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My Take On The New Google Update!


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#1 glyn

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Posted 25 April 2012 - 03:17 PM

So finally, Google has admitted that its search engine had an achilees heel, and decided that it was time to do something about it.

Google, you were too easy. Software has become too advanced even for the team at Google to stay on top of. The answer, remove the very thing that was being used as a way to game the sysytem, links. Or bad links (naughty naughty!).

It's not that black and white but there has been a big change that is affecting a lot of sites that got delusional on the links mean success route. Instead what it is now about is making the site look normal and made for reading rather than for ranking and exploiting the algorhythm.

It's well known that many of the bigger brands are employing agencies using methods that frankly were working (some were also found out, JC penny, and some also got forgiven) which means they will get hit too and might opt for an adwords option to bring it back on track. Adwords account managers on alert!

That's why I like this update. Because there are going to be a lot of companies asking their seo company what the hell just happened, and there's a blog post from Google saying that the sites that got hurt are the ones playing dirty. I think that's gonna clear out a welcome bit of dead wood in SEO. I do feel sorry for those that never really learnt the art of search engine discection before they learnt the instructions for using se nuke.

The key message from Google is make a site for a person not as a piece of material designed to rank according to an ever changing algorhythm, which is fair. Yeah, right Google. When you say to everyone don't optimize content for ranking (always optmize architecture and processes), then you have free reign to serve whatever you want to people.

A nice bit of irony is that a website that has gone above one of my own in Google was the very same one I wrote to a number of months ago to tell them that their Indian web-agency had scraped my content, respun it with TBS and then published it using AMR across a few 1000 article marketing sites. Exactly the stuff that this new update has captured!

Speaking hypothetically what would happen if those SEOs with all their tools just started submitting all the domains on the first and second pages of Google to the various link-spamming tools that have been cited so widely in this update. That would probably result in page 3 going up to page 1?

The point is that this stuff changes, and we've just been given a big change, which is refreshing!

Glyn.

#2 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 25 April 2012 - 08:04 PM

It's really way past time for people to stop complaining about the negative SEO implications of recent Google changes. Those negative aspects have been around for a long time and they are in no way heightened by these algorithmic factors, except in that you can now trigger an "Unnatural Links" warning in Webmaster Tools.

Whoopeee. Big deal.

The problems Google has been addressing are the same problems it has been addressing for years: INTENTIONAL violations of Google's Guidelines.

The guidelines may be vague but no one is holding a gun to anyone else's head, forcing people to use Google as a marketing channel. In fact, today search is a weaker marketing channel than it has been for years, relative to the number of other channels now available.

I find that NOT depending on links for SEO is very liberating -- and highly efficient and very productive in terms of building stable, steady, reliable search traffic.

If Google traffic really means that much to people, then perhaps they should get off the "links at any price" treadmill and stop complaining about being bounced around in every Google update.

You make your SEO fortunes, not the search engine.

#3 glyn

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 02:56 AM

While I don't agree with your first paragraph at all, I do your antepenultimate statement.

#4 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 06:15 PM

People have been Googlebowling each other for years. These new threats are no different -- except the people making the threats are only threatening to use link resources that Google has now devalued and/or deindexed. Talk about sending a toothless dog to terrorize your neighbors, why even bother?

That's really what gets me about the latest fascination with "negative SEO". These guys have been disarmed in their sleep and they are understandably angry but they're going to have to bring more than a threat to the table if they want to negotiate.

Triggering an "Unnatural Links" warning just doesn't cut the mustard. All the Webmaster has to do is file a reconsideration request pointing out that his linking history doesn't match the spike. Why would Google doubt that? The Web spam team isn't stupid.

#5 clandestino

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 11:40 PM

The problems Google has been addressing are the same problems it has been addressing for years: INTENTIONAL violations of Google's Guidelines.

The guidelines may be vague but no one is holding a gun to anyone else's head, forcing people to use Google as a marketing channel. In fact, today search is a weaker marketing channel than it has been for years, relative to the number of other channels now available.


