Searchmetrics Lists Winners And Losers Of Google’s New Panda Update

By: Chris Crum - May 23, 2014

As reported earlier this week, Google has launched a new version of the Panda update, which the company has officially dubbed version 4.0. It just happened to come around the same time as another big algorithm update aimed at cleaning up spam (a new version of the “Payday Loans” update).

When Google launches new Panda updates, Searchmetrics typically attempts to identify the winners and losers. It’s not always been 100% accurate in the past, and when another update is launched around the same time, things can be a little more complicated, but here’s what they came up with this time:

Losers:

 

domain percent
ask.com > – 50%
ebay.com > – 33%
biography.com > – 33%
retailmenot.com > – 33%
starpulse.com > – 50%
history.com > – 33%
isitdownrightnow.com > – 50%
aceshowbiz.com > – 75%
examiner.com > – 50%
yellowpages.com > – 20%
yourtango.com > – 75%
dealcatcher.com > – 50%
livescience.com > – 50%
webopedia.com > – 50%
xmarks.com > – 50%
simplyrecipes.com > – 33%
siteslike.com > – 50%
digitaltrends.com > – 50%
health.com > – 50%
spoonful.com > – 75%
songkick.com > – 75%
realsimple.com > – 33%
appbrain.com > – 33%
thehollywoodgossip.com > – 50%
dealspl.us > – 33%
techtarget.com > – 33%
gossipcop.com > – 50%
rd.com > – 75%
chow.com > – 33%
doxo.com > – 50%
heavy.com > – 50%
csmonitor.com > – 33%
toptenreviews.com > – 20%
parenting.com > – 50%
globalpost.com > – 75%
espnfc.com > – 50%
serviceguidance.com > – 50%
mnn.com > – 75%
mystore411.com > – 50%
urlm.co > – 33%
delish.com > – 50%
healthcentral.com > – 33%
whatscookingamerica.net > – 50%
columbia.edu > – 20%
songlyrics.com > – 20%
internetslang.com > – 33%
ibiblio.org > – 50%
webutation.info > – 50%
cheapflights.com > – 33%
mybanktracker.com > – 50%

Winners:

domain percent
glassdoor.com > 100%
emedicinehealth.com > 500 %
medterms.com > 500 %
yourdictionary.com > 50%
shopstyle.com > 250%
zimbio.com > 500 %
myrecipes.com > 250%
couponcabin.com > 250%
buzzfeed.com > 25%
consumeraffairs.com > 100%
wordpress.com > 20%
thinkexist.com > 250%
onhealth.com > 250%
alternativeto.net > 100%
whosdatedwho.com > 250%
reverso.net > 50%
wikimedia.org > 100%
dogtime.com > 100%
findthebest.com > 50%
eatingwell.com > 100%
quotegarden.com > 100%
goodhousekeeping.com > 250%
everydayhealth.com > 25%
simplyhired.com > 100%
momswhothink.com > 100%
similarsites.com > 100%
southernliving.com > 50%
theknot.com > 25%
allaboutvision.com > 100%
openculture.com > 50%
babyzone.com > 50%
tasteofhome.com > 33%
gotquestions.org > 100%
movie4k.to > 50%
wmagazine.com > 33%
ycharts.com > 100%
historyplace.com > 50%
rcn.com > 100%
salary.com > 50%
skepdic.com > 100%
mediawiki.org > 100%
oodle.com > 100%
abbreviations.com > 100%
homes.com > 100%
spokeo.com > 50%
hlntv.com > 33%
sparkpeople.com > 33%
hayneedle.com > 50%
emedtv.com > 100%

BuzzFeed wins again!

The losers list is interesting this time around – particularly the eBay and RetailMeNot entries (this isn’t the first time we’ve seen Ask on the list).

