I am the one who searches….Google under fire over organic search results
A certain search engine has come under a lot of flak recently for modifying its ‘organic’ search results.
Few companies are privileged enough to be both a proper noun and a verb. In fact, I’d wager that apart from Hoover there’s only one other – and it’s the company you most likely used in order to read these very words. Yes, Google of course, a constant presence that enjoys such tangible omniscience as to make deities jealous.
Recently though, the all seeing all knowing behemoth has hatched a cunning plot, ruffling a few feathers in the process. If you’re an SEO consultant, then you’ll be all too familiar with trying to evade incurring the wrath of Google: Use dubious black hat techniques such as keyword stuffing, link farming or creating doorway pages and you’ll soon discover that your sacred 500 word text will never appear in the promised land of a page one Google ranking.
Now, however, it seems that Google have broken one of their own ten commandments (Thou Shalt Not Deceive Thy Users), by ensuring that paid ads receive higher rankings than those results obtained by organic searching. Admittedly, this has always gone on in some form, and thankfully devotees of the Google search are pretty good at spotting which results are ‘genuine’ and those that are propped up by cash, yet it seems like this practice is becoming ever more common place. And it may only be occurring with regard to a minority of search queries at the moment, yet image carousels, paid ads and Google maps are slowly replacing more relevant search results.
So what can be done about it? Many SEO’s are frustrated by this volte face on the part of Google, especially when considering that they’ve given Google pretty much unlimited access to their content so that brands and company websites could easily be located by those Google spiders. One such solution – and it’s a bold move – is to STOP USING GOOGLE ALTOGETHER. Although that may sound like blasphemy to some, and impossible to others, it’s worth remembering that the Walls of Jericho collapsed and mighty civilisations do fall: Remember The Roman, or indeed British Empire, or even (whisper it) the world’s number one superpower formerly known as the United States of America?
Websites could block Google’s crawlers, making searches pretty much useless on that white screen with the letters in primary colours. Users would go elsewhere which would lead to a loss in ad revenue and ultimately a fall from grace as Google’s stock value tumbled. So, maybe it’s time to resurrect the search engines of the olden days; remember Before Google (BG)? Admittedly Alta Vista has been swallowed up by Yahoo, but there’s always HotBot, Dog Pile or – in hushed tones again – Bing? Bing could quite easily capitalise on this schism and use it to significantly invest in high quality organic search results.
Or why not use www.gizoogle.net instead? Gizoogle is a parody website of Google and returns all searches in gangsterspeak. You might not get exactly what you’re looking for – type Google for example in Gizoogle and it doesn’t even come up – but at least you’ll be having a good old chuckle, whilst those money worshipping devils in California will be left scratching their heads, praying for a miracle and wondering where it all went wrong.