Right, so I've ultimately decided that I am going to start working towards adapting my 722 Hubpages to the requirements / suggestions set out in the Ren's blog post. The Hubpages team are going to have a better idea as to what precisely has happened sitewide than any of us can gauge individually.
Obviously there post is open to a lot of interpretation, but this is how I intend to go about playing this one:
- No RSS feed whatsoever, I currently display "latest hub" or "latest hubs" in almost all of my hubpages.
- No Amazon on most of my non-sales hubs, asides from the occassional hub on which they are very well suited and as such still have a good chance of a sale.
- Reduction in Amazon capsules / extension of words to met 50 words per Amazon capsule quota.
- No news capsules, although I don't have many of these anyway.
- Reduction to maximum of 5 Internal links in my link capsule, some of my Hubpages have many more than this (I just found one with 14). Very selective highly relevant linking, potentially some tweeking here.
- I may delete my quote hubs, all 50ish of them, they don't trip copyscape though; I will see whether they have been affected. If they have then be gone with them.
I have finished this I am going to go back over them again and write a short 25 word description in each of my remaining Amazon capsules. I now have a list of my hubs printed off in alphabetical order, a ruler at the ready, striking out hubs as I deal with them.
This could take a while, but if it works at all then a while it has to take. Is there anything that I have missed out?
In addition, once this is complete, most of my hubs will get a couple of new very carefully selected highly relevant backlinks to replace those that have probably been weakened (Snipsly etc).
Anything that you think I have missed? Or does this sound like a decent enough plan?
Provided the products are in context to the content there shouldn't be a problem.
Reducing the amount of Amazon products is a good idea. Indeed, some people try and cram in as many as they can, as if more is better. But people want their choices researched for them. I discuss it further on my hub /hub/three look for: Tip 2. Amazon.
I'm stripping my hubs down to basics, to be honest it will improve the aesthetics, improve the CTR, and if Ren and co are right with the blog post then I may see a little bit of traffic return.
I am busy taking out non-relevant amazon capsules. For example, my quote hubs each had 4 amazon capsules. Usually this would be a couple of relevant books and then 2 entirely unrelated things (such as an iPad or a Macbook).
They now have 2 items, the relevant books. Many of my quote hubs seem to have news capsules, so they are being deleted, as are my "latest hub" feeds, which are pretty pointless.
I think the pages will become more user-friendly, and that has to be a positive. That's mainly quotes hubs thus far, as I am working in alphabetical order, and '25' dictates that most of them come first
Just my thoughts here but here is a part of the blog that may interest you:
"Second, we found that Hubs which successfully maintained their traffic were much more likely to judiciously use the Amazon, eBay, news, RSS and link capsules, so we ask if you choose to add news and RSS capsules, you make sure that you have plenty of original content in your Hub to accompany it and that you write at least 50 words of text in your Hub for every product you feature in your Amazon and eBay capsules."
To me this indicates that RSS feeds are OK if not over-used? The dup-content in them should be diluted with more original content in the text.
What do you think?
Hi Ryan, it sounds like a plan.
I am not in the same boat as you, a tenth of your hubs and a thousandth of your income (I expect) and none of your SEO knowledge.
I'm picking up on the RSS feed - which I add to all of my hubs as a last attempt to get the bas.. sorry visitors to buy something. It just has my latest 3 hubs in order to automatically refresh content (I thought that was important)
Do I need to take my RSS feeds off all my hubs?
I can't be certain, but that latest hubs feed is duplicate content just like any other. That's the way that I'm looking at it.
I have at least my one "latest hub" on almost all of my hubpages, each being one tiny bit of duplicate content. To be honest, I don't think that they send too much traffic to my latest hubpages anyway. Unless you write about the same topic religiously, not many people are going to be interested in public debt levels when reading a hubpage about facebook.
So I see that as a bit of unrelevant duplicate content. It is also a page leak which could be seeing people visiting that link instead of an ad unit or something.
