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Google Updates and SERP Changes - November 2013

   
3:20 am on Nov 1, 2013 (gmt 0)




System: The following 20 messages were cut out of thread at: http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4614058.htm [webmasterworld.com] by robert_charlton - 1:36 am on Nov 4, 2013 (PST -8)


I'm seeing some interesting SERPs right now. Queries seeming to be matched to the most generic term available instead of the specified query. IE - a search for "type of something" returns a list of "somethings". These are geomodified queries.

No surprise, just interesting to see.
6:12 pm on Nov 7, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Is Google actually incorporating new websites these days?

Even for unique pages and images I am not seeing new stuff, as in the past couple of months, being ranked in their SERPs meanwhile Bing already has them and ranked at #1 in their SERPs.

Both of them seem to have lost the plot insofar as images are concerned!
1:36 am on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member sgt_kickaxe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



Google image search doesn't drive nearly the same traffic numbers it once did, regardless of what Google says. People looking at your full sized images don't need to leave Google to do so anymore.

BIG UPDATE MIGHT BE INC!

While it probably will only affect less than 1% of all searches there is probably a major update going on this week(or next) based on what I see in my GWT. Every time there has been a major update over the past two years one particular site of mine reports a massive crawl spike by Google combined with an equally massive jump in kilobytes downloaded per day. This has been invariably followed by hundreds of 404 error pages appearing in GWT which represent pretty much every page I have removed since 2007.

It happened again yesterday, keep an eye out for Panda/Penguin movement(but not hummingbird).
3:06 am on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

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While it probably will only affect less than 1% of all searches there is probably a major update going on this week(or next) based on what I see in my GWT.


We had a big crawl by Googlebot a couple of days ago. (Our last big drawl was in mid-October, and the one before that was in mid-July. Each time, we saw a modest change in our Google traffic two or three days later.)
8:04 pm on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Is Google actually incorporating new websites these days?

Even for unique pages and images I am not seeing new stuff, as in the past couple of months, being ranked in their SERPs meanwhile Bing already has them and ranked at #1 in their SERPs.


I launched a new site 2 weeks ago and it is just starting to show in the serps. Before the last update something like this would have been up and running within 4 days, something has not been right since the last update and I think they are trying to fix it, but failing.

Here's an example of what I see.

Search Term: Diet Product CityName

#1- 100% completely different product, Like searching for beer and Coke page shows up as number 1, but same city.

#2- medical clinic mentioning product, wrong location

#3- another big clinic, wrong location that mentions product.
...then this
Results for similar searches

#4- Cityname Pizza and Wings ( thats great for diet searchers)

Then a couple yellow page sites and a travel site

It appears that google thinks the pages about "the product" are all over optimized and dropped out of the listings leaving a mess behind. This cant stay like this as I am sure google does not want to give someone searching for a diet product, a local pizza place or a travel site.

I had to go to the bottom of page three to find a site selling the actual product, above it is a .ru forum with "Free Por No for..." in the title. (real words filtered out by ww)

I can't see the Gorg being happy with their results, there should be some sort of change coming... but when?
8:09 pm on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)



Something major hit across my sites sometime on the 4th. Not sure what it is yet, but some lever was pulled and traffic dropped like a rock.
9:01 pm on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Before the last update something like this would have been up and running within 4 days, something has not been right since the last update and I think they are trying to fix it, but failing.


Good, at least someone else is experiencing not normal Google behaviour. I also deleted a WP Blog two months ago, all the images bar four have been removed from the index BUT 2,400 pages still remain even though everyone is 404d, I'm beginning to think I'm going to have to 410 them to get them removed however will even that work the way things seem to be?
10:37 pm on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)



I included my tags on my blog, added more than 100 and they still are not indexed. It passed more than 3 weeks. Google still seems to index my old stuff as see it crawling my old pages.
10:40 pm on Nov 8, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Just wanted to add that my example above was on the .com searching in the USA. Did the exact same type of search in Canada and the results look quite good. The only issue is have the same site showing in 4 or even 5 spots on the first page, but everything is very related, it just seems to me anyways that the USA is a mess.

