jump to last post 1-42 of 42 discussions (140 posts)

A Few Observations Concerning the Recent Traffic Failure

  1. Will Apse profile image89
    Will Apseposted 3 years ago

    In his hub 'What We Don't Know About Google Panda?', Paul Edmondson points out that Google seems to expect sites to leap high above any bar that might reasonably be set for quality purposes.

    Paul seems less than happy with Google's attitude. He seems to think that if a page can somehow limp over some paltry (and fairly arbitrary) imitation of okayness, it should have a place in the sun.

    This is obviously never going to happen. Google will not make money this way. And if you do not help Google help money, why should Google help you?

    It is the contention of this piece that Paul's deluded optimism (over-investment in his baby?) is the current stumbling block to a full and permanent recovery from Panda.

    I am a big fan of Paul, so apologies to him.

    Anyway....

    THE MAIN POINTS:

    CHANGE THE ETHOS

    User generated content has a place. Amateurish videos can do well on YouTube. Amateurish pages will never do well in websearch.

    If HP wants to succeed post-panda, it needs to brand itself as a place with the software and SEO to allow professional writers to make money.

    Offer amateurs the chance of a place at the table if they can up their game.

    PRACTICE

    Get rid of sub-domains. Get control of the URL removal tool. Cut the crap out of the site mercilessly and make sure it is truly gone.

    QAP everything that you can afford to QAP, un-publish what you cannot afford to QAP, regardless.

    Then with a site 100% QAPed...

    Zero tolerance for poor spelling and grammar. Everyday experience teaches that no page can get to to the top of the SERPS with more than a couple of typos why keep semi-literate hubs?

    Get to work on duplicate content within HP.

    These for example: site:hubpages.com earmites, site:hubpages.com iphone cases
    site:hubpages.com ugg boot, site:hubpages.com bad credit. (Drop them into Google to see the endless repetitions).

    THE RESULT?

    Fame, more sex than you want to think about and fast cars.

    OR: you will be obliged to cater to the less-than-talented for the rest of eternity (in hell as it is on earth). Lol.

    1. HollieT profile image90
      HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      After the recent chaos with the switch to indexing subdomains, I'm not really sure the community would be to thrilled to switch back- but possibly.

      Regarding the quality of the content on this site, I completely agree. If pages cannot achieve a score of 8 during the QAP process, then I really believe that the authors should be asking themselves whether they are skilled enough to be publishing at all. I'd like to see the threshold upped to an eight, I believe this would make a massive difference to how Google might view HP. Of course, the quality of the content on this site is not the only issue, but ridding the site of the rubbish and preventing authors from churning out more could only help HP, imho.

      1. SimeyC profile image89
        SimeyCposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I'm removing all hubs that score less than '80' - this seems to be a good level for my own hubs - there are a few exceptions - seasonal hubs - but I feel that if my hub scores less than 80 I either need to update it substantially, delete it, or move it elsewhere.

        I'll end up with a meaner, leaner and hopefully higher quality sub-domain!

        1. Cardisa profile image89
          Cardisaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Hey Simon.

          I used to do that with hubs less than 60 but since the QAP I noticed my lowest hubs have been 70. With new publishing feature where hubs only show points after being featured I stopped worrying about the points. I noticed my new hubs starts off with a score of 77 and that's great so I'll watch for hubs below 70 from now on.

        2. sabrebIade profile image84
          sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Out of my top ten trafficked Hubs, five are 70s with two 75s.
          HP doesn't like them, readers do.
          Simple.

          1. SimeyC profile image89
            SimeyCposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            As I said - it differs for different people. I'm keeping the ones under 80 that are getting traffic - the others are not getting any results and are pretty generic - doesn't matter if they are well written or not.

            Everyone has to make their own choice - I'm not the best writer on here, so I do what I think will work for me - try and make my own situation better - it'll benefit HP in a way as there'll be less saturation on some types of article - but the bottom line is that my experience is purely personal.

            1. Solaras profile image92
              Solarasposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              I think that Wrylilt expressed regret at dropping hubs that were not getting muchtraffic, as she lost age and breadth or depth of topic as an authority. I could be mistaken...

              1. NateB11 profile image92
                NateB11posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I don't know if Wrylilt said that, but it sounds right to me. I'm hesitant to delete Hubs: It wastes a lot of work and time put in, and might be unnecessary especially if there is still potential in some form for that work.

      2. Rock_nj profile image90
        Rock_njposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        How do we know what our QAP score is?  If a Hub is approved, does that mean it has a QAP of 8 or greater?

        1. HollieT profile image90
          HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Six or greater, I think! We do not get to discover our QAP score, however, the criteria for each level is given in the learning centre.

    2. Abby Campbell profile image95
      Abby Campbellposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Though I don't understand much about Google Panda and how it affects hubs, I have not had the issues that some have had. My scores and views have increased... as well as my earnings. June's earnings doubled May, and July has doubled June's. I am happy with the way things are currently.

    3. aa lite profile image91
      aa liteposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I'm not sure I agree with you.  My searches on google turn up terrible, badly spelt, factually incorrect, total rubbish top results.  Just not HubPages.

      I think what Google says about quality, and what I see on its SERPs are two very different things.

      Having said all of that, I would like to see the quality upped.  Not just the quality of the writing, but also the topics.  Apart from the constant repetition, there are many hubs that are very vague about their topics. 

      Not sure if Google cares about that but Susana S has speculated that Google might be confused about HP, the mixture of good how-tos and information pages, with the regurgitated pap and creative writing (even the high quality CW).  Perhaps if HP concentrated on good how-tos and information hubs Google would like it better?

      1. Barbara Kay profile image85
        Barbara Kayposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I have been having the same problem. The results for searches were better 2 years ago for some searches.

  2. HollieT profile image90
    HollieTposted 3 years ago

    Is hubscore a reasonable sign of quality though? I know there has been recent changes and hubscore is supposed to reflect QAP score, but has this been achieved yet? I have a couple of hubs in the nineties that Google seems to think are ok, but one in the high seventies which Google appears to love.

    1. SimeyC profile image89
      SimeyCposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      It's probably different for different people - in general, my Hubs with 80+ are my best - there are also some that may not be top quality but get traffic.....

    2. agilitymach profile image99
      agilitymachposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I don't think the axe should be based on Hubscore.  That figure takes into account variables that have nothing to do with quality.  However, I do agree that QAP score should be taken into account, and anything under 8 should go.

  3. psycheskinner profile image80
    psycheskinnerposted 3 years ago

    This is a content site, not a magazine edited by Nobel laureates that pays three cents a word.  I think expecting adequacy, rather than excellence, as the minimum standard is perfectly reasonable.

    If you want to write for an edited online magazine there are plenty available without turning Hubpages into one.

    1. Will Apse profile image89
      Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      What on earth makes you think 'adequacy' is good enough?

      One thing for sure, I don't think crowdsourcing is a viable future for HP. 'Crowd sifting' might work -- pluck out the best and brightest.

      Demand media shifted towards professionally qualified writers, as far as it could, long ago.

      1. agilitymach profile image99
        agilitymachposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I agree.  When I do a search, if I get to an article that is poorly written and not heavily researched, I'm off - and I'm upset to have wasted my time.  I want professional writing, professional research and experts talking about their fields.

        Yesterday, I read some dog agility articles (my field of expertise) here on Hubpages that offered flat dangerous advice.  They were written by people who have never competed and never trained an agility dog.  These people have no business writing on the subject, and if I were looking up that topic on Google, I'd be looking for the experts - not blow Joe who thinks the topic might make him big bucks with an easy article (it doesn't, btw, make big bucks).  I'd be mad at Google for sending me to such a worthless article, too.

        I love Hubpages.  I think the platform is cool.  I like getting paid for my work.  But I sure would like to see that "fluff" go.  It's dragging us all down.

  4. brakel2 profile image87
    brakel2posted 3 years ago via iphone

    Simey.  Most of my scores less than 80 are from poor traffic. They previously had higher traffic with 80 and 90 scores.  That is why we need the score based on quality. The scores mean nothing to me and I will try to help them succeed.

  5. WriteAngled profile image91
    WriteAngledposted 3 years ago

    All I know is this:

    I have a couple of web sites, which I set up to house about seven hubs between them, and to which I have only added a few more posts in total. None of these posts have been updated; some are about 2 years old. A number of posts contain no images. In order to avoid spam, I have switched off the ability for visitors to make comments. I have not even bothered to establish Google authorship on one of the sites.

