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Re: A 'book' on low traffic SERP's?

I see we sustain this habit of slowly composing a 'book'...

David wrote:

> On Fri, 29 Jul 2005 05:23:23 +0100, Roy Schestowitz
> <newsgroups@schestowitz.com> wrote:
>>David wrote:
>>> On Thu, 28 Jul 2005 16:03:12 +0100, Roy Schestowitz
>>> <newsgroups@schestowitz.com> wrote:
>>>>David wrote:
>>>>> On Thu, 28 Jul 2005 14:43:21 +0100, Roy Schestowitz
>>>>> <newsgroups@schestowitz.com> wrote:
>>>>>>I was deceived too at first. It was only once I went to his sites that
>>>>>>I realised it was somewhat a monkey business. Don't get me wrong, he
>>>>>>does everything he does quite well, but he cannot mention and present
>>>>>>the high numbers to someone with a 5-page Web site and the desire to
>>>>>>lure more customers.
>>>>> Can you show me one 5 page web site that gets high traffic?
>>>>Wordpress.org. PageRank 9 and not much more than 20 /significant/ pages.
>>>>Good sites with many references present themselves gracefully.
>>> What a load of crap, that site has thousands of pages and presumably
>>> makes a lot of money.
>>> http://www.google.com/search?num=100&hl=en&lr=&safe=off&c2coff...
>>> You might not like the site, but it's not what you said or I asked
>>> for, so again do you know of a 5 page web site that gets high traffic?
>>It's the support forums that make the numbers high. These are /not/
>>significant pages. The statistics to use is number of views _per page_.
>>Some WordPress pages will be viewed tens of thousands of times a day. With
>>your sites, you probably have less than 1 view per day.
> I haven't looked at the site in detail, but I can't believe out of
> 632,000 pages indexed in Google only 20 are /significant/ (as you put
> it). Isn't this like saying your NG posts are not significant to your
> site, I'm sure there will be some interesting forum posts just like
> you think some of your NG posts are of interest to searchers. Both
> will bring in traffic.
> Besides your point was that I don't use 5 page sites as examples
> (which is true) and so couldn't help a client who had a small site
> (which isn't true), I told you what I'd do in that situation (which
> has occurred, though not with just 5 pages) and you came back with the
> above site? I still don't get the link between an enormous site like
> WordPress and a hypothetical 5 page site though.

WordPress is a non-profit site and project even though its founder and lead
developer gets funded by CNET indirectly. WordPress.org contains
advertisements in the support forums which attract some traffic, but if you
look at the downloads counter you will get an insight into the enormous
number of people who get introduced to the software and decide to download
it (many more do it under Fantastico/cPanel). That is where it matters the
most from the Open Source project's point-of-view.

> If someone comes to me with a 5 page site and in 6 months the site has
> thousands of pages of a similar theme indexed, has many new links to
> the site and as a result of this has much more targeted traffic
> wouldn't that be considered a success in the eyes of the client?

Yes, but I am slightly skeptic about the long-term consequences. Honestly, I
am! Search engines are already getting to grips with these techniques. They
know it causes them to lose their credibility and leads to decline in their
popularity. They will not necessarily blacklist (very unlikely as a matter
of fact), but they can/will re-prioritise in the future.

>>> Just so we are clear this time, not a 50 page site, 1000 page, 632,000
>>> page site a 5 page web site. If you are going try to put someone down
>>> at least back it up with something rather than trash posts like-
>>> Oh look Dave can't get lots of search engine traffic to a 5 page web
>>> site therefore he's full of crap and deceives people.
>>The challenge is to take a 5-page site and increase the traffic using
>>keyword density, SERP investigation, nicer graphics, etc. Admittedly, it
>>is a hard task.
> You didn't say that at the start though, the only criteria was 5
> pages.
> Hard is an under statement, for a 5 page site to do well it will need
> multiple high traffic SERPs (highly unlikely to get lots of low
> traffic SERPs). Even in the top traffic sectors it's rare to gain over
> 500 visitors a day from a single SERP and to gain those really high
> traffic SERPs can take years of work. Highest traffic SERP I've had
> was 400 visitors a day from Google.

The first serious site that I built contains about 10 pages in its _trunk_.
It fails to get more than a few referrals, which proves my point. At least
you agree with me on that one.

> I'd much rather have thousands of low traffic SERPs though, because
> loose the high traffic SERPs and your site is dead, loose half the low
> traffic SERPs you can still survive whilst you build the traffic you
> lost back up.

