I did a little analysis of my articles in an effort to see why mine and the articles of others have dropped so low in reads.
One thing I noticed is the existence of "sponsored ads" at the top of the search result page. These ads are place there by Google in response to the data they have gleaned from the data they are getting from our google profiles. Did everyone notice this?
They use the search criteria itself and then they use such things as; my age, vendors I have used before, googles estimate of my interests, my saved search criteria, and all of the vendors I have gone to in the past.
The next thing I noticed is that there are often the top 3 YouTube videos on the subject you searched for. These can be placed at the top of the search results on down to even on the second page from what I saw in my searches.
My niche is RV's, along with camping and travel in RVs, so I have a lot of competition on this subject, but these new search result presentations have pushed my articles down the stack.
One more thing; the majority of my competitor articles are using very readable site themes that present their data, links, videos and pictures much better than our aging and restrictive HP structure.
I would appreciate any feedback I can get from my fellow writers on these changes to the Google search world.
Hey Don, I'm not seeing ads at the top of the pages I google on my niche which is poetry analysis, but am seeing the videos, a line of three just below the snippets, which I guess is in response to the growing popularity of youtube? Plus I see a wikipedia article all by itself to the top right. Maybe for your niche, RVs and all, the pages are a wee bit different?
If your articles are losing views then I can only suggest you attempt to claw back - review, update, edit, write new...no doubt you've done all this in the past to stay fresh and competitive? This is what I do and so far it seems to be working, despite knock-backs when the dreaded algorithms strike. As for things like SEO, well, I'm a dinosaur I'm afraid. I just try and write decent stuff, evergreen hopefully, and leave the technical writing to the more accomplished. Are you into SEO? Don't know if it's worth your while learning or applying some basics?
I haven't noticed much change in the format of my competitors - I'm up against a select few sites I've gotten to know well over the years - and am still happy with the fundamentals of what HP has to offer with regards to capsules, links and so on. Perhaps the time for a new design scheme isn't that far away?
Not sure I've helped all that much but keep us up to date with your observations.
Sometimes. I was reading an article by one of my favorite hubbers, in fact it was part of a series I was reading consecutively, and a big banner ad ran across his top photo. I was annoyed because he sometimes does his own artwork, and I was very interested in that. The ad was for a piece of subject matter that I'd researched a couple of weeks ago. In other words, old news and forgotten. Bleh!
Been noticing it too. I always just scroll down past it, hopefully most people do. lol
Unfortunately most people are too dumb to realise what's going on. Google has been steadily populating the top of the search results with ads and their own material for a long time. It's one of the reasons I gave up blogging and article-writing, because ranking well on Google was becoming so difficult.
It's one thing to compete against other bloggers and writers and even against the big companies, but when you have to compete against Google itself, it's too tough.
chef - I see what you're saying. My point is that before they get to my articles, even the best, there are a row of ads preselected, by Google, as well as the videos, which are competing with my article because they are at the very top, and easy to click on and the viewers never see my article much less the ads on my article, unless they drop down
It's been that way for a long long time, payd ads, videos and pictures not particularly in that order, but always on top.
I think everyone needs to remember how the google search response list is structured. Anything that is listed before your artucle has a better chance of getting the ad sale.
Now Google is placing their own videos and their own 'bot generated ads at the top of the search results.
This means we get less sales opportunities. DON
I agree, and since Google owns Youtube they put those video links above our written material. It is my feeling that a lot of people that are too lazy to read are watching those videos, and I know that those copies are costing me thousands. Google will remove them if you prove that they are copied, but there is no way to find them without watching all of those stupid videos.
The only thing that I think that can help, to a small degree, is to stop using Google. When you talk with anyone, tell them how bad the search results have become. I know that this is not much, but if we all change our home pages from Google, and stop using Google products, and encourage others we talk to, then things might eventually change.
Some successful protests have started out a lot smaller.
As mentioned, it has been like this for years. I bet most people have learned to ignore the sponsored results just like any other ad.
I think if it really bothers you then leave HubPages, vote with your feet not your words
Why on earth would you make a comment like that? It was a valid discussion. And it was about Google search results, not HubPages.
It's a valid comment, I know the discussion is about Google, but Hubpages control whats on the site
HubPages doesn't control what Adsense adverts are shown. And, as I said, the discussion is not about adverts on HubPages. It's about search results on Google.
So telling people to leave HubPages because they are querying how Google works is not helpful or constructive. Is it?
Hub pages choose to participate and have to apply for AdSense Site Approval.
You’re in control
Block ads you don't like, customize where ads appear, and choose which types fit your site best.
I have never understood people that complain about how a website functions and then still choose to remain a contributor; as I said before if you don't agree with something the only way to have an impact is to vote with your feet.
Annabelle... no one was complaining about HubPages. Read the thread again. And, in particular, **read the first post**. It's about adverts appearing on Google search results, not on HubPages.
Why are you insisting that the thread is about something else?
Yes Nate, I always thought my websites were a much better bet than HubPages - and for a while, they did well. But even they got to the point where they weren't viable unless I was prepared to put a lot of work into them.
Even as it was, I had 5 sites. One of them wasn't worth it at all. Three made a little bit from Adsense (but at least a little more than I make now since I don't have much Adsense activity except from the small collection of articles I have on Wizzley).
I had one, though, that made the most money - let's say either beer or gas money each month - all from Amazon ads.
I'd consider trying to bring a couple of these sites back because as it is, it's like my Amazon and Adsense accounts are sitting there with trickles or nothing coming in. We are no longer using those accounts here so it's seriously slowed my earnings, besides the loss of my own sites. Mind you, I'm totally fine with the earnings programs here, I like them. But I'd like to somehow keep my Adsense and Amazon Affiliates accounts active.
The best bit of advice I ever got was, "don't spread yourself thin". If you had 5 blogs, you had 3 too many. The most successful blog owners I know have only one or two sites.
For a blog to be successful, you must have (a) a lot of quality content and (b) constant new quality content. You can't possibly achieve (b) if you're trying to maintain 5 blogs.
My advice would be to revive the one site that was making money. Re-use all the old material (I hope you kept it!) - but if your posts were short, combine some of them to make each post at least 1,000 words long. Publish a dozen or so articles to start with, then schedule all your other posts to publish once a week until they run out.
If you're using Wordpress, there's a couple of good plugins to automate Adsense placement effectively.
If you've got artices in the doldrums on sites like Wizzley, and they're on-topic for the website, delete them from those other sites and move them to the website.
Well, the one I thought would do the best, that had the most content, was a pretty big fail. And the one that made the most money had no Adsense ads on it, it only had Amazon ads.
Yes, reviving the one with Amazon ads makes the most sense to me; it's the only one that made significant money. Was considering reviving the one that made the most from Adsense too. Those were the only two I was seriously considering.
I'd say stick with the one that made "significant" money and focus all your attention on it. It's always hard to predict what will work and what won't, there's nothing like experience!
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