Guesting posting "done" 's premonition by Rand

I just have to wonder about the "premonition" shown by Rand Fishkin in his whiteboard Friday preso about the "slippery slope" of guest posting/blogging three days' preceding Matt Cutts' video and post declaring that guest posting and blogging are "done".

I'm not a big fan of conspiracy theories, but this coincidence just begs for at least one. I'll start: WTF?

 

1st In-Depth Study of Authorship Reduction

I've published the study I've been working on for a month as "The Great Google Authorship Kidnapping: What Happened to Your Author Photo in Search?"

 

I have examined several dozen authors who reported to me that their authorship results had remained unchanged, been partially reduced, or had completely disappeared. Then I compared the patterns I observed with statements made by Googlers, both in the post by Jennifer Slegg cited above by Ann, and in a Google Webmaster's Hangout with John Mueller. My post gives my findings.

1st In-Depth Study of Authorship Reduction

I've published the study I've been working on for a month as "The Great Google Authorship Kidnapping: What Happened to Your Author Photo in Search?"

 

I have examined several dozen authors who reported to me that their authorship results had remained unchanged, been partially reduced, or had completely disappeared. Then I compared the patterns I observed with statements made by Googlers, both in the post by Jennifer Slegg cited above by Ann, and in a Google Webmaster's Hangout with John Mueller. My post gives my findings.

So what?

Yes, Google returns information directly in the search results from websites they've visited.

 

Typifying this as "stealing" is reasonable if there's an expectation from the web owners that Google will only direct users to their site, but not use the information they parse inline.  This is certainly a claim that Google's never made, and if this is the claim of the site owner then it's based a 20th-century understanding of search.

 

And apparently an expectation that Google exists to send traffic to the publishers of web pages.  They don't.  And it certainly serves my interests as a user if I don't need to navigate to a website to get an opinion on whether or not garlic is a vegetatble, or what time the Super Bowl starts, or what the height of the Eiffel Tower is, or when Father's Day 2015 falls.

 

As to all those websites that "freely supported" Google in what was seemingly the glory days of ten blue links it was a two way street, where Google sent traffic and garnered revenu to those magnificently supportive websites:  if Google is failed to live up their current expectations, they're free to make a single line modification to robots.txt that will immediately prevent such "theft."

 

If your point is that Google is acting hyocritically, take a look at their guidelines.  They don't advise against scraping, but against reusing content without adding value.  Organizing the knowledge from billions of parsed URLs in such a manner that information can be reliably returned for it on the basis of an infinity of natural-langage query is that added value.

 

Poll on Google's search results

Does Google know what is authoritative to a human? This poll is a summary of a discussion thread from Webmaster World: http://www.capturecommerce.com/blog/general/google-know-authoritative-human/

not again

I am honestly tired of hearing people complain about Google all the time as if Google owes them something. If you are a small business your competition is big business. They have more money, bigger marketing teams, and generally more time to "get it right." Don't lay the inequity blame on Google... (for the record this is my PERSONAL opinion)

My point is make Google irrelevant if you are a smallbiz

The game is fixed. My entire point is that we need to STOP putting more time into trying to rank on Google. We need to IGNORE Google altogether and invest that time and those resources in getting visibility where potential buyers already are, bringing them back to our sites, capturing their attention and building relationships with them. 

 

Any time spent trying to recover a site that has been penalized is a waste of money. Even Michael Gray changed domains. That is how his site "recovered". 

 

Barry Schwartz on SEO Roundtable: Only 15% Say The Disavow Tool Benefits Their Rankings

 

“If you got hit by a penalty for bad links you’re probably looking at 6 months to a year to recover after you clean things up.” ~ Google spokesperson John Mueller in his Closing Keynote at SMX Israel.

Dr Pete's response to my question on Reddit:

Dr Pete's response to my question on Reddit: "As marketers, we have to cut our dependence - not just on Google, but on search in general. We have to get back to connecting - in person, online, wherever and we have to diversify. Too many sites are getting 90%+ of their traffic from Google, and that's dangerous - replace Google with anything you want and no matter how good or bad Google is, it would still be dangerous.