Yup, no disagreement there. The questions posed then are: what will the
nature of the low traffic SERP's be? And what will the nature of the site
pages be? What will their source be?

>>If Google accepted content that is appended to sites en masse, Google
>>would perish. The guys at Google know that. They need to devise an
>>automated way of identifying good and authentic content. Due to benevolent
>>mirroring, it is a hard task, again.
> There's a difference between mirroring a site (that I've only ever
> done once as a replacement to my penalised Lingerie site, and as a
> side note that backfired!) and using content that's also used on other
> sites.

Interesting how they traced the migration of content... maybe they have a
picture of you up in the cubicles of Google engineers. *LOL*

> The content on http://william-shakespeare.classic-literature.co.uk/ is
> found on multiple sites in many different formats, last time I check
> no other site had all the plays listed on the above in the same
> languages etc... in the same way.
> Similar for http://mark-twain.classic-literature.co.uk/ which is
> listed in DMOZ with a Cool Site Award
> looking at similar sites none list everything I list.
> Are these not valuable sites to certain visitors?
> What about http://wrestling.dvd-video-store.info/ I happen to enjoy
> wrestling (UFC anyway) and you can find everything listed on the above
> site at Amazon around about here -
> http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/browse/-/467972/ref=br_bx_c_...
> which one is easier to navigate if you are only interested in
> Wrestling DVDs?
> There's a DVD listed in these and many others places-
> http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B0000AZKK...
> http://wrestling.dvd-video-store.info/B0000AZKKL/Ultimate-Fighting...
> http://www.movie-pages.com/movie/ultimate-fighting-championship...
> and many more.
> All use the same content, but with a different format, should all but
> one be deleted?

That is exactly what makes the job so hard to search engines/crawlers. Bear
in mind that it must be automated too.

> When I sold lingerie I sold the same items other sites sold, used
> similar and sometimes identical descriptions for the products other
> sites used. On a page by page basis there would be some pages that
> shared a lot of similarities with each other from different website's
> (if I owned both you might call them mirror sites). I assume you don't
> have a problem with this kind of duplicate use of content? Is there
> really that much difference between that and an Amazon affiliate
> store?

Google will most likely perceive Amazon differently. They will not want to
spoil any relationship with a giant. Putting that aside, this is (yet
again) what makes their job so hard.

> Google (search engines) don't like sites that don't add value in
> someway. The search engine directory sites that are there for Adsense
> revenue have no value (we all hate to find them during a search), the
> sites above do have value. You might not consider the affiliate ones
> as having much value, but visitors do as otherwise they wouldn't order
> so much stuff through the affiliate sites I own (like I said half a
> million dollars in sales of Amazon products is a conservative estimate
> for the next 12 months and that's from just a few months work).
>>> BTW I have a 10 page site that get ~500 visitors a day and took a lot
>>> of effort to get there. But, then I don't consider 500 visitors a lot
>>> of traffic.
>>> If you dislike Wordpress.org so much why do you link to them from
>>> http://www.schestowitz.com/Weblog/
>>I love WordPress. I am an active part of the community. Where did you get
>>the false idea that I dislike them?
> It was the 20 page thing, it read like you thought all but 20 pages of
> the site was crap. I must have misread you.
>>> Though this is very funny coming from someone who steals other people
>>> copyright material without their permission-
>>> http://www.schestowitz.com/UseNet/2005/June_2005_1/author.html
>>> I don't recall giving you permission to use my copyright material-
>>> http://www.schestowitz.com/UseNet/2005/June_2005_1/msg00041.html
>>UseNet is well(if not most)-renewned for being conversations in open
>>cyberspace. Seek your name in Google and you will see how many complete
>>newsgroups archives exist. I, on the contrary, store my own messages and
>>sometimes add a little interlinked context.
> It is still using unique material created by others which by
> definition is copyright at the time of creation.
>>> You're a hypocrite.
>>> Please remove it and any other uses of my copyright works or I might
>>> start a DMC complaint.
>>It is not copyrighted.
> Anything unique created by others is automatically copyright, so using
> it is a copyright infringement. I don't loose sleep over you mirroring
> my posts, but that does not mean it's not a copyright infringement.
>>You needn't attack either. In this newsgroup we ough
>>to discuss ideas and try to help each other out. I am not an enemy and I
>>only want to discuss, along with the others, what search engines like or
> Easy to say that now but think back to what you said earlier-
> "I was deceived too at first. It was only once I went to his sites
> that I realised it was somewhat a monkey business. Don't get me wrong,
> he does everything he does quite well, but he cannot mention and
> present the high numbers to someone with a 5-page Web site and the
> desire to lure more customers."
> So how should I take emotive words/phrases like-
> deceived
> monkey business
> What did you mean by deceived and monkey business then?

