You know something is up when you walk into a room and the kids suddenly get quiet and each of them has “that look” on their face. A mother’s gut knows something is up.
Well, when I clicked on my statistics page for my page views, one of my sites had “that look” while the other sites were playing nicely and didn’t even notice that I walked into the room. The site with the guiltiest look was my Tidbits and Stuff site. That’s the site that is prone to get into trouble.
Cause of the Look
I noticed in the past three days my Google earnings were off the chart. The last time they were that good, it was because Panda was about to strike. So I did a bit of snooping and found an October 5th tweet from Matt Cutts in which he advised of Panda changes over the next few weeks.
The Panda Update and Site Reaction
As I looked at my children, er, I mean sites, their response to Panda was expected. You see, Tidbits and Stuff is sometimes shunned by Google and then picked back up again. This is because I gave birth to Tidbits and Stuff before I knew anything about web parenting. I made the majority of my mistakes there.
Just like any good parent, you never give up on your kids. I kept Tidbits & Stuff but realized it would always be vulnerable to Google’s algorithm changes unless I did a total overhaul. Not wanting to do the overhaul, I use Tidbits as my online playground in which I continue to make mistakes.
As I analyze Tidbits and compare it to the rest of my sites, Tidbits has two characteristics that my other sites don’t:
- The focus is not single subject. You’ll find information on cooking, health, finance, pets, writing and more when you visit Tidbits and Stuff. The rest of my sites are focused and single subject.
- I used content from free article directories. I’d say about 50% of the content on Tidbits comes from free article directories while the rest is original. Some of the articles were from writers who requested to write a piece for the site and the rest I wrote myself.
What Am I Going to Do?
As far as Tidbits and Stuff goes, I’m not going to do a thing. I’ll write articles and place them there when the mood strikes. I’m sure Google’s algorithm will change again and Tidbits may find favor. If not, so be it. I’m used to the bumpy ride on Tidbits and Stuff. It taught and continues to teach me a lesson of what to do and what not to do.
Similarities with Other Sites
I see that Suite 101 and HubPages have also taken a hit with Panda this go around (again). The one thing I see that Tidbits, Suite and HubPages have in common is that they are not single-subject sites and they have a wide variety of authors. This is just my sitting at the kitchen counter observation.
Writing is an inside out sport. You learn a few rules (i.e., grammar, spelling and in the case of online writing SEO) and then do what your gut tells you. I’m going to keep on doing what I do and allow the Panda to do what it does.
After visiting Lis’ Passive Income Online blog and finding out about a free book writing tool called Scrivener, I’m motivated to get back to writing my books. Between ebooks, a few sites and Suite 101, I think I’ll be okay. Hopefully Panda was nice to you guys.