So I went to visit Google in Mountain View … … and learned that every second sentence has to be prefixed with “so”. Wait, that’s not all.
I’m sure you’re all just reading this to hear about the secret information they’ve been feeding me, heh. Sorry, you’ll have to join Google yourself to find out more about that part. It’s been really interesting so far, so many documents to read and digest, so many neat people to meet and chat with, so much good food to eat (good thing I’m only here for a week).
Another month goes by, here are the statistics for August (and some comparisons to July in brackets) 2007.
Number of new threads = 1329 [+5.3%] Number of new posts = 7676 [-1.0%] Average number posts/new thread = 5.48 [-4.5%] Number of posts by new users = 1061 (13.8%) [+30.0%] Number of threads by new users = 813 (61.2%) [+13.4%] Average number of posts in threads by new users = 4.
The last couple years I’ve spent a lot of time in the Google Webmaster Help groups (archive.org). Most of that time I’ve tried to help people with problems with their websites and Google. Together with the webmaster (every site is unique) and the other active members in the groups we’ve tried to work out where things are going wrong, what needs to be changed and often we’ve been able to fix things so that the website is back in the index, the content is getting found and hopefully, the webmaster has learned a thing or two.
This post has one main reason: popular sites don’t always get it right. You can also turn that around: you don’t have to get everything right in order to be popular. Never do something on your site just because a large site does it like that.
Combine web 2.0 with a search engines, what do you get? Lots of rel=nofollow links (archive.org) :), heh. You’d assume that they could get a few things right with regards to search engine optimization though.
In response to the other statistics regarding the Google Webmaster Help groups (archive.org), JLH (archive.org) asks (archive.org):
I always wonder about a statistic, I call them Drive-by-posters. Those who come in and make a post, only to be never heard of again, even though their questions may be answered. Let’s take a quick look at who posts in the groups (how long they’ve been active), who starts new threads and a short dissection of what first-time posters do on the group and how they evolve from there.
Just for fun, here are some lists and numbers for the month of July 2007.
Some numbers … Number of new threads = 1262 Number of new posts = 7754 Average number posts/new thread = 5.74 Number of posts by new users = 816 (10.5%) Number of threads by new users = 717 (56.8%) Average number of posts in threads by new users = 5.0 Number of new threads started by Googlers = 3 Number of new posts by Googlers = 85 Top posters webado (archive.
1000 monkeys at typewriters might come up with Shakespeare - but it’s much easier to just copy + paste. Duplicate content is a fact of the web - it’s almost impossible to avoid it within your own website and even worse when someone else decides to play “monkey at a typewriter” and copies your work.
Google handles duplicate content (including only duplicated parts) with a smart algorithm: It picks the “best” (in it’s opinion) and ignores the rest (mostly).
The “Ten things Google has found to be true (archive.org)” list is an interesting view into some of the ideas that drive Google. It was first put online in 2001 and starts with a great title: “Never settle for the best” and goes on with a list of ten things that Google seems to find important. (Silly me, I thought those “10 things” lists started when Digg came up :-) )
… or examining a Google automated spam penalty
Matt Cutts, a Google Engineer, explained in his private blog how off-topic and affiliate links can change the Google crawlers “priority” for a site, even deindexing it. The examples shown were quite extreme, but what surprised me was this part:
The person said that every page has original content, but every link that I clicked was an affiliate link that went to the site that actually sold the T-shirts.