Archive for September, 2015

Title: Study Finds Wikipedia Still Outperforms Google Properties in Google

Search Engine News, Search Engine Optimization

Article Source: Link Exchange Service Network

Last month, there were a number of reports about a significant drop in Wikipedia’s Google traffic. A report from SimilarWeb found that Google “stole over 550 million clicks” from Wikipedia in 6 months. According to Search Engine Journal, the site’s organic search traffic from Google dropped 11% from May to July.

Search Engine Land reported a few days later that Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales had said there was “a long-term issue with decreasing traffic from Google,” but that the SimilarWeb article was a misrepresentation of how Wikipedia actually needs the clicks in question. The article quotes Wales as saying:

“It is also false that ‘Wikipedia thrives on clicks,’ at least as compared to ad-revenue driven sites… The relationship between ‘clicks’ and the things we care about: community health and encyclopedia quality is not nothing, but it’s not as direct as some think.”

Wikipedia later released its own report on the subject saying, “No direct data shows a decrease in Google traffic; in fact, direct referrals from Google have been increasing in the last few months, rather than decreasing. However, we have some fuzziness around indirect referrals that cannot be resolved without the participation of Google. We should seek that participation, and work on tracking these metrics in an automated fashion.”

The report concluded:

Based on the data we have we can establish that the most obvious avenues for verifying or dismissing SimilarWeb’s claim show no evidence that Google traffic has declined. However, we do not have the data at our end to eliminate all avenues of possibility.
 
Our next work should be to reach out to Google themselves and talk to them about the data we’re seeing, and to build out infrastructure to begin tracking metrics like this on a consistent and automated basis, rather than relying on costly ad-hoc analysis.

Now there’s a new report on this subject. This one comes from Stone Temple Consulting, which has recently delivered interesting findings related to Google’s partnership with Twitter and engagement on Google+. They ran an analysis of the rankings data for over 340,000 search queries.

According to that, Wikipedia is still prominent on the first pages of search results, but has lost many of its #1 and #2 rank positions.

“Wikipedia still is far more prevalent than Google properties, so we cannot conclude that Google is favoring its own content,” a spokesperson for Stone Temple says.

It did find that Wikipedia pages are more prominent in commercial queries than for informational ones. It also found the opposite to be true for Google properties.

Check out that full report here.

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Title: Google Will Make It Harder For Repeat Offenders To Get Back Rankings

Search Engine News, Search Engine Optimization

Article Source: Link Exchange Service Network

Google is not cool with you frequently violating their guidelines. Well, obviously they’re not cool with you violating them at all, but they do give second chances. If you screw up and get slapped with a manual penalty, you can fix the issue and file a reconsideration request, and get back into Google’s good graces.

This will only go so far, however. If Google accepts your reconsideration request, and you keep violating guidelines after that, it’s not going to be so easy (if it was even easy in the first place) the next time.

That’s the gist of a message Google is sending webmasters. The company’s search quality team wrote a short blog post on the subject, urging webmasters to take its guidelines seriously. It says:

In order to protect the quality of our search results, we take automated and manual actions against sites that violate our Webmaster Guidelines. When your site has a manual action taken, you can confirm in the [Manual Actions] page in Search Console which part of your site the action was taken and why. After fixing the site, you can send a reconsideration request to Google. Many webmasters are getting their manual action revoked by going through the process.

However, some sites violate the Webmaster Guidelines repeatedly after successfully going through the reconsideration process. For example, a webmaster who received a Manual Action notification based on an unnatural link to another site may nofollow the link, submit a reconsideration request, then, after successfully being reconsidered, delete the nofollow for the link. Such repeated violations may make a successful reconsideration process more difficult to achieve. Especially when the repeated violation is done with a clear intention to spam, further action may be taken on the site.

Long story short, don’t violate the Webmaster Guidelines. If you do for some reason, and you get caught, and action is taken against your site, don’t keep violating them once you get your site back in the game. You’ll get caught again, and you’re going to have a much harder time getting your rankings back.

If you need a refresher, you can find the guidelines here. Read it over, and know what Google considers spam.

Image via Google

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Title: LinkedIn Joins Yelp In Bashing Google App-Install Interstitial Study

Search Engine News, Search Engine Optimization

Article Source: Link Exchange Service Network

Google recently shared results from an internal study about app-install interstitials, looking specifically at their own Google+ app, saying that they make for a negative user experience. Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman has been slamming Google over the study and questioning the company’s true intent.

The general gist of Stoppelman’s postition is that Google is discouraging the use of such ads in an effort to fuel its own self interests.

Now, LinkedIn has weighed in as well, calling Google’s study flawed. It’s not as finger-pointing as Stoppelman’s words have been but does go so far as to say that nobody wants Google+.

“Naturally, an interstitial that interrupts the user experience to promote something that most people don’t want is bound to backfire,” writes Omar Restom, mobile product manager at LinkedIn (via Re/code). “Google shouldn’t extrapolate based on this one case. ”

“Google admits that it was showing their interstitial even to users who already have the app – that’s bad mojo and fundamentally bad audience targeting,” he adds. “Again, Google should only have shown this promo to people who actually want and need the app. The Google+ Team also violated Google’s own SEO policy by showing this interstitial on SEO Pages.”

He goes on to make the case that LinkedIn’s interstitials work better because of better targeting and better creatives.

Restom also backs up his argument with some numbers, comparing clickthrough rate, bounce rate and incremental app downloads driven between Google+ and LinkedIn.

interstitials-numbers

This week, Google officially announced that pages using these interstitials will no longer be considered “mobile-friendly” by the search engine, and that means using them will hurt sites in search results.

Image via LinkedIn

The post LinkedIn Joins Yelp In Bashing Google App-Install Interstitial Study appeared first on WebProNews.

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