Once again a image update, Panda had did much harm to google image, but this update flips everything up and down, all sites at the top are blogs like sites, so mostly not sites that focus on image only. Maybe its now the sites that ranked good there, that gets hit to scare small sites, like on google.com
10:47 am on Sep 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
Ohh not my best text I have made above here, well just waking up. Another thing I have noticed is that some sites dont show when you do a mydomain.com image search, you see a lot of sites that link to that site, but non from the original site, as if they dont exist, but when you do a site:mydomain.com its there.
8:25 pm on Sep 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
nobody see these extreme changes or having the same problems that you go down 95% google image visits, I have never seen anything like that, that a site just vanish from any google image search, im really in trouble here.
8:51 pm on Sep 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
I saw a change in the image results as well.
10:20 pm on Sep 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
Thanks for posting this. This would explain why one of my sites is for all intents and purposes "offline". Wow. So much for the past 4 years of solid traffic. Oddly enough this was the site I spoke with Adsense in your City about. I LOL at all this now. A bomb goes off here, then another one there. So many tweak to algo I essentially have to stop caring about any of this.
Not to sidetrack, but I appreciate this post. I thought I was victim of the keyword domain algo. Guess not. All I can say is, who out there is really really get sick of this?
I will update my situation when it changes. Today is absolutely a kick in the gut big time. I've been through a lot but this really really hurts.
10:26 pm on Sep 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
Looks like they are "culling" "duplicates" even harder..personally I'm in favour of it..
Should ( if done correctly ) make it easier for the actual image creators to rank above their scrapers..
Would be nice ( I'm not holding my breath waiting for it though ) if they included pinterest, and the other crowd sourced image scrapers ..
11:16 pm on Sep 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
I'm doing more looking around on this. I spent a fair time checking image results over the past year especially. Confirmed you won't be seeing many duplicates that's for sure. If I could describe this, it would be like taking image search results, putting them into a blender, and then redoing it. It's that drastic from what I'm observing. People are going to find out in a real hurry how much of their "traffic" was the result of images. I can't wait to read more on this one. Far more drastic than anyone might realize. Of course depending what subject your site is and whether images have anything to do with it and what role they play in your traffic. There should be some good reading coming up.
[edited by: tedster at 5:30 am (utc) on Sep 30, 2012]
4:57 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
I have one site that gets quite a lot of image traffic and for this particular site the traffic converts ok. It took a big hit at latest panda (3.9.2) and all image search traffic pretty well gone. As for Google culling duplicates I own the original image any copies are copies of my image. It looks like high PR image scrappers are taking my positions.
5:30 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Okay, looking at numbers. My site enjoyed a 70% drop today. Sound bad? So today was a flashback to about 3 years ago. For 3 years this site has kept a very respectable and steady traffic. It didn't really waiver, never caused concern. I stopped working on this site months ago for fear of waking up to a flat line. I spent time at the Adsense in your City team going over this site a month ago. I decided recently to work on this site again. You could say I lost that "fear" of disappointment and felt secure enough that I wouldn't be wasting my time on it. Well, we're here today and guess what? With a 70% drop I can say you got me this time. Funny how the world works. This is getting to be an ugly business. I have a thick skin but this one? Not sure how to react other than wait. For me, and my decision to not work on it, then work on it and then see this? It's a major slap in the face.
Aside from that, I see another one of my sites with images ranking well with marginal change. Another site which is more product related? It appears you need to have your own camera photographed images at this point. Mission accomplished, less duplicates.
Quite a lot to digest here. I sense for the most part image search may get a collective "shrug" around here. Guess we will find out. Frankly I can't find any other details of this anywhere which has me wondering.
5:35 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
MrSavage, was all your Google traffic on this site image search traffic?
5:51 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Based on today, it must have been very dependent. It's shocking to think the site became this dependent on images. The fact that I become this dependent on Google means these types of mornings are what I'm going to face. If not this, then something else. Nothing shocks me anymore. This however stings more than the rest.
As mentioned, I avoided spending time on this site for months and months. So when I added new content recently, I think the new content is not being indexed or will take a long time to index. Part of those recent updates included new and improved images.
The only thing I can take from this right now is to see how well that image traffic really converted. Since right now it appears I don't have an image anywhere in Google search, now is the time to do a comparison. It's early and hard to say. It's one tiny positive I take out of this.
