Saturday, April 28, 2012

So Google rolled out a new algorithm called Penguin, intended to minimize web spam (basically lousy sites with little or no real content, and sites that are for backlinks only and so on) and it really made a mess of the search results!

Now we have tons of really bad, poor-content, spammy sites sitting at the top of Google's search results while sites with good content have now been banished to page  5, 15 or 30!

In some cases the sites that were negatively affected by Google's new algorithm were really great sites with excellent content that were deservedly ranked on Google's first page.

Google writes on its page about "Link Schemes":
"The best way to get other sites to create relevant links to yours is to create unique, relevant content that can quickly gain popularity in the Internet community. The more useful content you have, the greater the chances someone else will find that content valuable to their readers and link to it. Before making any single decision, you should ask yourself the question: Is this going to be beneficial for my page's visitors?

It is not only the number of links you have pointing to your site that matters, but also the quality and relevance of those links. Creating good content pays off..."
[emphases by this author]
Really, Google? Good content pays off? REALLY???

Maybe the distinguished engineers and high and mighty Management Team at Google should ask themselves:
"Is this going to be beneficial for my page's visitors?"

Clearly the latest Google update is no good for Google's visitors, nor the web's millions of  webmasters whose sites provide Google's reason for existence!

Look at this example of a Google search for bread machine reviews:



If you copy and paste the sites above into your address bar you will see that they all use "spun" content that is barely readable and several of them feature a youtube video that is blank. Their content value is near zero, in other words.

Way to go, Google! Way to give us great search results! Way to reward great content! You banish great sites with useful well written content to the back pages and put sites like these on Page One! Has Google stepped into the Bizarro World?

This is just one set of thousands of examples! Do a search for "bad results of google's new penguin update" and you will see many,  many examples of how completely ridiculous this latest Google update is, how it's hurting many legitimate sites and businesses while helping sites like the above.

If you do some google searching now you will find tons of examples of very bad sites on page 1 and you will read many stories of legitimate businesses with NO spam, NO spun content and in fact GOOD informative interesting content that have gone from page one to page 10, 20 or 30!

Frankly, Google, I don't care how someone gets to page 1,  just as long as their site has great content! Isn't that the goal of search engines? To rank the best sites at the top of the listings? (Well after the all-important Adwords clients, of course!)

Here's some info from Google's own web site about the update:

Tim Carter's web site (and business) has been hurt very badly by Google's recent update and addresses this comment to Matt Cutts, a "distinguished Google engineer" who seems to be Google's mouthpiece:

You guys jumped the shark with Panda 1.0. Go read this blog post if you want to see where many of us on the other side of the fence see this going:

Read closely the text from the Google blog that I quote. Panda was supposed to "reward creators of original content." BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

If that's the intention of Panda, why have I lost 80% of my traffic at You can't get any more original content than what I have.

It's SO GOOD that has cited it on over 13,000 of their pages. It's so good it's copied all the time by the webspam sites that constantly outrank me on page one of your results.

How is it you can't tell the difference from my original content and what the thieves regurgitate? Are you serious?

For goodness sake, has been able to spot plagiarism for YEARS. Why can't your highly educated engineers do it? ..."
READ MORE OF THIS comment BY CLICKING HERE (Tim's post is towards the bottom of the page).
"Content is king," my ass!

I just checked my own rankings again. 3 days ago and for months previous, I was on Google's page one for 5 main keywords.

Much like Tim Carter's above, my content-heavy site was banished from the rankings with this Google update. Even though my site is FULL of hand-written expert and useful information and commentary by an expert in the field (me), Google slapped it down to as low as page 30 with this update.Why? Clearly Google does not care that much about content!

So what has Google done with this new algorithm? I have no clue what the intent really is but I have made these observations regarding my competitors' rankings:

Google has put half a dozen of my competitors' sites on page one. These sites are pre-made template pages bought from the manufacturer, are almost all EXACTLY THE SAME as each other, just very slight differences, and they have zero content; they just point to the manufacturer's main web site with the affiliate's link.

In what way, distinguished Google engineers and corporate heads, does that make for a better search experience?

Furthermore, suddenly my youtube video about the product is ranking in position #8 for some of the same keywords that my site pages used to rank in the Top 10 for. Huh?!
It's just an affiliate video made by the manufacturer that all the affiliates can and do use so I simply uploaded it to youtube with all the others (duplicate content) and put my link below it. So THAT is now suddenly ranking 32 pages above my content filled site pages!?

So the message I am getting is this:

"If you want to be on page one, put NO effort into your site, use pre-built template sites that have no content, use stock videos from the manufacturer, and The All Powerful Google, Supreme God of Search Engines will reward you!"

Oh, and one more thing:

One of my highest ranking pages from my main site, now, after this "Penguin" algorithm change,  is an inner page link that is #80 on Google now. My great content heavy pages were on Page #1 and now my highest ranking is a page at #80!

What is that page? My main page full of facts and figures and commentary? A secondary page full of content?

No, it's a page provided by the manufacturer, a .pdf about Warranty information!

Google has gone nucking FUTZ!

So what do we do now? What does Google want?

I'm not sure what they want but since they have shown and continue to show no regard for their visitors nor the webmasters their business is based on, and they are arrogant beyond belief as they destroy people's businesses that they have put their heart and soul and work into for years... here's my advice:
  • Stop using Google's search engine for any purpose, except maybe for a good laugh at their ridiculous and useless search results!
  • Remove Google Analytics from your site
  • Do not use Google Webmaster Tools
  • Do not use AdWords
  • Use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Manta, etc. for marketing
  • Do anything you can do to help your sales, that is NOT related to Google in a direct way
 You see, I really don't like Google's business practices. 

Who do they think they are - the phone company?! 

If you're old enough to remember the above bit from the early days of SNL then you know that the joke was that the phone company's motto was "We don't care. We don't have to! We're the Phone Company!"

Guess what? The joke was on them! Their arrogance and disregard for their customers (sound familiar, Google?) led to their demise!
You see, when you stick it to your customers, your customers will eventually stick it to you!

Search THIS, Google!

(Google, I dare you to have the integrity to rank this on page one!)

1 comment:

  1. Your point about using Google for a laugh makes it seem as if you've been reading my mind. ;) Maybe because we're more in tune with the changes than non-IM folks, but there are some absolutely funny results showing up for some kewyords.

    Your bread machine one is by far my favorite example. You can tell their LSI tool is on steroids or something to have picked such spun garbage to put on the front page instead of actual reviews that might be helpful - at least readable!

    I notice they've cleaned up that particular example. Not perfect but MUCH better. Let's hope THAT trend continues.

    I feel miserable for those whose businesses and incomes have suffered. Makes you wonder if Google had any idea what impact their change would have on the livelihood of small businesses or if it was just an unintended, unforeseen consequence.

    (A part of me hopes they're having to work DAMN long hours to sort through what they've put in place to fix bugs and continue the clean up. They earned it.)

    There's a rose colored set of glasses I keep around for times like these. Would love to believe that Google had more heart than to cause this kind of upheaval in one short time span. Can only keep working away and watch to see if things improve.

    Good luck to you!