Monday, 19 December 2011

Google's Panda - The Main Factors

A member called 'Brinked' wrote an interesting article about Google's Panda - The Main Factors at Webmaster World, in which he described some of his findings in dealing with clients whose sites had been 'Pandalized' by Google's recent "Panda"  update.

It's worth reading that thread in it's entirety, but - perhaps unsurprisingly - I have chosen to highlight my response to his excellent work, as the issue is one that I feel quite strongly about.

Re-written content? The sludge of the internet; untold billions of pages that essentially add nothing (except a few Adsense clickers trying to escape). 

Un monitored auto-generated pages? A total waste of space. 

Poor page design? MFA in effect, though possibly not in intention; no more, no less. 

And Panda goes to the heart of the problem - intention - as no update has done before. 

Because it's effectively very cheap to produce 'content', and search engines have always favoured 'content rich' sites, there has been an explosion in totally pointless pages, just like the tonnes of pizza delivery leaflets I recycle each year, we have become buried in quantity, leaving quality at the bottom of the pile. Panda has sought to redress this. 

I do accept - and always have - that there are some innocent victims of the collateral damage of the Panda process, but you have illustrated the awful truth that if people have nothing to say, they should shut up - not plaster the web with mind-numbingly dull, repetitive content. In fact the only place I would disagree with you, is that I advise people to simply lose those pages, not just try to 'pretty them up' in order to escape the Panda scythe - I suggest that your unsuccessful cases might try that approach with success. 

If Panda really succeeds in letting a bit of quality shine through, then the price is worth paying. 

Let's face it, if there was a $1.00 per page tax on URLs, 99% of pages on the web would disappear overnight, and no-one would miss them

I applaud Google's attempts do what the taxman can't - encourage quality rather than quantity. And I note that the vast majority of those who complain are those running sites with millions of one-paragraph-pages, written or paraphrased by machine, surrounded by ads.

Many webmasters cannot see anything wrong with using Google to drive visitors to sites which are no better than those pizza delivery leaflets, while the genuine innovators find it hard to dig themselves out from under the drivel.