C'mon Michael, I know you're not that heartless. You're one of the good guys. Not everyone that is penalized is wrong or did it intentionally. Google needs to have adequate staff to sort them out, and they don't.

Let's move the bad guys out of the way, everyone agrees. But let's not shoot the civilians to get the bad guys.

Let's get rid of links and focus on engagement.

What's that? -- I hear an echo -- http://googlewebmast...gh-quality.html

Good search engine optimization can also mean good marketing: thinking about creative ways to make a site more compelling, which can help with search engines as well as social media. The net result of making a great site is often greater awareness of that site on the web, which can translate into more people linking to or visiting a site.

Why not promote sites based on visitor engagement metrics?

I'm game, now that's fair...Let's do it!

Edited by chuckfinley, 26 April 2012 - 11:41 PM.


#6 glyn

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Posted 27 April 2012 - 02:39 AM

Michael, Having spoke to a good number of agencies in the UK, as well as agencies here in Italy this was no ordinary update and perhaps that is not what you are saying, but that's how it's coming across in its reading.

The biggest update to happen in over 10 years some were saying to me. Across really really black hats and super white hats (squeaky clean, I am in bed with Google guidelines types) the impact and feedback I have have received has been that it is devastating.

But life goes on, and still my clients will win and Google will lose :)

In the meantime people will get angry (see 1st comment)

Edited by glyn, 27 April 2012 - 02:40 AM.


#7 jonbey

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Posted 27 April 2012 - 05:29 AM

As you probably know, one of my sites was heavily affected by Panda. After scrutinizing the Google recommendations and making a lot of changes it fully recovered (about 8 months down the line, cleaning up 5 or 6 years of bad blogging!).

Thankfully this site did not get affected by Penguin - and too right too, all white hat, quality content etc. etc.

Another site of mine was whacked by the penguin though. I never did any dodgy SEO on that site either. In fact, I hardly did any SEO at all. At the moment no idea why it was whacked, although I have 3 "theories", 2 of which I can act on (and have) and 1 that is impossible to change (the domain name!).

I am confident again that it will recover though. If I had built millions of dodgy links, bought links etc. then I would be less confident, but Penguin is another automated penalty which means you can fix a site and it will recover.

Of course, I may be proved wrong and never recover!

#8 glyn

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Posted 27 April 2012 - 06:35 AM

This is not a normal update. Wait for the fallout, three to one on that affiliate sites loose out.

There is no consistency whether white or black you got battered. Tabulate ranking differences against keyword costs via Adwords, I'd start there, but for the next two weeks I ain't doing diddly except experiements.

#9 clandestino

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Posted 27 April 2012 - 05:32 PM

It's part of Google's move to drain the cesspool, as Eric Schmidt says it. -- http://www.seobook.c...ding-brands.php

They definitely want to get the affiliates and pushing out small businesses that can't invest in advertising is just fine with them too. Unfortunately, that small business might be you or me.

Edited by chuckfinley, 27 April 2012 - 05:34 PM.


#10 jonbey

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Posted 27 April 2012 - 06:06 PM

Makes sense. Actually 2 sites I managed got hammered by Penguin, both are keyword domains.

Also today I saw a big UK brand hit a million Google+ fans.

#11 raz

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Posted 28 April 2012 - 12:18 PM

Makes sense. Actually 2 sites I managed got hammered by Penguin, both are keyword domains...........


jonbey,

My main site which got really hammered (traffic down by 50%) has keywords in domain.

I held the number one position for the main trophy keyword for some 9 years and now the homepage is nowhere to be found for that keyword.
An inside page which has exactly 50% duplicate content (put up back in 93 when it wasn't a problem) ranks 6th place.

However the two sites that occupy the 1st and 2nd positions have keywords in URL.

That tells me; keyword in URL is not a problem.

Also; I never revived any unnatural linking warning from Google and I have never engaged in any link building schemes. What's more I have in fact not bothered with link building in the past 3 years or so since the site itself attracted links because of its position and the quality of content. I have really good quality content.