/Deceived/ by incomplete information. For example, if one mentions the
number of visits to a site, but the site only delivers atom feeds to
subscribers, the latter fact is a very important one to point out.

Monkey business: I just like the phrase. A friend of mine uses it too much
and it makes me laugh. I'd use the phrase to describe any business that
operates in ways that are not acceptable by all and does not accept all
others, e.g. Micro$oft.

>>>>That's the same type of sites that Charly referred to as "a lot of
>>>>spammy sites" a few hours ago. Spam is evil. Greed drives spam. Greed is
>>>>evil. *smile*
>>> Tell me what's spammy about these pages
>>> http://www.classic-literature.co.uk/bram-stoker/
>>> The first is information (free) the second and third sells products
>>> people want. Visitors read the first page and order products from the
>>> other two, what is spammy about that?
>>I took a look. You're quite right about this one. I take my comment back
>>as Charly was talking about portal-like scraping.
> Apology accepted.
> I don't like those scraped sites (the search engine type directories)
> either and have never considered making one, they have no long term
> value or future. I used to think short term when it came to the
> internet, but now I take a long term view of things, picture what I
> can do with my literature sites over the next 10 years, how I can
> expand out from them. Right now I'm adding affiliate Amazon stores to
> them, few years from now I could be selling products related to the
> sites, William Shakespeare T-shirts and cups etc.... or selling study
> notes/guides related to the works, all depends on how things go.

About scraped sites, I noticed a few of them that trackback items of mine.
At least they leave a link, quote /in part/ and push visitors in my
direction while avoiding search engines from suspecting duplicate content.

Others whom I know were less fortune as scrapers plagiarised from them and
got them penalised. Again, the SE's can easily interpret mirrors wrongly
and penalise the benevolent site.

> I have a free recipes site than gets over 10,000 visitors a day, I'm
> trying to think of a way to use those visitors more effectively long
> term than for just Amazon/Adsense revenue which gets me less than 10%
> of the income they generate. I know from running online stores you can
> make at least 40% profit if you sell the right products, so there's
> the potential to make 4X what I'm making now from that site.
>>> At least I don't make those waste of space Usenet mirrors that clog up
>>> some SERPs. What does everything under
>>> http://www.schestowitz.com/UseNet/ add to the net exactly, what if 80
>>> millions domains or so (including parked ones) contained Usenet mirror
>>> pages whose volume was 1000% of the master content?
>>My UseNet posts (if you look closely) display my solutions to problem that
>>rarely involve commercial software. For example, I talk about my Linux
>>experiences, ways in which I fixed my handheld and HTML tricks that I use.
>>People have thanked me for helping them solve some obscure problems in the
>>past as the posts are very problem-specific.
> That's all well and good, but you also post others posts verbatim. I'm
> far, far from a copyright expert, my understanding is you can take
> parts of a copyright work as fair use. For example this post if I put
> it on a web site I could post parts of your post (I shouldn't post it
> all though) since I'm 'discussing' your work (so to speak). Legally
> speaking I can't take all your posts and put them on a website
> verbatim as that's infringing your copyright.
> I think it's only a matter of time before someone makes a DMCA
> complaint against a Usenet mirror opening the gates to further
> complaints.

I used to save only my own messages until December 2004 when I realised that
some messages lacked context that provided the actual solution. If I make a
suggestion and somebody follows up with a correction, that, for example, is
where I'd typically add a message that is not mine.

>>>>Using statistics as a tool for high self-portrait while neglecting the
>>>>very important 'details', which are the nature by which you scrape the
>>> Are the statistics false, are they even manipulated in a way to make
>>> them sound better than they are, what important 'details are
>>> supposedly missed out?
>>> Last time someone (Bill) suggested I was making visitor numbers up I
>>> removed the password from the sites basic statistics page for all to
>>> see for a few days. Everything I say is true and can be proved.
>>> So where is the deception?
>>No explicit deception. No lies. I won't deny the fact that you managed to
>>attract millions of people. It is just not a suitable 'case study' for the
> Why not? You obviously don't know the details of what I do for clients
> since I don't publish that, so you are assuming what I do for my sites
> isn't repeatable for clients (it is in a lot of cases).
> I have a single site that receives over 10,000 visitors a day (that's
> my best site in terms of number of visitors per day, next best is 7K).
> I use the same techniques and tools I used on that site on some (not
> all) of my clients sites. I have clients who thanks to this have
> several thousand extra visitors a day without having to spend a
> fortune on traffic or other resources.

