10 Ways to Fix SEO Rankings in Google's New Search Algorithm
Bob Brooks rises from his seat to admit he's been lazy about ensuring toilet monsters and wine bras from his gift site, BaronBob.com, rank highly in organic Google search results for "funny gifts" and "unusual gifts."
"I got too comfortable," discloses the Maywood N.J. businessman.
Dani Horowitz admits her information technology forum relied too much on just one search engine, resulting in her unique U.S.visitors dropping from 90,000 to 15,000 a day on Feb. 28—when the Google algorithm most recently changed.
"I don't know what happened," says Horowitz, founder and CEO of Uniondale, N.Y.-based IT discussion community DaniWeb.com.
What happened is known colloquially as Panda or Farmer, an update to the algorithm that ranks search results in Google. "[It's] a change that noticeably impacts 11.8 percent of our queries," wrote Google Fellow Amit Singhal and Principal Engineer Matt Cutts in the Feb. 24 Google Blog post "Finding More High-Quality Sites in Search."
News sites such as mashable.com and msn.com gained traffic, while "content farms" with low-quality content lost visibility in double digit percentages, according to research by Marcus Tober of German-based search analytics company Searchmetrics. But more than media outlets were affected.
So a panel from SearchEngineWatch.com listened, consoled, attempted to put the issue in perspective and, primarily, provided advice on how marketers on the losing end of the change could try to make it right.
Moderator of the session's panel, Mike Grehan, vice president and global content director of UK-based publisher Incisive Media, suggests marketers who lost ranking on search engine results pages stop and realize how good they've had it for as long as they have. After all, organic results were sending them business for free, he says. Eventually, both Horowitz and Brooks uttered a solemn "thank you" to Google for having helped provide their previous revenue levels.