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Google Updates and SERP Changes - Jan 2012

     
7:36 pm on Dec 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



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

i tried to sprinkle different variations of one phrase onto each page

if the target phrase was "big red widgets" then the page might have a couple mentions of each of these

big widgets
big red widget things
big widget things
big red things
red widgets

plus an exact match in the <title> and <h1>

[edited by: tedster at 12:31 am (utc) on Jan 2, 2012]

4:04 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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@alhutch totally agree the 14th caused a big shift. Possibly in link weight?
4:17 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)



@c41lum I think the 4th might be link weight and the 14th something to do with a trust measurement of the whole domain which could be panda related.
4:22 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)



Agreed with the 'trust' measurement being reassessed on the 14th. I had a website that went a bit heavy on the above-the-fold Adsense and was struck down by Panda. I hugely cut down on the advertising and placed any advertisements 'below the fold' before Christmas and as waiting patiently to see the effect this might have. On the 14th the rankings jumped from page 3 to page 1 for all key terms.
4:29 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)



@n00b1

I have got to agree with you, one of my sites was ranking #7 for so long I decided to delete a lot of pages and remove Adsense it is now ranking #1. I am not sure if Adsense had anything to do or if it is something to do with yesterday's update as it seems like G did some sort of update.
5:34 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)



Question for you guys... a lot of people throwing around the idea that this has had something to do with "link weight" - it seems like a lot of webmasters are in agreement on this... how can you tell? I mean what signs lead to that conclusion? Any actual evidence or just a hunch based on professional analysis? I'm not questioning anybodies professional opinions... I just am curious how to measure link weight...
6:37 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)



Hello,
sorry if it will be offtopic, it might be related after all.

Foreign Spam Backlinks[webmasterworld.com ]

i have noticed the same in my webmaster tools recently - many irrelevant backlinks from sites, which are not even close to be in niche or on relevant subject, across the world.

I have noticed as well other people looking for same answer, while did google search - some from last days, some from today even.

Of course i've never did such kind of linking.
7:34 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I've been making a lot of headway on my investigation on my site's 1/14 drop. Along the lines of link weighting shift/devaluation, has anyone suspected blogspot.com links (or similar) being devalued?

I've witnessed drops for terms with back links from a couple blogspot blogs. Blogspot comprised a large percentage of the total backlinks. Wondering if the blogs themselves were slammed as spam blogs, or blogspot links as a whole were devalued. Thoughts?
8:34 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



my ecomm sites showed gains in traffic on both the 4th and 14th, but the conversion rate on my organic google traffic dropped noticeably on both those dates as well. i have noticed this exact symptom with prior updates. i rely heavily on longtail - my theory is that the algo changes take a few days to get applied all of the way down to the supplemental index (i know we don't use that word anymore...) results where i mostly live.
8:48 pm on Jan 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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



Wondering if the blogs themselves were slammed as spam blogs, or blogspot links as a whole were devalued. Thoughts?

I'm thinking the change is more fine-tuned than that - however, it still could affect a lot of blog links. What I suspect is that Google is getting more intense with their visual page segmentation. Links that are run-of-site (extensive tag links, categories or blogroll links) may be sending a lot less power than they were.

Just a theory right now, and it's not all that easy to research. But from some of the examples I've looked at, it does look to me like the "reasonable surfer" model for PageRank circulation is getting some kind of tune-up.
1:43 am on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

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@ wingslevel
I'm not ecomm, but my observations are very similar to yours
4:11 am on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



@ignatius - same here. My site took a nose dive after Jan. 4th. I got a Panda slap on the wrist a few times in 2010 and 2011, netting traffic down 50% - but suddenly, I got whacked 33% down overnight. Which net net puts my site down 80% now since early 2010.
4:19 am on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)



Not sure if anyone saw this. But the recent update is related apparently to about 30 changes Google recently announced.

30 search quality highlights (with codenames!):

You might remember "Panda" and "Caffeine," but you probably don't remember last month's "Top result selection code rewrite." That's why many of the search quality improvements we make have internal codenames.

To give you just one example, our old question-answering feature in search was codenamed "DAFFIE," which stood for the "Database of All Fact Fiction Information and Exaggeration." In 2010 the team did a complete overhaul of the system and released a new short answers feature. Amit Singhal, thinking of Daffy Duck, decided to codename the new system "Porky Pig", because Porky Pig was trying to kill Daffy Duck. The team laughed thinking that Amit was just confused (everyone knows Elmer Fudd is the hunter). But, it turns out Amit was right, as he often is. In 1937 in the original cartoon to feature Daffy Duck, Porky Pig was in fact hunting Daffy.


