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|Original Message Added : 21 Apr 2010|
I have come to face with something quite unbelievable recently as I was reviewing some keyword searches and I was wondering whether any of you knew how it is done.
Using a generic one-word keyword followed by the town name I landed straight into the Home page of a website instead of seeing the expected list of matches for that search. However, adding the district or the country does bring a list of providers within the town.
I understand that SEO and other techniques can improve dramatically your ranking but in this case there is no ranking any more.
I also know that Google has changed the way it brings people to the top of the rank but in this case it is going further as there is no competition allowed anymore from the local market. Quite frightening actually!
Has anyone seen this? Can anyone tells me how it is possible?
Thank you in advance.
|Reply : 21 Apr 2010 - (Edited : 21 Apr 2010)|
Your post got my attention as what you say happened actually contravenes Googles own reason for being in existence, unless they are doing some very underhanded local advertising as you infer.
Notwithstand the local advertising option - and they are always looking at new ways to make money, and they are always testing things, sometimes in quite "remote" [sorry] areas - the only reason I can throw up is that the site you landed on is actually the only site for that keyword, in that specific area - which I would find very hard to believe - and therefore there were no other options for Google to offer you.
Google exists to give us choice as you will obviously know. Against a search term, or terms, they deliver to us a list of choices in the form of their rankings, both organic and paid ads, and we take our pick.
You CAN buy a placement in the Google Maps area - I think it is around £300 for the year and that guarantees a place in the top 7 Google maps results which it shows at the top of the local search results - which sort of defeats the object of a Google map listing for those that either do not know that option exists or cannot afford to pay.
Local search, and the resultant advertising of local products and services, has now more traffic than any other on the internet, so it is clear this is an area which Google simply has to focus on - and watch out for people such as Twitter and Facebook doing the same.
Google - and others besides - see this as a potentially massive revenue earner - so nothing they got up to would surprise me - we are talking serious, serious money here.
As regards Google changing the way it ranks people, it is always changing its algorithms, but how we get ranked has not changed and will remain based around continually updating your site with quality content and building authority links.
Keeping up to date with what Google is up to can be time consuming - I do feel for business people to whom all this is liteally gobbledygook.
I would love to know the keyword and town you used? You can email me direct if you wanted to - you'll get my info from my profile on here.
Interesting post - thank you.
All the best
|Reply : 21 Apr 2010|
Not just for the reply you gave me above but also for the further really great advice you gave me in the background, so to respect the sensitivity of the details I had. I will follow up on it.
It is a sensitive issue which affects me directly and I wonder whether other people within the Free Index community could carry out such a check as they might be affected too and effectively removes any local choice to consumers AND competition to businesses!
I have done a little further investigation and the problem only seems to occur with the top left Search bar on my PC, which is a Google organic search engine and comes with the Google Logo at the top. Incidentally, I have the actual Google Search Bar as well and the problem is not displayed there.
To test if others are affected, all you have to do is type (in the top left Search bar) a keyword, such as Florist, Photographer, Accountant, etc and the town name you work from and nothing else. Please try and test more than just your business area and please, do report back here if it leads straight to a website as I suspect that, at the very least, something is going wrong.
I will update any further finds from here.
Thank you all for your help in the matter.
|Reply : 22 Apr 2010|
It could be that:
- you are using the omnibar (combined search and address bar) in a browser and it is remembering a previous search you did - so the browser itself is taking you to a previously visited site.
- for some reason you are getting the 'I feel lucky' functionality from Google, instead of the search functionality
- there's some kind of double-click going on, where the first click momentarily gets a search result page, and the second click visits one of the links
This behaviour isn't some new psychic function from Google (that is what the omnibar has been called!), it wouldn't be in their interests to do that because it would cut out their opportunities for advertising revenues from AdWords pay-per-click ads.
Hope that helps
|Reply : 23 Apr 2010|
The problem was in the configuration file of my Firefox location bar, as it is called, which I found out while pursuing Rob's suggestion of "I feel lucky" being set up without my knowledge.
Indeed, i was not set up for a default Google search anymore which would have been
and it did not have the "I feel lucky" setting either which would have been
Instead, it was
If anyone can translate it into English I would love to understand.
Anyway, if anyone ever has a similar problem, this is the way to "repair" it in Firefox:-
Make sure it is accurately typed in as it is not good to mess about with a configuration file.
I hope this will help others which may have this functionality downloaded automatically with one of the many automatic upgrades we continuously receive. You can do the same if a download resets your browser to Yahoo! or any other browsers you do not want to keep.
So a big thank you to John and Rob for their great suggestions and I would also like to acknowledge the very useful technical pointers provided to me by Denyse from Strathmore Computers in Blairgowrie.
|Reply : 10 Jun 2010|
I thought I'll share this with you guys. The Google ranking change which is known as the Google "Mayday update" recently so many websites across the world have noticed a fall in their Google rankings and traffic levels. SEOs have been seeking explanations and engaged in finding the true cause of these sudden dips. Is Mayday the algorithm update that pushes many out?
If you have had a noticeably large drop in your site traffic, indexed pages and long-tail keyword performance since May 1st, you are not alone though.
As we know, Google have been looking to achieve a few fundamental things with their search engine:
1) Improve speed of results
2) Improve relevance of results
3) Increase the amount of time users spend on Google
The Mayday update appears simply to target these three principles.
The biggest issue for site owners and webmasters is quality. Unfortunately ‘quality’ is something of a loose term and Google certainly don’t do much to provide a definitive answer as to what they expect.
We get an idea for how and why some sites have been affected. We also see how deeper pages using long tail keywords are being impacted the greater.
To see how some sites may suffer, here is an example:
Say you have a website with 30 pages. You have just 12 core products and have optimised the entire site to target these pages. There is an excellent linking profile, including plenty of deep links to your individual product. You have also developed a good internal link structure, with all pages easily accessible and sharing their content. Better still, you have unique content on each page and customer reviews to keep a fresh stream of information for the search engines to index.
Your competitor on the other hand has a site covering thousands of pages. They offer a variety of products in a wide number of categories. Each product has the manufacturer’s description attached, but no dynamic or unique content. The site has a high number of links, but the majority go to the Homepage and other main money pages.
Now you both have the same product. You are also both targeting the phrase ‘Sky Blue Brand X Sports Jacket’. This is a long tail keyword; it is also a term that you are likely to be far more optimised for being as though you have created original content. This could mean that you could now possibly overtake your rival due to your page’s greater authority.
Google usually tries to use a variety of methods to determine a website’s authority. Going beyond just including the main search keyword, it looks for synonyms, uniqueness and of course the strength of its linking profile.
If you have no links to your child pages across the site, there is a fair chance that your pages will suffer a Mayday relevance drop. Equally if you don’t have unique content, even on what you might consider to be less important pages (such as individual products), you could see a dip.