My hubs that are holding up are the ones with comments. I only have a few and they're usually either book reviews or recipe related. I don't include comment capsules on any others usually. And product hubs don't generally get comments anyways. And not all of them are doing well. Just a thought in the middle of the night - after a few cups of tea with lots of whiskey...
If this is true, my mother will be typing her fingers to the bone early tomorrow morning. Okay I'm just kidding around.... I would never ask my mother to engage in black hat tactics. My sister, all of my cousins......hmmm.
I'll bet my family-cousins especially-is bigger than yours, Nelle! Hubs with comments seem to be the victors for me, too.
the amt of comments on mine is a reflection of how many visits - the ones with the most comments have the most visits.
I haven't made much either way - I don't have sales hubs.
It's nice to get feedback & I enjoy the interaction - this is about as 'social' as I get (I'm an extreme introvert)
better share that tea and whiskey tonight!!
yea, the more comments on the hub, the better they seem to do. I also see a trend in the type of content - info does much better than recipes though I have a couple that are steady with traffic. Today seems better than this past week...hoping next week will improve a bit more. And you?
So I guess I'd better put those comment capsules back on then. Wow, you just never know. It's interesting to see trends and patterns, even if they aren't scientific.
My traffic as a whole is steady today after a significant decline. But the internals stink. It's google.co.uk and google.fr etc. Not google.com and those folks aren't clicking and buying. My adsense click through rate, is the lowest I've ever seen - well maybe the last 5 years.
I am not seeing a noticeable difference, and I have hundreds of comments on some hubs. I have had an awful lot of spam comments recently as well - so I had been considering doing the opposite to you.
I am trying hard to look the other way until this change has settled down. I will officially start panicking if this goes on for a week.
Nelle, it never occurred to me to remove the comment boxes from my product hubs. I never expect comments to them either but surprisingly I do get comments from certain users here, the usual suspects who I suspect might like me or something
I did one hub product hub that triggered a user to share a memory they had with an antique version of the product I was discussing, and the story was really sweet. I guess what I am saying is that it is worth leaving the possibility of comments open, you never know what might happen. Might get someone share a personal story or whatever. I know you are by far more experienced with all this stuff then I am and so feel free to ignore this post.
Hubs with comments generally do better because google also crawls through comments.
okay, we'll shoot down that theory. Mark this is like a train wreck. I can't stop peaking. Made myself spend most of the day on a new website, which helped a lot.
I am going mountain biking instead of working. Not in a great mind set to be making decisions or setting up new sites.
If google achieve their stated intentions - I will be good, because most of my content is highly informative. But at the moment it appears as though particular subjects and approaches have been slammed pretty hard.
We shall see - certainly the junk I am seeing outrank my good pages is mostly that - junk, so I guess we are only part way through the change. I mean - real junk is outranking me and some of it is obviously copied from my pages. This cannot be the end of the shift.
Around 50% of my hubs haveblue arrows pointing south. I know I live in Australia but fair go...
First time this has happened to me in three years unless i am very much mistaken
But do the down ones have comments, is there are pattern?
will check each hub individually & give a situation report
Nelle, my hubs are (for the most part) bouncing back in traffic at least. I haven't looked at the sources, so I don't know if it's just international visitors. But I have looked at everything else, and comments don't seem to be a driver for me. I've looked at Avg time on page, promotional vs informative, backlinks vs none, etc., and I cannot find one single pattern.
Comments dont seem to be relative to my losses and gains. My heaviest trafficked hub was heavily commented on, barely backlinked (as it was a commercial flop) and has seen a 40% drop.
I could care less.
But it did seem to follow all "quality" factors, high time on page, very low ctr, high social sharing, outgoing authority links, triple checked for grammar/spelling and is often shared in forums and referenced in articles.
Its quality for its topic, for sure.
Its been dropped from #1 to #9 - with the manufacturer as 1, amazon listing as 2, ebay as 3 and a large industry aff/compare site at 4. Which is something I believe you saw also Nelle?
But although a commercial product now outranks me, the query was not strictly transactional - it was more along the lines of "when should I use widget a" not "where can I buy widget a"
Mark mentioned something yesterday that i have seen repeated at some webmasterforums.