So the three most often cited reasons for sits that have lost positions don't seem to apply to my site and yet I have been hammered big time!

I am so confused and down that I haven't even bothered to analyse the sites that beat me...

raz

Edited by raz, 28 April 2012 - 12:19 PM.


#12 iamlost

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Posted 28 April 2012 - 03:54 PM

So the Google 'over-optimisation' update
I think 'over-optimization' wasn't the best description, because it blurred the distinction between white hat SEO and webspam. This change is targeted at webspam, not SEO, and we tried to make that fact more clear in the blog post.
---Matt Cutts quoted by Danny Sullivan

is really a 'webspam' update that is expected to affect ~3% of queries and has officially been named 'Penguin'.

While webspam is a typically google amorphous term, over-optimisation is not; while there can be debate where 'over' begins it is a rather explicit un-Google description. Given that webspam is a huge and varied target and that an algorithm requires highly specific specific parameters I suggest that Penguin is aimed at over-optimised spam results.

I suspect that the re-description quoted above is the result of the furor that erupted regarding SEO, optimisation, over-optimisation, et al. Rather than have to clarify by explaining what exactly Google means by 'over' optimising Matt Cutts retreated back into the black void of webspam. Much safer; for Google.

If we take Google's numbers as reasonably factual then a ~3% query change is not anywhere near a biggest update to happen in over 10 years, except of course to those being hit hard for the first time in a decade. :)

glyn - that such comments are coming from agencies may point to where Google has drawn their 'over' line. Agencies and many/most multiple site webdevs tend to replicate methodologies that work be it in content generation, SEO, etc. When a SE threshold line contracts that can be a catastrophe when it impacts a business model foundation behaviour.

It also may say something about an agency that utilises one size fits most/all of it's clients.

So far my sites are muddling along pretty much as usual. Whether I'm doing things right - from Google's perspective - or simply playing in uninteresting niches I don't know. But I'll take it. :)

raz - most/all Google updates work around the addition or subtraction of parameters/filters and the expansion or contraction of thresholds. It is quite possible that keyword(s) domains and/or URLs weight is in play but not sufficient by itself to cause a broad/limited ranking change.

From a SE perspective this makes sense as being difficult to diagnose means difficult to game. From a webdev perspective it remains an excruciating pita. My usual recommendation to webdevs that have been hit but are adamant that a site is clean is to watch to see if site crawl has been affected and if/how things change after the affected pages have been subsequently crawled at least twice plus indexing time (knowing your SE historic change time lag is a good thing). Every algo change impacts outliers and adjustments may come without any input from the webdev.

#13 clandestino

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Posted 28 April 2012 - 09:54 PM

@raz I'm sorry, man. No one likes to see a good soldier go down. You should be able to call Google or maybe chat with them online to address the problems and they should be able to tell you exactly what they want from you to put you back online.

If that happens once, I'm fine with them being less customer service oriented on the next pass. I just think it's wrong to penalize people without telling them why. It should be easy enough for them to do. And, there are innocent bystanders that are getting taken down, Or, maybe they didn't understand, or maybe they were agressive 4 years ago when Google said they didn't care, or maybe so on, and so on, and so on.......the possiblities are nearly infinite.

It's hard for small businesses to put in the kind of investment in architecture, design, marketing, etc. that Google would like to see when they can be randomly gunned down without a hearing. Left for dead by the roadside and Google hopes no one finds the dead bodies.

Maybe this wouldn't bother me so much except we're experiencing the worst financial catastrophe since the Great Depression, and the jury's still out, this isn't over yet; it may be worse than the Great Depression. So Google decides it's the perfect time to put small businesses out of business and send their employees to the unempoyment lines. And, the cost of all those bankruptcies will be borne by society which is -- You and Me! Google profits at your and my expense.

I know Google has a business to run and they have competitive pressures -- Facebook -- but it seems they are running scared and that's never a good business model. The PR effects of this can't be good either. Sooner or later some savvy PR agency is going to pick up on this.

Edited by chuckfinley, 28 April 2012 - 09:57 PM.