    It varies from day to day, but as a general rule Google sends me anything from 5 to 15 times as many views to these sites as it sends to my 22 remaining hubs. My monthly earnings from Adsense alone on these sites are again about 5 times as high as my combined HP Ads + Adsense earnings from my hubs, and I even get the odd Amazon sale.

    None of the material on my sites has been Qrapped on by MTurks and it does not contain any of the stuffing HP is trying to force us to use such as polls, maps and other such kapok.

    So, no updating, no Q(r)AP, no empty stuffing, no "engagement", no promotion, no interlinking with other people's writing, no authorship,

    yet these sites are vastly more successful than anything I have posted here.

    1. theherbivorehippi profile image83
      theherbivorehippiposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Exactly the same for me! Some of my oldest sites have not been touched in forever (not even sure if I could remember the password at this point. They have no pictures, polls, etc., and I do not allow comments. Yet, they are making me nearly all my money in Adsense right now. Thankfully, because this profile has died. One of my oldest and most successful hubs has earned in a week what it was earning consistently every day. So, so, sad. sad

  6. BonnieHall profile image78
    BonnieHallposted 3 years ago

    Would you mind sharing what sites you are referring to...?

  7. Greekgeek profile image96
    Greekgeekposted 3 years ago

    As one of those whose traffic is improving slightly (main account) or hold steady (niche account), I really wanna know: why do you want to do away with subdomains?

    I realize that Google's spiders must be drunk not to pick up on some people's quality content, but still -- why punish those who for whatever reason are doing well post-Panda 26 by forcing those subdomains back into the bucket with those that aren't, so that all hubs are Panda downranked the same amount?

    How would that help anybody or the site at large?

    Further devil's advocate: I think, unfortunately, that even with all the guidelines and hints we've got to go on, it's a dicey proposition trying to pin down exactly what Google wants. Figuring out what visitors want is far more likely to succeed, long term. Google often rewards pages that leave us scratching our heads. Those pages may not be the most polished or in-depth, but they provide just what the visitor was searching for so that she can hop in, read, and get on with life as quickly as possible. So while it's a good idea to encourage quality and help people learn how to write effective articles, and I personally would like to see more great content on HP, I would be wary of instituting overly draconian quality filters. I mean, look at a lot of the stuff on wildly successful sites like HuffPo, Cracked and Buzzfeed.

    We also have to remember that Google isn't ranking pages absolutely on their own merits: it's always relative to other pages on the web that may satisfy the same search.

    Finally: SimeyC, a couple of my hubs with lower scores than 80 are pulling 50-60 visitors a day and are presumably still earning part of my income. Their scores would probably be higher if I'd update them, but they are informational articles whose info is still relevant and useful. Readers find the info they need, then leave, which means less interaction and a lower score, but may nonetheless indicate reader satisfaction.

    I'm not dismissing the pain and frustration of seeing one's traffic dry up -- it's devastating. It's happened to me elsewhere, dropping my online income by more than two thirds. So I have some idea how angry one can get at the host site for not taking the steps that you think might protect or rescue it. But I've also seen desperate flailing make already-struggling sites suffer even more catastrophic traffic drops due to their instituting quality filters based on what they THINK Google wants rather than based on measuring remaining traffic and visitor behavior. That site wound up jettisoning a lot of successful pages that were still bringing traffic and revenue.

    1. Will Apse profile image89
      Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Why get rid of sub-domains? Because then when a page is unpublished, HP could remove it from Google's cache fast using the URL removal tool.

      Apparently, Google's been keeping those pages for months pretty much negating efforts to improve quality in the short to medium term.

      As to- 'it's a dicey proposition trying to pin down exactly what Google wants.'

      I think we can be fairly sure that what we have now is not what Google wants.

      Your subs may be showing some pluses but the site as a whole is in bad shape.

      https://www.quantcast.com/hubpages.com?qcLocale=en_US

  8. ologsinquito profile image94
    ologsinquitoposted 3 years ago

    I've seen desperate flailing on another site as well, and it hasn't been productive, to say the least. Also, I've been reading a lot ;lately about keeping content fresh. I notice better search engine traffic for about a week after I publish a new hub. I'm starting to think that adding new material is very important, and that our subdomains might be judged on this, in addition to content.

  9. ziyena profile image86
    ziyenaposted 3 years ago

    I'm laughing my behind off.  I've inspected some of the Hubbers giving out their so-called 'advice' who think they're the experts on Hub Quality, and I find that they have typo-errors in their Hub articles  ... some that I've observed have an apprenticeship status.  Before knocking those who are not the 'best and the brightest' and would love to weed out on the Hub ... please make sure you know what you're talking about by showing it in your own work.

    1. HollieT profile image90
      HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I don't think anyone was discussing a few typos or asking for literary genius- merely talking about hubs which are incomprehensible and not "adequate" by any stretch of the imagination.

      1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image94
        TIMETRAVELER2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Here's the thing:  the bottom line is that what Google (and all of us) wants is to make money.  It is becoming clear to me that  there is a major move now towards short, concise articles that people can reasonably read and access on small digital devices.  Some say this is where the future of online writing is heading, and if that is so, HP needs to take a serious look at the figures, find out what is working, and make some big changes.

        You have to change with the times to succeed, and I worry that we are heading in the wrong direction here.

        1. HollieT profile image90
          HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Yes, I agree. But when it comes to reasonably reading articles they have to be of reasonable quality, whatever their length.

        2. janderson99 profile image85
          janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Yeah! Stella fell of the cat walk - or was she pushed.
          Plain Jane, Simple Sal is the go.
          Nobody, but nobody can compete with Wiki so stop trying!

        3. Rock_nj profile image90
          Rock_njposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          That's an interesting take on article length, because the SEO community seems to think that Google is going to start ignoring and penalizing shorter articles in favor of longer ones, since the shorter articles are usually blog posts and most spammy articles are on the shorter side.  What you said about readability on mobile devices makes a lot of sense though.  I guess the key is to keep the quality high, short or long.

  10. janderson99 profile image85
    janderson99posted 3 years ago

    HP's modus operandi is not working and it's recipe for success clearly has not worked.
    I agree with the notion of shifting the focus to what users and writers want - not second guessing what Google wants.
    Major rethink required.

    1. Abby Campbell profile image95
      Abby Campbellposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I see what you're saying, John, but what happens if we don't show up on Google? We, as writers, are providing the best material for our viewers, so we want to show up on the first page if possible. Right? wink

      1. janderson99 profile image85
        janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        HP stopped listening to suggestions about 6-9 months  ago. My head is all black and blue from bashing against the wall. What I suggested was that HP develop a 'Title Tuner' at inception that pops up when an author enters a title.
        It says "hey that topic is super saturated you will need to be very specific with a narrow niche if you want to succeed". Here are some suggestions!

        HP has vast database of of data stored in Stats > Search > Search terms - these are terms people have used to successfully search for HP hubs - WOW what a fabulous resource. Why not use it? Why doesn't HP get an API for Jaaxy. com and pop up suggested terms with green lights. That is the way to get on first page of SERPS IMO - write on topics with reasonable traffic that you have a reasonable chance to compete in.

        Just my opinion - another one for the paper bin. HP staff are remarkably absent from the forums - so what the Heck. Back to staring at the bullet holes in my stats.
        PS
        The HOTD is a great commentary of what HP is favoring - you be the judge! How many articles have been written about sentence construction - its a good article - but really do we need another one - What's its chance of getting on the first page of the SERPS "writing effective sentences" results - number of pages  2,550,000!!!! - top 10 are all edu sites etc. No hope - Really is this the way to go??? Enough!

  11. Paul Edmondson profile image
    91
    Paul Edmondsonposted 3 years ago

    We have been reading the posts as well as running tests.  We've found a few things that do improve things (at least temporarily) where we will give Hubbers some options soon - two weeks or less.  We are developing as quickly as we can....We hear the frustration and really appreciate all the weighing in with ideas.

  12. Judi Bee profile image86
    Judi Beeposted 3 years ago

    So - traffic is down because:

    overall quality is not good enough;
    overall quality is too good, we need to dumb down to compete with WikiAnswers et al;
    hubs are too long and don't fit on mobile devices;
    hubs are too short - G favours longer articles;
    hubs need quizzes, polls, maps etc to engage readers;
    hubs shouldn't have unnecessary fillers;
    not enough low traffic/high quality hubs have been deleted;
    not enough low quality/high traffic hubs haven't been deleted;
    subdomains are a good thing as they allow people to be judged on their own merits;
    subdomains are a bad thing as HP loses control and hubbers lose the strength of the larger HP site;
    people should write about their passion without regard to keywords;
    people should be paying more attention to SEO;
    it's the summer and traffic is always bad in the summer (substitute another season/holiday of your choice for "summer" if you're reading this later in the year;
    it's Panda;
    it's down to some guy called Charles in Illinois who is copying the entire site and translating it into French.