I think sometimes when people talk about site traffic drops etc, it's easy to dismiss the words people are writing. It's hard to put yourself in another persons shoes. This was the one site that was the top dog. It was a beauty and a steady earner. It's been absolutely smashed and that's just the way that it is. My gut said the day would come and it's better to just walk away knowing that you didn't get sucked back in. Unfortunately I did get sucked back in and put my time back into the site only to have this happen. It's comical and depressing. A real life drama. Webmastering for me is starting to become a very cold place. Not friendly, not long lasting and barely worthwhile.
6:29 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
The reason I asked about Image Search is that I'm hearing from other webmasters who lost search traffic on the same day - and it WASN'T from image Search. I'm beginning to think that there was also a regular Web Search update at nearly the same time - something besides the EMD.
I appreciate that not every traffic loss means an update - but I'm now suspecting that this past Friday/Saturday was both an image search update AND some kind of Web Search update as well. In fact, one of my long term clients lost an important page 1 ranking and about 40% of their total Google traffic - and they don't have an EMD, it's a branded domain.
6:35 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
@MrSavage I am in almost exactly the same place as you at the moment. Very similar timeline a site that used to do well then got hit a while ago came back. I got excited started working on it again and bam now it is gone again worse than ever. However some interesting information has come of it and this might be more for tedster to look at..
@Tedster 1) This site is an EMD 2) This site has ranked 3 or better for the EMD for over 8 years. Last 2 years it was position 1 but ranked under images bar (you know what I mean?) however my images was the first image! 3) In the last Panda update it lost all of its Google image traffic. Which converted ok on this particular site. this reduced traffic by 2/3rds so halved my income as the 2/3 that was lost was 4) Now I actually rank above that image bar and have a proper position 1 but the traffic is still down as the image bar seems to pull more traffic. 5) This site used to get lots of longtail keywords image traffic on minor images that related to the main keyword but didn't have the main keyword in them. However all image traffic gone now as I said earlier. 6) Lastly I have lost most of, if not all my international traffic. This was not huge part of my traffic but it is now noticeably gone.
6:39 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
@tedster I think you are right about that for example my image traffic has gone from about 3k uniques a day to 27 in total today! that is a big difference!
6:51 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
one other thing the images are mostly my images and the one for my main keyword is definitely my image. However the site that has taken my spot has stolen my image but it has a higher PR than my site so looks like Google is saying if it has a higher PR we are going to trust that domain to be the owner of the image. Sad really!
7:01 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Totally relate to where you're coming from MrSavage, and am in completely the same boat. Though google images didn't bring me huge amounts of traffic, I did check it this morning, and see my images have been totally relegated there as well.
What peeves me is that my photos do actually appear at the top of the results, but they are on blogsites that have used them without my permission.
For a so called minor update, they seem to have caught up a lot of individuals who no way deserve this treatment. I wasn't affected by Panda or Penguin, and my domain has no bearing on my content. I'm a professional at what I do, so seeing poorly created amateur sites with badly written articles, created for the sole reason of making advertising revenue, doesn't give me much hope for the future of Google.
[edited by: zarathustra2011 at 7:04 am (utc) on Sep 30, 2012]
7:03 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
I think the confusion for a lot of people "might" be the fact that they aren't getting traffic from images which they did before. Not realizing until now that images did provide a lot or a portion of organic traffic. I could be wrong, who knows right now. I don't think most people are thinking in terms of images and how their organic traffic may have been inflated because of it. If I didn't read this thread about images I might still be thinking I've been penalized, Pandalized, refreshed algo, or something other ranking algo change as being the culprit. LOL, I just did a site search to make sure I'm still in the Google index. Yes I am! Heh, I know it's bad when I need to verify whether I'm indexed or not in part of looking for a reason for the 70% drop.
8:27 am on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Yes it is a very sad day for google image, I see a lot of blogs at the top and looks like when a site links to your site or image they rank higher, I sure hope this is not the end of this update.
Since panda updates, it has also changed the google image rankings, the same yesterday, when they launched a web update, the same time google image changed.
12:25 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Looks like they are "culling" "duplicates" even harder.
I did a couple of trial searches when I saw this thread and came to the same conclusion. I also noticed that there seems to be less clustering of pictures from the same site. Two test searches show that I am doing worse on one and better on the other.
3:39 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Anyone seen any changes today, still hope they will fix this or is the only way to be presented at top to create a blog or link to other sites and images
3:41 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Holy smokes. I hope I'm not misdiagnosing my situation here. My #2 most valuable site is at 50% loss of traffic. In fact every site I'm checking is down down down.
I need to check further but it did appear that those brand sites, powerful PR sites, ownership sites are taking those image rankings. So the powerful have become more powerful from what I've seen. Again it depends what type of images. I'm talking about like product images.