#14 clandestino

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Posted 28 April 2012 - 10:24 PM

So let me make sure I understand this. Google says all SEO should be natural. So adding a descriptive keyword to a URL isn't natural? Would it be better for user if it was /#hl=en&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=google+eater+eggs&oq=google+eater+eggs&aq=f&aqi=g-s10&aql=&gs_nf=1&gs_l=hp.3..0i10l10.3443.9228.1.9441.17.17.0.3.3.0.235.1980.2j10j2.14.0.9MiBXQ1_3bU&psj=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=fe2819027d67eb6c&biw=1280&bih=552 ???

What about renaming a image file with a descriptive keyword? Is that over-optimization. Would it be more helpful to webdevs if it was /thumbnail.asp?file=assets/images/ProductImages/YP41WIDGETXXX14_Product.jpg&maxx=275&maxy=0 ???

Is a Title Tag unnatural if it includes more than one keyword that relates to that page? How do you get a natural Title Tag? -- have Google employees vote on it and mail you some suggestions? Well they won't do that. They would rather crucify a few hundred thousand small business owners and watch the ones that survived, to a significant degree by chance and/or luck, scramble to figure out what the algorithm did, and why, and what to do about it without any help from Google.

Who decides what the tipping point is? How many points do you have to accumulate before you get "Whacked by the Penguin"? And, can you even get a logical/supportable result with a mehod like that?

Maybe I'm just a simple guy and I sure do have a lot of bad habits, LOL! But, I'm pretty sure no one deserves this kind of treatment.

I just want a market place that is safe to compete in and affords an opportunity for all to benefit with as little risk as possible. Is that too much to ask?

Having said all of that, none of my clients got hit with the Penguin.

But, will they tomorrow? For some goofy thing that no one would have planned for. Or, will Google make an error in their parked domain classifier --> http://www.seroundta...-bug-15036.html but won't look into it because my client is just a small business without a big megaphone?

Google -- get a hot line or online chat, with enough people to staff it. This business of going on the forums and begging someone from Google to help and no one ever does is ridiculous. I'm tired of reading those threads that go on, and on, and on, and on......get it?

Hang in there raz, you'll sort it out. I hope you're still in your house by the time you do, though. You know those Google execs won't have any trouble with that.

#15 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 01:37 AM

C'mon Michael, I know you're not that heartless. You're one of the good guys. Not everyone that is penalized is wrong or did it intentionally. Google needs to have adequate staff to sort them out, and they don't.


Trust me, I AM that heartless. Search engine optimization is not about following some cookie-cutter formula that is guaranteed to always work.

A lot of "good guys" push the edge of their site design / content as far toward the bad side of things as they think they can get away with -- or simply because they read SEO blogs and forums and don't question the advice they pick up from those places.

The majority of people who are downgraded in every search algorithmic update believe they should not have been and yet the reality is that a large percentage of them (say anywhere form 50-99%) SHOULD have been because the update was specifically targeting behavior those people thought was okay.

In real-world SEO you adjust to the changes in the environment and move on.

Sometimes the search engine makes a mistake but the more acrimonious the response to the mistake, the less seriously I take the SEO practices behind the acrimony.

I've had Websites flatline with no apparent hope of coming back. Big deal. "number 2" happens. You deal with it and move on.

It's not [added on EDIT: entirely] the search engine's fault that 90% of the Websites trying to make money are relying on short-cut techniques and magic bullet formulas.

Edited by Michael_Martinez, 29 April 2012 - 01:38 AM.


#16 bwelford

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:35 AM

In general I believe the updates that deal with content are usually correctly separating out the sheep and the goats. Also you have control over your own content and so can correct whatever over-enthusiasms you may have had in the past for keywords or whatever.

The updates that deal with links are less effective and unfortunately you can't do much about links that others may have put in place. The sped arrow ... and all that stuff. The crazy thing is that Google has mucked up the link world by getting everyone enthusiastic about links and now wants to put the genie back in the bottle. They're trying to change the world back to what it was so that the PageRank theory can work. I've set out my thoughts on this here.

