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The online market question is a red-herring.
The online market question is exactly the point of this thread
...viable alternatives for e-commerce ...top 5
He got a company to put the name, address, and phone number of his business on his car.
its important now to plan your business beyond Google
Fascinating thread and surely a vote on Google behaviour in the last few years as people discuss essentially doing anything but Google.....
If you're running a good business and an efficient website, Google will want it in their results.
Why do you need to discuss ?
When Google won't sent visitors anymore just adwords ! So easy.
just look at the number of unhappy campers in this thread alone
do you try to get by on the assumption it's only transient traffic, noindex everything to get rid of the traffic or gear up to deal with it?
"Don't rely on free traffic" is easy to say - but that's only possible for some business models.
"Don't rely on free traffic" is easy to say - but that's only possible for some business models. E-commerce can certainly work with paid traffic - but information publishing funded by advertising can't (in most niches):
As a publisher you simply can't afford to pay to create great content, then pay for visitors to come and consume it for free, in the hope that 2% of them will click an ad - unless you've got amazing visitor retention, the figures just won't work.
Doesn't mean I approve of all that they do, I certainly don't..But searchers don't care what we think..and neither does Google..or Bing for that matter..
Because G will "take all the pie" they can ( meaning most peoples traffic or revenue sources will shrink even more drastically than they maybe have )..one day
If what The Mad Scientist is saying is Google plans to change things in such a way that only a very small percentage of the traffic on Google will find its' way to our sites then that obviously sounds like an end of the world scenario for online businesses who haven't found other ways to generate business. I'm struggling to see it though. I agree the 'machine learning' aspect of Panda will become more and more influential over time and I can see how that could be the foundation of the 'one right answer' concept but my understanding is the machine learns from the behaviour of humans who visit your site, so how can it learn what the one right answer is without continuing to send humans to our sites? Has Google really developed intelligence to match that of a human? I doubt it.
I think I need more info on the 'one right answer' idea. Will this be an option, with results listed as normal if you're not satisfied with the one right answer? Does anyone know or are we discussing something based on speculation about HOW Google will implement what they've talked about?
[edited by: TheMadScientist at 6:21 pm (utc) on Jan 8, 2013]