    Did I miss any?

    1. HollieT profile image90
      HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Related Search!

      1. Judi Bee profile image86
        Judi Beeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        How did I miss that!

    2. janderson99 profile image85
      janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Most of the good writers got pissed off with the bullet holes and left, stopped writing or started 'forever blowing bubbles" blub blub blub from abandoned SUBS (farting in the bath per chance)

    3. Mark Ewbie profile image83
      Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Perfect.

    4. Susana S profile image91
      Susana Sposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      overall quality is not good enough;
      content needs to be readable and engaging for whoever the particular audience is and in fluent English.

      overall quality is too good, we need to dumb down to compete with WikiAnswers et al;
      writing well usually means writing clearly so that anyone can understand it - quality writing doesn't have to use lots of words many people won't understand. There also needs to be a fit between the search phrase and language used to answer the query.

      hubs are too long and don't fit on mobile devices;
      depends on the subjects you're writing about and what your audience wants

      hubs are too short - G favours longer articles;
      depends on the subjects you're writing about and what your audience wants

      hubs need quizzes, polls, maps etc to engage readers;
      depends on the subject and what will be useful to readers

      hubs shouldn't have unnecessary fillers;
      no they shouldn't. Fluff is unnecessary and trying to add needless bulk is likely to backfire

      not enough low traffic/high quality hubs have been deleted;
      This is an erroneous statement. Low traffic hubs were unfeatured to try and get rid of a load of crap hubs at the same time. It was a very crude way to do it and many good hubs got unfairly caught up in the process. Low traffic doesn't mean low quality, but low quality often means low traffic.

      not enough low quality/high traffic hubs haven't been deleted;
      Complex issue. see GreekGeek's answer

      subdomains are a good thing as they allow people to be judged on their own merits;
      subdomains initially got HP out of the Panda black hole but the positive effects didn't last for a lot of hubbers. The site is still very much interlinked, so no account is truly free of influence from others

      subdomains are a bad thing as HP loses control and hubbers lose the strength of the larger HP site;
      many of us thought that subdomains for authors rather than topics was a bad idea exactly because we do lose strength. but we've got what we've got and it's probably not going to change now

      people should write about their passion without regard to keywords;
      This has been HP's official line lately to try and counter over-optimisation (part of both the Panda and Penguin algo's). Unfortunately the only online writers that can write without regard to keywords are those who are exceptionally good and have a very large following.I can't think of any hubbers that fit into that category

      people should be paying more attention to SEO;
      Yeah they should. If online writers want their pages to get read, they need to know what searchers type into search engines to get the info they're providing. They also need to know how to assess their competition so that they don't waste their time writing on phrases that will never rank.

      it's the summer and traffic is always bad in the summer (substitute another season/holiday of your choice for "summer" if you're reading this later in the year;
      each season has it's potential traffic fluctuations. depends a lot on what topics you write about. This is a fave answer for newbs because it's simple.

      it's Panda;
      This is a certainty. Panda completely changed the online landscape and 2.5 years on Hubpages is still trying to work out how to appease the bear and keep it's original business model.

      it's down to some guy called Charles in Illinois who is copying the entire site and translating it into French.
      Nope. This is the kind of answer newbs like because it is easy to comprehend, even though it's wrong

      __________________

      LOL!

      The truth is for most of these points is THAT IT DEPENDS! There is no one size fits all (in general).

      There are so many variables that it can be truly mind boggling, even for those that have been doing this for a long time. Those newer to the world of writing online want definites - this causes that - but it's not that simplistic. There are many, many factors to take into account.

    5. LuisEGonzalez profile image81
      LuisEGonzalezposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      You missed one, but I see Hollie beat me to it....................lol

  13. HollieT profile image90
    HollieTposted 3 years ago

    I don't believe that Google even know what "quality" content is. They, like HP, like us, are consistently evaluating searchers' behaviour and trying to adapt to the unknown. When their market share decreases, they have to ask why? Perhaps this is, in part, why they are so vague when it comes to defining quality- the SERPS do not reflect quality by the usual standards.

    Nevertheless, I really don't see how ridding this site of some of the rubbish can harm HP. Its a starting point. Once achieved, other variables can be explored.

  14. Barbara Kay profile image85
    Barbara Kayposted 3 years ago

    I signed-up for the site health check at Adsense. When my hubs get crawled a message is always sent that load time was slow. I wonder if all the extra photos, quizzes, polls, aren't slowing the page load time. Page load time is considered as part of Google's ranking.

    1. susi10 profile image95
      susi10posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Yes, I agree with you on that one Barbara. According to Alexa's hubpages.com traffic stats, HP is super slow to load. That could be a major problem in terms of bounce rate.

  15. rebekahELLE profile image91
    rebekahELLEposted 3 years ago

    I found another great link on my FB feed today (thanks sunforged) with the best 100 free seo tools and resources online from the Moz blog.  I haven't had time to go through most of them, but I did try the Barracuda Panguin Tool which examines our google analytics data with Panda/Penguin dates.  It's very interesting as it can tell you easily if you were affected by an update and gives comparisons.  I don't know a lot about these sites, but it was included by a reputable seo blogger, so I'm guessing that it's a fairly reliable tool.  I most definitely was hit by this last Panda but was mostly affected positively by previous Pandas (for the period I'm comparing from July 29, 2012- July 28,2013.)

    1. HollieT profile image90
      HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks Rebekah, will check that out.

    2. susi10 profile image95
      susi10posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks for that link, Rebekah. I found some of the tools so useful especially the Baracuda Panguin Tool.

  16. LeanMan profile image80
    LeanManposted 3 years ago

    Google still can't read, and even if it could how would it know if what was written on a page was accurate?

    Google can only tell if a page is relevant by what it on the page (Do you mention "homemade lemonade", lemons, sugar, refreshing drink, etc when writing about it?) This is why onpage SEO is important.

    Google wants to provide the searcher with the right info for their search (alongside 2 million adverts and steal your personal information because big brother really wants to know what face cream you are searching for!) - NO they really DO want to provide the searcher with the right info!!!!

    Problem! - The internet is full of people (Like us) targeting keywords and niches just to make money from google ads, Amazon and everywhere else. Of course I am an expert in my field as is everyone else that is reading this! However there are a huge number of "writers", spamers, scrappers, foreigners, low lives, SEO experts, etc who are only churning out keyword stuffed crap to fool google into thinking that their page is the best and deserves all traffic and ad revenue.

    So how does google tell the real experts (Us!) from the low lives??

    Well a real expert has authority in their area, people start to read and continue to read, they may even click on other pages by the author and they rarely go back to the search page after 2 seconds and click on the next result because they found what they needed.. SO - how the reader behaves must be a major factor in how Google judges you!

    Real experts don't mind people knowing who they are, so having authorship rather than being a hidden face has got to help. An author who is active in their niche and can show it must also be a major bonus - but I don't think this is fully active in the Google search yet!

    Dedicated SITES (NOT PAGES) about a subject are "obviously" going to be more likely to contain good information (especially if the previous two points are OK also). Are you going to trust a random article about nuclear fission or even worming your dog written on an article site (such as HP) over an article on a site that is full of articles related to that subject written by a respected expert in the field? Who deserves the traffic? "Iknownuclearok" with his lone article on "how to make a fission reactor" on HP or "Dr. Ivan. Powersource" from the university of somewhere famous with his 200 page website which is frequented by other nuclear physicists and students on a frequent basis?
    How about "Mydogpoop3014" and their article on "How to walk your dog" (Along side articles about "best toothpaste for your piranha", "101 best songs by one legged artists" and the all time favorite "How to do foreign exchange while removing zits"). Should their article be chosen over the 300 page website that shows "perfect" reader interaction and has been established for 3 years?
    Just think about this for a few minutes and think about which site you personally would like Google to show you....... dedicated clearly expert site (and writer) with lots of information about the subject.. or an individual lens on squidoo by an anonymous person with a stupid name (maybe "leanman") where everyone is writing to make money and there are few barriers to publication.... So; expert site or squidoo, HP, shetoldme, bubblews.... which is more likely to be held in regard for most searches?

    Sorry this is starting to drag on........ but what I am suggesting is that people start to think about how Google (Sorry 90% of our searches still come from there!) can ensure that searchers get a good result rather than one that has only been written to fool the search engine?? Is a site with a billion subjects and different writers really going to provide the best answer to a query? WHY should Google serve up a page from HP over a dedicated site related to the query?