#17 jonbey

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 09:34 AM

I suspect that the only big change wrt to links is that a lot have been downgraded. So while a lot of webmasters may be complaining that Penguin has penalised their sites, the truth is probably that their sites now have a poor link profile - the cheap old links just do not cut the mustard anymore. I've set out my thoughts on this here. Although my thoughts are not really very sensible at the best of times :)

#18 raz

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 12:13 PM

A lot of "good guys" push the edge of their site design / content as far toward the bad side of things as they think they can get away with -- or simply because they read SEO blogs and forums and don't question the advice they pick up from those places.

Michael, - though the statement is true for most part, the fact of the matter is that this reality is brought on by Google itself. Mat Cutts keeps preaching that the algo can do this and that at a time when he is simply reciting capabilities in their wish list, and meanwhile webmasters are looking at the sites that dominate their categories doing all the things that they are not suppose to be doing month in month out thinking to themselves; "the hell with this, I am going to join in"...

This round of update is just as poorly executed as all the rest.

The majority of people who are downgraded in every search algorithmic update believe they should not have been and yet the reality is that a large percentage of them (say anywhere form 50-99%) SHOULD have been because the update was specifically targeting behavior those people thought was okay.

Really Micheal? Anywhere from 50-99%???? Would you like to fly in an airliner that is from 50-99% safe? How about driving down the freeway at 80 mph with brakes that are 50-99% effective?
I don't mean to be mean Micheal but the reality is that Google keeps talking about these grand ideals, comes up with a half a**ed solution that is maybe 50% effective and moves ahead. This can be bast described as practicing Russian roulette with a lot of sites.

raz

Edited by raz, 29 April 2012 - 12:17 PM.


#19 clandestino

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 01:03 PM

The updates that deal with links are less effective and unfortunately you can't do much about links that others may have put in place. The sped arrow ... and all that stuff. The crazy thing is that Google has mucked up the link world by getting everyone enthusiastic about links and now wants to put the genie back in the bottle. They're trying to change the world back to what it was so that the PageRank theory can work.

I've set out my thoughts on this here.


Hi @bwleford,

Great post,explains it perfectly from an analytical perspective. I believe you may have said it in a way that Google can understand and accept. Very good!

I only see 3 ways for Google to sort this out --

1) forget about this link penalty strategy and go back to devaluing links from their end (accept this is a Type 3 error),
2) a long and painful process of penalizing sites until there are no more with whatever types of links Google thinks should offend them (refuse to accept or care that Type I and Type II exist), or
3) communicate with people in one of more "audit meetings" to reach an agreement as to what links are O.K. and how many of the old links Google will accept because it's impossible to take many of them down (attempt to resolve the Type I and Type 2 errors).

I've been focusing on communication (3 above), which Google doesn't seem to want to do.

I was listening to a business news program yesterday and they said Google's revenue was up 60%, year over year. I would think they could take a small amount of those profits and invest them in competently resolving the Type 1 and Type 2 errors.

Better yet, as you suggest, they can solve this for the time being by accepting their strategy is a Type 3 error and retract this effort altogether.

They've got plenty of engineers and profits, put them on figuring out how to devalue links. When links don't work anymore, people won't use them.

That would help a lot with PR for Google too. Right now they're trying to use the "Crucify Some Offenders To Make Examples Of Them" method that guy over in the EPA is trying to use. He said that when the Romans wanted to dominate a city, they took the 1st five people they saw and crucified them. After that,everyone was very cooperative. So he's applying the same concept to oil companies.

It's not working out very well for him. Think it will work for Google?

Edited by chuckfinley, 29 April 2012 - 01:39 PM.


#20 clandestino

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 01:13 PM

Really Micheal? Anywhere from 50-99%???? Would you like to fly in an airliner that is from 50-99% safe? How about driving down the freeway at 80 mph with brakes that are 50-99% effective?
I don't mean to be mean Micheal but the reality is that Google keeps talking about these grand ideals, comes up with a half a**ed solution that is maybe 50% effective and moves ahead.

raz


I have to admit, you have a way with words, raz. That, my friends, is exactly the point. You hit the nail directly on the head.