Why would HP get hit hard and squidoo so much less - pretty similar user base BUT vastly different site structure, HP's internal linking is amazing, squidoos is non-existent. If that factor was "dialed back" (hopefully for testing purposes) which site would fall farther?
phases of algo switches have been discussed heavily too, Ive been getting emails about some hubs and pages rising already and can see that slightly in my own portfolio (but mine is mostly young) - there is a system of dropping filters, executing algo changes and resetting filters - this has been admitted to and can be found within the google blog (somewhere) - been trying to collate all this stuff as I find it interesting - sorry for the rant
My guess is that Squidoo was hit a while ago, but it does seem odd.
The Squidoo chief editor made a forum post about the algorithm changes and lower traffic, so they have been hit to some extent. I don't have enough mature lenses to make any observations about traffic drops, so I have no idea how badly they were affected.
A Hubber with a bigger presence on Squidoo might have a better idea.
The only Squidoo lens I have that's doing really well was just blessed by the Squid Angel yesterday (and "really well" is relative since most of my lenses do not get daily hits - maybe weekly). And that one's about my cat, so not exactly a money-maker!
No rant away, Sunforged.
I have been doing the same thing off and on today, as I have done many times in the past.
Why would the internal linking structure be of concern to Google. Unless it is considered over optimizaton. Now I'm worried, because I've been trying to learn a few things from HP, when it comes to site design. My new Cape Cod tourist site has a HubPages inspired design. Oh my.....
It seems that sometimes HP categorizes Best hubs using comments as part of the criteria. Some of my best hubs have a lot of comments. The hubs that I saw climb today seemed to be hubs that may generate more interest on a weekend, a few of them are older hubs, one is travel related. But I was relieved to see one of my hubs get back to p1 after being bumped to p3 yesterday. I just checked again, and it's still climbing. And it has less than 20 comments.
Well at least my mother won't have to start reading all of my hubs and commenting.
The definition of spam has changed over the years. We need spammers and gamers, otherwise Google wont evolve. In the first place they need the money. Who knows, Google is forever?
you asked for it
Im kind of regurgitating here, not much original thought and my industry specific jargon may be skewed so ill define my meaning just for this post:
Google is constantly making changes - tweaks, I will call those "filters"
Say spammers, introduce SEOBotastic2000 software and start churning out links and quickly getting their pharma sites all high ranked.
(opera and hp not getting along will be back)
Google identifies the unusual activity , say by link profiles, a code snippet , whatever.
and they institute a filter, "antiseobot2000" and fix that issue.
None of us will notice, its not an algorithm change just a little bandaid. the spammers are the only ones effected. the beat goes on for everyone else.
But the algorithm is different 200+ factors all weighted and balanced and that isnt changed as much or at least not at the level we are seeing now,mayday, florida etc.
When the algorithm is changed often the filters have to be set back and then reset perhaps to make up for core algo changes (total regurgitation here - but descends from webmaster world by way of google blog by way of google programmer who has been working on an update for a year now)
so when we see these big changes and things are jumping around, its because "filters" are still being added/tweaked, weights of the various factors perhaps tweaked.
So ASSUMING - we were seeing a hit here from a devalue of the interlinking that wouldnt be necessarily permanent or "bad" it would just be part of the process.
_____end of regurgitation_______
As "writers" we are quick to think of quality as readability to the human eye , but the googlebots are not humans they are extension of a massive mathematical formula that is evaluating everything the phds can come up with.
Your nobel prize winning essay could be shot to page 1000000000 if your site loaded to slow, your content was iframed, or every visitor who landed was so bored they "backed" away instantly - and 197+ other factors,most not directly related to the human readability of your page, most probably intended to simulate human interaction with your page and accessibility to the bots (or blind visitors)
(im being overly general - as phrase matching, reading level. lsi - things that can try and understand content relavance do exist)
Just trying to say - a google "quality/relevance" is not so basic as the writers here in the forums are assuming - much of HP success is from the site structure made by ex-MS IT specialists.
