Google vs The World – well just the EU at the moment
Because you are the best doesn’t mean that you deserve top rankings in the best search engine in the world, and this is similar to any industry. Take the BetaMax video recorder back in the 80’s, they died off as it was VHS that did the deals and won out, even though BetaMax had the better technology. Or take the more recent battle between HD DVD and BluRay… there was no room for HD DVD as BluRay stormed their way through, instrumental via the PS3.
People complain that Google is all powerful and that if you’re not on Google you’re not on the internet. I bitch and complain about Google all the time but I’m not going to sue Google as a customer has got a choice, they can use Google or Bing. I’m a Bing fan, I have good friends there and have been an unofficial ambassador for many years, but Google has the traffic when it comes to search and deservedly so. We jump through hoops with Google but many of us wouldn’t be where we are today without them.
Let’s look at a few facts:
Websites get penalised every day in Google. Whether you agree or not with the penalisation methods if you understand how the algorithm works you understand the risks as well as the gains.
Roll back the clock a few years to a company we all know and love – Espotting. For people that don’t remember that far back here’s a quick reminder. Espotting was an early pioneer of the pay per click game but were slightly different from anything else at the time as they paid the biggest % to affiliates, and the same as the comparison aggregators and scrapers of today, Espotting affiliates were destroying the user experience on Google. I was vocal at the time and I was working with Espotting affiliates, so it was a double edged sword. My issue was that for a search term in Google the entire first two pages were filled with Espotting affiliates and it used to really annoy me. I didn’t mind one or two Espotting affiliates, and didn’t care if they were the best or the worse, I just wanted diversification.
Roll the clocks forward and now we have comparison websites. It seems that anyone with a script can pull other peoples content onto a site and believe that they have the god given right to dominate Google.
Personally I believe that Google should penalise or at least filter search results so that I do get diversification. In fact, hang on, isn’t there something called QDF and QDD. People in the know, and anyone in online marketing should know, that QDF means Query Deserves Freshness and QDD means Query Deserves Diversification.
Let’s look at QDD.. it pretty much does what it says on the tin. If Google can bring back a diversified result for a search term to include shopping, images, video, news and blogs then that enhances the search experience. Take the search results for Michael Jackson today, the results are very diversified, but when he died the search results were very different and full of Fresh content (QDF). This doesn’t mean that the sites that were ranking have been penalised or the sites that are now ranking were penalised back then, it’s just Google adjusted their algorithm to fit the Google customers’ needs.
Google’s algorithm indexes billions of pages all the time and it doesn’t always get it right which does frustrate SEO’s, but in all honesty if Google were forced by the EU Antitrust laws to break down the algorithm you are then opening the door for “bad” people to walk right in, to reverse engineer it and to dominate the serps with automation.
As I have said previously I have many close friends within all of the major search engines but I get no favours (and wouldn’t expect any). My peers’ say I am one of the smartest reverse engineers but I can honestly say if Google’s back door was unlocked, the relevancy which has made them so dominant in this marketplace will be destroyed which is why the EU Antitrust investigation is so so wrong.