Google's profits are up 60%, year over year. How can they justify such low quality.

Especially in dire times like these. Google is putting business owners out of business and adding to the unemployment lines while they are adding to their profits.

And remember, the cost of bankruptcies is borne by society -- that would be You an Me! Google profits, we pay for their profits. I'm astounded that anyone is willing to put up with it.

This can be bast described as practicing Russian roulette with a lot of sites.

raz


See my crucifixion analogy above. I had to look up the spelling of that one -- I'm usually not in favor of crucifying people, especially for no reason, so I guess I don't use that word much.

Edited by chuckfinley, 29 April 2012 - 01:40 PM.


#21 clandestino

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 01:44 PM

In real-world SEO you adjust to the changes in the environment and move on.


I'm just astounded people are willing to put up with it. Kind of like a battered wife returning to her husband because she thinks it's really her fault that he put her in the hospital.

#22 DonnaFontenot

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 02:16 PM

It's not a matter of putting up with it. Over the years, everyone eventually realizes that resistance is futile.

#23 EGOL

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 04:05 PM

I don't think that "putting up with it" is accurate language.

I think that google is basically a mirror. But it is an imperfect mirror - sometimes dirty or distorted and sometimes late to recognize.

In general, you put up great stuff and the mirror will generally show good results back to you.

Some manipulators might get above you because they are aggressive enough to overwhelm the signals used by google.... and some lesser value might be ranked above you as google makes mistakes.... and it might take google a while to appreciate you... but overall google does a pretty good job in the long run.

I complain about google alot... but I believe what I wrote above.

#24 iamlost

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 06:00 PM

...overall google does a pretty good job in the long run.

Highly variable on the niche being queried but generally fair to good.

They have two very basic fundamental problems:
1. they want to index all the web's information - even though 90%+ in some niches is garbage: gigo.
2. they want to serve quality query returns while highlighting their own products/services and not shooting their ad serving business in the foot; catch-22.

#25 bwelford

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 07:57 PM

They have two very basic fundamental problems:

A much more basic problem is that their PageRank theory that links indicate authority is no longer true on average. They are so dominant and were so effective in spreading the links=authority model that they have completely muddied the waters. In this respect, the Internet is broken and whatever Google does to try to fix it (FUD or whatever) will not do the job. They should acknowledge that PageRank as a concept is only true if people do not change their behaviour as a result. Perhaps it worked for a few years after it was first revealed. It's time to drop that concept and move on.

#26 raz

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:03 PM

I have to admit, you have a way with words, raz. That, my friends, is exactly the point. You hit the nail directly on the head.


Ha ha,

Blame that on my frustration...

#27 raz

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:17 PM

It's not a matter of putting up with it. Over the years, everyone eventually realizes that resistance is futile.

Hate to admit it, but true.
However that is not the kind of reality that stops me from venting my frustration from time to time. :blushing:

#28 glyn

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 01:01 AM

@all!

When the dust settles on this and some trend analysis comes out of it, it will be seen that sites with bad link profiles was utter boll****. When you have penalties being applied right across the board and are hitting content and nasty link profile sites (that for the record got created because of googles achilees heal) I simply don't buy it.


For sure google caught some software and devalued links, as normal, but they did more and that is what they are not telling.

I know this because I am google!





#29 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 01:45 AM

I'm just astounded people are willing to put up with it. Kind of like a battered wife returning to her husband because she thinks it's really her fault that he put her in the hospital.


One might as well be astounded that a sailor "puts up" with storms at sea. It comes with the territory.

#30 clandestino

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 06:17 PM

One might as well be astounded that a sailor "puts up" with storms at sea. It comes with the territory.


The difference in analogies -

A sailor wants to go to sea and is willing to put up with the unpleasantness -- being seasick, etc.

A battered wife neither wants nor is willing nor deserves the violence.

#31 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 07:20 PM

I'm afraid I don't agree with your analogy being apt for the Penguin algorithm update.

