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Thread: Panda rolled out internationally on April 11 2011... AND IT SUCKS!

  1. #11
    Good points here.
    Relying on google for your business success is a plan for failure.
    Just drive traffic to your site, do not hope that your site will do good in google and they will send you traffic.
    Smart webmasters figured this out way back in the 90's...that traffic is the lifeblood of any site and to rely only on one method is not good.

    Be like relying only on forums for your traffic.

    And adsense?
    I could care less about that!
    And any webmaster who relies only on adsense for income?
    Again, setting up for failure.
    Rely on adsense for part of your income is okay, but remember there are so many other alternatives out there.

  2. Quote Originally Posted by Natural Elements View Post

    Well, when customers are looking for some products the first thing they use are search engines, including Google.
    True, but that doesn't mean it should be the only way for people to find you.

    Besides, the way this tends to happen is when people focus on SEO too much, and on developing value and great user experience too little. Usually, if you do the latter, the former will come naturally. In a way, "good SEO" is increasingly becoming "no SEO, just make good stuff that people love". That's what is becoming equivalent to SEO.

    While it may obviously happen that your site gets hit by some Google update even when you don't try to over-optimize for it, chances of that happening are a lot slimmer, and even if it does happen, you still have your good content and quality user experience to stand for (which will help you adapt).

    Quote Originally Posted by Natural Elements View Post
    On that I disagree with you, because right now many people are struggling with their budget and customer loyalty play a less important role. You know who can resist to offers like buy 2 and get 3 for free? Or some little genius who are selling the same products at a loss.
    Well, I didn't say you get customer loyalty for free, nor that it is permanent once you have it. It is something we have to fight for all along. That's the business of being in business. If someone makes a better offer, of course people will flock to it. This just means you have to make a better offer too, or change the rules of the game if you can. If you take a defeatist attitude to it, the defeat is what you'll have. I know this is easier said than done, but fewer things are impossible than are thought of as impossible.

    The point is that if you've got customers who know about you as a brand they will know about you even when you disappear from Google. Chances are they will still check you out, and this gives you a good chance to stay afloat even when Google screws you up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Natural Elements View Post
    Well right now in our field we are fighting with huge corporations that decided to target our niche, plus Google gave recently more ranking weight to brand corporations (I think they don't need that, but google played evil), plus they have million dollars of marketing budget including taking your wind with their money power and place Adwords link on your targeted keywords. When you see that closely there is a war going on to sell on internet.
    Indeed, but that's competition. I understand though that it's hard to compete with big corporations, and I actually think that if the market wasn't ruined by government intrusions (since corporations are government invented institutions which give some businesses "limited liability" and unearned advantages), the playing field would probably be fairer.

    Nevertheless, never say never. I guess it's a matter of picking your battles. If you know you can't win with one particular strategy, pick the game you can win at. Try to be disruptive.

    Again, I know it's easier said than done, but at least it might be better than folding.

    Quote Originally Posted by Natural Elements View Post
    The small business moto could be: "We are the resistance" lol
    That would be the right spirit! Resistance is never futile!

  3. #13
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    This thread went into a totally different direction than it's supposed to. Why are we talking about Google AdSense? About Google dominance? Resistance?

    Bah...

  4. Well, this Google update, as well as any other, reasserts Google dominance as traffic and revenues shift around as a result, so I think that topic is at least relevant. It also indicates ongoing changes in the way Google looks at sites, which goes against gaming Google, and for building sites that stand on their own more.

    That said, if most consider this a bit off topic, feel free to get back on topic...

  5. Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    I think these very small businesses you are talking about are complicit in this situation, often without really giving that much thought. Why are we letting ourselves be so dependent on Google? Do we really have "no other choice"? In the long term I just don't buy it.
    The web is huge -- so huge that directories failed to provide a useful method for visitors to find sites. That leaves branding, social networking, advertising and search. Branding is an option only for large companies. Social networking works only in some niches. Advertising works only on niches where the profit margins support the costs. Search is the only workable solution for small sites in non-entertainment niches with low profit margins -- i.e. most informative niche sites.

