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BizReport : Search Marketing : December 03, 2010


Google changes search algorithm to prevent "gaming"

Google has acted swiftly following news that their search engine had been "gamed" to ensure bad online reviews don't increase a retailer's ranking in natural search results.

by Helen Leggatt

Following an article in the New York Times about a dodgy online merchant who increased his Google search rankings by generating huge amounts of online dissatisfaction, the search engine has changed its ranking algorithm.

The retailer, Vitaly Borker, openly admitted he welcomed customer complaints, saying they bolster his business higher in Internet search results. To this end he verbally abuses customers and encourages them to post negatively on review sites.

"I've exploited this opportunity because it works," Vitaly Borker, the founder and owner of the company in question, DecorMyEyes, told the New York Times.

"No matter where they post their negative comments, it helps my return on investment. So I decided, why not use that negativity to my advantage?"

On its official blog, Google stated it was "horrified" to read of the account and immediately developed a fix to detect merchants that offer appalling customer service.

"The algorithm we incorporated into our search rankings represents an initial solution to this issue and users are now getting a better experience as a result," the organization announced.

The changes mean Google can now detect unscrupulous merchants and reduce their search ranking accordingly.






Tags: Google, search marketing








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