I don't yet know aside from speculation how valuable traffic was from images. I can say it was one avenue to get organic traffic. If there is one less avenue now to get some organic traffic? Well that's a game changer for me. I will say the next while will be a major test. If income loss is closely related to the percentage of organic traffic loss, then I will decide if I put another ounce of time and effort into these sites. This is a very significant situation for me. If the image traffic proves to be not valuable in terms of income, then I can still move forward and put some time into these site even with 50% drops in traffic. If not, I'm done.
I can only say what I see on my stats, this is like a penalty which is not server or site wide, it's pretty much levied against every site I own. I preface that by saying I don't own a "brand" or a "giant" PR website. For them? I think it just got even more wonderful.
I'm not sure when I check my stats again. I'll just see if anyone here is reporting a bounce back of sorts. I'm waiting for more positive outlooks regarding this.
4:07 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
MrSavage : I also have about 10 sites that are down 50% also a single non related to images, means not dependent on google image. I already look for a job and end my business after 10 years, be cause of bloody Saturday update,I even have to sell my car if this dont change within the next week. NEVER done any link buying or other things, just pure cool sites which are mostly over 5 years old.
4:20 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
I'm not sure but could this update be as simple as Google saying, well site A ranks #1 for that term, so why shouldn't they rank #1 also in image search? Seems cut and dry but I see some of that now. I'm hoping someone can verify that. If you have PR, you are trusted on Google search, and isn't this as simple as making the algo behave the same way with images? This would partially explain to me why it's been so devastating to a person like me.
It also seems that not all image searches have yet been updated. In fact some searches don't have the hover effect that shows the site url and the page 2 doesn't load but only has that spinning icon that it's loading. It doesn't load. I'm just seeing some sporadic issues and differences.
update: I think this is still rolling out. It appears broken to me because there is no preview effect and it's stuck on page 1. This is what I see on the keyword searches related to the my site which lost 70% of traffic.
9:03 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
There where once back in time where google image had the same problem, there all sites that linked directly to a image or/and site rank better then the original (where they link to). This is REALLY not a good update, come google you must see that.
9:58 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
One thing I have noticed is that HIGH PR domains are factoring more heavily in the image searches now. Even ones that have stolen my original picture. Sites like about.com and what look to be student/knowledge sites. I used to not care they stole my content because many would link to me as the original. But now they out rank me in image search LOL!
10:17 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Yes thats what I mean that a single link to a image or site can outrank another site where the image is. I dont see that high PR sites outrank others.
10:36 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
@viral You should always care about who steals, scrapes your images and what happens to them..
Same way you'd care about some one scraping an entire article..( IMO it's worse with images, because each scraper takes the entire image..it isn't like they just take 10% of it, there is no such thing as "fair use" of someones images, unless for parody, review etc..link backs make no difference and are not a legit excuse for scraping ) ..If the scraper is big enough , it is as if they gain "mass" ..and then they outrank the originator(s) for that image and any others that they have scraped..
Or if the scrapers are numerous enough, Google is as likely to "attribute" your images etc to the biggest of them..
They could do otherwise..but as I have said elsewhere ..I'm not holding my breath..meanwhile, you have my sympathy..hopefully you have realised that from now on..you need to protect your images..as you would protect your articles..only let others have what you do not need..
Don't allow dupes or scrapers..whoever they are..unless you are feeding them watermarked images..
Now it has gone a stage further, as Google appear to have decided that the greater "mass" site, is the only one that they need show for an image..given the "evidence" that they have to work with, they have made a logical and understandable decision..plus , there is always "collateral damage" with every algo, big or small..
If you don't protect your content , images, graphics, or texts, videos, whatever, eventually people and search engines cease to regard them as yours..
This is why "brands" protect their "brand"..
11:25 pm on Sep 30, 2012 (gmt 0)
Personally I think that Google messed up somewhere. It wouldn't surprise me if on Monday they roll back whatever happened this weekend.
5:12 am on Oct 1, 2012 (gmt 0)
I see a lot more image results in the supposedly non-image 'web' search.
"Image results for ..."
Totally agree with the big sites getting control of image search. I've pretty much transitioned over to writing content for popular article and blog sites, since I can't get my own sites to rank for anything anymore.
So I noticed the product images I've put on my articles on these pages are showing up on the first page of the serps "Image results for ..." with a link back to my blog page. These are far from unique images, just things pulled from an affiliate database.
5:48 am on Oct 1, 2012 (gmt 0)
My image searches went down 68% but the day after are now up 54% on the crap day. So your prediction of its a mistake may be coming true. Has anyone else seen a rise the day after this thread was posted?