    I personally think that Google has been very kind to us so far! - If I were them I would have just cut all multi-user "content farms" and free sites out of the equation completely!

    So anyway I agree with some of what has been said but I can only see HP working with subdomains that are "owned" by recognized authors if those subdomains are well written etc..... IF Google does not just pull the plug!

    1. Jean Bakula profile image97
      Jean Bakulaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I don't know what to do anymore. I have 130 hubs, and all of them are featured. I have only 3 which have a score of under 75. But I just looked at my account, and have 2 red arrows.

      I still think Google is looking for well written articles, even if the subject is oversaturated. There is still a lot of crap online. I can see that if I look up my blog, Google lists 14 sites similar to mine, but rates most of them lower. I don't make much on there either, though I like the blog itself and writing on it.

      We just drive ourselves crazy trying to think of what Google wants, and in the meantime, many good writers are disappearing.

      1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image94
        TIMETRAVELER2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Jean:  I just started a blog in my niche on Google Sites.  I have signed up for adsense there, but have no idea how much I make or even how many people are reading what I write (if any).  I also see no way for people to comment, which for my niche, is very important.  Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I have never done a stand it alone blog site.

        1. Jean Bakula profile image97
          Jean Bakulaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          TimeTraveler2,
          I had help making my blog, because my online experience was pretty limited when I began writing on HP. It was a huge learning curve for me. My blog is on Weebly.com. Mine shows how many people visit each day, and I get comments. But I believe the only way to know if you make money is that it will show in your adsense (which is only pennies) and in your Amazon.

          I have made a little money with Amazon. The person who helped me put on something called Skimlinks. If you mention a product, there is a whole list of stores, and the code is already done for me. Say I wrote about Bob Marley. His name would show up as a hyperlink, and a store would automatically show a bunch of his albums if a reader clicked the link.

          It's been about a year and a half, and honestly, I only made about $100.00. I also have an affiliation with a beautiful jewelry store who makes all kinds of metaphysical and religious jewelry, so unique. People are not spending. The templates make it easy to set up your own blog, but I had trouble with the Google ads. Nobody really clicks them anymore. Have you noticed on your hubs that many may read it and comment, but you don't get many clicks on the hands up or down? Weebly has a lot of glitches too, so I'm not saying you would want to go there. But it could give you some ideas. I'm undecided whether to keep up writing on mine or not. I get around 300 visitors a day, but like HP, you probably need about 7 or 8 thousand a week to make money, and I don't see it happening. I just feel sad to abandon it!

          1. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image94
            TIMETRAVELER2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Jean:  Thanks so much.  I just started this blog a few days ago, and am mostly using it as a place for articles that deal with my niche that did not do well here.  I don't even know how to get traffic to it!  It's more for fun than anything, but I would like to be able to see comments, etc.  I also wanted to see how those articles would do away from HP since Google owns that site.  I hate to let good articles just sit!  Anyhow, thanks for your help here.

            1. Jean Bakula profile image97
              Jean Bakulaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              TimeTraveler2,
              If you want to get people to your new blog, mention that you have one in every one of your Hubs, and on every piece you have written for any other writer's site.  If you put it in one of the blue boxes, it will be highlighted. That's how I began. I had about 100 hubs then, and went back and said, "come visit my blog, it's all about metaphysical subjects." Since I can see the amount of followers, I think the bulk of them are from here.

              If you look at any of my hubs, you'll see what I did. Plus as I change and revise some of the blog material, I tell people here that too. Best of luck with it. Unless you are really good at SEO, AdSense sucks anyway, I never even made the first $100.00 there in all my time writing, though after 2 1/2 years I'm close. They better pay me! Other sites have different money splits, and you can still do affiliate things. If they are doing away with AdSense, they have to come up with some kind of payment plan if they want people to share their written work. And nothing can be as bad as AdSense.

              1. theherbivorehippi profile image83
                theherbivorehippiposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Some of us feel differently. There are many who take no part in the ads program. I rely solely on AdSense.

                1. sabrebIade profile image84
                  sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I make more money with AdSense than HP ads.
                  Or I did......

                2. Lisa HW profile image83
                  Lisa HWposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I've used AS only up until about five days ago (I think).  I'd always found that I did with AS only.  When I stopped doing as well (or as reasonably well) as I'd been doing with AS only I thought I'd try HP ads again.  The times I tried HP ads before, it seemed as if Google ads were better suited for the kind of stuff I write.  These days, and at least with some pieces/types of writing and/or some sites, I think some re-thinking obviously makes some sense.  One-size-fits-all approaches don't work from one site to another, from one piece/type of writing to another, or for one writer or another.

        2. sabrebIade profile image84
          sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          You may wanna keep this in mind....
          "Google has quietly posted a notice that they are "sunsetting AdSense" for Google Sites. It appears that after August 30, 2013, the AdSense ads on Google Sites will no longer be able to be edited or added to. You can delete them."
          http://www.seroundtable.com/google-adse … 17132.html

          1. Mark Ewbie profile image83
            Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Might be worth making sure I have maximised my adsense setup on my site before they make the change.

          2. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image94
            TIMETRAVELER2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            If Google is dumping AdSense on Google Sites, then how are people who use Google Sites supposed to monetize their blogs there?  This sucks!

            1. brakel2 profile image87
              brakel2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              I think the ads that are there can stay, and you can put them on new sites.
              You can still get money for the ads that are on site. That was my understanding.

              1. Jean Bakula profile image97
                Jean Bakulaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                On HP, nobody has to click on the ads. They consider that just the fact you are on a page means you have seen the ads. IMHO it would be better if all sites went over to that.

                1. brakel2 profile image87
                  brakel2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I agree Jean. I don't think many people click on ads, at least not my ads. I am almost up to my first payout, but it has taken three years. Someone said that some of Adsense ads are per page view. On the question page, it shows page views, Maybe that is one of them. I will look it up and see what I find. When it says you cannot have Adsense on new pages, do you think that means no Adsense on new hubs? I think it says you can have it on new sites. Google is mysterious. I know they are down in their profits, and someone said  they are cutting back, because many of the Google ad sites are spammy.

    2. janderson99 profile image85
      janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      "WHY should Google serve up a page from HP over a dedicated site related to the query?"
      They won't except when their tools don't work. So the trick is to only write in narrow niches NOT covered by Wiki and the other big guys (edu, gov etc). I call what is happening at HP The 'Tragedy of the Commons' people believe that they can write on any topic and succeed. HP just dumped 1.3M pages which shows that they can't. The realitity is that perhaps 70-80% of pages published on HP will fail to get traffic and get unfeatured. This is a tragedy, a huge waste of time. The solution is to apply a 'likely to succeed test' for each new topic and title - 'targeted topics', 'likely to be competitive tests' if you like. But HP encourages the opposite - write on anything you like and let the writer beware and cop the failures. Imagine how Google sees the endless B grade repeats on tired old topics that represents 70-80% of all news stuff on HP. Look at the HOTD's. They are mostly very well written, BUT poorly targeted and doomed to fail.

      These HOTD's are the public face promoting what HP is about.

      That IMO is the problem. The solution is to narrow down the topics and apply filters ar inception that test the likely success of the topic and title - if its anything like what Wiki covers, forget it think again.

      1. aa lite profile image91
        aa liteposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I think you are giving wikipedia too much credit, I don't actually think it is that great. 

        It's ok if you want to look at some quick info. about something you don't know that much about.  However, whenever I've looked up something I do know a lot about on wiki, I've found the stuff there rather shallow. 

        Their entries often don't read that well, sometimes it is obvious that different people wrote different bits of the page.  Occasionally the different bits contradict each other.

        Having said that Google trusts it and will show it whenever it can.  I think that is because it can be pretty sure that it is not utter rubbish. 

        The problem is that there is a lot of flux in Google SERPs right now.  So a kw that I used to rank very well in, that didn't return a wiki entry on the first page, now has a wiki page in the top results that comes and goes.  IMHO the wiki page is way too general for that query, and probably won't satisfy most searchers, but google intermittently keeps putting it up there.

        1. WriteAngled profile image91
          WriteAngledposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          I totally agree that Wikipedia is not that great.

          In fact, I think it is, for the most part, a load of rubbish.

          I cannot understand why Google loves it so much. It is written anonymously, thus no authorship. Entries can be changed at whim by anyone. There have been many publicised examples of entries being changed to reflect a certain political or religious bias, thus no expertise can be assumed.

          Most academic milieus of which I am aware will heavily mark down a student who cites Wikipedia as a source in an essay.

          Wikipedia is one of the prime examples of the dumbing down of society, a place where knowledge is evaluated and truth defined by a majority vote of the great unwashed and uncritical masses.

