Many of you likely read the ”Decor my Eyes” horror story earlier this week. And I’m guessing most if not all of you read that and got upset. Gaming the search engines is for nefarious purposes is bad enough, but gaming the search engine by using nefarious tactics is even worse. So that’s why I’m thrilled to post the happy ending to this story.
The short story is Clarabelle Rodriguez bought some glasses from a company that was ranked high in Google for the brand of eyeglasses she was seeking. She had a bad experience with the company and had her bank stop the transaction. She was allegedly met with threats of various types, and harassment until she made the payment go through. Then someone from the company allegedly called her bank and got the transaction to go through.
Furious with this treatment, she started putting out bad reviews. As it turns out, this is exactly what the owner of the company wanted.
“Hello, My name is Stanley with DecorMyEyes.com,” the post began. “I just wanted to let you guys know that the more replies you people post, the more business and the more hits and sales I get. My goal is NEGATIVE advertisement.”
As it turns out, negative publicity and back links from reviews (even bad reviews) were driving up his google rank like crazy. As this story made it around the internet, Google got wind of it.
“We were horrified to read about Ms. Rodriguez’s dreadful experience. Even though our initial analysis pointed to this being an edge case and not a widespread problem in our search results, we immediately convened a team that looked carefully at the issue. That team developed an initial algorithmic solution, implemented it, and the solution is already live. I am here to tell you that being bad is, and hopefully will always be, bad for business in Google’s search results.”
Source: Google Blog
So the moral of the story here is clear: the golden rule applies to business, and if you’re scamming, cheating or treating people badly it will catch up with you. It’s really nice to see Google step up and take care of this so quickly.