Unless your strategy is to write 1000 high traffic hubs, and then write one hub about that asbestos cancer with a $100 keyword, and then just leave it like that forever (actually, that does sound like a plan).
Further to that, I suspect that a few carefully selected highly relevant internal links would likely result in more movement of traffic in the right places
I needed that blog post in a big way, motivation was sucked out of me, now I have something to at least attempt.
Not sure what you mean by this. My RSS feeds show the Summary description which isn't duplicate of anything save for the description that shows up in the SERPs. I've also made use of custom tags to generate relevant RSS feeds. Do you still think these could cause me problems?
Not sure, I wish that it was clear enough.
But, those latest hubs things never did much for me any way. I have also never used summaries, I discovered that function shortly after my 500th hub.
I was never going to go back and do 500 summaries
Maybe I should though
Hi lhrohner - I doubt it you are asking me as I know nothing, but in case you are...
I have no idea. Just picked up on a couple of bits in posts on here about RSS not being good for you. I don't know if its true or one of those internet rumours.
I thought they were an easy way of having refreshed content. But generally no one seemed to use them to look at another of my pages. There might be a good reason for that of course.
Anyway I have just removed 80 odd RSS feeds from my pages, having only put them on a couple of months ago when I thought they were good to have.
Please don't tell me to put them back on again.
All I know is that my traffic is the lowest it has been since the slap, my CTR is the lowest it has been since the slap.
So if somebody throws me a bone, I am going to try and chase it. But, for all I know I could be f*cking it all up.
What does everybody else think that the blog post says? Lrohner, how did you percieve the blog?
Before the slap, my hubs that actually ranked well had a low-average AdSense CTR but extremely high Amazon conversion rate and very decent time on page, so they were obviously fulfilling the readers' needs. I can't ask for more than that. And if that's not good enough for Google, then I can only imagine that there are other factors that are out of my control.
The only changes I'm going to make are to go back and get rid of any Amazon products that don't have a full review attached to them, and up the word count to a minimum of 1,000 words on all of my hubs. Outside of that, I really don't think I'm going to do anything else.
For those hubs that have gotten knocked down in the rankings by sites other than Amazon or other high-PR sites, I'm going to take a really close look at the competition to see why they're ranking so highly. Seriously -- what else can I do?
I have to say that I agree with you, in that I thought one of the plus points of RSS feeds was to keep new content coming in - on the basis that google likes fresh content (so I believe).
For the moment I'm not taking down my latest hubs RSS, though I guess I may change my mind in the future as I see how things go.
We are going to have to seek clarification on that point aren't we? I'll email somebody on the team to ask when I get a chance.
Ryan, I have left a comment on the blog requesting clarification of the RSS feeds to other hubs.
I currently use 2 feeds on nearly all my hubs; one using tags to direct traffic to similar pertinent topics and one for my latest hubs.
My thinking was that the one using tags could increase traffic, and analytics would seem to indicate this happens - I very often get traffic from other hubs and I believe a good part of it comes from these feeds. I am loathe to remove them as a result.
The "latest" feed, however, was put in simply as SEO thinking that it might help indexing and a little aid in search placement. If that is even of value, it would probably be just as much value if only used on hubs that get very little traffic anyway, and I may delete them on my better hubs.
Like you, I'm in the process of deleting all but the most pertinent amazon capsules and products in information hubs - I've already re-done my sales hubs. I do like to give readers some choice there (price, options, etc.) and for now at least will continue to do that.
Hi, just read this latest update
and was thinking it might or might not affect your plans for altering your pages.
Phew! Couple of hours removing all RSS and news links, and drastically cutting down the Amazon adverts - 50% of which were in there as a joke or to just break up the text.
At some point I'm going to have to create a helluva lot of pictures to make my hubs more beautiful.
But not today.
