Effect of Google's Panda update
According to eConsultancy, the impact of Google's new Panda update has been limited and mainly affected low-quality websites with thin content. Citing research by search marketing agency StickyEyes, the Panda update has had a smaller impact than the previous Caffeine and Vince updates to Google's search algorithm.
Tracking changes across five key verticals, StickyEyes found the average changes to be relatively small, though possibly hiding some big impacts on individual websites.
One of those is Review Centre who saw a significant drop when Panda launched on Google.com in February and again when it rolled out in the UK on 11th April. They all but disappeared from Google's search results despite clearly not being a 'low-quality' or 'thin content' website.
We track the performance of SatchelsAndBags.com across a number of search terms on Google and other search engines and saw a mixed impact of the Panda update. Interestingly it wasn't consistent across the whole site, but affected rankings only for certain keywords.
The worst hit keywords were Caribee (falling from the first page to outside the top 30 pages) and Samsonite laptop (down from page 3 to again outside the top 30 pages). This was particularly frustrating as we stock one of the widest ranges of Caribee laptop bags in the country.
The other keywords tracked roughly the same as normal.
While there will always be winners and losers with changes Google makes I'm still not convinced Google's algorithm works ideally for product searches. Take laptop bags as a search term. generally if custoemrs are using that term, they don't have a specific bag or brand in mind and want to see choice. yet Google's algorithm ranks the laptop bag page for Timberland (only one bag) higher than sites such as ours that stock multiple brands.
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