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Google Updates and SERP Changes - July 2011

     
11:14 pm on Jun 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

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

Here's what I am more interested in than anything...

How are all the cosmetic changes Google is making going to affect the traffic driven from Google search?

It definitely seems like Google is de-emphasizing the straight up search aspect of itself more and more and more. They're going out of their way to direct people AWAY from search with every cosmetic change they make.

That has to be having an impact on people who get a lot of traffic from search... I don't know I don't get any search traffic anymore since Panda took it all away.

If you do still get Google search traffic, how is this impacting you?

[edited by: tedster at 3:32 am (utc) on Jul 2, 2011]

9:25 pm on July 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Rowtc2, I did nothing at all. My site and my competitor (informational) are not quite right yet. We are unnaturally way off off page 1 for our main KW in US & UK serps. The only comforting thing is I adapted a while ago for long tail traffic over homepage rank because I simply couldn't keep up with aggressive competition.
10:03 pm on July 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Mr3putt, you say you added plus 1 about a week ago, and then followed that by saying you removed all adsense except one small block at the bottom, but it's not clear to me if you removed adsense recently (along with adding the plus 1 button), or if you removed it back in april. Could you clarify? Thanks! And congrats! Hope your recovery remains.
10:57 pm on July 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Sorry for the confusion. I removed adsense April 1st except for one small block at the bottom. Added the +1 a week ago.
11:20 pm on July 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I'm simply stunned, for one particular 3-word phrase on google I'm seeing:

--#1 original webpage
--#2 cloaked iframe page of #1
--#3 stumbleupon's cloaked page of #5
--#4 original webpage
--#5 original webpage (cloaked by #3)
--#6 original webpage
--#7 one picture, one sentence lifted from and linked to page on website found lower down in serps (this is a newer bookmarking/social media site that's ranking).

Is it even necessary to create our own content now? This serp shows thin pages with one or two sentence and a picture plus fully dup'd pages aren't actually the issue with Panda. Maybe Panda has opened the door to where we just need to cloak "good" pages and whichever domain gives the visitor the overall best experience (time on site, site clicks, pageviews/user, etc.) and does a better job drumming up links and tweets (offer giveaways and network with a large team of bloggers)...winning? This is about.com circa 1999...and it's #winning with Panda 2.x?

I mean wow, that's a whole new opportunity to pull in a thunderstorm of new eyeballs with very, very little effort and then just wrap it all in sidebars and headers promoting my own sites and products.
11:55 pm on July 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I'm now seeing some very slight improvements in ranking for certain fat-head terms on google.com. It's too soon to tell if this is resulting in much traffic increase. I doubt it will be too dramatic, but any upward movement is a good sign after the last few months of downward spiral.

Anyway, it definitely looks like something is changing.
12:17 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I saw a little bit of , not sure I can call it recovery, but had more visitors that the days before. Today it's about half of it, so what gives?
You can see in the serch results that a lot of new sites have showed up, mostly scraped site (maybe) and domain names with lots of dashes in the name and page names.
Can't figure out what they are doing so I might just go in for a ride as long as it lasts. Might not quit my day job just yet...
9:52 pm on July 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

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< moved from another location >

So we got hit with the panda update 2.3 and saw rankings drop around July 14th... I know they said the official roll out date was the 18th but pretty sure they rolled it out a few days over the datacenters. Saw some drops to 2nd page for most of our top keywords in pretty competitive areas. Seeing some site ranking now that have never ranked before... anybody got any clues on what we can do to improve once hit by Panda?

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 3:00 am (utc) on Jul 27, 2011]

4:40 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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So we got hit with the panda update 2.3 and saw rankings drop around July 14th... I know they said the official roll out date was the 18th


Where was it announced there was a panda 2.3 around the 18th?
4:46 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Our article on Search Engine Land originally said it was around the 18th, but we've since updated that. I'm pretty sure it happened on the 22nd.
5:03 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I agree with 22nd U.S, saw movement in Oz on the 23rd late evening that looked different from the usual fluctuations.
5:23 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Vanessa, was it more noticeable on 22 July for sites that you track? I noticed it in the week starting July 14-16. there were changes in early July as well.

It does look like they are triggering it at different times for different sets of websites/pages now.
7:33 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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There seems to have been a rollout in European languages ( non EN ) for the 1st time. Can anyone reconfirm this?
7:52 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Ranking changes happened the 22nd for me, not the 23rd.
And, it affected all my international sites as well (france, germany, scandinavia etc...)
9:47 am on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I haven't a clue what's going on...on my widget trade site my page views and uniques are yo-yoing all over the place. Monday they were at levels I haven't seen since Panda 2.1, yesterday they were 33% of Monday and the worst day of the month and so far today in my first 10 hours I have already doubled yesterday's uniques and it's already the 2nd highest of the month but with a 50% reduction in average page views!