Right, I have searched my hubpages portfolio for the words:
"In The News"
It is 100% conclusive that news feeds are a problem? Therefore, they can go immediately.
I'll let the rest stew for a while.
@Ryan and @Mark -- If you read the latest blog post by Patty Inglish, she actually advocates the use of RSS feeds.
My interpretation from everything I've read from the HP team this past week points to this: It's all about balance. I don't believe RSS feeds are bad for your hubs in and of themselves, but if you load up your 300-word hub with 10 Amazon/eBay products, 8 affiliate links and an RSS feed, then you're going to have problems.
With all due respect to Patti, we all advocated RSS feeds - I have done ever since Maddie suggested that they are beneficial in a forum post.
But, this is a response to the Algorithm change a few weeks ago, I am currently going to work in line with this statement from Paul Edmondson:
"Yes. We ran several tests and Hubs that used Amazon were the most likely to see a decrease in traffic, followed by the news capsule. We can only guess at the reasons, but it's possible that it looks like copied content, possibly resembles a scraped site, and could have an ad to content ratio that is to heavily weighted toward ads that the new algorithm doesn't like as much."
So, for now, reducing my number of Amazon capsules, in fact taking them off non-sales pages, and removing news capsules. I will ask him directly about internal RSS feeds. But external feeds will be the same as the news capsules.
I've thought they sucked before I even published a hub. They have them at Squidoo, and I didn't use them either.
The argument for RSS feeds is that it presents fresh content on the page, so every time it gets crawled the bot is going to think "Ooh! There's something new here!"
But in my opinion, it's just a traffic leak.
So when I started making Flagship hubs we were given a choice of using either an RSS feed OR the ebay capsule. Because the theory was, the ebay capsule was showing new stuff, what ever auctions were shortlisted to end soon.
At the start I didn't have an Ebay account. But I opted for the Ebay capsules instead of the RSS feed. Of course later it would be of benefit to me when I got signed up and started to earn money from it. But in the meantime I still didn't see the point of giving about 3 live links that people could click on and leave my hub.
If it makes anyone feel any better, my click percent is the lowest it has ever been on all my two dozen or so websites.
It's like the people your trying to reach is not finding your content now. Instead your being found by people with no interest in your articles.
So it's not just Hubpages and it's not just about affiliate links. It's about really bad search engines!!!
I am not seeing the problem lying with rss feeds at all. All my hubs that are tagged are linked together with other relevant articles and they display in hub.
If there are no other relevant articles, they don't get a feed until I have written more around the same topic.
I honestly fail to see that they are the problem. My best hubs that have stayed 'up there' have rss feeds on them.
Every week since the crash my traffic has tumbled on a Thursday and started to recover again by the Monday.
This is Saturday - it's been my day of lowest traffic each of the 3 weeks since.
My sales hub with loads of capsules are the ones which suffered most, along with everybody else's. Capsules have now brought to within the new limits so we'll wait and see if that helps before worrying about something else like feeds or news capsules.
Oh and like everybody else my click rate has dropped considerably since the change, likewise my eCPM.
But then it is true that most of my hubs also lost their google.com traffic and visitors from the other regions aren't clicking.
I think that might be a geographical thing more than anything.
It also has a lot to do with advertising rates, a 10p click is massive in India. You are effectively left with UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. Well 'we' are left with that, for now.
Yes, good idea - I agree. Having just edited my hubs to remove all the excess Amazon items I don't fancy going back into them and deleting all the RSS feeds - not unless I know it's necessary. (And I've only got a fraction of the number of hubs that some people have.)
Yes. Over the three weeks since the Google update, the US page views on my other (Amazon-oriented) account have gone down by just over 38% compared with the three weeks immediately before the update. No wonder I've only made three Amazon sales this month
I've actually started to view my hubs in a whole different light since the update. OK, so they'll carry on earning me a tiny residual income but they're now far more use to me as a portfolio of work to garner freelance writing/editing jobs, so that I can earn real money in the here and now.
