Hi everyone,

I just found out (a few hours ago) that DaniWeb was *seriously* hurt by the new Google algorithm update that took place yesterday. The algorithm change was only rolled out to US visitors, and it reduced the amount of US-based traffic to DaniWeb by over 50%!

Google plans on rolling out the change to the rest of the world systematically, which means that by the time this update propagates worldwide, we will end up with HALF the amount of traffic we started out with.

I'm not sure what this means for DaniWeb's future ... As it stands right now, we won't be able to afford our carrying costs. I am petitioning you for your help ... All we can use right now is more traffic and great content. Please ... Revisit a lot. Tell your friends. Posts more. Contribute. Help us stay alive :)

So much for Google claiming that the change would simply filter out the content farms and give more visibility to genuine content creators such as DaniWeb.


Let's hope that as the brown stuff hits the fan, and the media starts displaying how the change is impacting upon the wrong people, Google might tweak the algorithm again.

Yes, Google officially planned this algorithm change against content farms like answers.com and ehow.com, and "Made for AdSense" sites that just have billions of pages of crappy content.

Unfortunately, DaniWeb somehow got grouped into the same category. All of the search terms that we used to rank #1 for got replaced in the search results with sites like Wikipedia and other long, more elaborate, in depth analyses and articles.

Help us prove to Google that we aren't just full of low quality, broken English Indian students asking for free homework help! The best way you can help right now is to contribute great content to DaniWeb, tell your friends, and keep coming back.

If I do a search on PHP problem, ASP problem and C++ problem, I find a Daniweb PHP post on Google page one and posts for the other two on Google Page 2. A search on the languages themselves or on topics like Windows doesn't find Daniweb in the top 100. I don't know how the keywords ranked before the Google change but it looks like a site like Daniweb that is quite broad but not that deep won't do as well as sites that are focussed on just one language/topic and have more depth. It seem that the path that you were already thinking of in terms of ramping up the content is now a necessity. It wouldn't be that difficult to have a section for downloads for each language (for example) and have people in the forums suggest their favorite programs for inclusion (possibly including some of their own). You probably want more articles and tutorials but that will take longer. Since there are so many recurring newbie questions, maybe some of the experienced people in the forums would be willing to create a formal Daniweb tutorial on some of these topics. If it's now much more about content, I guess it's a matter of dealing with it or paying the price. Google might adjust the algorithm again to Daniweb's benefit but you can't count on it. On the positive side, maybe this is an opportunity to get everything re-vitalized. Maybe there is more that can be done to get more articles on advanced topics. Maybe you could start with suggestions for articles and tutorials from the members, build a list and see if anyone volunteers to write some of them. It can be the 2011 Daniweb Community Project!

Note: as you probably know, Daniweb isn't ranked high in terms of response time. According to Alexa it is very slow at 3.493 seconds. That may also be a factor in Goggle ranking it down.

Hi chrishea,

According to your member profile, it shows you are in Canada. This google update has so far only affected US traffic (International traffic to follow soon). Therefore, if you are seeing DaniWeb in search results, it's because you aren't seeing the effects of the Google update (yet).

Yes, I know we are not ranked high in terms of response time, and that affects our ranking. James is already on this one!

As you say, it's all about content now. We have been working recently on our editorial section, but paying for content is not realistic or sustainable for us.

Currently exploring options ...

The way I see it, Google has now decided to rank content creators/sources higher than content consumers and the content creators are now judged based on visits, track-backs, how long the visitors stay on a given site (certainly possible) and the discussion surrounding that given site.

This might be the reason why search for terms like "time complexity of algorithm" would definitely put Wikipedia and other free online book links at a higher priority than forum links. It's also a possibility that this algorithm puts *all* the discussion boards at a disadvantage assuming that they would be mostly content consumers and not creators. I think the track-backs also play a big role here. If a "time complexity of algorithm" search brings up two articles: one from Daniweb and one from site XXX, and if the link from site XXX was discussed on hacker news or reddit, it would be placed before the Daniweb one. Or so I think... ;-)

But I'm surprised that you are surprised at a Wikipedia link ranking higher than Daniweb. :-)

BTW, I just compared the result of the query "starting java" using a US proxy and my own connection and for strange reason, the thread started by me ranks above the official Java tutorial. :-P

with proxy (US proxy):

without proxy (India servers):

Maybe the results didn't propagate to whatever proxy you were using. When I google "starting java", DaniWeb doesn't appear AT ALL. codingforums.com do, however.

We had been averaging about 90,000 US-based pageviews per day from Google. This was incredibly consistent. On Thursday, we suddenly dropped to 50,000 pageviews per day. Friday just closed out at 20,000. At this rate, by morning, we will no longer receive any US-based traffic from Google. I am watching the site dwindle away before my eyes. There won't be anything left in a few hours. I'm afraid to sleep.

*breathing from a bag*

Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, oh my god. It's the flipping apocalypse!