Google just needs to clean up the crowd sourcing or whatever they want to call it and they would have a good search engine again. Even the wiki and directory junk is on page 2 and below where it belongs in Canada. If you guys down south get what we are seeing, you will be happy I'm sure... but we know better, I'm sure the junk you see will spread up here instead.
8:27 am on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)



Hi. Looks like another roll of 1st November update. I got hit on the 1st. On 5th of Nov my rankings got back to previous state and today I got hit again. The rankings went down at least 50 spots down and are the same as on 1st. Anyone else got hit?
11:20 am on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)



Seem to have been hit today (12th). Yesterday was Ok'ish but today is dead. SERP's look the same as last week to me so stumped again. Looking at dates I'd say we were hit around the 1st which recovered on the 6th.
11:44 am on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



Sgt_Kickaxe - google image germany dont show images like that, I think its be cause they know that would give troubles with the Germans.
12:01 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)



People who saw the crawl spike a few days back...seems to be a traffic drop kicking in. AGAIN.
12:07 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



Nah I also had all pages spidered a week ago, I dont see any difference.
1:13 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I see that Google finaly adjusted the backgroundcolor from ads to serps backgroundcolor: White
But they added a yellow flag with white "AD" on it before the snippet.
That is very good and i think the best Google has done in last time for transparency. That adds one rubber Point!
1:54 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Martin, I am not seeing that. Are you talking about SERPs on tablet/mobile or on desktop?
2:22 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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@aaak, i am german located.
[google.de ]

Hope it is ok, ony some generic keyword
2:37 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Martin, I tried google.de (in German) and not seeing it. Also tried your URL and not seeing it either.

However, I think I saw what you described on tablet on google.com and google.co.uk
2:38 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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MIW - They seem to be doing this for several countries but not .com nor .com.au at the moment.

Added - And it's random!
2:55 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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[dropbox.com ]

I see it on Desktop search
3:08 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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@redbar, i like it a lot. It is clear, Looks nice and does not have taste to hide something and make the user click on ads.
3:34 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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It's very random, I can't make it do it again.
3:35 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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People who saw the crawl spike a few days back...seems to be a traffic drop kicking in. AGAIN.


I'll echo what Zeus said: "I dont see any difference."
4:22 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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seems to be a traffic drop kicking in


I don't see any difference either, although Google traffic has been so abysmal lately that changes of a few percentage points wouldn't be readily noticeable.
5:02 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)



I am noticing a daily increase from other search portals other than Google. I wonder if the general public is beginning to use other search sources other than just Google?

Is anyone else seeing increases from other engines that may have lots ground in the Google serps?
8:06 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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@Martin - thank you for the image. This is exactly what I am seeing on tablets and mobile, but not on the desktop. It is a bit less obvious in English as the word in yellow is just "Ad" hence shorter.
8:35 pm on Nov 12, 2013 (gmt 0)

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



But they added a yellow flag with white "AD" on it before the snippet.

I was at a presentation by Moz's Dr Pete for an informal SF bay area SEO community meetup, and this is one of the changes he reported he'd seen being tested. One theory regarding this is that it might work better in mobile, and it might allow ads to be interspersed in organic serps... again with mobile in mind.
1:09 am on Nov 13, 2013 (gmt 0)



might allow ads to be interspersed in organic serps


I hope not. Google was just about literally founded on a mission to prevent just that! It'd be 1995-1998 all over again.
8:51 am on Nov 13, 2013 (gmt 0)



Google has been on a slow change to #ffffff for ad backgrounds. The day is coming when it will happen. I am pretty sure legally they do need to differentiate ads from results. However with Knowledge graph taking over the serps it is kind of a moot point anyway
9:08 am on Nov 13, 2013 (gmt 0)



I thought part of the bind the EU had with Google was to make ads MORE obvious! Making the background colour the same as the SERP's with a tiny "Ad" logo in the corner doesn't cover that base IMO. Still, it's obvious where Google are going...
9:45 am on Nov 13, 2013 (gmt 0)

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@aaak, it must be pretty new in germany, cuse i saw it the first time yesterday. So it spans over to desptops PCs in germany ( that could be because of the EU regulations, like ohno says to make ads more obvious ).
I like it cause you def see ist a ad. But it also thrives the attention from the user to this Little tiny flag.
So if it is just a test, we will pretty fast see if it works for them.
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