Google’s Farmer/Panda Update Goes Global, Hurts Keyword Domains

Earlier this week Google Google extended the algorithm change that penalized content farms to the rest of the world. They also incorporated user feedback – dropping the rank of sites that users block in their search results. Domainers have been reporting that his change has significantly hurt their keyword traffic – especially the traffic of international sites that weren’t hurt as badly by the first Farmer/Panda update.  According to Google

We’ve rolled out this improvement globally to all English-language Google users, and we’ve also incorporated new user feedback signals to help people find better search results. In some high-confidence situations, we are beginning to incorporate data about the sites that users block into our algorithms. In addition, this change also goes deeper into the “long tail” of low-quality websites to return higher-quality results where the algorithm might not have been able to make an assessment before. The impact of these new signals is smaller in scope than the original change: about 2% of U.S. queries are affected by a reasonable amount, compared with almost 12% of U.S. queries for the original change. (Official Google Blog 4/11/11)

In addition to penalizing “low quality content” the change appears to reduce the value of having a keyword in the domain title.  The value is not zero, but without accompanying strong content a keyword domain may find it self on page 4 instead of page 1. 

This change argues in favor of content-rich solutions such as WhyPark over traditional parking companies for certain domains.  If you have seen your parked domain income drop on some of your best keyword domains, give WhyPark a try.

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