Google Panda 4.0 | Complete Detail about Panda 4.0

Is eBay A Big Loser In Google’s Panda 4.0 Update? — Winners & Losers Data

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Yesterday, Google began rolling out their Panda 4.0 update designed to punch low-quality content. That’s generated both “winners” who have moved up in rankings as “losers” have dropped down — and eBay might be one of the big losers.

Searchmetrics gave us their initial winners and loser charts, based on rankings they continually monitor. These show that one of the biggest losers was eBay. According to the data, eBay lost a tremendous amount of traffic from Google, much of it from the ebay.com/bhp/ area of its site.

Another huge loser was Ask.com, yes, the search engine, that lost a tremendous amount of traffic in their Questions section at ask.com/question/.

The Losers: Ask.com, eBay, Biography.com & Google-Backed RetailMeNot

Among the top losers include Ask.com, ebay.com, biography.com and retailmenot.com. I should note, retailmenot.com is venture backed by Google’s venture arm. Here is the top list of losers from the Searchmetrics initial analysis:

panda-4-loser

Here is a chart showing eBay’s UK drop by their main root domain versus the directory from Searchmetrics:

ebay.co.uk in Google UK

Dr. Peter Meyers from Moz also documented with their analytics how much eBay lost with this update. Pete said, “over the course of about three days, eBay fell from #6 in our Big 10 to #25.” Meyers digs deep into the analysis on the Moz blog.

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Refugeeks looked at early SEM Rush data, which also showed a steep decline for ebay’s web site in Google. Note, SEMRush will be sending me more data as they work it up at their office. Here is a chart from the UK data:

ebay-dot-com-keywords-lost-UK

The Winners

With all algorithm updates, there are also those who win and gain rankings. The big winners seem to be glassdoor.com, emedicinehealth.com, medterms.com, yourdictionary.com and shopstyle.com.

panda-4-winner

The SearchMetrics data is sorted by increase in SEO visibility in absolute numbers, but sorted by percentage (relative).

Only Losers Really Know If They Lost

As we said with the Panda 3.5 Winners & Losers report, lists like this aren’t perfect. The sites above may have had gains and drops for other reasons; less visibility this week because last week they were visible for different news stories, for example.

It’s also worth remembering that this is a sample of search terms. The only way to really know if any update has hurt or helped you is to look at your search-driven traffic from Google, rather than particular rankings or lists like this, which have become popular after Google updates. If you’ve seen a significant increase, you’ve probably been rewarded by it. A big decrease? Then you were probably hit.

More About Panda 4.0

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SEO Check List 2014

Business SEO

Business SEO

12 Other Google Update Checks


1. Titles and Descriptions

Titles and descriptions still remain one of the most misunderstood items on any site and they are still as important as ever. Know what these mean and how to write each properly. Make sure you don’t have duplicates, ones that are too long or over-optimized tags.


2. Anchor Text

Is your anchor text over-optimized with keywords? Are you using keywords when domain names should be used? What is the natural way someone would link to your site? This counts with inbound links as well as internally. Beware of over-optimized and overused keyword anchor text.


3. Links – Inbound & Outbound

Run a link check. How do your inbound links look? The threshold for spammy links was about 80 percent, it is now down to about 50 percent. That means 50 percent questionable links can keep your site or a page out of the index.

Know your link profile.

Using outbound links, make sure you are not sending out link juice on ad links, but still make sure you are doing some links offsite. Google doesn’t like it when you hoard that link power all for yourself. Share with worthwhile sites, but never with ad links.


4. Links Cross or Triangulate

Sometimes by accident even, sites crosslink to other sites they own or partner with that site while sitting on the same IP addresses or C classes. Do you know if yours do? If they do, delink your sites or put rel=nofollow on those links, or Google may think you are attempting to put up a link network of your own.

Remember, Google can’t discern intent, so the appearance of impropriety is all that you need to give yourself a penalty.

SEO

SEO


5. Page Speed

Google likes to say page speed is a small factor for websites and maybe for some industries this is the case, but in others our experience shows it isn’t. This only makes sense. For Google, faster loading sites lower the load on Google’s end, so take the page speed tool, check your site, and get it above a 90 percent if you can. That seems to be the magic threshold for most.


6. User-Generated Content Spam

User-generated content spam on your site is directly linked to a penalty now at Google. (Heard about Sprint’s latest fiasco?)

It doesn’t take a lot to indicate to Google “No One is Home” keeping an eye on things.

Make sure you have checked your blogs and comment areas for things like multiple https or for words such as “free shipping” with a database crawler or in Google with site:domain.com “words go here” and see, is someone scamming you?

Note: If the spammers are very good you may not be able to see it without a Google search.


7. Redirects

Get a tool like Screaming Frog and check your site pages for redirects then make sure those redirected pages have a 301 permanent redirect, which tells Google the page has been permanently moved and it should keep following it.

It’s rare you need a different type of page redirect and if you do, then remove the page from the index with a noindex tag in the header. (There are rare cases where this won’t be the case, this is just the general rule.)

Also make sure you have your canonicals in place and that they are correct. This should go without saying, but not all sites do it.


8. Over-Optimization on Non-Content Items

A common type of over-optimization happens in the navigation, the header or footer.

This is where someone either adds a keyword to every (or almost every) word to try to rank for the term or where someone adds an overabundance of header or footer links to “help” a site position for known keywords. This won’t help and is likely to give the site a penalty.


9. Alt Attributes

How are you using the alt attribute on your images? Don’t stuff keywords into this text. Using good alt text, especially when images are replacing text in links, can be very good for a site. In fact, Google will treat this alt text as actual text in these cases.

SEO Content Strategy

SEO Content Strategy


10. Ad Issues

Google doesn’t like it when a site seems to only be there to support the ads on it, so an overabundance of above the fold ads can cause the site to receive a penalty.

What is too much? Google is a little obtuse about this, but find out what is above the fold for your screen size (not your screen, but the site screen size), then hold up a post it note, if it takes up more space than the note, it is probably too large.


11. Crawl Issues

When is the last time you got into your Webmaster Tools and checked how your crawls were going? How is your crawl rate? Are the spiders having any crawl issues?

We once had a client who had 28k crawl errors. These will affect your site strength and authority with the “No One Is Home” devaluations. So keep an eye on your crawl rate and if it is not crawling well, find out why as quickly as possible and fix it!


12. Malware or Rogue Sites

For the most part, we’re fortunate that Google will email us and tell you that you have malware on your site – but be careful: this isn’t always the case. Periodically you want to do a search for your site, see if you trigger malware warnings in a site search or mobile, then check your analytics to make sure no one is running anything untoward on your site like say a rogue Viagra site. If you want to see how prevalent this is, go to Google search and put in “.gov” Viagra.

Not only can these sites be doing things on your site that could be causing you “hack” issues, but also sending links to their pages on your site causing your link profile to be damaged.

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