Their sites become something else in that case. You transform the site's
scale as an optimisation step...

>>> Since most of my sites have Adsense ads my sites make quite a bit of
>>> money for Google, I've no idea what percentage Google gives it's
>>> Adsense customers, but I'm guessing it will be less than 10%, so again
>>> Google could easily make half a million dollars from my sites over the
>>> next 12 months.
>>Google AdSense will not pay much, but it depends on the nature of the
>>site. I think you should stick with Amazon in your site. It will benefit
>>your better -- financially that is.
> I base my estimates on real figures, basically look at the previous 28
> days and assume everything will remain exactly the same (won't go up
> or down). As you probably know you can't discus Adsense income in
> detail (against their terms), so can't be specific. I'm finding some
> days I make more from Adsense than Amazon, overall though Amazon is
> performing slightly better and as I've add higher priced items
> (started with classic books in April which doesn't make much via
> Adsense, now include large kitchen appliances etc... which is much
> better) the Amazon revenue is steadily climbing at a higher rate than
> Adsense.
> If you saw my stats from Adsense you'd see for my sites they are well
> worth having, I could comfortably live just from the Adsense revenue
> alone now and it looks set to jump again. I changed all my site from
> having ads that blended into the background to what I have now (bright
> borders that clash a little with the look) it's early days, but looks
> like it's going to increase revenue by about 30% almost overnight!!
> You really do need a lot of visitors and your content to target
> phrases advertisers are willing to pay a lot for your visitors for
> Adsense to really work. When I look at just the literature sites
> revenue they pale in comparison to some of my other sites with the
> revenue per click up to 10x higher!

The majority of my site does not involve any adverts because it serves as a
gateway to my research and projects. I guess I could get more decent
revenue to cover hosting costs, but I would never follow that route. My
site is never intended to make any profit.

>>> My clients are more successful and like Amazon/Google helps keep their
>>> employees in a secure job.
>>> What can I say I'm a giver :-)
>>> So other than your Usenet crap what do you contribute?
>>Plenty. Most of my visitors read my Web log where I publish some opinions
>>and point out relatively interesting articles. I also built some free
>>software from scratch; people download and use it. Just to clarify, I
>>don't make a dime for what I do on the Web. In fact, I have to work at
>>daytime to cover part of the site maintenance costs and pay the bills.
> It's a shame as there is a LOT of very easy money to be made if you
> can get the traffic.

I like traffic more than I like money. In fact, I have an apathy for money,
I think...

>>>>By all means, I don't consider you to be a spammer (upcoming is
>>>>just a 'case study'), but here is the story of another man who thought
>>>>he just carried on 'business as usual':
>>> Why show this story then Roy other than to try to associate me with
>>> Russian email spammers?
>>> I don't consider you to be a paedophile, but here's a completely
>>> unrelated news story for you (just a case study)-
>>> http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/1502035.stm
>>> Do you really think I don't understand the tactic of "throw enough mud
>>> and some sticks".
>>It was probably redundant again, but I wanted to point out another article
>>that I liked. Don't we /all/ hate spam?
> Most people hate spam, but that doesn't mean we all have the same
> definition of what spam is. I think most would agree unsolicited
> emails is spam, can you say the same for a site using public domain
> content in a way that adds value to the content?

Spam is just a word. It's a word I don't often use (although this has
changed recently; it plagued my ears) because I prefer technical names that
explain what exactly is happening. It's like saying "worm" or "security
flaw" rather than XML-RPC loophole or DoS attack. Even "hacker", "cracker"
and "script kiddie" have gotten all mixed up. Let's use more proper

> I keep getting phone calls of recorded messages saying I've won
> holidays etc... and to phone this premium rate number to claim, now
> that's spam!

I used to get these in my grandmother's house. I no longer use the phone
much. I try my best to avoid vocal, unrecorded conversation over wires
because rarely is it welcome.


Roy S. Schestowitz

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