 

At some point, the rules may change to the point that organic search is nearly irrelevant, and if your business is 100% reliant on that traffic, your business will cease to exist. I don't say that to be alarmist, but just because none of us really know. I don't want to have to wonder every morning how Google might change the game. Better to stop playing it, if only little by little.

 

As for Moz, the truth is that building an index and building a search engine are miles apart. I can honestly say Moz has no plans to be in the search game in that way - the math just doesn't work. We will evolve beyond search to focus on content, social, and the emerging world of what people need to track, while trying to balance the reality of where people are in 2014."  http://www.reddit.com/r/bigseo/comments/1xm8nm/hey_im_dr_pete_meyers_marketing_scientist_moz_ama/

yes i disagree

I do not believe the absolute statement "Google damages small businesses." Although not exactly the same, to me it is like saying guns kill people versus the person behind the trigger doing the killing. Every business venture has inherent risk. In bustling section of town where the rent is often volatile, brick and mortars fail all the time. Some can place part of the blame on the town based on tax or other environmental changes, but others would blame the disinterest from people that frequent the area near the business, or too many direct competitors (both established and "shiny" new).

I just disagree with the extreme idea that it is Google's fault since they made an algo update mostly aimed at people that cheated the system. There are of course excepetions, but I can't put lost jobs on Google any more than I can put it on the economy or thousands of unique circumstances that lead to gowth and failure of businesses.

Did you read the quote from the small business?

“Our family run business has been destroyed by Google’s animal updates."

 

What will it take for people to understand?  Aaron Wall at SEOBook publishes the quote where Google's CEO proclaims: 

The internet is fast becoming a "cesspool" where false information thrives,... "Brands are the solution, not the problem," Mr. Schmidt said. "Brands are how you sort out the cesspool.http://www.seobook.com/google-branding

 

Let me put it more clearly. Google puts small businesses OUT of business intentionally. Here are just a few examples: 

  • Online only ecommerce engraved gift seller builds sales to over $1.2 M over 12 years. The MayDay update takes 1/3 of their traffic, Panda and they're down to half. Penguin and they're done. What happens to their employees? No corporations I know of even sell engraved gifts. Prior to the algo updates Google hides their products for only the phrases that convert to sales in Google Product search. Screen captures showing how this is done in http://growmap.com/farmer-update-google-competitors/
  • Online only manufacturer and wholesaler builds a business over about that same time. Penguin takes 58% of their traffic, apparently because they created a lot of content about their one primary product and most organically acquired links use the name of that one primary product as the anchor text. 
  • Online only business worth $3.3 million built over a decade. They are #4 in their space. eBay buys #1 in their space. Suddenly they stop ranking for money keyword phrases and lose 70% of their traffic and income. They never built a single link; never hired an SEO (before that traffic drop - when the best SEO I know confirmed there was no negative SEO, no manual penalty - NOTHING to explain their traffic drop).

 

The propaganda is that Google's also updates are mostly aimed at people cheating. I call b.s. and point you to this analysis that clearly shows the Panda update bashed competitors to Google: http://growmap.com/farmer-update-google-competitors/

 

So not only did Google take the ecommerce stores traffic away, they also tried to kill off extremely useful sites like TheFind and ShopWiki which allow consumers to find small businesses to buy from directly.

 

Who benefits if we can't find them? Google and Amazon - the Wal-mart of ecommerce. We should support small businesses and buy from them directly, or through others such as NewEgg which carries much of what Amazon does and is a small business. 

 

I would argue that towns shortsighted desire for malls killed off downtowns. That subsidizing corporations like Wal-mart who transfer their costs of doing business onto the taxpayer, refuse to pay a living wage so that their employees are on government assistance by design (and indeed have people HELP THEM to get on the dole) is as stupid as letting Google control the Internet.