With that background out of the way if google tried to directly identify "content farms" and "duplicate content" (which isnt specifically stated but was discussed in the cutts/google blogs for awhile now) what factors would they try and identify?
Some that seem to be agreed on are:
Speed of content development (Demand pubs 4000 daily)
Percentage of Duplication (dupe to unique ratio)
Does the quantity of content have a sufficient level of authoritative backlinks to justify the quantity produced?
Currently (right now), if one searches alot (i do) one will see lots of very old content on top ..as in outdated BAD returns, ehow is showing up in multiple locations in the same return (prev limited to 2 per domain) scraper (duplicate sites) are more prevalent and webmasters are reporting that these sites are outranking their original content.
This would suggest that google is still very much in the process at the moment - and the filters are still being re-applied.
HP's interlinking really cant be penalized, its considered an asset to a site to be easily navigated and well organized along categorical relationships. Its not over optimization, but if we arent seeing that factor weighted, or weighted as high then each publisher is standing more on their own then we are used to.
----end conjecture ---
thats what I meant to say the first time
ill come back and reread that later and see if it makes any sense, or even answers the question but i really shouldnt be spending time on conjecture.
but i was working on the end of the hubsacademy article on the topic and have to much info rolling around and to many great new resources to read on search technology and philosophy to do it now. regurgitating will allow me to go off and work on paying work with a clear mind
*now where is that coffee maker*
I was wondering if there was an age filter effect too... a huge amount of stuff I am seeing in the search is old material... and I've noted that there are quite a few people on here that have said that their traffic is holding up... those people have tended to be on here for a long time.
Nelle - I haven't noticed that comments make any difference. There is some correlation with age, although it is very weak.
One thing I noticed is that my current best performing Hubs tend to be well over 1000 words. I am wondering if the extra comments may be having an effect because they increase wordcount in the eyes of Google.
that's interesting. I've been trying to reduce my word length down from 2500. The last few seem short to me, and they're still 1200 - 1300 words
Nelle commented a long time ago that she'd found longer Hubs did better. However there's another factor to consider - it's accepted wisdom that reading on a screen, people's eyes glaze over around the 1200 to 1500 mark. So there's no benefit in going over that figure - you'd be better to examine your subject and split the Hub into two separate Hubs, because that gives you double the chance of being noticed!
I'm sure the change in the algorithm wouldn't have affected that philosophy much.
I have noticed the same thing...and also thought the income potential was tied to word count until I did a short hub with $$$$$ potential...oh well so much for stats
The $$$$ is only a guide to how lucrative your keywords in the Hub may be - turning that into income is a different matter, especially if they are in a competitive market.
The wordcount thing is pure speculation on my part, and I am not a high traffic hubber - if it has an effect, it is probably one of many factors
I think Nelle has a point about the new farm algorithm favouring hubs with more comments. I find it is RECENT comments that could be the positive factor. In other words anything current that is being edited regularly and is being commented upon is favoured more.
This lines up with Google's aim to remove stale, irrelevant (outdated?)content.
I have an alter ego on HP that is far more 'commercial' than me but is hit less by the 'farm' changes. The difference is their stuff is more recent and updated more. They also have an RSS feed that is updated daily. Just a thought ..
I don't see any rhyme or reason to the traffic changes on my hubs. My hubs with the most comments aren't doing very well, except for the ones with recent comments, like Riv suggested. I thought maybe there was a word count/$$$ link - like, my longer hubs with more dollar signs (but not the ones with only one dollar sign) were doing better, but they're really not. I don't get much traffic, though, and I don't make any money (although I'd like to), so it's not really affecting me in any life-threatening way. I was just going to start trying to really get into some article marketing to promote my hubs, but I'm wondering now if my efforts would be worth it at this point - until all this mess gets straightened out?
Although my hubs with comments generally do get more traffib they are also seeing a sharp decline. I think the last time I had so few visits to my hubs was the first month that I started here. I was hoping that something was wrong with Hubpages "counter" but my Google Analysis report is also reflecting the sharp decline.
We;ll just have to sit out this storm and hope the arrows all point in the opposite direction tomorrow.
