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Traffic from organic search should be considered a bonus, not an entitlement.
[edited by: AlyssaS at 10:59 pm (utc) on Sep 7, 2011]
and the fact that they are looking for webmaster input about high ranking scrapers seems to say they have at least that area in their sights.Way back, in the mists of time, this request was quite common, so merely by requesting indicates a problem in at least one area. I anticipate a roll-back , promoted as " a great improvement building on Panda " i.e a PR spin.
There was a time when people used directories, links resources pages and bookmarks to discover new sites or revisit old ones, but search engines became so good that most people use them instead nowadays.
... someone from the organic team makes an unambiguous statement that their team does not even have an income related KPI to use in evaluating the effectiveness of their algo changes.
After all these years, if the official statements were bald-face lies, wouldn't some engineer, present or past, have spilled the beans and leaked the story?
This is about a specific technical issue: is adwords a direct ranking factor in the organic search algo? The idea that it is comes up a lot, but I've never seen credible evidence that it is actually the case. There are plenty of arguments as to why it might be in Google's best interest to do that, although I disagree with that too. I think they're smarter than that - the con they're running is a very long con, not a get-rich-quick scheme. But there hasn't been any direct evidence, any statistical analysis, even any seriously credible anecdotal evidence, that they actually do this.
And therein lies one of the flaws of our thinking: engineer. Most Google discussion and company reference focuses and obsesses about the Google engineers. But, there are plenty of just-as-brilliant, non-engineer, business-types on the Google staff, and these are the staff and teams that are charged, at some level, with evaluating and measuring the impact of the changes, and suggesting appropriate income-related actions.
And there's another reason directories dropped in prominence
It's organic quality that fuels the whole search business and Google is too smart to undermine that with quarter-to-quarter manipulations.
Are we talking quality?
As Google+ grows - so will Google's understanding of how to use it as rankings signals.
We are not playing Google+ because we want too - we are playing Google+ because we have to.
[edited by: indyank at 2:58 pm (utc) on Sep 8, 2011]
Google+ SEO factors now trump linking as prime algo ingredient.
but what if that fails and they don't see patronage? there doesn't seem to be any indication of it succeeding and they can see success only if webmasters cooperate.Since there is a huge dependence on webmasters, google will definitely try to tease them with rankings..
Now that I really don't believe. Google's serps didn't change that radically, there's not a bunch of new sites at the top of the serps with no links and lots of +1's.
If so, I'm skeptical as to how many people are using this. I've not seen it on sites, and nobody I know who's not a webmaster is signed up into a Google account.
[edited by: AlyssaS at 4:36 pm (utc) on Sep 8, 2011]
The question in my mind is the percent of all users/visitors that will actually provide feedback
And depending on where you work -- say, Facebook or the Justice Department -- that could look like Google is unfairly using its search engine might to boost its Facebook alternative.
That might explain why Forbes killed a story by Kashmir Hill entitled "Stick Google Plus Buttons On Your Pages, Or Your Search Traffic Suffers" which was seemingly based on information from a meeting with Google ad representatives. On August 18, Hill wrote, "the message in this meeting was clear: "Put a Plus One button on your pages or your search traffic will suffer."
But the story quickly disappeared from Forbes' website and from the Google cache, though it was noticed and saved by the Raven Tools SEO blog.
One guesses the tone of the post -- and its headline -- rankled someone somewhere.
Forbes, Hill and Google all declined to talk on the record about the post that disappeared into the memory hole.
I'd say the biggest reason directories fell off was that the model cannot scale with the growth of the web.Web directories hit a scalability wall very quickly because they rely on user submissions to gain content. The alternative is to have a website detection/acquisition setup and this is beyond the expertise of most people who build web directories as it effectively is the precursor to a search engine.
And the current search challenge is still scale. That's what makes truly competitive entry into the search market so problematic.Actually I don't think that the problem is scale. This is based on building search engine indexes and doing monthly website usage surveys of about a million websites. The problem is getting fresh content and identifying derelict websites that have not been touched in years. There is also a sub-problem of distinguishing actively updated content from spam sites. Scale is easy - it is a technological problem. Quality, timeliness and relevance are far harder problems to solve.
I hope Brett is right - and I wait for the change with a degree of expectation, in fact. Google holds maybe 8 to 10 times more data in their active index than Bing does, from what I see. And that difference in scale seems to be another part of what Google tends to choke on.I think it is more a question of quality. I've seen a lot of easily identifable holding pages in Google so it is a possiblility that Google's quality control sucks. It seems that Google relies on its algorithms to keep these sites down in the SERPs but it really is an example of poor programming that they should even make it into the Google index in the first place. (This may upset the Google fanboys and fangirls but it is a simple truth of building search engine indices that it is far easier to stop junk going into the index than remove junk from a live index.
Web directories hit a scalability wall very quickly because they rely on user submissions to gain content.And that's what makes some of them great. Really depends on who's submitting that content. I absolutely love small specialized topic-specific directories. There are some still up since the 90s that contain a treasure trove of info on some hobby stuff I do. They are mostly accepting submission by the owners (not technically a submission though) and maybe a small circle of trusted friends. Sort of like a prehistoric Yahoo - style.
If you have repeatable empirical evidence that Google is "manipulating" (whatever that means, it would be nice to have a definition) search results to increase adwords revenue, that would be interesting.