          I'm sure the "editors" of this collection of drivel would have been among the first to have stoked up the embers around the stake of Giordano Bruno had they lived in his day, likewise they will be the among the first to vote for the universal burning of books promulgating dissenting opinions and brave new theories.

          1. janderson99 profile image85
            janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Wiki  =>  Google loves me, This I know, cause the SERPS tell me so.

  17. Lisa HW profile image83
    Lisa HWposted 3 years ago

    First, I don't pretend to know the answers (or anything about anything, for that matter), but a lot of the following questions, doubts, maybe frustrations, have been gnawing at me for quite awhile now; so, in the interest of "throwing out there" some thoughts from - maybe - another perspective (even though they may useless or things that have already been thought of a zillion times by HP, itself), I figured I'd err on the side of trying offer - maybe - at least some morsel of another "take" (or of a take that someone else hasn't yet written about) in the interest of trying to offer input from the perspective of just one more Hubber (and searcher).  (Apologies for the length of post here - and I'm not even including all the stuff that's been "gnawing".  hmm  )  I don't assume anyone will even want to read all this, or cares about my personal "thoughts on the matter"; but right now doesn't seem like a time to stay silent.  So I don't know...    here goes.

    I respect and understand that this is HP's site - not mine; that any site/business, of course, has its right to decide what its aims are and what kind of material is wanted.  That's how it works in offline freelance writing.  It's how it works pretty much anywhere that anyone writes.  I know, too, that I'm certainly not the one who has built this site (or any similar), or who is even knowledgeable enough to do that kind of work.  This is why I've never been all that free to voice opinions/criticism of how things have gone on with this site.  I have, though, been watching the evolution of the Internet and Internet-writing for years now, though;  and paying close to attention to trends at any number of levels observable by the "interested-yet-still-casual" observer".  Other than that, I'm mainly offering thoughts from the perspective of a person, a writer, a reader, and - only occasionally, because I'm not particularly a big fan of what is found on the Internet - a searcher.
    _________________________________________________________________

    I read PE's article, and I very much agree that if Google would out-and-out say what it expected of this site a whole lot of people would simply decide to either do that ("honestly") or else just do something else.  In the meantime, though, Google won't "just out-and-out say" - so that's out.  My "issue" with a lot of the changes on here has been that Google comes out and makes a big deal about saying that people shouldn't try to "make Google happy", and yet standards that have been implemented on this site are essentially aimed at least trying to do just that.  On the one hand, with the role that search traffic plays in the success/failure of this site and writers on it, it makes perfect sense for HP to try to get a reading on what "seems to do well" with Google.  When all is said and done, though, it amounts to trying to please Google ("legitimate"/fair reason or not).

    I understand if the aim is to be nothing but a "glossy magazine looking" site with images that accompany words.  There are those magazines in the print world too.  Not all magazines are all pictures.  Some are all pictures, some are a mix of different types of articles/material, some "more serious" magazines have few pictures with their "main" articles.  So, depending on what HP has in mind with regard to what it wants to be, stay, become...    Maybe those requirements for/encouragements for x number of images/capsules etc. are just very important parts of HP's aim for its own site.  I, personally, think the emphasis on all those extras on every Hub -regardless of the type of Hub/subject it is, have overshadowed the matter of offering high-quality material in the text capsules on Hubs.   In the "real world" writing is supposed to do the job it is intended to do, so "high-quality" is most often a matter of whether the writing does that job.  It might be a sales ad,  an op-ed piece, an annual report, a humor piece - whatever.  Now, maybe HP only wants that one kind of Hub on its site.  That's its business and right.   I believe it was Simone who wrote a Hub about the difference between "formal writing" and "content", and who essentially pointed out that "formal writing" isn't wanted on the Internet; and that "high-quality content" is.  This was kind of at the height of the "we're making big changes" thing on this site.

    Essentially driven away were all Hubs/Hubbers who had anything that at all hinted of "commercial" (and some of those Hubs were decent quality for what their aim was).  Then essentially discouraged from writing on here have been the people who do "formal writing" (including non-fiction, own-unique-voice, writing).  Researched non-fiction is, of course, encouraged; but unless someone writes what might amount to a short, well researched book; researched-info articles are pretty much re-hashes of the research that's already out there - and on sites with a whole lot more "authority" than this one.

    My thinking has been that this site ought to prohibit, along with things like "flat abs" or "build credit" Hubs, INFORMATION Hubs on subjects that people expect genuine authority/expertise on when searching.  To me, it wouldn't involve prohibiting writing about those subjects, as long as it was made good and clear that Hub was from a "my concerns about", "my experience with", "what I think the public needs to be aware" of type of angle.  Ironically, the seemingly almost universal belief that the only "high quality" material is information-from-research could (at least I suspect) potentially be backfiring on a site like this.  Maybe not, of course.  It's just something that HAS occurred to me.

    What it looks to me has happened is that with the emphasis on aiming for "search friendly" (again, reasonable and sensible enough in this business) has turned HP into a site that is full of either search-friendly-but-not-particularly-human-browser/reader-friendly.  That's great for the stuff that is "way above the quality line" enough that it does well with Google.  It's not great for the majority of those SEO-aimed Hubs that don't stand out above the rest - and let's face it, a lot of people aren't great at making the actual "words part" of the Hub stand out without the help of pictures (and "what-not"); but a lot of searchers who want info want words that stand out first and may only in SOME types of searches care much about the images.  And - as, in education-related discussions people refer to "teaching-to-the-test" - it very much has looked to me as if a whole lot of people are on this site are "producing Hubs to the 'test'", rather than a) truly asking what they have (or can get) to offer a user/reader, and/or b) truly aiming to go well above and beyond the minimal standard beyond just x number of pictures and other capsules.  I don't know how HP staff thinks, but I'm not even sure that those guidelines/standards for x number of non-text capsules are "written in granite" as far as their idea of quality goes; but even if they're not, a whole lot of Hubbers have interpreted them as just that and interpreted all Hubs that don't exactly meet those (HubPages' own) standards/ideas about how to "add quality" to a Hub.  So, while even HP, itself, may not actually think pictures are the most important thing in a Hub; a whole lot of Hubbers sure seem to think that.

    Respectfully (and I really do mean that, because I do respect and appreciate the efforts, accomplishments, and apparent integrity/character of Paul Edmondson).  PE posted a forum post "ages ago" with a link to a blog about food, and there was a reference to how great the blog looked and how great the images on it were.  I clicked, and I'd agree that the images were impressive.  The blog was "all pink and glossy-looking" (and actually had a grammar "issue" in, if I recall, a "major" line on the page); and no doubt the big pictures of food were attractive (as pictures of food go).  I kept looking for some substance on the blog, though, and I keep seeing - like - links to other stuff that still didn't have much substance.  It was a very pretty looking page for those inclined to "food-picture-looking", but if there was any substance or real information on that blog I sure as heck couldn't find it - and believe me I went looking.  Maybe I just missed it; but one point that Google has always made (besides the whole thing about substance and quality) is that users should easily be able to find what they're looking for.

    There are so many different types of pieces of writing, and if fluff and pictures and quickie snippets of information (or else info regurgitated from research already available online) are what HP wants its site to be that's not my call or business.  If the aim/idea, however, is to offer a mix of writing of different types and on different subjects I don't think one-size-fits-all quality works.  What can be confusing to users is that, on the one hand, HP allows fiction and poetry and some "non-researched-info" Hubs.   It allows other, non-fiction, type of Hubs than straight "info-only", and even mentions "insight" and a few other things for those new to sign up.  They've added "long form" and "magazine style" (if I have the wording correctly) these days; but, again, there are a lot of magazines, some of which have 3000-word articles or first-person stories with pretty much no images on the page.

    HP had been a rich mix of stuff that included loads of good writing, as well, of course, as the loads of "crud".  Now it looks to me like a lot of the crud/spammy stuff is still out there, the fiction and poetry are still on here, and there are still a few Hubs offered by writers who have the audacity to think they have unique experience, information and/or insight and the nerve to think they have something worthwhile to offer "from their head" or in their own voice - but then there are all the kind of " still  somewhat flimsy" in a lot of cases, "info-only", researched Hubs.  That, though, goes to how many people want to put in the time, effort, research, and whatever else to come up with "way above flimsy-ish" - only to have no guarantee of pay, the risk of theft (and stuff that has appeal also has appeal to thieves) and/or the risk that it might be unfeatured (when the person may not have otherwise have put in all the effort if he weren't trying to write a Hub, rather than something else).