Here's the full update list for December [insidesearch.blogspot.com]

[edited by: tedster at 4:46 am (utc) on Jan 20, 2012]
[edit reason] Add citation [/edit]

11:22 am on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Hey everyone,

i have a short question regarding last updates.
On update 4th Jan we recognized a significant increase of visitors, on 14th all this was vanished only to come slowly back on update 19th.
But now my question, till update on 14th and 19th my conversion rate is ZERO? How about u? Did one of u experienced similar?
1:58 pm on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Life on Google serps must go on with or without Above The Fold Algorithm Launch :-)

So it seems January 2012 has been very rich with Google Algorithm Updates:

- Google Algorithm Update of 4th-5th January 2012

- Google Algorithm Update of 14th-15th January 2012

- Google Algorithm Update of 19th January 2012

Keeping in mind that January 2012 isn't over yet, who knows how many algorithm updates would be launched before the end of this month?

Pssst.... have you noticed that Matt Cutts has't mentioned anything at all about Panda!
Haven't I told ya that Panda is dead "God rest its soul" :-)
2:41 pm on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Yeah, something happened last night. One of my main sites fell about 50 spots... no ads, good content... over 50K links over a decade. No sense at all.
3:51 pm on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

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All my rankings returned, almost exactly to where they were (down 1 spot for top terms). Noticed some new sites in the top spots.
9:13 pm on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



@Gshaughn

All my rankings returned, almost exactly to where they were (down 1 spot for top terms).

How about organic traffic? Is it where it was?
11:22 pm on Jan 20, 2012 (gmt 0)



any other partial recoveries from the 14th seeing a cooling off? Our traffic is back down to what it was prior to the 14th.
3:52 am on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)



Something happened 19th Jan - 20th Jan. Anyone else noticed it? My affiliate manager also told me that a lot of his publishers got hit and it was the worst day ever for them.
4:41 am on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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



ErnestHemingway - Jan 19 was the day Google rolled out their newly revised algorithm for web page layouts... here's our thread about that: [webmasterworld.com...]
5:28 am on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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



newly revised algorithm for web page layouts

Has this been launched in place of a long overdue Panda iteration?

I'm wondering if this process needed to preceed it. 3 months of waiting to see if work that's been done is enough to satisfy the "quality score" is way too long to endure from a webmaster / siteowner's viewpoint. Needs some communication.
6:19 am on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)



@Tedster

One of my sites that got pushed down apparently doesn't have any ads.
7:44 am on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Has anyone confirmed from any sources that there was a Panda update this year and/or is Panda now a rolling update?
11:42 am on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



I have seen no mentions of a Panda update in Jan so far. I too had something happen on Jan 14th, lost about 15% of traffic. Others here who lost or gained traffic on the 14th, what are your theories for this? Now I am not talking about the 19th, which had to do with above the fold stuff - which by the way, if you were hit on the 19th but have no ads, then there is something funky with how much content you're showing above the fold. In other words, it may not be ads that trigger the above the fold algo, it may be simply your layout.

But some here have said it was a back link change on the 14th, others have said a trust thing
I am curious because I have two sites that dropped a bit on the 14th that were Pandalyzed last year that I have been improving tirelessly, so to see them get whacked a bit by something other than Panda is annoying.
1:47 pm on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member crobb305 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



my bounce rate soared sometime during the first week of January. My bounce rate is consistently around 30%, but for 2 weeks it has been 42% to 46%. I've been pulling my hair out trying to figure out what I did to cause it; but as I look through the search phrases in my logs, many are highly irrelevant, generating numerous 0s pageviews.
3:23 pm on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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@reseller - only one day of data to compare since returning (Friday) from 1/14 hit:
-organic traffic down 33% from Friday 2 weeks ago
-organic traffic down 18% from Friday of last week
I'll take it. beats being down 80%. returned to #3 vs #2 for major kw which could be the difference right there.

@crobb305 - the bounce rate for my site improved after I got hit the 14th, as if gg hit the kw/page combos that were inflating bounce rate. Haven't looked too much into that piece, just an observation.
9:41 pm on Jan 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



@aok88: I experienced exactly the same on the exact same date, That's strange. Traffic is down about 90% from the first Panda hit, I were hit by almost every panda update.
1:11 pm on Jan 22, 2012 (gmt 0)



Hello,
all my 14 sites gone from top 3 positions to 6th,7th pages in google.
Is there any way to recover those sites?
please help me out.
thanks.
1:16 pm on Jan 22, 2012 (gmt 0)



All of them gone on 13th Jan. I know it was Panda hit.
My friend said, it is really impossible to get back those sites ranking which where hit in panda update period... Is that true?
3:35 pm on Jan 22, 2012 (gmt 0)

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



crobb305 - could also be googles fault if a user dont get those results they are searching for, be cause of pure serps.
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