#32 jonbey

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 08:11 AM

Who is the sailor and the wife in this analogy? I am even more confused now. :dazed:

#33 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 02:55 PM

In my analogy the sailor is the SEO and the stormy sea is the search environment.

#34 clandestino

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Posted 01 May 2012 - 08:30 PM

Who is the sailor and the wife in this analogy? I am even more confused now. :dazed:


Michael and I had a bet on how many off the wall analogies we would have to come up with before we confused you. Michael, you win, LOL!

#35 glyn

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 12:47 AM

Watch out here comes a new big google wave with 10000 pluses inside

#36 earlpearl

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 12:53 PM

I operate a bunch of smb sites. In a general sense, I've done a lot of similar things with all of them. One of the sites got crushed by penquin. oi!!!! Its also a problem business. We might close it.

With regard to penquin.....as with various small smb sites it competes for what are really rare phrases...usually some kind of combination search term that combines the local city name and the service...and then some variations.

We try and operate above board....but with traffic so low and though try as we might.....we can't find cost effective ways to expand business visibility beyond google search (and believe me with the various smb's in various markets we've tried lots of ways). We end up relying on google search.

In this particular case the site is overly loaded with links that have very specific anchor text....most....but clearly not all focused on the dominant search phrase.

Some months back when one of the few competitors jumped in front of this site for the dominant keyword phrase...I went a little crazy adding a relatively high number of somewhat higher quality links....EVERY ONE I think with the same danged anchor text.

I suspect that its not only anchor text loaded into one phrase....but the relatively recent link activity has virtually solely been on one phrase. I'm starting to look at this site now....but my one experience on a site crushed by penquin....is that the most current and active link activity was way weighted on behalf of singular anchor text. Wonder if there was a time element with regard to this aspect of the penalty.

Has anyone else experienced that????

#37 Michael_Martinez

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 10:48 PM

It could just be that your links were devalued by Google and that your site will do fine once it acquires some new links. Where did you get your links?

#38 praveen

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 10:53 PM

I have been trying to understand more about this update and figure out certain stuff.
In the niche that i am in, my site got hit and i lost about 50% traffic. I am only angry and frustrated that i got hit building a decent content site where 85% of it is unique/original content.

But my competitor has remained unaffected by this. One look at his website and even a child can figure out doorway pages, mis-spellings, duplicate pages for all combination of a word and ofcourse keyword stuffing.

I will be first one to say that i do have a bit of questionable links (but who doesn't). probably about 20% of my total links can be termed as shady. But it happens. i cannot stop who links to me.

its extremely frustrating to find that the shallow sites are ranking as high as #2 and #3 but sites with good quality content gets penalized.

Panda was ok. It was not this bad. But penguin has screwed up big time by promoting (insert expletive) with copy/paste content and whatnot.

#39 jonbey

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 03:20 AM

One of my sites dropped a few positions in the SERPs after Penguin. I really think that for many of the sites that have suffered they just need to do some better SEO (as Michael suggests). If your site is dumped beyond page 2 then there is probably a bigger problem, but if you lost no.1 for key searches and are now loitering in position 3 or 4, this suggests to me that there is no site penalty, it is just that the SEO work done previously is no longer useful. More online marketing needed.

#40 earlpearl

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 10:13 AM

It could just be that your links were devalued by Google and that your site will do fine once it acquires some new links. Where did you get your links?


None of the links were great......they consisted of long term paid directories that I've found do generate link juice. you know....some of the ones that have been around for years, I might have added 5 of them....probably all with the exact same anchor text and then a couple of others from reasonable sources...but again not strong.

My thought was simply that the timing of the link building and the fact that it was entirely (or virtually entirely) all focused on one anchor text phrase, relative to the entire link profile over time, and subsequently adding few links....might have been a trigger to get it included in penquin.

None of the other smb sites were hit. None of the other sites experienced that kind of recent surge of links....all generated in a relatively short time and all or virtually all focused on one repetitive piece of anchor text.

Just a thought. Any comments or observations????



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