It is definitely rodeo time for this site yet my B&M sites are looking completely normal.

Trying not to assume I wonder if this site is about to come out of Panda or be smashed again?
12:07 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I wonder if this site is about to come out of Panda or be smashed again

Anything rolling around is playing with thresholds. Time to really get stuck into improvements and stabalise in my opinion. Wild rides up or down don't look healthy anymore to me.
12:56 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Yes, but the thing is, with every update the junk in the SERPs seems to rise not fall.

A few weeks back, I filled out a spam request on one such example -- an unloved exact match domain with broken links, two lines of content and an Adsense block front and centre. I thought google should be aware of the quality sh*t residing at #5 in the SERPS on this major search. After this latest update it's #2! How long before it's #1 and google's embarrassment is complete?!

My wife keeps asking me what we can learn from it and, seriously, I'm thinking I don't think we can. What am I to do... stick some broken links on a page, leave it unloved for 2 or 3 years and then wap some Adsense on it? And, that would make it 'quality'.

Maybe google should have picked a smarter animal than a Panda?!
1:51 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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My wife keeps asking me what we can learn from it and, seriously, I'm thinking I don't think we can.


Correct, and therein lies the entire problem. I have some sites completely untouched yet I have others using the same parameters which have been stung badly. I have a new site using the same template layout, ads, IP etc with pages all ranking well and in some cases 10 pages ahead of other older sites and pages I have with far better content.

There seems to be no overall generalisation of what does and does not work, assuming one's site is clean and relatively unique, therefore going around changing things just for the sake of it is, IMHO, pointless.

Try launching a couple of new small sites but present the information differently but still for the visitor, not for Google, and see how they fair.
3:49 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Way fewer blogs are ranking well in the SERPs, and probably not even getting indexed. Google Alerts are reporting a lot fewer blogs, too.

What's up and ranking better are way more ecommerce or sales links in ther SERPs. Google Alerts showing lots more of these pages getting indexed. It looks like you can throw up an ecommerce site for a product listing and get it indexed. I know, many of you will have a different view. I'm just observing the SERPs I'm seeing.
6:42 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Regarding blogs, there's a current discussion of those here...

Is Google Devaluing Blogs & YouTube?
http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4343415.htm [webmasterworld.com]
6:45 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Daniweb.com make a recovery this past weekend. Along with a few other sites. Congrats to them!
7:53 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Google is confirming the recent update and they are calling it Panda 2.3. How about that.


[google.com...]
8:14 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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The third link above is an absolutely classic example of what is wrong...an MFA keyword domain for sale!
8:43 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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The first algo-change roll-out started already on July, 12. The second one on July, 18/19. It seems that Google is forcing YouTube/Blogspot results in front of other results. While checking some of our phrases I even noticed up to 3 YT results on one single page. This could be an additional push for governmental prosecutors to move forward with lawsuit against Google since this looks like a clear conflict of interest to me.
11:02 pm on July 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Daniweb.com make a recovery this past weekend. Along with a few other sites. Congrats to them!


Dani has been brilliant in making her situation very public, she has probably gotten tons of external links through the process.
1:46 am on July 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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How about Dani was public enough to get press time. Was is that fact? Or was it a result of their site changes and alterations? If I had one real public situation that made my business look bad, I would add some grease to the squeaky wheel. I'm just saying my trust of Google right now isn't exactly what it once was.
6:28 am on July 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Two of our domains when green again in GA yesterday. Sales this week have been better than last and this is supposed to be the quiet time as the holidays started this week!(well, they started late last week but this is the first full week). As ever I hope they just leave things to settle for a while but I think I know the answer to that one!
3:34 pm on July 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Is anyone else seeing a high volume of mis-spelled traffic today? Terms that have been driving steady traffic for many months are suddenly replaced with misspelled versions of the same phrases, and the original, correctly spelled phrases are not driving the same volume.

Odd...
3:46 pm on July 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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The "Referring Sites" down July 22, now Google images traffic is included as organic traffic.

Could it be the cause of traffic increases?
4:16 pm on July 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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@Errioxa

I mentioned that earlier, and yes, Image Search and Google News are now included as Organic search traffic, not referral. We've seen a drop in referral and an increase in organic, but overall, we're seeing a net increase.

I wish they'd change one thing at a time!
6:19 pm on July 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I'm seeing big drops on several of my sites.

Some that were recently promoted to first page have now dropped several pages deep.

Others that were in #1 position for years have also dropped several pages.

Some rankings remain the same. Haven't seen any sites that improved.

Anyone else see big drops today?
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