For a long time, many SEOs have been talking about whether 301/302/307 Redirects pass on PageRank. Now, Google has confirmed that “30x redirects don’t lose PageRank anymore“, which is a very important information. This issue actually becomes irrelevant when you know that in general redirects are not used correctly and this is the main reason why domains may lose their rankings.
You can see this on a large scale within the weekly list of Movers & Shakers. There you will find a lot of domains losing rankings on Google, either because of a bad website migration or because of a new website design. Even popular brands do not escape this.
It seems that some SEOs may not want to believe that individual URLs are responsible for the most important quality signals of a domain – such as authority, reputation, trust, user signals, and many more – and that these URLs usually provide the majority of all incoming links.
By eliminating, ignoring or redirecting your old URLs incorrectly, your domain is suddenly worth much less – sometimes even zero – to Google. As I said before, size, power, brand and funding will not save you here. Even if you are the Queen of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand or The Mayor of London or Tesla or H&M or Theguardian.com or Manchester City F.C.
Let’s take a look! Read Full Article
In May of this year, the BBC announced far-reaching cuts to their web presence. “Soft news“ content such as magazine articles, recipes and travel advice would be reduced. The BBC’s director-general, Lord Hall of Birkenhead, said that the broadcasters’ websites “cannot be all things to all people“. All this is nothing new. On the chart bellow, we can see that the Visibility for BBC.co.uk on Google has been decreasing for years. Mainly due to two reasons:
(1) On 26 February 2010 the BBC’s web output was cut by 50%, with online staff numbers and budgets reduced by 25% in a bid to scale back BBC operations and allow commercial rivals more room. On 24 January 2011, the confirmed cuts of 25% were announced, leaving a £34 million shortfall.
(2) In 2004 the BBC used the Public Value Test as the cornerstone of its manifesto for the renewal of its charter. The BBC took on a pioneering role in this endeavour.
5 years ago, the BBC.co.uk had a Visibility Index of 1,000 points on Google. Today, they are left with 628 points. The BBC pretty much reduced its marketshare on Google by 37% over the past 5 years. So what does this Visibility Index value of 628 points actually mean today? Read Full Article
The SEO Congress “Congreso SEO Profesional” is held every July in Madrid and specialises on presentations where website operators put their cards on the table, for all to see. Last year, for example, we had the opportunity to check out the exact data for the costs, auctions and traffic for TV-adds for two Spanish online-shops. It is not hard to guess why it is usually forbidden to take pictures of the sessions and write about them.
This year, we got extremely lucky in that one of the attendees, the owner of Floter.com (an online-shop for hardwood floors and laminate) and his SEO-consultant, MJ Cachón, gave us permission to tell their tale. I am sure this article will be quite helpful for anyone interested, especially due to the fact that we are able to share real numbers with everyone.
Floter.es and the bane of the Panda- & Penguin-Updates
There is growing evidence, that Google can identify and devalue unnatural links very well by using User Signals.
Already in 2014, we wrote about the fact that Google has the possibility to evaluate links by using data from the Chrome Browser. Using the User Signals on how often a link is actually clicked on by users, Google could asses the true value of a link. Unnatural links could be as easily exposed as links from websites, which have only been created in order to sell links, but which do not have any actual visitors due to missing added value.
Up until now, there concrete evidence has been missing to support the theory that Google Chrome Browser has been sending its user’s browsing habits to Google. Now, that evidence exists. Read Full Article
A few weeks ago, I saw a great “Whiteboard Friday” episode by Rand Fishkin, which we agree with 100%. I too think that Google is all about delivering the best answer for the user, and for this, Google needs user behaviour data in order to decide which search result deserves the top spot, the second position and so forth.
Even at times when Google does not have enough data from the SEPRs, for example because the URL is too new, it is quite possible that Google will use the data they have for the entire domain to estimate the trustworthiness of the new URL.
Let me give you 3 examples:
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The Visibility history for Softonic.com shows a large loss on Google US (-40%), UK (-33%), Germany (-42%), Italy (-61%), France (-53%), the Netherlands (-31%), Brasil (-43%), their home-market Spain (-45%) and many more search markets. For our analysis, we will therefore simply stay on the US market, as the cause is always the same, for all countries.
When we take a look at the Visibility for Softonic’s most visible directory, /s/, on Google US, we can see a major loss in Visibility. Before, this one directory made up a whopping 40% of the entire domain’s Visibility (84 Visibiliy poinst from the total of 208 points for the entire Domain). Now, this directory makes up less than 0,5% of the domain’s Visibility.
About two months ago, Monster changed quite a bit of their internal website structure for both their USA and UK sites. Although the website architecture for both domains is very similar – both before and after the change – the positive effect is much more visible in the UK.
Monster.co.uk increased its Visibility by 116%. In the chart above we can nicely see how they break their long-time sideways trend for Monster.co.uk at the end of April.
This is a great example which shows us how a domain can do much better on Google by adjusting a number of screws. If we wanted to figure out every exact change in detail, we would need to run a very deep evaluation, which would probably take a few weeks of time and we would likely need information that is only available to their SEO’s and webmasters. Nonetheless, I want to show you what we can already see.
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The most common mistake during a website redesign is that 301 redirects are not set, which causes Google to miss that the addresses for the pages have changed, as in the case of Zippo.co.uk:
Please imagine the following: “Al Capone’s Spaghetti” is the UK’s most well known brand of Spaghetti. After 5 successful years, the manufacturer makes the marketing decision to start selling their Spaghetti under a new name. They now call their Spaghetti “Viva la Mama”, as they know very well that “Viva la Mama“ has a much more positive and stronger connotation for consumers, which should help them keep increasing their sales. Now they only have one problem as, somewhere along the way, they forgot to inform both their vendors and consumers about this change. Read Full Article
Five years ago, in April 2011, Zappos’ market share in Google was more that 3 times as large as Nordstrom‘s – in numbers: 43 visibility points for Zappos vs 13 points for Nordstrom. Today, Nordstrom has twice the market share on Google as Zappos.
During the time from April 2011 to December 2012, Zappos.com managed to increase their market share by 51% (going from a visibility score of 42.9 to 63.42 points), while Nordstrom increased their Visibility 13 points to 54.9. A huge jump in market share by 302%. At this point, they became a direct competitor to Zappos, with both domains having 50% of their keywords in Google in common.
In September 2013, Nordstrom.com unstoppably took off, leaving Zappos.com in the dust. Since then, Nordstrom.com has continuously increased its market share, climbing by 65% from September 2013 until today, with a visibility score of 90.78 points. During the same time, Zappos.com continuously lost market share and ended up at a -37.32% loss, dropping from 63.42 to 39.75 points.
What happened? Read Full Article
Today we want to present you with the first video in a series of videos we have prepared for you. In just three minutes, this video will give you a detailed explanation on the significance of the Visibility Index and show you how you can use it in such a way that you can jump right into a domain evaluation.
We are sure you will like it.
We will continue to add new videos over time and if you would like to learn more about our SISTRIX Toolbox, we invite you to check out our webinars.