I can't see a correlation between hubs, comments and traffic on mine, except for the obvious one like the hottest hub getting fresh comments like they do.
As it pans out my hottest hub is actually my best performing. Its been #1 in google for over a month and the hub itself is less than 3 months old.
It's now #2 and that is a big drop in terms of traffic
Woke up today and it seemed to have rallied but on closer inspection its traffic is coming from worldwide googles, not google.com.
When it is rolled out I expect to see decimation unless as Sunforged says, they get their filters all working again and that pushes us back up.
As both Paul (in the HP Blog) and Sunforged (on HubsAcademy) have stated... this traffic glitch is but a temporary problem and will return to normal for those who write quality, original content.... My traffic has come back to 90% of what it had been and rising, with better SE ranking on some of my hubs.
Just a comment on what I'm seeing as I search....
I'm not only coming across a LOT of older, outdated and irrelevant material floating to the top, but I'm also seeing MANY MORE pages from one domain being returned. Where last week you might have seen one page from, say, MayoClinic.com, now I'm seeing three or four or more pages. ICK! It certainly isn't helping searchers, that's for sure.
I just searched "hubpages google slap" and I get the first 4 returns to the hubpages.com domain.
the fifth is lissie - but its from 2009 - so is not "relevant"
the 6th return is to an internet marketing blog that doesnt actually use the word hubpages (it says hub once but in the traditional context) hasnt been updated in months and has very little interaction
then Bukisa from 2009, a duplicate of the 6th return on article snatch and some crap forum also from 2009
I really dont think this is the way google wants search returns to be, so some filters must still need to be rolled out. *No doom and gloom, but if this is the new google, I actually will not be using it anymore as these returns are all crap , where are all the brand new authoritative returns from the search journals and the active discussions from trusted sources?
*id rather be 75 and sunny http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-v5sdyEcE0
Yeah, I've actually been seeing that for a while. Google used to limit returns from a single site to two listings. Now it appears that it's lifted that limit. I've got SERPs, with 6 or 7 Amazon pages ahead of me. Then 3 or 4 from Macy's. Then several from Dillards. Then me. So I'm in good company, just way too far down in the SERPs to make any money.
Interesting timing. Just when Amazon is coming to realize they are not going to get away from state sales taxes that easy.
All of a sudden - they are dominating the search results - and for informational terms as well as "buying" keywords.
I hear a bell tolling - and I think it is for Amazon affiliates.
This makes more sense than most theories Ihave been hearing. BUT surely this just means that another search engine will take the non-bigboy-commercial stuff ?? We choose to Google I think, we can choose to Bing or Yahoo or whatever I think ?
Maybe Baidu is coming to get them in their home territory
Ditto. And I don't get it. Yes -- whatever I'm selling on my hubs you can certainly buy from Amazon. But I've chosen the best-rated across price ranges, culled through the reviews and pulled out what seems to be across-the-board feedback and put it all into one place for the reader. I give them the good, the bad and the ugly. In other words, I'm saving them time and work. The readers who don't find what they want on my hub can always click through to Amazon and do more research, and many of them do.
To be honest, when I'm personally shopping, I quite often read review sites before making a purchase. Now I'll be lucky to even find them. I think this move is really good for the retailers and bad for the shoppers.
Finding reviews has been tough for a while.
There IS a fix for this - some time ago Google started supporting microformats and specifically hreview ( see http://microformats.org/wiki/hreview ).
In theory, that lets Google know that you have written a review. I started using it at my main site in mid 2009, but I don't think many people even realize they can (and of course you cannot at sites like HP).
If people DID use that, Google could let you see ONLY reviews when you want.
Structured content like this really could help.
Google link: http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot. … ppets.html
Oh, I see they have expanded their support:
http://www.google.com/support/webmaster … swer=99170
That's good news. It does mean a lot of work though to go back and find appropriate content that should be marked up this way.
Oh well: something to keep me busy in March
But it could end up bringing more content/review articles back up if people aren't finding this info in their searches. Retailers are of course biased towards their product, and a smart shopper will keep digging to find more reviews.
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