Google Hand Editing "Search Engine Optimization" for PPC?

Jun 17th

A friend told me that recently he has seen huge changes in Google's search results for search engine optimization.

Overture, SEMPO, and Search Engine Watch are all in the top 10. Is Google relying more on related community / hub links, placing more value on word relations, or placing more value on human review?

My friend has stated that arcoss the wide variety of sites he tracks that this is the only large change he recently noticed. Anyone else see any shakeups recently?

Is Google trying to get people to think SEO is PPC? That would be evil.

Update: I did a bit of digging around. My other site does not have much in the way of anchor text for search engine optimization and the Google API shows it ranking at #73 for search engine optimization. Perhaps they are better understanding that search engine marketing and search engine optimization are related. Yet another indication of how important mixing anchor text is & will become.

Published: June 17, 2005

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Comments

June 17, 2005 - 5:54pm

I object strongly to the sites listed in the top results! Wait a minute, I don't :)

But seriously, hard to see that they changed thing somehow to skew toward SEO=PPC. Going down the list:

1) A submission company
2) A submission company
3) Jill's site, which is always strong on organic
4) A submission service, especially for organic
5) A forum, which I'd say skews more toward organic
6) SEW, where we talk about both organic and PPC
7) SEMPO, which realy does talk about both sides of the SEM house
8) A submisison company
9) A submission service
10) Wow -- Overture! I mean Yahoo. Yep, that does look especially new and odd. Wonder who does their SEO :) But that's the only really nearly pure PPC-oriented link I'd see there.

Looks like they may have tried to skew things to get some more informational sites up there. And maybe just for SEO, but I still suspect it's more likely applicable to some other areas as well.

June 17, 2005 - 6:43pm

>Wait a minute, I don't :)

always cool when you are king of the mountain, eh :)

You prettymuch laid out that most of the results are SEO oriented.

The reason I pointed out those three links as an oddity are:

  • Sempo: I have not looked through their anchor text much recently, but as a guess I would not bet it would fit the profiles of many of the other top ranked sites.
  • Overture: pure SEM
  • SEW: I don't think you have to work hard on link building, as your reputation is huge and your site is one of the rare ones where the content is so good that everyone links to it. Having said that I do not think you work on anchor text and link building the way some of the SEO firms do, and maybe Google is moving a bit further beyond raw anchor text.

>Looks like they may have tried to skew things to get some more informational sites up there. And maybe just for SEO, but I still suspect it's more likely applicable to some other areas as well.

I am sure they can and want to do that.
Yahoo! Mindset is a good example of a similar attempt.
http://mindset.research.yahoo.com/

One of the major flaws with many SEO sites is that many of them have only about a half dozen short copy sales pages.

I think your idea about biasing toward info is probably right on, and maybe they are placing a bit more weight on related / non exact anchor text.

Thanks for the comment Danny :)

NFFC
June 17, 2005 - 7:56pm

>Wonder who does their SEO :)

I couldn't say... but I think there is a big story re: Y!'s SEO push.

June 17, 2005 - 8:22pm

Nope, not working the anchor text hard for search engine optimization. Actually, it's not a term I've worried about for many years. It's so competitive that I've long figured it either comes naturally or it doesn't. I don't think we've been there for some time, as well. But you can bet that I think we're relevant for it. That's why I think it may be a shift to somehow try and hit some informational sites. SEMPO fits that, as well. Yahoo, well, them's a mystery. Would be really interesting to do some backlink analysis to see how the name change and maybe some URL changes might be impacting things.

By the way, other things might be going on. If you are somehow working to cluster search engine optimization to be search engine marketing or search marketing, you explain SEMPO and the fact that for "search engine marketing," Yahoo now looks new at number 10 (and note the title, Yahoo Search Marketing."

My gut still tells me it's automated, not a hand job. If you're going to do that, this is exactly the wrong category to do it in. It's an area so closely watched by so many -- which is also why we may not yet be hearing of it elsewhere.

Of course, if SEW drops, then that will definitely be a handjob, which I'll have to be very upset about :)

June 17, 2005 - 8:25pm

Duh! You said the seo sem relationship right at the top! Missed it, but yeah, that would be very interesting to explore more.

June 17, 2005 - 8:38pm

>But you can bet that I think we're relevant for it.

I think your site is relevant for most anything search related so long as buy and services are not part of the query, but then again you have how to buy tips, relevant ads, & many articles from various service providers that would be.

>Of course, if SEW drops, then that will definitely be a handjob

Keep making a few posts like Google's Own Listing Gets Hijacked or Webposition.com de-indexed and you might not be getting a happy ending.

D
June 18, 2005 - 1:26am

Time to put up some pr0n affiliate banners since you may be getting since nice traffic with all this handjob talk.

June 18, 2005 - 6:48am

The reaction that ranking changes are done for PPC purposes I hope is sarcastic. While the changes are obviously happening I do not see them being related to a motive of driving people to PPC.

June 18, 2005 - 6:54am

>I hope is sarcastic.

so do I ;)

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