    Google has managed to become the dominant search engine. Webmasters can't change that -- only web searchers can change that. Nothing we do on the supply side will help, this is a demand side issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    Also, what do you mean by "legit" sites? I would say that any site which uses any blackhat tactics, deserves to be dropped. The web needs some spring cleaning.
    That's closer to the opposite of what happened in Panda II.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    What it ultimately comes down to is this. If you have compelling content, or a compelling service, wrapped in a compelling package with awesome design and awesome usability, as well as sense of style, and which most of all provide real value to customers (yes, customers, not eyeballs, traffic, members and what not), ...
    We will have great websites which no one will ever see and we will eventually pull the plug on them because we can't pay for hosting and domain registration fees.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    I think customer loyalty goes beyond Google, and is ultimately more powerful than Google. If you've got loyal customers they will not drop off regardless of what Google does, and they are your seeds for Google-independent marketing through things like social media.
    This is true, in some niches. Ogrish doesn't need Google. But... I need to look up a chemistry formula. Social networking, advertising, branding, and directories are useless to that transaction -- only search is designed for that requirement.

    Quote Originally Posted by TopDogger View Post
    I didn't see any sites that got hit that were sticking to the guidelines.
    Check these: "Pocket Lint, Electric Pig, Tech Radar, TechEye, The Register's hardware site RegHardware, PC Advisor, IT Pro Portal and the venerable Computer Weekly sites have all been hit by the reordering."

    More to read on Panda II:

    Submit Your Webmaster Related Sites to the NB Directory
    I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    True, but that doesn't mean it should be the only way for people to find you.
    I am sorry to be a little off topic, but I found important to make a point on how people find you the most. Sure we can talk about different networks but that is absolutely not comparable with the kind of traffic search engines like google and bing are bringing to site owners.

    Have you ever wondered why Facebook builded his own search system, with an Adwords similar system? Take a smaller example like Jaydes on their search engine Web Search Engine: ExactSeek.com and their network The Independent Search Engine & Directory Network: ISEDN.ORG based on search engines and directories.

    Well it was a great idea to include a search system in a directory network.

    I agree with Will:
    The web is huge -- so huge that directories failed to provide a useful method for visitors to find sites. That leaves branding, social networking, advertising and search. Branding is an option only for large companies. Social networking works only in some niches. Advertising works only on niches where the profit margins support the costs. Search is the only workable solution for small sites in non-entertainment niches with low profit margins -- i.e. most informative niche sites.

    Google has managed to become the dominant search engine. Webmasters can't change that -- only web searchers can change that. Nothing we do on the supply side will help, this is a demand side issue.
    One think to remember is that Google with their corporations friends are squeezing the traffic from regular webmasters to force them to sign up into their Adwords system. Make no mistake as webmasters we are no match to compete with the Google friends corporations.

    Some webmasters here talk about competition, I will say to have a fair competition you have to compete in the same category, otherwise you have a great chance to fail against these guys. Again it makes no sense for Google algorithms to help or boost rankings to brand corporations, because they have already done that on their own.
    Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.

    Voltaire


  7. Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    Branding is an option only for large companies.
    Why is that? I don't think we need a huge budget to create a brand in a specific niche. It's about creating a particular user experience and tying it to a consistent visual identity. We can't create large brands, but I think we can create small brands. This would make us less generic, more rememberable even to people who find us through search engines, and with that at least a bit more resilient to Google screwing us up.

    This article lists some nice examples of this. While they are meant to be examples of clean whitehat SEO, and good content being successful even in boring niches, I think there's some overlap. Most of those sites have a visual identity of some kind, rather than looking like just another wordpress theme, which communicates greater value to customers. I certainly will always choose such a site over a generic "content site", and will also be more inclined to talk about it, link to it etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    Google has managed to become the dominant search engine. Webmasters can't change that -- only web searchers can change that. Nothing we do on the supply side will help, this is a demand side issue.
    I have my doubts about that. Sometimes supply can affect, or even create demand. I can think of two ways this can happen. One is creating a product or service that solves a "problem" everyone was so accustomed to they didn't even realize it, but suddenly the solution is in high demand (there are many potential variations on this theme). Second is about supply driving the standards upwards, affecting people's expectations and therefore what they demand.

    One of, or a combination, of these strategies can be used by webmasters to pursue a better search paradigm, where we (and especially small webmasters) have a more favorable position.

    Besides, don't webmasters "demand" more independence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    That's closer to the opposite of what happened in Panda II.
    That may be, but the general trend was against blackhat, content farming etc. was it not?

    I'm under no illusions that Google might be a bit hypocritical. They can get away with it after all, for a while, and so long as webmasters let them...

    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    We will have great websites which no one will ever see and we will eventually pull the plug on them because we can't pay for hosting and domain registration fees.
    I didn't say this has to be the only strategy, but rather a complement to an existing search oriented (whitehat) strategy that can actually strengthen it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Will.Spencer View Post
    This is true, in some niches. Ogrish doesn't need Google. But... I need to look up a chemistry formula. Social networking, advertising, branding, and directories are useless to that transaction -- only search is designed for that requirement.
    Ok, what if you then find two sites dedicated to chemistry formulas. One of them is a generic wordpress site with a list of articles, each for each formula, written by random writers who got their info via a one hour research on the web.

