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Thread: Yahoo's Algorithm

  1. #1
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    Yahoo's Algorithm

    Let's try and make sense of what they're up to.

    Am I the only one whose done research on their SERP's and found quirks? I mean seriously guys...my stuff IS working but I, for the life of me can't figure out why some sites are even ranked!

    let's discuss....

    p.s. as for google, lately...they've been playing fair

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by benjee68 View Post
    Let's try and make sense of what they're up to.

    Am I the only one whose done research on their SERP's and found quirks? I mean seriously guys...my stuff IS working but I, for the life of me can't figure out why some sites are even ranked!

    let's discuss....

    p.s. as for google, lately...they've been playing fair
    Yahoo and Google revenue thrive on Search Engines. I doubt they will want to reveal their algorithm. I don't believe Google is playing fair. Maybe if you compare Yahoo and Google you feel Google is fairer ? That is in relative comparison and not absolute comparison.

    I suspect certain sites always are top for the simple reason they pay. As to how they pay could be business tie-down or sponsor-ship or whatever. The same logic applies to certain renowned research websites. Let's me realistic, without monies flowing in, how do they sustain their business correct ? They have to feed their employees every month.

    Nowadays I read those research websites recommendation and search engine results with caution. Maybe trust 50% but never 100%.

  3. #3
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    I know that Google's ranking algorithm is fully documented and patented and Yahoo's probably is as well. You can search the patent database by applicant at http://patft.uspto.gov/ at your convenience and take the mystery out of their operations.

    Happy SEOing,

  4. #4
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    Well, here's the patent number - 6285999 - but something tells me their pagerank algorithm has evolved massively since this (2001).

    EDIT: Updated patent number - 7,058,628 (2006)
    I've switched careers...
    I'm NO LONGER a scientist,
    but now a web developer...
    awesome.

  5. #5
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    The two patents cited above were interesting and pertinent to search engines in general, but neither patent belonged to Google or Yahoo. In delving a little further specifically into Google's patents, I discovered that they devote a great deal of effort to the customization of their search results to the predicted intent of the client as determined by his or her "current context". In a patent approved in 2010 (#7,693,825), for example, the claims section begins with, "A method of ranking article identifiers of a result set from an implicit query implied from a user's current context" ('article identifiers' = keywords), and goes on to discuss various methods of accomplishing this. Google's patents seem to indicate that they are aggressively exploring this idea of tailoring their results for specific users. I'm not sufficiently involved in SEO to devote as much time to perusing Yahoo's patents, but it would seem reasonable to think they are working along similar lines.

    Thus, the same query submitted by two different users can, and should, return widely varying result sets, and the tendency is for them to become more different as time goes on. It would follow, then, that there can be nothing that resembles an absolute page ranking.

    Can this really be so, or am I misreading something here? If it is so, how can an SEO expert get meaningful data with which to work?

  6. #6
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    Thus, the same query submitted by two different users can, and should, return widely varying result sets, and the tendency is for them to become more different as time goes on. It would follow, then, that there can be nothing that resembles an absolute page ranking.
    True statement. Even something as simple as your IP address will likely affect your results. The best you can hope for in terms of SEO is providing well-targeted and quality content with some good inbound links. It's fair to say that the top engines are continually working to refine their algorithms to pick these types of sites out. But, more importantly, they want to provide the searcher with precisely what they're looking for, and that requires the engine to "know" the user.

    So, the precise set of algorithms that are in use at any given time is a tiny bit irrelevant. What is relevant are the types of data that a search engine is capable of incorporating into its results. This could include things like ...
    1. general location
    2. time of day
    3. past sites visited (in some cases)
    4. the query itself
    5. search history (yours correlated with other users')
    6. bookmarks you've saved with the search provider
    7. blog and forum posts you've written using your username for the search provider


    Some items are more reasonable and/or helpful to incorporate into ranking results. Others may not be. But, I wouldn't put it past Google to include most of the above in addition to a few I haven't thought of or listed here ...

    So again, as an SEO expert, your primary job is to help a site owner produce quality content above all, use tags and tag attributes correctly, and then attempt to network the site with other relevant sites. It is NOT your job to promise first page listings or anything silly like that. The site may be objectively more relevant to a particular query than some site listed above yours based on your own understanding of the engine's algorithm. But, searching is an ever-more subjective science (as it should be), and you can't expect a site to be subjectively relevant to every user who runs a particular search.
    Jon Wire

    thepointless.com | rounded corner generator

    I agree with Apple. Flash is just terrible.

    Use CODE tags!

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the excellent answer, Jon. It is about what I intuitively expected to be the reality of the situation and I'm pleased to hear it confirmed by an expert.

    Have a nice day,

  8. #8
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    thanks for the input...good stuff.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chipzzz View Post
    Thanks for the excellent answer, Jon. It is about what I intuitively expected to be the reality of the situation and I'm pleased to hear it confirmed by an expert.

    Have a nice day,
    hehe ... I should clarify. By the following:
    So again, as an SEO expert, your primary job ...
    ... I did not mean to imply that I am an "expert". I guess I could be. But, the statement is meant to be about SEO experts, given the limited knowledge I have on the topic.

    Despite not considering myself an SEO expert, I can confidently stand behind my initial response though, with the exception of the ambiguity that may have mislead anyone to think that I consider myself an expert!
    Jon Wire

    thepointless.com | rounded corner generator

    I agree with Apple. Flash is just terrible.

    Use CODE tags!

  10. #10
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    Lol... your modesty is becoming but perhaps you underestimate yourself. You may not think of yourself as an SEO expert but I've read much less accurate or informative dissertations by people who did think of themselves as such .

    Have a nice day.

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