The July and August 2012 Crash of Elsmar

Jim Wynne

Staff member
Admin
#21
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

So, according to (https :// developers. google.com/shopping-search/v1/reference-request-parameters - OBSOLETE BROKEN 404 LINK(s) UNLINKED), Boolean search symbol of "+" is replaced by including the terms in parentheses.

I almost always find what I'm looking for, and I don't think I've ever used the plus sign in my search terms. It generally adds nothing, and is assumed when no quotation marks are used. For example, a search for 500MB hard drive is turned into this by Google: https://www.google.com/search?q=500...ie7&rls=com.microsoft:en-us:IE-Address&ie=&oe=

Google adds the plus signs, which makes adding them (or the parentheses) superfluous. I find that when you want to narrow things down without limiting yourself with quote marks, it's usually good to tell Google what you don't want to see by using the minus sign, as in 500MB hard drive -external. If I'm looking only for internal drives, this will narrow the search considerably by excluding hits that include the word "external."
 
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Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#22
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

still on thread topic, but off search terms:

Is there a remote possibility Elsmar looks like a link farm with all the links we freely supply to help folks find their way to a detailed or "official" explanation? An algorithm only looks at data, not altruistic intent.

If this is the case, perhaps Google WILL cut the Cove a special break.
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#23
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

I've been very busy and am way behind on tagging threads, attending to thread titles and such, but here is the latest:

> Thank you so much for all the background information. So much of what you're
> doing will work and I've seen sites go down like this plenty of times and by
> primarily attending to the errors and oddities found in webmaster tools alone
> brings it back without even contacting Google. The reduction of errors that
> you've eliminated since July 28th is astounding really. The site dropped a few
> days before that so I assume you began fixing immediately. It will recover, I
> have faith.

I'm freaking out a little bit less right now.
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#24
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

I've been very busy and am way behind on tagging threads, attending to thread titles and such, but here is the latest:

> Thank you so much for all the background information. So much of what you're
> doing will work and I've seen sites go down like this plenty of times and by
> primarily attending to the errors and oddities found in webmaster tools alone
> brings it back without even contacting Google. The reduction of errors that
> you've eliminated since July 28th is astounding really. The site dropped a few
> days before that so I assume you began fixing immediately. It will recover, I
> have faith.

I'm freaking out a little bit less right now.
Who or what was the source of the quote? - I presume an email to you, but from whom and what occasioned it?
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#25
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

The SEO person in an email. The fellow the advertiser connected me with.

I was up until close to 5AM this morning essentially writing a history of the forum, the site in general, what I had done so far, etc., etc. I started about 11PM so it was a *very* long email.

I still have much to do and he still has some things to look at, so this isn't finished. I'm looking at one heck of a lot of work ahead of me.

But - It's the first "bright light" I've seen in 2 weeks. As is evident, the drop devastated me. It was seriously depressing. For all these years things are running quite well and then - WHAP - Down the cliff practically over night.
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#26
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

The SEO person in an email. The fellow the advertiser connected me with.

I was up until close to 5AM this morning essentially writing a history of the forum, the site in general, what I had done so far, etc., etc. I started about 11PM so it was a *very* long email.

I still have much to do and he still has some things to look at, so this isn't finished. I'm looking at one heck of a lot of work ahead of me.

But - It's the first "bright light" I've seen in 2 weeks. As is evident, the drop devastated me. It was seriously depressing. For all these years things are running quite well and then - WHAP - Down the cliff practically over night.
I can imagine the level of stress - kind of like folks have who were holding Groupon stock, hoping for a comeback until yesterday's SLAM!

SEO (search engine optimization) appears to be an imperfect art - stray too far and you get heavily penalized; ignore SEO and the search engine algorithms sink you anyway.

I recall ten years ago when SEO folks were deemed "miraculous" and five years ago when the search engine folks had demonized them, saying they "enabled" link farms and the "repackagers" who had no original content, just "teaser" lead paragraphs and a long, long page of ads and links.

Well - I hope this all gets resolved in the Cove's favor - there's a lot of newbies out there who are going to be gasping for oxygen without a "safe harbor" like the Cove if Google does the Cove in.

The big dogs at the top of supply chains still don't "get" Deming and try to control their supply chains by FEAR. Without our cadre of folks able to dispel that fear with facts and support, we'd still have charlatans running around promising "registration in 40 days!" and scared supply chains buying such dreck.
 
T

tamale

#27
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

Mark,

Here is a link to a page where the author discusses the pitfalls of Penguin and how to avoid them. His article echoes what you are going through.

Its in French but perhaps with the help of an online translator you will be able to rummage through enough information.

http://www.webrankinfo.com/dossiers/conseils/comment-eviter-penguin

Good luck!

Tamale
 
H

HPLC_Help

#28
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

Could all this be affecting the internal search on the Elsmar website? For example, I just did a search using the search sidebar, and I got a few hits, but when I clicked on the "hit," I got a message saying
Sorry - I didn't find any matches for at least one of the Key Word(s) you entered to search for. Please try fewer or different Key Word(s). NOTE: There is a 3 character minimum search word limit so do not include single letters or 2 letter 'words' in your search phrase.

Or, try the Google Search of the Elsmar Cove (see above).
Just wondering.
H_H
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#29
Re: Notice to All Visitors - Significant Drop in Google Search Rankings - August 2012

No. The problem is when people do a search in Google from their browser or the Google search page. That is why traffic died. Google "demoted" Elsmar.com at least temporarily :cfingers: in their "organic" search results. The internal vBulletin search engine is not affected by Google in any way.

The built-in vBulletin search engine sucks. That's just the way it is. It's OK for some things, but the Google Search box (which is at the top of every forum page in the sidebar and thus readily available) will find everything on Elsmar.

That said, if you used the Google Search in the sidebar, you definitely would not have seen: "Sorry - I didn't find any matches for at least one of the Key Word(s) you entered to search for. Please try fewer or different Key Word(s). NOTE: There is a 3 character minimum search word limit so do not include single letters or 2 letter 'words' in your search phrase." That's a result you only see if you use the built in vBulletin search engine.
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#30
Elsmar Visitors - 16 August 2012

As you all know, I have been working hard to "fix" the problem (what ever it is/was) of a sharp, almost over night drop in Google Search. A SEO person has looked at what I have done so far (see Post 23 in this thread) and wants to wait a week or so to see if the changes I started making on the 28th July will help.

This morning I checked the visitor stats in Google Analytics and it *appears* there is a "ray of light". It is far too early to tell what the future will bring, but this is what I see:

 
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