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Google Updates and SERP Changes - October 2019

     
12:04 pm on Oct 1, 2019 (gmt 0)

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System: The following 5 messages were cut out of thread at: https://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4962430.htm [webmasterworld.com] by goodroi - 5:42 pm on Oct 2, 2019 (utc -5)


Dealing with Google as a business is tough and dealing with Google as a normal user is becoming a huge headache as well. I was trying to find some info about some software on the latest Smartphone I just bought and it was insane how stupid the search engine is now. It blatantly ignores keywords and uses synonyms for others which was not my intent and important for the search. It just returns articles of general information that are 5 or 6 years old. Even the stupid "People also ask" widget just regurgitates these same articles with information that is either outdated or completely wrong regarding my query. My whole mobile screen seems to be filled with either ads or search widgets.

I disagree with the use of all these widgets, and see a lot of it as content theft (people work hard to provide this information). It would be one thing if Google actually returned the correct information but in a large percentage of queries it does not making these widgets and the AI behind a huge failure.

Google please become a real search engine again instead of trying to be an information provider on the backs of other peoples businesses. (I know this will never happen unfortunately unless the government steps in)
4:16 am on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Same here, must be trick or treat time again. Every holiday seems to totally unplug the internet, while Gorg continues to gain 20% every quarter. Odd.


@samwest Now is the time for US holidays!:P
9:39 am on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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SERPs with favicons are back... and it hurts
10:56 am on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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SERPs with favicons are back


I hate how it looks. Too confusing to they eye. Why would google want this?
11:02 am on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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No, the economy most certainly is NOT booming.

In my industry we are seeing solid growth. Overall sales in October 2019 are 26% higher then we had in October of 2018. We recently surpassed total sales of 2018 with two months still left. It has been a good year for us, and I don't see any indication that business is slowing. Certainly some industries are not doing as well, but I think those that have an over-reliance on search traffic are the ones really hurting. Considering the internet is growing more slowly then it has in the past, much of Google's profits are driven by digging deeper into the pockets of businesses by increasing their advertising costs.
11:38 am on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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The hardship here is not from any contraction in the economy or big slowdown in spending... It's wholly manufactured by the wunderkinds at Google taking the money out of your pocket and putting it in theirs.

And this has to stop.

.
12:45 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Interesting Finds has returned. #^%#! Kiss any conversions goodbye.

[edited by: samwest at 12:46 pm (utc) on Oct 31, 2019]

12:46 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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@heisje
And this has to stop.

It is hard to see how it will stop because the searching public still love google, afaict they haven't decided the search experience is declining there. Until searchers start using other engines en mass I can't see a rebalancing for webmasters taking place.
12:47 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Mods Note: Please remember this is the Google Updates & SERP changes thread and keep your comments on topic :)

If you want to discuss something that isn't directly related to a Google Update or SERP change, please post a new thread.
4:31 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Surely, if a site is informational, as mine is, it's possible to rank higher than almost any ecommerce doorway page?

I'm UK as well as informational and I rank above almost all the ecommerce sites. I don't always rank at the top because there are some very smart, large, trusted and financially backed informational sites which also have an ecommerce element to them.

But it can be done. Many people want to research before they buy and I see them going to independent informational sites first, like mine. From there they often click on the ads to buy.

In depth knowledge of the subject area and an understanding of what the reader wants are key to repeat visitors. And in my experience, repeat visitors = higher in the SERPS.


Seems you have both backed my argument up and negated your own at the same time there. Exactly my point re informational sites and that companies with the resources are creating informational sites that rank above eccommerce sites but are in effect just disguised doorway pages. Ive seen companies by aged domain blogs and then "update" the content to contain references and recommendations to their products, have "comparision/reviews" that their products always win out on top and the other might be seen as "ok" or sometimes put basically libelous comments about them.
So this is a double whammy wereby the companies with more resources are going to win and destroy the smaller competition and the content for users might seem like it is informative yet it is not a true picture and often completely misleading - googles algos do not know , or least don't do anything about, these kind of sites and they often dominate (at least in some niches)
4:46 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Interesting Finds is now gone again. There is certainly uncertainty in the current SERPS. Traffic is once again back to a trickle / drip pattern and massive zombies. Appropriate for the season I guess. Happy Halloween.
5:24 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Last year, I stopped adding any new content (I paid professional freelancers specialized in my business niche, also for professional images). My search engine / Google traffic remained the same, but I saved several thousands of $$$. I advise other webmasters do the same because money spent on quality content = negative ROI.
5:28 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I totally agree, no matter what I do the traffic remains the same.
7:00 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Last year, I stopped adding any new content (I paid professional freelancers specialized in my business niche, also for professional images). My search engine / Google traffic remained the same, but I saved several thousands of $$$. I advise other webmasters do the same because money spent on quality content = negative ROI.

IMO, it's all a crapshoot, but you never know when--or if--a page will take off and do really, really well (which could be quite a while after it was published). I've seen that happen any number of times during my 20+ years in Web publishing..
7:28 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Anyone else seeing a lot of page requests for url/undefined ?
My redirection log is full of requests with ".../undefined"
Not sure if I should redirect those or if it's some new bot slamming my site.
8:33 pm on Oct 31, 2019 (gmt 0)

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I just been searching for some specific products and Google's serps are currently awful. Not one of the serps on page 1 gave me the product I was seeking. To check what I was seeing l did click through.
I got serps from the wrong country, although it was English, i did not get a result worthy of google.

Interestingly, I found exactly what I wanted on page 1 of Bing SERPs.

Oh dear Google.
4:15 am on Nov 1, 2019 (gmt 0)

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Google's serps are currently awful


@engine Well when you search for 'Best Amd laptops' then you might get the 'best intel powered mobile'. It works that way these days.

System

9:54 am on Nov 1, 2019 (gmt 0)

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The following 8 messages were cut out to new thread by robert_charlton. New thread at: google/4971024.htm [webmasterworld.com]
4:01 pm on Nov 1, 2019 (PDT -8)
This 317 message thread spans 11 pages: 317