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Effectiveness of "Google +1" - My research and findings

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by zub07, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. zub07

    zub07 Registered Member

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    Hello everyone!

    First of all, I have been into this black hat world for a few months now and join this forum recently. I consider myself being at the very beginning of the learning curve (due to time constraints on my part). But I have been 'testing' some stuff here and there. Today I am bringing you some findings about a 'research' I have undertaken.

    What is it about?

    After reading lot of thing about "Google +1", I decided to give it a shot and test for myself how effective it is to get "+1" on your website and whether it actually helps to build it by yourself... a la Blackhat style and also a comparison between a website which builds +1 "naturally" while another do it using its own set of accounts (meaning you create account to +1 for your own website).

    What was the 2 website I use about?
    As I mention, I did the comparison between 2 website. So, let me give you a few rundown about both website, their characteristics are as follows:
    - Both are owned by me.
    - Both are top level domain.
    - Both of them deals with one specific product, the same product for both site. Consider it as a niche website.
    - Both website's keywords are the same.
    - The thing that differs between the two is domain name and the articles; I wrote the same amount of article for both website but the article will be exclusive to the website it is on... Meaning that I don't copy/paste from one to another. Both of them have the same set of unique article dealing with the same topic.
    - I originally bought high quality backlinks for both website, meaning that they feature on several PR5+ website and also 3 .edu website.
    - Both website are more or less the same age (probably just a few hours apart).
    - I originally made the first one purely for monetary gain (through Adsense) but then later on the same day I created the second one because I thought I could also use both of them as a mean to 'test' different black/whitehat method (like Google +1, which is my first research on both website).

    The statistics of each website.
    From now on, I will name one website Alpha and the other one (created a few hours after the first) will be called Omega.

    Search engine rank on 30th August (Before Google +1):

    Alpha - Keyword 1: 25th
    Omega - Keyword 1: 21th

    Alpha - Keyword 2: 57th
    Omega - Keyword 2: 48th

    Methodology.
    The main idea was to give each one of them +100 and see what happens. But later on I realise that I could not more than that and bump the number up to +200. So, I decided that both of them will have +200 but different way for each website.

    Method 1 (for Alpha): This method consisted of building +200 'naturally' for the website. I have several source which I have use for that. Mainly what I would do is to have people to type the address of the website OR go to the website through a social networking website. I would let the +200 build over the span of 48 hours.

    Method 2 (for Omega): I have a handy list of google account. I used 200 accounts and manually +1 to the website and spread that +200 over the span of 48 hours (its a pain in the ass to do that). I thought that after some point I would have to use proxy for it but I finally did not use proxy at all and build all the +200 through only one IP.

    Both of these method was completed in 48 hours. I recorded ranking immediately after the 48 hours.

    The statistics of each website.
    Search engine rank on 1th September (After Google +200):

    Alpha - Keyword 1: 20th
    Omega - Keyword 1: 22th

    Alpha - Keyword 2: 44th
    Omega - Keyword 2: 46th

    I was actually surprise that there was already an effect on ranking while I was building the +200. I noticed that Alpha (the one that was building +1 naturally) made much better improvement in ranking than Omega. I decided to give it a break and was checking stats on a daily basis. I could see some movement for Alpha while Omega was not moving much... but was actually getting worse. Here is what I recorded after one weeks time

    Search engine rank on 8th September (1 week after Google +200):
    Alpha - Keyword 1: 11th
    Omega - Keyword 1: 27th

    Alpha - Keyword 2: 19th
    Omega - Keyword 2: 62th

    SHOCK! Both keywords for Alpha was ranking on the second page! Alpha actually peak at 4th on the 3rd of September! I was greatly surprise to how Alpha improved because I build +1 'naturally' while Omega's position just got worse! And now, lets see the statistics for today, 15th of September, 2 weeks after +200.

    Search engine rank on 15th September (2 weeks after Google +200):
    Alpha - Keyword 1: 9th
    Omega - Keyword 1: 26th

    Alpha - Keyword 2: 20th
    Omega - Keyword 2: 65th

    Keep in mind that I have not run any campaign after the +200. I also literally put the +1 button in the corner of the website so that people won't even notice it. Both of the +1 counter was sitting at +200. What I notice was that Alpha was going back and forth between the first and second page on the Search Engine while Omega was a bit 'dancing around' but in the end it's ranking was a bit worse than the beginning.

