Welcome to WebProNews Breaking eBusiness and Search News
Advertise | Newsletter | Sitemap | News Feeds News Feed 
 WebProNews Search Part of the iEntry network iEntry inc. 

Google Bowling: How Competitors Can Sabotage You; What Google Should Do About It

Michael Pedone
Expert Author
Published: 2005-10-27

WebProNews RSS Feed

Have you heard about the latest "sport" in dirty online business? It's called Google Bowling and it represents a gaping flaw in Google's system that allows your competitors to sabotage your site to the point of getting it banned or penalized.

This can't happen, right? I mean, Google would have us believe their algorithms are not easily manipulated and that your rankings are safely under your (and their) control. But in fact there's a chink in Google's armor that can have massive consequences for any web business unfortunate enough to have aggressive and unethical competitors.

Here's the loophole, explained

It all began with Google's aggressive attempts to curb link popularity manipulation by penalizing sites that purchase site- wide text link ads to get lots of incoming links in a hurry. (eg: If the ad selling site had 1,000 pages, the advertiser's link would instantly be on 1,000 pages.)

Google began filtering sites that indulged in this kind of linkage and either penalized or flat-out removed the site from its database. Bad news for that business. Excellent news for their competition. Can you guess what's coming next?

Certain scoundrels began thinking: "If buying site-wide text link ads en masse will get my site into hot water with Google, why not buy them for my competitor's site instead? Then just sit back and wait for Google to solve my number one business headache... the competition." (Cue evil laughter sound track.)

This, ladies and gentlemen, is Google Bowling. Simple. Devious. Devastating. And not just in theory; it's really happening out there.

Here at eTrafficJams.com, we are hearing from a lot of businesses whose sites once enjoyed great rankings (ours included) and now don't even show up in Google for their own company name.

A small loophole has turned into a devastating black hole, sucking in and wiping out countless quality websites in the process. And it just may be their competitors sending them into the abyss.

Is your head spinning yet? I mean, it was bad enough knowing that with every Google update, your business may go up or down in the rankings depending on the whims of the Google geeks. But now add into the mix the fact that your competitors also have a hand in your search engine health and wellness... well, Houston, we have a problem.

Although this would be a fortuitous time for me to suggest that the solution to this problem is hiring a reputable SEO firm (like www.eTrafficJams.com) to watch over your rankings, I shall resist the temptation. Instead, I'd like to offer Google - as if they're listening - a simple solution to this nasty problem.

Right now, Google hands out either rewards or harsh penalties for linking strategies - good rankings to reward good linking techniques, and penalties, such as the now-infamous sandbox, to punish un-cool, manipulative linking practices. But there isn't any middle ground.

I say why not create a neutral response... a filter that simply ignores questionable links, neither rewarding nor punishing them?

1) Innocent victims of Google Bowling don't get hurt.

2) If the dubious links actually were perpetrated by the business at the receiving end of them, Google would exclude those links and the site would gain nothing. It would simply be throwing ad money out the window (unless, of course, it was buying site-wide ads in vehicles that generated relevant traffic). And

3) Google's reputation for delivering accurate and fair search results would be restored.

Google needs to do something soon to plug this loophole, not just for the immediate relief of its users but for its own credibility

Although being "Google Bowled" by a competitor and having your site removed from the database could ruin a small business, the consequences for Google could be just as dire. If chatter picks up that Google's results are easy to manipulate and consequently inaccurate, users may be scared away to other search engines.

Fewer users = fewer clicks on ads = lower revenues. Well, I don't have to spell that out for the financial wizards at Google.

But just think: a few stories on the big TV networks, say on MSNBC (*cough* think Bill Gates' MSN Search, a major Google competitor), revealing how the new sport of Google Bowling is sweeping the nation... well, the average user at home may start to have doubts about Google and maybe decide to try out Yahoo! or MSN Search.

Is it really that far-fetched to speculate that someone like oh, I don't know, Mr. Gates, might take advantage of this situation to solve his number one business headache... the competition?

So I suggest a simple solution to Google's link bowling problem: neutralize suspicious links so they are neither helpful nor harmful. Problem solved. Sorry, Mr. Gates. © 2005, Michael Pedone

Receive Our Daily Email of Breaking eBusiness News

About the Author:
Michael Pedone is the President / CEO of eTrafficJams.com, a search engine optimization and website marketing company <http://www.etrafficjams.com> located in Clearwater, Florida that specializes in getting targeted, eager-to-buy traffic to your site. You can catch him blogging at: <http://www.etrafficjams.com/blog/>.

WebProNews RSS Feed

More Expert Articles Articles

Contact WebProNews


Targeted Information for Business
WebProNews is part of the iEntry network

Internet Business: Marketing: Small Business:
WebProNews MarketingNewz SmallBusinessNewz
WebProWorld AdvertisingDay PromoteNews
EcommNewz SalesNewz EntrepreneurNewz

Software: Search Engines: Web Design:
WebMasterFree Jayde B2B DesignNewz
NetworkingFiles SearchZA FlashNewz
SecurityConfig SearchNewz WebSiteNotes

Developer: IT Management: Security:
DevWebPro ITManagement SecurityProNews
DevNewz SysAdminNews SecurityConfig
TheDevWeb NetworkingFiles NetworkNewz

The iEntry Network consists of over 100 web publications reaching millions of Internet Professionals. Contact us to advertise.
 Advertise | Contact Us | Corporate | Newsletter | Sitemap | Submit an Article | News Feeds
 WebProNews is an iEntry, Inc. ® publication - $line) { echo $line ; } ?> All Rights Reserved
About WebProNews
WebProNews is the number one source for eBusiness News. Over 5 million eBusiness professionals read WebProNews and other iEntry business and tech publications.

WebProNews provides real-time coverage of internet business.

Free Email Newsletters:
WebProNews SearchNewz
WebProWorld DevWebPro
Marketing SecurityNews
Plus over 100 other newsletters!

Send me relevant info on products and services.

Ten most recent posts.

Featured Software

WebProNews in the News
View all recent mentions of WebProNews from around the world!

Recent Articles On ...
Google eBusiness
Yahoo Ask Jeeves
MSN Blogs
Search Engines Blogging
Affiliate Programs Marketing
eCommerce Advertising
eBay Sun Microsystems
AOL Adsense
Microsoft Adwords
Oracle IBM
Amazon Apple
SEO iPod
Adsense XBox
PR Adobe

iEntry.com WebProWorld RSS Feed WebProWorld Contact WebProNews Print Version Email a friend Bookmark us