I don't write product hubs, but I know many hubbers do. I just found this article from Search Engine Land about Google's new product search business model. Eventually they want to make it for paid advertisers exclusively. It will change e-commerce in yet another Google monopolized way.
http://searchengineland.com/google-prod … del-122959
I've sure noticed that my product hubs get very little attention. The internet sure is looking bleak.
Thanks rebekah! It's great to catch this and know what Google is up to next. By raising the cost of inclusion, Google is helping stifle innovation and create smaller markets that can offer low-quality goods - the opposite of its claimed intention. (Any microeconomist could tell us that.)
But, for us, we can work around it. If we write about products on Amazon or eBay, we won't be affected at all. If we write about products on Google, we may have to focus on ones that are listed there, and perhaps especially companies that have the Google Trusted Stores badge. Let's plan ahead and succeed!
Thank you for sharing this article. I wrote one product review and had a lot of fun doing it. It's a popular Hub, but it certainly is not a money maker. I have not been motivated to to read, comment or write any Hubs these past few weeks. Retirement is looking good right now.
Just when I see my system of copywriting begin to come together, The Google Geeks come along to unglue my once inseparable parts. Life seems to be getting more complicated by the second!
James, I don't see that you focus on writing product hubs. Your writing is more informative and doesn't appear to be focused on selling a product. And you write well. I like your conversational style.
You're right, rebekah . . . I read your post (should write 'scanned' the post ) focusing on my 3 personal websites.I missed that 3 letter word, h-u-b, that made all the difference in my first reply. We're set to release a 3rd. CD, and this information will be very helpful as I write copy for the new website that will become one marketing vehicle for our music.
The real issue will be if your product hubs can be found. A random google search for any product shows the paid text ads and google shopping ads and then the free web search listings. Those will gradually be replaced with more paid listings.
It will require more work for product hubs to be ranked well, at least, that's how I interpret the article.
It's certainly something worth noting and following if you write product based hubs.
I can see a day when all shopping queries are paid. Right now if you look at some terms the page is about 3/4 paid. For certain queries, this may be better, but it's hard to imagine that ever being the case of informational/review type queries. I love that you read SEL.
Yes, I think you're probably right about a day when all shopping queries are paid.
I checked a few different products to see what the page looked like, and it would be hard to not click on one of those image shopping results if that's what you were searching for.
My one lone product hub used to rank directly underneath the brand paid ads, now I don't know where it ranks. It depends on the search query.
It will be interesting to see how this affects the informational/review queries.
I learn a lot from reading SEL. Even writing part-time, I think it's helpful to know what's going on. I had first heard about this latest Google change on NPR when I was driving home for a lunch break so I checked SEL and there it was.
Let us know what you think as the changes continue. It's nice to get your input.
On a personal level, my Amazon income has dropped by 90% since its peak. On a wider lever, the developments are certainly a matter for concern, with Google increasingly blurring the line between free web search listings and paid advertising, with the latter gradually taking over.
A VC Portfolio friend of mine recently suggested that Social Commerce would explode over the next three years, changing product queries and quite possibly the landscape of eCom overall. Competition is fierce, especially in the Ad industry.
Paid queries are not new, and search engines stand to loss much by ignoring this sector given the nature of Google Play, AppStore, eBay, Amazon and product review sites.
I only remember writing one about a birdhouse that I thought was really great. I don't normally do any type of review writing and only did that one because a few friends mentioned having trouble with squirrels.
I would think it would be a benefit to the public to have these sites especially if they aren't all about how great a product is. I often look online for reviews to find out if there are any problems with something I'm considering purchasing. It helps us find out about any issues.
If they only allow product links then we won't get the real picture. I wonder if manufacturers have complained to Google about negative press. When people realize an appliance or gadget is a piece of junk we don't buy it and they either have to improve it or stop selling it. If Google only allows their posts then they can delete any negative comments and we won't know this valuable information.
Sounds like censoring at its worst.
Which is one of the biggest issues with search engines that offer their own products/software, etc. It completely removes the "altruistic" approach. It is also not a bad thing, as now Big G and others have opened the floodgates for private search engines. Engines driven, like social bookmarking sites, by a close knit group of people who share similar queries. Think paid discovery specifically for products and quality information. This also sheds the keyword competition peoblem and promotes social quality over quantity. This is something my partner and I have been working on feverishly and could go beta within few months.
In the Guardian today: Google warned to change search results or face court over antitrust issues
I unpublished most of my product reviews and now know why my best ones aren't getting the views they used to. I hope the courts can have some positive impact on the big G's policies.
These are both interesting articles. I also find it interesting that a company known for penalizing content that appears too commercial is headed toward commercializing its search results.
This is a quote found in the Washington Post.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/ … story.html
"Having a commercial relationship with merchants will encourage them to keep their product information fresh and up to date,” Samat wrote. “Higher quality data -- whether it’s accurate prices, the latest offers or product availability -- should mean better shopping results for users, which in turn should create higher quality traffic for merchants.”
Google, under Chief Executive Officer Larry Page, is seeking to increase ad revenue by doing away with a service that now drives traffic to a company website for free. "
Right there they give a few tips of what must be missing with the current search model/results.
Fresh information/up to Date
Higher quality data including accurate prices and product availability
It will be interesting to see what happens with this move.
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