    To me, what it looks like has happened on this site (and don't go by my Hubs these days, because I've been doing all kinds of experimenting with them; so honestly, I kind of hate them all and certainly don't think they're an example of a "quality Hub") is that some of the efforts aimed at increasing the level of quality on the site have, in some ways, resulted in a kind "blight" with regard to uniqueness, true substance, true "passion" about the subjects (and not just "passion" for aiming to "get tons of traffic and make a lot of money" with whatever it is they do write online).  (And please:   Don't post the whole thing about how nobody will earn money if they don't get search engines traffic and how "pleasing" search engines is the only thing anyone has to worry about to get that traffic.  Most everybody on this site already and/or w/ an Ad Sense acct has known that "news flash info" for years.)    hmm   ).   It's a different Internet world now, and there isn't going to be a whole lot of traffic to stuff that doesn't measure up in quality - at least not from Google and not for now.

    The Internet originally was its own little world that operated its own way, largely because of limitations of technology.  It was a "whole different thing" from "the real world".  Over time more and more "non-technical" people began to inhabit the Internet world, and for awhile they needed to learn how to function in it.  As it has become more and more "non-technical-person" friendly, it has become a bigger and bigger part of the larger world; and the larger world began to impose its standards for quality on the Internet, as far as I can tell.  I understand that there are people with far more expertise than I in "the whole Internet workings in general", but it also seems to me that while some of that "specialized" thinking is obviously important and valuable; at the same time a whole lot of people are still hanging onto the idea that the Internet is a separate world from the larger world - and it no longer is.  For example, the common Internet belief that "Nobody reads any more," is just not true.  Maybe a lot of Internet people don't read, but "real-world" people still read - and a lot of them are the ones who expect higher quality online (or else they'll leave and find something other than "content" somewhere else).  I'm not saying that a whole lot of "conventional wisdom" about what people online want is wrong.  I'm saying, though, that it is a "tunnel vision" approach that doesn't factor in a whole lot of standards or people from that larger world, which is now the same world in which the Internet exists. Advertisers and searchers are "larger world" people - not just people who live in the Internet world, Internet-writing world, content world.  Sometimes a lot of people forget that, I think. 

    One other thought:  I wonder if a site like HubPages (or even if Google, that sort of does this a little now in some ways) would be better off having "more obviously and 'dramatically'" divided sections for different types of Hubs (maybe rather than, say, subdomains).  I know there are now templates for things like reviews and recipes, but I wonder if a more clear-cut and obvious "categorization" would make it easier for HP to have a set of standards for different types of, say, non-fiction Hubs (maybe "how to's" would be one section of the site, something like "personal insight" stuff would be another, and - as someone recently suggested on the forums - something like "opinion" would be another section).

    I can't help but think that rather than trying to complete with one or another type of other sites, assessing what this one has to offer and offering it in the best and highest-quality-looking (and "being") way possible is the way to stand out  (rather than looking like a "wannabe" copy of other sites).
    ______________________________________________________________

    In any case, I hope Paul Edmondson and others understand that none of this has been intended to be a criticism of HP, and has only been an attempt to offer that "different perspective" (if it's all that different at all anyway) "from the HP trenches".  Simone commented that she wished a lot of people on here could know the HP adm better and see how caring (or whatever word she used) they are.    I'm fairly certain a whole lot of people on here have a pretty good idea and have tremendous respect for what this site was built up to be, as well as the efforts being put in to make the site better.  If there's one thing I've learned in life it's that things can get better and/or be held together when people act like a family and decide to work together - not when people act like a bunch of squabblers and fight with one another or put others down.  Please forgive the "rah rah" speech, but I think with the present difficult times people on here should aim to have that "pull together" kind of thinking - not the "rip the site and/or everyone else on it but oneself and one's own ideas" to shreds verbally.  I'm not saying people who don't want to stay should stay, but, to me, as long as anyone keeps coming back it would be more constructive in general to offer input, ideas, concerns without implying or out-and-out saying that "everyone else" who does things differently than the one doing the "offering"  is "bringing the site down with their crap".  I can't help but think that a whole lot of people who have disappeared from this site may have done so not because they weren't willing to ride out some traffic/earnings problems, but because that negative "flavor" of so many people on here often seems to have become the "overall attitude" on the site.  (If I click "submit" on this particular "airing of months' worth of pondering/stewing/wonder/doubting it won't be without having to tell myself, "Oh, stop making a big deal about things and just go ahead and post what you think someone ought to say."   hmm   hmm  Here goes (apparently  roll )  (Damn this insecurity I have about so often having a lot to say and also having the typing speed that lets me say it so easily.   hmm  )

  18. paradigmsearch profile image88
    paradigmsearchposted 3 years ago

    Lisa,

    I read every word. All messages from the heart are a good thing.

    1. Lisa HW profile image83
      Lisa HWposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      paradigmsearch, thank you.   I feel at least a little better about it.   smile

      1. Will Apse profile image89
        Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I'm impressed by your capacity to get things off your chest Lisa too (lol) but this is something I disagree with:

        I read PE's article, and I very much agree that if Google would out-and-out say what it expected of this site a whole lot of people would simply decide to either do that ("honestly") or else just do something else.  In the meantime, though, Google won't "just out-and-out say" - so that's out. 

        Google has offered guidelines and revised guidelines. The problem is that no one takes them seriously.

        1. Lisa HW profile image83
          Lisa HWposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Will, (The "off-the-chest" thing sometimes builds up for months, even years, before I finally manage to do it, though.   lol  )   You ought to hear what people in my personal life have to hear about from, say, 1989 - or occasionally, even 1959  lol

          I think (maybe) I know what you're saying.  I've often thought about how that list is out there, with regarding to what Google's looking for.  The one thing I do often think about is how Google tells "everyone" not to write with the idea of what might do well in search, or what Google might "like"; and so many changes seem to come from aiming to do well in search.  When I read PE's article, though, I interpreted what he was saying as Google's not being willing to tell HP what it ought to be doing/requiring on the site - that kind of thing.  Maybe I interpreted incorrectly..

  19. paradigmsearch profile image88
    paradigmsearchposted 3 years ago

    My traffic has been getting really ugly. I thought I had escaped this latest Google fiasco, but apparently not. And then I had one of my rocket surgeon insights. I went and looked at how I was doing a year ago, a month-to-month comparison. My traffic is higher this year than last year. Bang, accurate perception/perspective reestablished. As long as my traffic remains higher this year than last year, I won't defenestrate myself. big_smile

    1. NateB11 profile image92
      NateB11posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I did the same thing. Somehow I'd never thought of comparing traffic now to last year, but I did and found my traffic is actually higher. Of course, I only just started last year, not a lot to compare, especially considering I had far fewer Hubs and was totally new last year. Still, for someone with my amount of time on the site, I think it's not bad. I realize, of course, many people have several years to compare and go by.

      1. sabrebIade profile image84
        sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Not for me....
        July 2012 - 33,096 views
        July 2013 - 17,062 views
        Lost 16,034 views.

        1. IzzyM profile image85
          IzzyMposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          I feel your pain.

          July 2011 - 57,400 views
          July 2012 - 24,254 views
          July 2013 - 18,771 views

          Panda hit this site in February 2011 and slapped my views to Hell. Yet that July my views were respectable. I think I was put on subdomains that month, but got hit badly by the early August update and have never recovered.

          I think it should be noted that I have only written 10 hubs since July 2012, 9 of which are idled through low traffic.

  20. susi10 profile image95
    susi10posted 3 years ago

    My traffic has gone down hard due to the last Panda Update. I used the [url=http://www.barracuda-digital.co.uk/panguin-tool/]Baracuda Panguin Tool which tells you when the latest Panda/Penguin updates where released and how your traffic fared. As you can see from the graph below, mine went down a lot after the update. Try the tool, did you get impacted?
    http://s4.hubimg.com/u/8257015.png

    1. Barbara Kay profile image85
      Barbara Kayposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      My traffic has gone down so low that I don't even need a tool to check it.

  21. Mark Ewbie profile image83
    Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago

    So after all that crap - what was the message?

    We need to what exactly?

    My efforts comprise 0.000000001% of the mass on here.  I cannot achieve anything.  Short, long, fat, thin - it will make no difference.

    To be honest I am sick of rules wherever they come from. I don't need to be judged except by any readers I might get.

    I don't need related ads or related articles.  These writers are not related to me.  They have nothing to do with me.  I have a subdomain which is surrounded by content that does fit alongside mine.  And I am not at all interested in writing articles that slot into some section of a Wiki style library.

    Tell me again.  It's summer that's why.  If all content has the same perceptive ability as that nonsense there is no hope.

    1. Will Apse profile image89
      Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I did, in fact, have a message and beyond that a complete rescue plan. It is not especially practical given the current state of play, but not absolutely impossible.

