Has Your Search Position and Website Traffic Disappeared?
By Stephen Bucaro
Has your Google search results position disappeared and along with it your traffic? When
Google first started, it based its search results on the concept that the value of the content
on any webpage could be determined by the number of times a key word appeared on that
webpage along with the number of Internet links pointing to that webpage.
Webmasters soon learned how to game that concept by swapping links and keyword
spamming. To defend the relevance of their search results, Google modified their search
algorithm. To combat those changes, search engine optimization (SEO) was created. The
word “optimization” is misleading. In reality SEO means to find new methods of gaming
Google's search algorithm.
Each time SEO “experts” found a new way to game Google's latest search algorithm,
Google changed it to thwart their new game. At the same time Google has been modifying
their search algorithm in response to the the growth of local, mobile, and the social Web.
Now Google changes their search algorithm on an almost continuous basis, so SEO
experts are trying to game a moving target. The data and the rules Google uses to rank a
webpage is now so arbitrary that it's harming innocent websites to whom search engine
gaming is the last thing on their mind. What they're doing now is paramount to censorship.
Now Google search algorithm programmers spend half their time responding to webmaster
So why has your webpage lost its search results position and its traffic? It's more than
just Google censorship. Today social sites are getting more traffic than Google. Facebook
alone gets about the same traffic as Google. Most people log onto their favorite social site
and never leave. When they want to search they use Facebook's search box, and Facebook
uses Microsoft's Bing search engine. So if you're counting on traffic from Google's search
engine, it's not going to be what it's been in the past.
It's not just the social web that's causing your traffic to dwindle. When the great recession
hit in 2008, probably several billion desperate people created websites and blogs in an attempt
to generate some income. I don't care what kind of website you have, what product your selling,
what blog topic your writing about, tens of thousands of other people are doing the exact
same thing. You have to share traffic with them. It's just too competitive.
And lastly, Google is a public company. Their revenue and profits are analyzed and scrutinized
by stock holders and investment advisers. They need to show continuing growth in their
revenue and profit or the value of their stock will go down. They're accomplishing that by taking
a large amount of their ad inventory internal. Displaying ads in Gmail, Google+, and other
applications. They don't need to share the commission from those ads.
If your Google search position has disappeared and along with your traffic, it's partially
because Google's arbitrary search rules and their need to show growth in revenue and profit
has squeezed you out. And it's because a huge amount of traffic has left the conventional
Internet and now lives on social sites, and because there's just too many people trying to milk
money from the Internet.
You can gain back some traffic by paying for advertising, investing time and effort into social
media, and by investing time and effort into a newsletter and article marketing, but then your
ROI goes down, so you haven't really achieved anything. I'm sorry I don't have any solutions for
you. Reality is what it is. If you have any ideas, please contact me.