Why have you forsaken me, Google?!

commented: nope +0

How about you drop the entire internet-marketing forum, that should boost the overall posting quality on DW significantly.

(just thinking out loud here)

It certainly appears that Google is rewarding those sites which are 'narrow and deep' while penalising those which might be better described as 'broad and shallow' in terms of content.

Nick may well be onto something, in that the Internet Marketing and Business Exchange forums are the ones which attract the most cut and pasted content, the most 'me too' content, the most spam content and the least in-depth content. Perhaps if we cut back on the breadth and focussed on the core (narrow) community strength, which is the programming/development/geek expertise, it could turn things back around in our favour with Google?

I appreciate it's a very tough call, especially as the marketing and business forums pull in a lot of traffic. However, in the light of the Google turnaround perhaps it is time to seriously consider whether it is the right type of traffic.

The Business Exchange category is entirely behind a login gate, so that won't affect anything.

Additionally, this appears to be ACROSS THE WEB. In checking with friends in the industry, nearly all forums are affected. Two of my friends who also own really huge developer-related websites have also been affected, and neither of their sites cater to hardware/software or marketing. They're both dev only.

Damn, this is really depressing news...

Sorry to be non-constructive.

Thank you for the support everyone. As mentioned, the absolute BEST WAY you can support DaniWeb right now is to post a lot, revisit often, and tell your friends.

Now THIS is just absolutely ridiculous! This makes me mad ...

We used to rank #1 for "round robin algorithm" in Google for about five years straight. This is the page that Google sent people to: http://www.daniweb.com/forums/thread1334.html

Now, I can completely understand being bumped down in favor of a Wikipedia article for 'round robin scheduling' that took over the #1 spot in the search results. I can kind of maybe even understand the wikipedia article for 'Round-robin tournament' taking over the #2 spot, even if I think it's in very bad taste for the same domain to hold two positions in a row in search results, especially spots #1 and #2.

But now c'mon ... this is just RIDICULOUS that our article was pushed below THIS thread for a Google spot we've held for 5 years: http://forums.devx.com/showthread.php?t=160880

Compare the DaniWeb thread that used to be #1 to THIS thread! Does this thread really deserve a higher position in the search results?! We have clearly just been flagged by something in this algorithm change to devalue the entire daniweb.com domain in one swoop.

Time to send in a complaint to "google almighty"?

There really isn't anyone to "complain" to. I've submitted a reconsideration request through Google Webmaster Tools, and I tried reaching out to some Googlers through twitter.

This is incredibly harsh especially as the whole of Daniweb hinges on Google searches.

It is a shame that one little thing can have such a massive affect. And the frustrating thing there seems very little you can do to turn it around...

Article sites have been hit pretty hard as well (some would say that was appropriate). Ezinearticles is down 35%. This is an interesting blog post by Chris Knight, their CEO. It shows that there will be some significant changes to react to Google's changes.

The algorithm update was intended to affect these "content farm" sites such as ezinearticles.com, about.com, etc. DaniWeb somehow got caught up in the mix.

well, maybe i do not understand the full complexity of all of this but here is my 2 cents...

seems that Google has forgotten what has made them a household name. they have done so many "upates" and "improvements" lately that what has made them so popular is now giving them a bad name.

kinda like peanut butter. (lol) SKIPPY became a household name because it tasted good :), and in my opinion..it is still the bestest! why?????????? because they never fixed what wasnt broken.

now google, is a household name..and has a monopoly (or close to it) but if they continue on this path..people (like me) will remember that yahoo has a search engine...Bing is trying to make a name..ect.

and maybe what needs to happen here is not a petition..but people actually "knocking" google down to size by going to other search engines that have been good in the past and are still trying to make a name.

lol..it would be kinda ironic to see google drop down in the search engine tooooooooo!! hehheheheheeee

Stranger things have happened than giant names in tech disappearing, even search tech giants: anyone remember Alta Vista?

However, I'm not sure any of that helps us at the moment...

ahhhhhh yes, i do remember Alta Vista..that was a good one :)

And GoTo.com, who pioneered the concept of PPC.

After reading this, and a few articles linked to by friends on Facebook, my overall opinion of Google has dropped significantly. If it wasn't for my Android Phone and my liking of Chrome, I would have dropped Google entirely by now, in favor of some other provider. If the articles I read are correct, Google is on the wrong side of the net neutrality issue.

When it comes to enhancing content here on DW, I'll volunteer to write a few tutorials in ASP.NET as well as SilverLight.

Hi Fortinbra,

Thank you SO much for your support. Articles would be great!

I will try and add a couple more minutes a day (already 3-4 hours a day), anything more, I will have to move in to the office permanently.:)

I will also start posting some tutorials etc in my main forum vb4/5/6. If that will help, then hey, why not.;)

In the same light, it seems that a huge amount of people that was making use of gmail got let down when all their contents were deleted, adding to a huge outcry from the users. I say, what goes around, comes around. Let Google fry in their own fat. They reckon it has nothing to do with the implementation of algorithms OR hackers, it just happened....