Searchmetrics founder Marcus Tober concludes:

Some sites that should be potentially on the Panda loser list have actually shown a positive development. This could be the “learning from mistakes” (also from others), as some of these candidates have (now) written their own content. The losers on the other hand, tend to show syndicated content or even duplicate content. But this doesn’t mean that this is the end of the update. Google proofed in the past that they are able to perform improvements or rollbacks really fast. So we will see what will happen over the next weeks.

By the way, the Payday-Loan losers can be identified pretty easy -> URL completely removed from the index (it’s more like a link -based loss) or not (rather Panda).

We already knew that eBay took a hit thanks to some digging by Dr. Peter J. Meyers at Moz, who points to specific keywords where eBay pages fell out of the top ten.

RetailMeNot actually released a statement following the release of the Searchmetrics charts, in which it said:

The company believes these reports greatly overstate the impact on RetailMeNot.com. Over RetailMeNot’s history, search engines have periodically implemented algorithm changes that have caused traffic to fluctuate. It is too early to judge any potential impact of the latest Google algorithm change. While RetailMeNot’s traffic with Google continues to grow year-over-year, the company has experienced some shift in rankings and traffic. The company continues to believe its focus on content quality and user experience will continue to help grow the business, enable consumers to save money and drive retailer sales.

With RetailMeNot’s 600,000 digital offers from over 70,000 retailers and brands, the company believes it offers consumers the largest selection of digital offers. Since a substantial portion of those offers are not monetized today, traffic fluctuations do not necessarily correlate to financial performance. At this time, RetailMeNot does not have an update to its financial guidance.

RetailMeNot has made considerable strides to diversify its traffic sources. In the first quarter 2014, approximately 35% of RetailMeNot’s traffic came from sources other than search engines. RetailMeNot has its highest brand awareness metrics in the company’s history, and millions of consumers are coming to RetailMeNot directly through its mobile applications.

RetailMeNot’s strategy remains unchanged. The company will continue to strive to provide consumers with the best user experience and highest quality offers from leading retailers and brands.

You have to wonder if any of the Panda 4.0 losers will face decisions like Meta Filter and others have had to in the past, and lay off employees.

Keep in mind that Searchmetrics’ lists should be taken with a grain of salt.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

About the Author

Chris CrumChris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.

View all posts by Chris Crum
  • Anon

    It certainly seems to me (and clients) that small businesses who have been investing in original and unique content are FINALLY starting to get some traffic back from the mega corps.

    I have a feeling this is partly Google PR though, it’s been taking a massive amount of negative press from small business around the world, because we’ve all been seeing their own advertisers and corporate friends like Amazon and eBay stealing massive amounts of traffic with incredibly WEAK pages. When Google consistently demands original content, but then still puts you on page 10 behind scraped content from Amazon and spammy pages of their own advertisers, then it’s bound to cause anger.

    Hopefully Google has now learned that it cannot play both sides and expect to win. If it wants us to create original content, it has to support that and reward the sites that do it, even when their own advertisers and corporate buddies are “bribing” them for the traffic.

  • Matilija

    I don’t see the vile city-data portal on the list. They are slamming my sites and thousands of other sites with copied form data. They basically copy the Census site data verbatim, the U.S. Census pages should be ranking higher and this site WAY lower! Google still has a lot of big holes in their search to fix. Seems the analog brick and mortar sites are taking another hit, while the huge automated sites are climbing still higher!

    They have not even touched the sites that steal digital images, files, maps and give them away on offshore sites, all for Adsense clicks!
    Many have STOPPED using Google Search since their valid screams have gone unanswered!

  • Over it

    I’m not buying it.
    Panda 4.0 is yet another kick in the balls for small businesses desperate to win rankings. Once again we are forced back to Adwords to compete with the industry giants marketing budgets.

    Having spent the past year and a half, desperately adding good, valuable content to my small business site, linking with related sites and Blogs and doing all the right things, on the 20th of this month one of my main keywords finally scraped into Google’s top 10. The very same day, Google released Panda 4.0 and now we are on page 3 again.
    I am sick to the guts and at my wits end with Google!