    Second site offers a special interface designed to make it easier to search and find formulas, and formula pages all follow a specialized format with, for example, the formula in a special box, in a special big font, on top, and details below it. When you hover over each chemical element sign you get a description of it in another specialized box. The site also has a thoughtful and good looking, enticing logo, and a pleasing design. It also features a custom formatted banner inviting you to contribute new content in exchange for some kind of honor or monetary reward (or both).

    Which of these two would you choose? Which would you be more inclined to visit again? Which would you think of first when someone asks you where to find chemistry formulas?

    I think the answer is clear, and I think next time you need chemistry formulas you might go straight to that site, skipping Google (direct traffic). I know this sort of thing happened to me multiple times. Off the top of my head, I never search for domain name sites on google. I go straight to DomainsBot.com because it gives me the best domain hunting experience. I don't think DomainsBot is run by a large corporation, yet their brand definitely got me.

    EDIT: If mods think this is too off-topic we can split it.

  8. Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    Why is that? I don't think we need a huge budget to create a brand in a specific niche. It's about creating a particular user experience and tying it to a consistent visual identity. We can't create large brands, but I think we can create small brands. This would make us less generic, more rememberable even to people who find us through search engines, and with that at least a bit more resilient to Google screwing us up.
    Anyone can create a brand. You create it and then you know about it. OK... what have you accomplished? Very close to nothing. Coke spends $1.6 Billion dollars a year to promote it's brand -- because it has to. Brands are expensive to create and maintain.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    This article lists some nice examples of this. While they are meant to be examples of clean whitehat SEO, and good content being successful even in boring niches, I think there's some overlap. Most of those sites have a visual identity of some kind, rather than looking like just another wordpress theme, which communicates greater value to customers. I certainly will always choose such a site over a generic "content site", and will also be more inclined to talk about it, link to it etc.
    Great sites are pretty irrelevant when they don't get seen. Art for art's sake is romantic, but unprofitable.

    Haris and I once created an awesome site which could have totally changed the private firearms training industry in the United States. It turned out that I had not designed it for search and that, without search, the project was too expensive to continue. The revenue model could not support branding or PPC, and the customer's don't look for vendors using social media or directories. The customers use search to find vendors and my design was customer-centric instead of being search-centric. I eventually deleted the site and 301'd it to a search-centric site which doesn't serve the real customer need.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    I have my doubts about that. Sometimes supply can affect, or even create demand. I can think of two ways this can happen. One is creating a product or service that solves a "problem" everyone was so accustomed to they didn't even realize it, but suddenly the solution is in high demand (there are many potential variations on this theme). Second is about supply driving the standards upwards, affecting people's expectations and therefore what they demand.
    Definitely. These happen once in a blue moon and life is beautiful. If I can do this once in my life, I will feel like my time here had a purpose.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    One of, or a combination, of these strategies can be used by webmasters to pursue a better search paradigm, where we (and especially small webmasters) have a more favorable position.
    That could be interesting, but webmasters are a very very small percentage of searchers. We don't have much clout as search customers.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    Besides, don't webmasters "demand" more independence?
    I try not to demand anything when I don't have the power to force people to comply.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    That may be, but the general trend was against blackhat, content farming etc. was it not?
    That's what Google's PR people say... but actions speak louder than words.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    Ok, what if you then find two sites dedicated to chemistry formulas...
    How do I find them without search? This is the first reason search is the dominant customer acquisition technology on the web.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    Which would you think of first when someone asks you where to find chemistry formulas?
    I wouldn't remember either, because I only need to do this once every few years and I don't store tens of thousands of minor brands in my head. This is the second reason search is the dominant customer acquisition technology on the web.
    Submit Your Webmaster Related Sites to the NB Directory
    I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.

  9. #19
    now i know why .....
    my site have huge traffic drop (50% on week day but 20% increase on weekend), though of my site major update i did recently causing all issue ....
    said, need to reboot traffic again ...

  10. #20
    Every time there is a major update, there is collateral damage. if I remember correctly, when Google first announced the update in the USA, they expected it to affect 3% of web sites. After it rolled out the number jumped to 12%.

    Quote Originally Posted by memenode View Post
    I'm under no illusions that Google might be a bit hypocritical. They can get away with it after all, for a while, and so long as webmasters let them...
    Okay, let's not tolerate this abuse any longer. What are we supposed to do about it? It's their ball and we are on their playground.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


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