blogsearch.google.com click-through - a new relevancy criteria?

by Mike Levin SEO & Datamaster, 09/22/2005

As of this morning, I’m on the first page of Google for the term, Condition Response (screen snapshot attached). Now, this is not unusual, as I have seen my site come up for very common words, in what I think of as Google’s “Window of Opportunity”. Like the sandbox, this window is just semantics. I doubt they use the term. But in essence, new content released may experience a brief spike in ranking, only to plummet after other factors such as click-through and rate of new inbound links don’t keep it buoyed. And even after the plummet, it may rise again after the slow burn of these factors have been in effect for a few weeks (or months), and the quality of the content merits and compels some linkage.

But the thing that makes Condition Response different is that the first hit on that page occurred in the new blogsearch.google.com tool, and the very next day the page was in the first page of results for Google, proper. Is Blogger and the new search blog tool a new criteria for relevance? Is Google trying to spot the emergence of new quality content specifically through their new and nearly real-time blog indexing tool? It would only make sense to me that once Google took the work to develop the Technorati-like real-time indexing and inclusion, that they use it to improve the quality of the default results.

If true, how will this manifest? It will probably manifest as new volatility in the results, and the “window of opportunity” effect that I often notice will become more pronounced. For those not familiar with the window, you may have encountered it when content that you recently optimized and released produces its first search hit, and it turns out to be on the first page for those keywords. In your excitement, you boast about this accomplishment to your client. Everyone is happy and impressed with your capabilities, only to have it disappear from sight the following week. Google’s patent application last March yielded insight as to the sensitivity to the “delta”, or difference between a website, from one indexing to the next. Newly released content is in that delta, and high in the results. But whether it stays there or not is a function of follow-up events, such as inbound linking or click-through in the search results. And now with blogsearch.google.com, there is basically a new class of follow-up events that COULD be factored into determining relevancy. Time will tell.