? If that's the case, any change on organic traffic?
9:14 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



GA has updated at last, steady decline in traffic since Monday. (less traffic than last week but sales WELL up!).
9:19 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



@ohno...

I find it strange now that you are receiving traffic that you are no longer complaining about google's rubbish results and about bing that it is better and you are switching over to bing and even your customers. Well don't get me wrong, I'm happy for you that your traffic improved but yeah I am finding it strange that you are on the google side again because your sales are going up!
10:04 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



I'n not complaining about Google's rubbish results because i am no longer seeing them! I'm not on Google's side at all either-Google control UK search-FACT! (& i never said Bing was better, i said if Google carried on being useless for my PERSONAL searches i would try Bing, &, if it carried on being useless from a business POV would hope customers would try different search engines if Google wasn't allowing them to find what they want).

For the record, we haven't sold a bean today.
10:50 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Just for reference, we saw about a 20% increase (still a 30% loss overall, but up from a 50% loss previously) in traffic from Monday - Wednesday, and it's dropped again now back to 50% loss again on Thursday.

Googlebot is now hitting our site hard again today.
10:56 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



/\ Which mirrors what we have seen i'd say.
11:02 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Matt Cutts did say it is a " Change in the Algorithm " yesterday during google io.
See [themechanism.com...]

So forget caffeine, this is a permanent situation and will not change to the better for us. We will have to adopt or die.

I can't tell how pissed off i am about google silently making changes. They just dont care about us.
11:07 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Has the UK filter been switched off in all of this mellay of changes?

I'm seeing little or no difference between .com and .co.uk results.

Cheers

Sid
11:10 am on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Looks like the Mayday name has stuck then. What next, the SOS update or Abandon Ship update ?
12:03 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



It looks like the shuffle has settled out for us (knock on wood) for now...and I've been checking our long tail terms - it looks like better results now - currently ranking in over 8000 terms. As far as sales go, I think it's a perfect storm of the Caffeine shuffle, good weather, a bad economy and another newsworthy eco-disaster and global market fears that have customers acting skittish, but overall things are picking a bit. Traffic levels never really dropped off, just sales. Can't blame it all on G.
12:18 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



Just noticed on today's refs: About 40% of my Google visits come from non-US, never seen that before, my site is as American as apple pie



Hello walkman,
One of my site's keywords are targetted with different US cities and still i am getting more traffic from google.ca, google.co.uk and google.com.au rather than google.com.
12:40 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



Just taken a look at the logs, looks just like last week again. Either everyone has taken the day off or something not quite right again.
12:47 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



hi... Just noticed something too after reading this thread. I run SEO for a shopping site. Was getting roughly 8000 uniques a day.

This has dropped to 4000 if not less, but only 5% drop in conversions and sales?
The only way they could be pulling this data is by reading my Analytics STATS.
1:16 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



This has dropped to 4000 if not less, but only 5% drop in conversions and sales?


Sorry, your conversion rate has roughly DOUBLED?
1:22 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Sounds like Analytics is the problem.

Sid
1:46 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



While accurate meta descriptions can improve clickthrough, they won't impact your ranking within search results.


So clickthrough rate has nothing to do with ranking?
1:48 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)



I'll put on it will start to if it doesn't already.
2:22 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



While accurate meta descriptions can improve clickthrough, they won't impact your ranking within search results.



So clickthrough rate has nothing to do with ranking?


That's not what it says. It says "meta descriptions" won't impact your ranking...
2:29 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



That's not what it says. It says "meta descriptions" won't impact your ranking...


I think you are missing the point I am making.

If clickthrough rates can affect ranking and the meta description can affect clickthrough rates, one could conclude that the two are closely related. Meta descriptions can affect ranking.

Maybe the admin should move this side topic to a new thread...
2:50 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



About 40% of my Google visits come from non-US


Visitors to my UK site from Google this past month don't even speak english!

I just want one good year then I'll buy a cabin somewhere :)


We all have the same dream buddy!
3:15 pm on May 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

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



If clickthrough rates can affect ranking and the meta description can affect clickthrough rates, one could conclude that the two are closely related. Meta descriptions can affect ranking.

I agree with that very much. So perhaps it would be better to say this: The WORDS in your meta description are not directly scored by Google's ranking algorithm
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