      It was duly ignored, lol.

      1. Mark Ewbie profile image83
        Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I'm apologising all over at the moment.  Sorry Will.  I am hacked off, mostly with me, because I am useless at this.

        1. Will Apse profile image89
          Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          We are all useless when the ground is constantly shifting under our feet...

  22. Sue Adams profile image92
    Sue Adamsposted 3 years ago

    I don't need a special tool to show me the slap. My stats page speaks for itself.

  23. Dolores Monet profile image92
    Dolores Monetposted 3 years ago

    Whoo, I don't know what's going on here, I haven't looked at anything online for nearly 2 weeks. But let's remember, this is high vacation season = less traffic. Also, I notice that when there is a new Panda, the stuff I look for, the stuff that comes up at the top of the search page is often rubbish: one paragraph, badly written blurbs that link to other short pages. While I prefer information that is a bit more than the short choppy things that pop up, maybe others do not.

    Personally, I like to read blogs. I like to read about gardening and DIY projects and I find that sort of info on blogs. The best have helpful pics and in depth info. But they can often be hard to find.

    I feel that HP should continue to concentrate on high quality, that high quality will again rise to the top a month or two after each Panda slap. That's how it seems to work for my own work and how it seems to work when I search for information.

  24. PaulGoodman67 profile image90
    PaulGoodman67posted 3 years ago

    If this is what Google "softening Panda" looks like, I must say that I preferred the hard version!  wink

  25. aa lite profile image91
    aa liteposted 3 years ago

    Do you think it's possible that we haven't actually been slapped by this.  It's just that our competitors have been unslapped by the "softer fluffier" panda, more than we have.  The end result would be the same of course.

    1. Solaras profile image92
      Solarasposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      That's a good point!

  26. maanibilla profile image60
    maanibillaposted 3 years ago

    for me niether.
    july 2012 5000 vies
    july 2013 0005 views
    u can calculate the rest

  27. Victoria Lynn profile image89
    Victoria Lynnposted 3 years ago

    I appreciate Paul E's response about looking into things. I do hope we hear some options in a couple of weeks, as he says. Thanks, Paul. And to Judi Bee--right on! You captured the dilemma perfectly. We hear one thing and then another, so we don't know which way to go with things. Hopefully, we will get some type of hope soon. It's disheartening to get half the traffic and revenue of a year ago, which is about where I am. Maybe even less than that. I'm still hangin'  in there, though. :-)

  28. paradigmsearch profile image88
    paradigmsearchposted 3 years ago

    Yesterday's Wednesday was my worst Wednesday of July. Lowest traffic. Lowest CPM. Lowest earnings. I expect August to be extremely grim.

    1. Victoria Lynn profile image89
      Victoria Lynnposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      It sucks. Very disheartening. I keep hoping . . . .

      1. paradigmsearch profile image88
        paradigmsearchposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        It's reached the point where I've decided to have fun with it, so to speak. I've set up a one-click access to my GA August 2012 daily traffic chart. Every morning I will compare this year's date with last year's date. If this year's date is higher, all is well. If this year's date is lower, defenestration plans will commence. lol

        1. Victoria Lynn profile image89
          Victoria Lynnposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          Cool. I want a traffic chart!

  29. ziyena profile image86
    ziyenaposted 3 years ago

    Out of 71 hubs, I unpublished all save for 26, those being the best with more than a 1,000 words in content with Featured status.  I'm keeping thes rest on the back-burner until I can edit and bring them up to par ... since I've done that, overnight I have nothing but "Red Double Arrows" on half of my remaining 27 Hubs ... Traffic is flowing like I haven't seen in it in a long time.

    1. sabrebIade profile image84
      sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Well I tried something similar...I unpublished every Hub with less than 30 hits in the last 30 days since I think Hub Score means nothing as far as getting readers go.
      Sadly that was about a quarter of my Hubs including two of my most recent ones (even though I kept telling myself NOT to write anymore freakin Hubs until something gave I did it anyway!).
      I'll let you know how that turned out.....

      1. sabrebIade profile image84
        sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        No effect.
        Maybe I will try unpublishing everything under 75 instead.
        That will only knock one out of my top ten and 100 Hubs altogether.....
        Nah...thats too much work.
        I think I will republish everything and let it ride.

    2. Solaras profile image92
      Solarasposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Ziyena - that's amazing.  I will unpublish 4  of my meager hubs and let you know what happens.

    3. TIMETRAVELER2 profile image94
      TIMETRAVELER2posted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Ziyena:  did you unpublish or did you delete?  It's my understanding that unpublished hubs still stay indexed with Google...if this is the case, then how can unpublishing make much of a difference in page views?

  30. janderson99 profile image85
    janderson99posted 3 years ago

    Is waiting two weeks wishful thinking?
    Cargo Cult for a Soft, Fluffy Panda?

  31. LuisEGonzalez profile image81
    LuisEGonzalezposted 3 years ago

    So far as anyone can tell; is this sharp downturn in views happening to other sites or only to HP?

    1. HollieT profile image90
      HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      I honestly don't know, but if the reindexing to subdomains is one of the major issues when it comes to the drop in traffic, it is likely that HP may have been affected more than most.

      On a lighter note, feel free to slap me down if this sounds too happy clappy, (or just nonsense) but might it be possible that those with older hubs who have recently been transferred to their own subdomains, might see a recovery in the next couple of weeks as their articles move up the SERPS?

      I hope so.

      1. PaulGoodman67 profile image90
        PaulGoodman67posted 3 years ago in reply to this

        Squidoo has pretty much mirrored HP, as far as I can see, it's slightly more subtle, but the relative drop is the same.

        1. HollieT profile image90
          HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

          So the switch to indexing on subdomains may not be responsible for (some)  of the decline in traffic?

          I expect it's too early to tell, one way or another (not that we ever really know what the reasons are for tanking traffic) We're a few days in to the new update, we'll see, I suppose.

          1. PaulGoodman67 profile image90
            PaulGoodman67posted 3 years ago in reply to this

            Squidoo didn't experience a pre-update spike.  But generally it has followed a similar pattern.  The update overall hasn't had a wide-ranging effect across the internet, so I am guessing that it was intended to target sites that Google has labelled "content farms" in the past?

            1. janderson99 profile image85
              janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

              I can't run quantast in this computer. But if you run 'compare' it shows Squidoo has remained about the same while HP has plunged down closer to Squidoo (for views). This is either due to the indexing stuff or Google has wound down the dial for HP so its closer to Squidoo (Panda quota theory).
              Perhaps you could post the image for compare - page views.

              1. janderson99 profile image85
                janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                here it is
                http://www.wotisnew.com/julystats.jpg

              2. janderson99 profile image85
                janderson99posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Another one for data since February.
                There is GOOD EVIDENCE that RELATED SEARCH ADS have triggered the DECLINE for HP  - Too many ads. They were introduced mid to late March.
                http://www.wotisnew.com/rela.jpg

                1. Susana S profile image91
                  Susana Sposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  A lot of people's traffic went UP at the end of March. Notably those who have older accounts with plenty of hubs published before Summer 2011.

                  If Google had applied a penalty for related search ads it would have applied to all hubs and not just some.

          2. Will Apse profile image89
            Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

            During the Panda run in March some people got a big boost, some saw a decline.

            The people who saw a boost had many pages re-indexed under the main site domain. The people who experienced a decline saw their pages stay in the sub-domains (more or less).

            Why Google Panda reassigned pages is a mystery.

            I have a feeling Paul et al are planning to let us choose to keep our pages in the subs or move them to the main site, for the sake of an anticipated temporary traffic boost.

            1. LeanMan profile image80
              LeanManposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Hi Will, If you were google and looking to provide a searcher with an authoritative answer to a search which would to your mind give the best answer??

              1. A stand alone page on a site that contains work by hundreds of authors that was of variable quality?

              2. A page on a subdomain that was authored by a recognized expert in that field and has several pages around that topic?

              3. A page on a dedicated site run by a recognized expert in the area of the search?

              I am not saying that Google has everything right yet, but which would likely give the best result? Don't just think about temporary fixes today, we need to think about what is going to likely work in the future.

              1. Will Apse profile image89
                Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Nah, I'll take the money now.

              2. Mark Ewbie profile image83
                Mark Ewbieposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                4. This was written by Mark Ewbie - hold the front page... of the search results.

                1. Jean Bakula profile image97
                  Jean Bakulaposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  I'm a niche writer, and have name recognition for what I write on various sites. I don't make a lot of money, but this year has been pretty good for me. This last month is awful, sometimes I have only 2 red arrows up. I think Google should rather see people with experience in a field, as originally people began going to Google to get valid information. It seems to me that after so many ups and downs, we should have some clarity on this issue, and we don't.