Since I'm not really sure what will work. I plan to re-work my hubs into 2 or 3 groups.
first group: Remove all news RSS, reduce Amazon products to 3-5, and max 2 internal links.
2nd group: RSS news max 2-4 links, Amazon products max 5, and 5 internal links.
3rd group: no changes.
Then I'll wait for a week and see the results.
I'm also thinking that this direction to removed excess Amazon capsules along with the complete ban on duplicate content is obviously aimed at bringing the whole site back up in google's eyes.
It will be a couple of months before we know if it has worked because of the timescale HP has allowed us to make the changes, but I think I read somewhere that they have to be made by the 28th of March or thereabout.
I don't know how much longer after that it will be before we know if it has worked, but if and when it does, we will all see the return of Google.com traffic.
So individual changes we make to hubs outwith those directions are probably not going to show either a positive or negative change until the whole site has regained its authority.
By default, almost all of my hubs are already free of these clutters. Thank God, I did not follow many suggestions by top earners on how to make money in HP! Only one thing that doesn't fit now is my second usage posts (originals written elsewhere). But most of these posts are handpicked by me for good quality content and I had added many pictures and some video links to them, to make them stand out when compared to original ones elsewhere.
Such "basically good stuff" are getting a reasonable readership for me all along and the traffic to them has not dwindled post Google update.
Though I was never a good earner at Hubpages, Google update has fortunately done virtually no damage to my page views or earnings so far!
Yes - I have noticed the same. The hubs that do not make any money have hardly been affected.
Sadly - hubpages need to make money in order to host your "basically good stuff" that does not make any money.
Sounds good. I'm hoping to do some tweaking on my hubs next week. I like the idea of adding some description text to the Amazon capsules; I've never bothered till now.
I think what I notice is the accent on wanting to publish one's writing. I'm not interested in publishing my writing. I'm interested in earning money! Well, hubcamp today. Looking forward to it!
Looking forward to meeting you Sophia as I will be attending HubCamp also. Maybe we will learn everything that we need to do to help increase earnings. I went through ALL of my hubs and removed Amazon capsules down to a limit where the warning sign did not show up under the title. Still have latest hubs RSS feeds, etc. Can't WAIT to hear from the Edmondson's as to what to do!
@Ryan - let us know if you notice any differences with the elimination of the RSS.
I reduced the number of the RSS items in each module to 3 or 4 (from the max of 8). If this is somehow causing an issue with Google for duplicate content (or whatever) then reducing the number shown may help.
Will see how it plays out.
I don't think the Google slap is over...my views and earnings and click rates continue to decline.
"Excess” Amazon capsules might be a minor problem compared to the potentially much larger problem of having your keywords coincide with a product page at Amazon.com. ANY Amazon capsule or link could quite possibly be the kiss of death in this case. Product pages at Amazon.com are almost automatically getting first page results, and associated affiliate link pages are being scattered into the wind.
It could quite well be the end of Amazon “product” hubs (which could be a good thing for searchers if the content wasn’t ever anything more than could be found at Amazon.com anyway.)
There is nothing that a few extra links can't fix
And I don't have to make any changes to my hubs. Well, strictly speaking I had - in my 3 product oriented hubs I had to change upper amazon/ebay full wide capsule into a floating one. That's all in terms of changes.
I do have several news capsules, but hey are short, and I do have 4-product amazon and ebay capsules in virtually every hub for decoration purposes, and I am not going to remove them.
@Ryan. I noticed you made a post about getting rid of Amazon capsules before the HP Staff posts about that. You are prescient!
Phew! Just spent two hours putting RSS feeds back onto my hubs.
Haven't got a clue what to do.
Oh yeah I know.
Let them age.
I thought that was for wine, cheese and women, no?
I'm too busy to do all this - Ryan when you've finished with your 700+ hubs I'll give you my password, buy you a beer, and you can do my 300 next weekend - cheers
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