    My conclusion.
    I think its a bit obvious. From what I have experienced, google is probably recording the IP address of each +1. I don't think that using proxy will work either (this one is just an assumption since these days, a browser can leech more than your IP address). Alpha kept improving in general while Omega was slowly falling apart. From what I can tell by both website, they originally ended up in the first page (BEFORE any +1), it was when I just build them but over time I just did not really took care of it and let it lose ranking. But in this case, building +1 'naturally' DID help. Building +1 by using doing it all by yourself... nope, seems like google lives up to the expectation of being a smartass. ;)

    With that said, I'd like to hear what you guys have to say about this 'research' and also would be glad if you would share your experience... Wow, that was lot of typing! I will try to answer any of your question ASAP! :)

    zub07
     
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  2. albaniax

    albaniax Elite Member

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    Thanks for this study, sounds great.

    But I wonder how to do Method 1

    hmm..I have a e-mail list, maybe I can give s.th. in exchange for an +1.
    Just not sure how many already use +1 in my niche.
     
  3. zub07

    zub07 Registered Member

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    I actually had to do a lot of planning in order to make the counter hit +200 through method 1. I actually was in direct contact with 200 different persons for this to happen, it was VERY draining but I was doing it for the sake of satisfying my curiosity. In normal times, I could have use that method much quicker with less effort if I just wanted +1 and I would have get much more than +200.

    I think that you can understand that I'm a bit reluctant to give away my source. :)
     
  4. Botwiz

    Botwiz Executive VIP Jr. VIP

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    Google +1 comes down to organic consistency, once you start playing around with services make sure they are solid and keep it on a drip feed.
     
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  5. tami6699

    tami6699 Regular Member

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    But its clear, if you click with one Google Account 10 or more +1 of one site, thats not really looks "natural".

    So you need for a effective +1 marketing, XXXX accounts, login with different user agent, proxy etc.....but thats to much work
     
  6. zub07

    zub07 Registered Member

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    Also, I wanted to make a point here. I have notice in this forum (and also several other forum) that people would be selling +1 and sometime selling it in bulk at ridiculous price. I don't think that they are going to deliver x number of unique +1; most likely they will be doing the +1 by themselves... Base of what I have find out, this kind of +1 is actually worthless. Yeah, maybe they are delivering what they promise but it will probably not have the effect that the buyer is seeking.

    Right here, we can talk about the 'quality' of the +1 matters and a website with +50 might be better than one with +500.
     
  7. tami6699

    tami6699 Regular Member

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    Absolutly right about the worthless part from 100 clicks from the same account on the same blog.
     
  8. zub07

    zub07 Registered Member

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    No one has more insight about their experience with +1? I would like to hear a bit about whether anyone else have try to farm some +1 and whether they had any impact on their ranking.
     
  9. SuperLinks

    SuperLinks Elite Member

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    Interesting case study, but how do you know it wasn't some other variable that caused your increase in rankings?

    You mention that you bought some backlinks for both sites, and high PR at that. You do know that it takes time for these backlinks to "count" and affect your rankings right?

    I'm not trying to be a negative nancy, in fact I'm a firm believer that Google + will at some point help rankings. I'm wondering though if your results weren't based on your prior linkbuilding though.
     
  10. robertaccess

    robertaccess Newbie

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    thank you for sharing
     
  11. thirdeye85

    thirdeye85 Junior Member

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    Interesting and well put together! It's hard to conduct a study like this in an SEO environment but you did a good job!
     
  12. zub07

    zub07 Registered Member

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    Superlinks: As I mention in the main post, I build the website some time before this study and at the same time I got the backlinks. The backlinks did effect and made the my website hover around the first pages (also mention on the original post) before it started losing rank. So, we can say that the backlink have done its effect and is pretty much out of the variable. At best it helped maintaining the websites in the top 100. The change that was shown due to the +1 took place while other variables was not altered... at least, I did not alter any of the variables (it was on purpose i did that since I wanted to use both as 'test' website... as mention above). I hope it clear things a bit for you... Apologies if there is any incoherence in this post because its 1am right now and I am making my way to bed lol

    Robertaccess and thirdeye85: I'm glad that you liked what I presented here! I hope that it will be of use for both of you :)

    Again, any question or doubt that need to be cleared.. drop your quries here and next morning I will do my best to answer all of it! :)

    zub07
     
  13. phpbuilt

    phpbuilt Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    I agree, you need a control site that doesn't get any google +1 at all to have any semblance of a test case. Those sites will go up and down on their own regardless of google +1 just based on the backlinking you already performed.

