Google is relentless in its effort to rid search of spam and those who try to game the system are being targeted. The problem is that even legitimate sites are getting hurt in the shuffle.
Marketers today must understand what Panda, Penguin and Humming bird are looking for and what they consider unnatural. It is of course a moving target. Search systems are amongst the most automated intelligent system in the world. They learn what is natural by constantly measuring what people are doing. As the averages change so does the nature of natural, at least from their point of view. Because of this search Marketing is rather like playing in quicksand!
What this means is that hotel managers and tourism marketers need to keep informed or employ marketers who are well informed and stay in touch with the latest patents on search.
Position 2, is one of many companies that on top of trends as this article will demonstrated. In this blog they share who got hit and who flourished in the latest Panda 4.1 upgrade. HotelGuide did well gaining 285%. As the article says: “One thing is for sure – Panda 4.1 is in line with the previous updates and is intended at sites which have poor or plagiarized content. Typically, websites which do not produce their own content & re-publish content tops the list of losers.” …Position 2on Panda.
In the same analysis Yellow.com lost 76%. The implication is that Yellow is reusing content much the way that OTAs once did. This has particularly sinister effect on content owners as Google will often not penalize the authority site with duplicate content. It simple may not know who is the originator of the content and will often side with the authority site. That means hotels that allow OTAs to use their content verbatim may suffer. It has happened, it’s just another nail in coffin for hotels failing in search, as noted in previous blogs on Google Travel, so don’t let it happen to you.