              3. NateB11 profile image92
                NateB11posted 3 years ago in reply to this

                Good reasoning and sounds like exactly what is happening and what Google is trying to do. I'm afraid the search engine will have to work that way to be worth anything.

            2. Ella Quirk profile image84
              Ella Quirkposted 3 years ago in reply to this

              Im guessing then, that if you are a niche writer with 'authority' then you might be better off remaining with a subdomain but if you're not a niche writer, you'd probably be better hooked up to the main site. Is  that right?

              1. Will Apse profile image89
                Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                I don't think people should be getting ahead of themselves too much, given that we don't know what HP is really up to, just yet.

                1. LeanMan profile image80
                  LeanManposted 3 years ago in reply to this

                  The problem is that we really do not know what Google is up to, no matter how you look at it they are the ones holding the purse strings and with all of the control. We can all spend days posting on all of the social networks to get a spike of a few hundred visitors to our pages but is that financially worthwhile in the long term?
                  We rely on Google for around 80% of our traffic (if you are earning!) and that means providing them what they want - the trouble is their algorithms don't seem to give results that make obvious sense!
                  Like most previous updates this one has cut traffic and now it is starting to recover, it has hit my HP traffic hardest and hardly affected my personal sites at all.
                  We need to be able to stop playing catch up and reacting to the changes that they make and find a way to create something that will ride the changes without problems. The trouble is I think that Google not only don't know where the goal posts belong but they don't know what shape they should be or even which field they should be on! The more they try to over complicate the search algorithm the worse the results get in my mind!

  32. agilitymach profile image99
    agilitymachposted 3 years ago

    For those of you who are unpublishing hubs, my Google traffic is up 200 percent.  I did not unpublish anything, and I have creative writing hubs that get maybe one view a month.  I keep them up because I like them.

    I have a mostly niche account, and my hubs are all relatively fresh content.  I believe the new Panda likes the fresh work and the niche site.  Google knows what I write about, and I suspect that the repeated subject (dogs) makes me look like an expert on the subject.

    If you were a Google programmer, would you more highly rate a writer who has a ton of varied topics, indicating that perhaps they aren't truly an "expert" in any of those topics, or a writer who writes about one topic, indicating the higher possibility of being an expert in that field?  True, there are exceptions, but I think Google is starting to look strongly at authorship - ie. what do your write about?

    I do have some book review hubs, a few non-dog creative writing hubs and a couple of recipe hubs, but almost all of my hubs are about dogs and specifically about agility.  Perhaps the days of writing on topics on which you are not an expert are over.  Perhaps it's the niche writer who puts out new content that the new Panda desires.

    I know if I were a programmer for Google, that's what I'd be focusing on finding.

    I think it might be wise to look at what those of us who the new Panda loves are doing rather than being drastic and unpublishing hubs or quitting altogether.

    1. HollieT profile image90
      HollieTposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      If you were a Google programmer, would you more highly rate a writer who has a ton of varied topics, indicating that perhaps they aren't truly an "expert" in any of those topics, or a writer who writes about one topic, indicating the higher possibility of being an expert in that field?

      I wish that were the case, but when you consider that we have a scientist on HP whose specialism is frogs (amongst other things) and is being outranked, not just by a bunch of hobbyists, but by active Yahoo and Wiki answers participants, it becomes clear that Google is favouring certain sites (not authors or experts)

      1. LuisEGonzalez profile image81
        LuisEGonzalezposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        I agree with Hollie T. 96% of my articles are about photography so if I follow the logic about Google liking an "expert's" work simply because I write "niche' articles or many about the same topic then my articles should be getting tons of views instead of the ones that I can count with my hands! BTW I have written about 12 photography e-books and have authorship yet Google seems not to care.

  33. brakel2 profile image87
    brakel2posted 3 years ago via iphone

    A while back Paul ran a graph of Wiki and this site, and they were pretty even. It looked good at that time.

  34. Reality Bytes profile image93
    Reality Bytesposted 3 years ago

    Why do I continue to receive information concerning Revenue optimization?  HP, what's up?

    Can you please enhance my ad placement for improved optimization?  Sorry, I do not partake of the HP ad program, but I would appreciate the ultimate optimization for my revenue?

    Perhaps, we could abide by Recommended ad formats to improve revenue?

    Am I the only one seeing this on my adsense account?  The traffic is beyond the control of the site, but advertisement configuration is something that can be controlled.

    1. sabrebIade profile image84
      sabrebIadeposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      No you are not the only one.
      AdSense complains about my HP sites all the time.

    2. Will Apse profile image89
      Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Google Adsense wants you to plaster ads all over your page. Google Search will punish you if you do.

      It is one of life's ironies.

  35. Will Apse profile image89
    Will Apseposted 3 years ago

    'We need to be able to stop playing catch up and reacting to the changes that they make and find a way to create something that will ride the changes without problems.'

    Well, I delivered my perspective in the opening post. Essentially, try to rebrand the site as a place for professional freelancers and forget the folksy UGC angle.

    People don't want amateurish pages in search.

    1. Susana S profile image91
      Susana Sposted 3 years ago in reply to this

      Your plan makes perfect sense, but HP will never go for it. Providing an open platform is fundamental to their business model and I don't think they want to completely move away from that to an about.com or ehow model.

      That's not to say they can't raise the quality bar and provide more help and training for newbies though.

    2. Sue Adams profile image92
      Sue Adamsposted 3 years ago

      http://www.wotisnew.com/rela.jpg
      Thank you Janderson for providing proof in the pudding of what we thought was the culprit of decline all along: The dreaded misleading so called Related Search Adds.
      Have you emailed this picture to Paul Edmondson?

      I have duplicated the picture on Paul's own thread here:
      http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/114897? … ost2447779
      With a little luck he may look at it at think again about the Related Search Adds fiasco.

      1. Will Apse profile image89
        Will Apseposted 3 years ago in reply to this

        As far as I can see, that graph proves absolutely that related searches on HP caused the sudden traffic crash at Squidoo.

        The traffic crash at Squidoo caused a big jump in traffic on HP.

        And that in turn caused a piece of the Arctic Ice Shelf to disintegrate.

        Excellent!!

        Correlations and causes by the truckload...

    3. Chris in VA profile image60
      Chris in VAposted 3 years ago

      I would agree with those that say low-quality hubs are a detriment to this site. That is main reason I joined. I want to keep my writing skills sharp since that is a major part of my job and liked the idea of being evaluated.

      However, to use something like a HubScore which does fluctuate as the criteria for determining quality is going to discourage people from writing if they are consistently, but never great. There is a huge difference between being a best-selling writer and a writer who writes well. (Think Hemingway and Grisham.) I think everyone is looking for that area in the middle -- well written material that generates traffic and revenue for those who have signed up for the ad programs. (That is something I am going to do once I am out of boot camp.)

      For me, I am going to continue to "hop some hubs" as a way to provide quality feedback on articles people have written. Poorly written material, from a technical standpoint, should definitely be unfeatured and eventually unpublished if consistently rated low by a number of Hubbers. 

      As for the search engines, I would say that we need to wait and see what happens once the panda update is complete. Then HP would be able to figure out what changes would need to be made, and we would all have a better idea of what to expect. For some, that may mean moving to another site. For others, it may require some other adjustment in the way we post content here.

      Just my opinion.

    4. brakel2 profile image87
      brakel2posted 3 years ago via iphone

      @ Will. I don't understand something. A letter goes to penalized sites with explanations of what they are doing wrong. Why can't we find out, so we don't have to guess?. I remember once that staff shared the info with us in a hub.

    5. MusadiqueKhan profile image60
      MusadiqueKhanposted 3 years ago

      Yes the recent updates have a great impact.

    6. MusadiqueKhan profile image60
      MusadiqueKhanposted 3 years ago

      Most probably.

    7. ziyena profile image86
      ziyenaposted 3 years ago

      I unpublished only those that were below 75 (even those that were featured) and then upgraded a few of my hubs that were featured with scores above 75, and now I'm getting better traffic, scores are increasing across the board for the remaining 27 .  I did not delete any of my back-burners as I plan to slowly edit those a few at a time.  I don't know all the magic tricks here but I do believe in perfecting what you already have ... seems to be working for me

    8. Solaras profile image92
      Solarasposted 3 years ago

      Google blows - Bing and Yahoo are becoming nice friends of mine!  I am seeing more traffic from them than Google. Fine. I hear Bing has a nicer user interface. Maybe not as ad focused as Google has become.

     
    working