    If you're comparing google+1 from natural sources vs a few ips you'd need to do ...

    1) site with no google +1 at all
    2) site with natural google +1
    3) site with unnatural same-ip google +1

    And then ... you shouldn't be getting high quality backlinks or whatever. You should at most do one article directory submission (maybe to ezinearticles ... just make it the same article directory) and each site gets 1 backlink. That way, Google can find the site, the backlinks are exactly the same, and because there is only 1 backlink without PR you will know that Google+1 is mostly influencing the rankings.

    Thanks for trying, but any site will rise in the serps and easily fluctuate from the 20s to teens or low top 10 based on nothing but links from several PR5 websites and 3 .edu websites.
     
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  14. SuperLinks

    SuperLinks Elite Member

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    I understand what you are saying, but unfortunately that isn't the case. Simply buying links, or having new backlinks to a site, and then seeing an initial fluctuation doesn't mean that you've received all the "value" of those links. As backlinks age, so does their credibility and "value" which is why its tough to determine whether its actually the Google +1's or if its new links being indexed and older links being aged.
     
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  15. frenchboy

    frenchboy Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    thanks for sharing, I guess it's important to have a good service provider if you try to game +1's.
     
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  16. cybersage

    cybersage Regular Member

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    I don't know if it happens with other browsers (I use chrome), but if I'm logged into a particular gmail account it will take into account browsing preferences and thus +1 rankings into play when check rank manually (programs like rank tracker are still accurate however); if you ever care to disable this you can place"pws=0" at the end of the search url to turn browsing preferences off.

    I would also wonder the quality of the google+ accounts of each in m1 compared to m2? I would think that with m2 you would not have anyone connected to you because they're all your accounts whereas m1 presumably is people that are connected to others. My understanding is that +1 is supposed to impact searches on those connected to your g+ social network; I could even see big G using some attenuation coefficient for each tier of friend as far as SERPs impact is concerned.

    That said thanks for your sharing your results, I would like to see some more about +1, because I haven't really begun to focus on it much. I could see it being big for websites trying to rank on a local level.
     
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  17. zub07

    zub07 Registered Member

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    For the few people who was referring to the variable involve in the equation. Yes, I do understand what you are saying by the fact that backlinks could have an impact on the search rank. But the reason I am thinking that this case study give a rough overview of what google +1 can REALLY do is because of the fact I have use 2 website which are completely identical and market the same way (even the backlinks are on the same place). What I have see in this research is that as time pass while I was doing nothing, both website was losing ranking but when I use the google +1, suddenly one started to bump quickly up (natural +1) while the other was still losing ground (not natural +1).

    Again, how far this is valid? The only way to know that is to run more research like this and cross check results. But sadly, I have limited resource to do such thing on my own and for the moment I will be holding back from running such kind of research because it did cost me something to get 200+ for each of the website. I have yet another website and after I have see the impact of this research, I have start building +1 naturally on the other one and will see what happens as time pass.

    And yes Frenchboy, I think that if you are going to make someone build the +1 for you then better make sure that his/her method use are good. Otherwise, you might end up with lot of +1 but no apparent effect. Like someone up there mention, there is more to it than just a number, I am really thinking that the quality of the +1 matters a lot... just like in search engine where having a load of (junk) traffic no longer works now.

    Thank you for your input guys! :)
    zub07
     
  18. digitalcows

    digitalcows Newbie

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    Great case study. Thanks a lot. :)
     
  19. daymond

    daymond Junior Member Premium Member

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    Google collects so much data that it will be very hard to fake true user making +1, of course by proxy etc you can automate such votes and they will work but I think that gg also give different value for each such vote. So votes from experienced internet user ( who have gg cookies for years, use google.com everyday, visits many websites where for example google tools are added like adsense adwords etc so they can track such user and his behavior ) can have more value than auto generated vote. Why google is best in targeting advertisements for people? because of history record of every user, for sure that data on other gg services is used
     
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  20. tami6699

    tami6699 Regular Member

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    I don't believe, that a "high google user" hase more value then any other user and its the same bs, if this user push 100 times the +1 button on one site (same as a not "high google user").
     
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