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#11232 - 07/31/10 01:57 PM Cache question
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
I did a name search on my business. One result came up that caught my eye on page 5(about 50 results down). So I clicked on it a few times over last few days.
All of sudden, it comes up to page one. Truth is, that is not accurate. Cache issue.
Why the heck would any browser allow that to happen. and how does that happen?
Just because one clicks on a result 4-5 times over last week I get totally inaccurate search result?
I don't get it. Isn't the most important thing in searching to get accurate result?

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#11238 - 07/31/10 05:46 PM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
> Just because one clicks on a result 4-5 times over last week I get totally inaccurate search result?

Is it possible that the object of your search is so obscure that a few clicks can have a seemingly disproportionate effect which is actually on the mark?

The cache on your Mac should have nothing to do with the results of a (presumably) Google search.
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#11239 - 07/31/10 06:10 PM Re: Cache question [Re: artie505]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
Artie, thanks, I nailed it. Google has a new personalized search that functions even when you are logged out! They just wont give up giving us features we don't want!

That said, I don't get the point of bringing up sites that should not rank high.

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#11247 - 07/31/10 10:09 PM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
tacit Offline


Registered: 08/03/09
Loc: Portland, Oregon, USA
The point is that if Google sees you click on a site multiple times, Google thinks "Aha! That site must be relevant to you!" Since the whole purpose of personalized results is in increasing what is relevant to you personally, anything that Google thinks is relevant to you will get higher placement.
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#11250 - 07/31/10 10:35 PM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
> That said, I don't get the point of bringing up sites that should not rank high.

A "name search on my business" strikes me as being a pretty obscure search, so your clicking on a link in those particular search results seems like it ought to elevate the rank of that link and give it prominence in those particular search results when it would be page 1,000 obscure in the results of a different search.
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#11253 - 08/01/10 04:45 AM Re: Cache question [Re: tacit]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: tacit
....anything that Google thinks is relevant to you will get higher placement.

This could actually be worrisome. When one thinks about it a bit, the concept of personalized results seems unnecessary and could also be misleading you if you want to have an idea of how well your site is doing.

Unnecessary - It seems to me that, if you visit a site often, you are not going to use a Google search to return to it. You'll have a bookmark. For example, I have never got to the FTM site by searching. Ditto for many others.

Misleading - Anyone with a business site goes to it constantly. They also want to keep abreast of how well the site does in searches so that they can make appropriate changes to raise their profile.

If the personalized search changes placement according to Google's relevance criteria, isn't it generating meaningless results for the purpose of checking how well one does when people search for their site?

ryck


Edited by ryck (08/01/10 04:52 AM)
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#11258 - 08/01/10 07:38 AM Re: Cache question [Re: ryck]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
thanks Tacit/Artie for letting me know how google is thinking.
Rick, nailed it. It's totally silly and stupid. Google needs to get a life.

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#11262 - 08/01/10 09:18 AM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: kevs
It's totally silly and stupid.


So the question becomes "Is it changeable?" Can a person, conducting a "how's my site doing?" check, make any adjustment that will neutralize Google's 'relevance' criterion in the search?

That would be good to know.

ryck


Edited by ryck (08/01/10 09:21 AM)
Edit Reason: Grammar
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#11263 - 08/01/10 10:08 AM Re: Cache question [Re: ryck]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
ryck, I beat it, in upper right window, was some link -- thing said web history and then a way to disable this 2nd new layer of personalized results.

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#11264 - 08/01/10 10:48 AM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
I assume you mean the Web History link that appears on a web-search results page. It toggles between "Disable customizations based on search activity" and "Enable customizations based on search activity".

I think the default must be "Disable" as I've never opened the Web History button and, when I looked at mine, it was set to "Disable"

That would also account for the results of a quick test I did.

My daughter has a business site which I visit fairly often. I did a search using her name and she appeared 7 times on page one. The first two links in the list were directly to her site and the others were to articles from newspapers she writes for.

I then phoned a friend in another city with a different ISP. He duplicated the search and his results were very similar including the same first two spots on page one.

My friend is a person who absolutely would never have opened that link so it's a safe assumption that he must also be set to "Disable", hence the same results.

ryck
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#11265 - 08/01/10 12:32 PM Re: Cache question [Re: ryck]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09

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#11268 - 08/01/10 04:37 PM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
alternaut Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: kevs
It's totally silly and stupid. Google needs to get a life.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but Google's personalized search is an option you actively have to enable yourself. It's not a default setting.
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#11270 - 08/01/10 06:47 PM Re: Cache question [Re: ryck]
dkmarsh Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09

I'm not sure your interpretation of the toggling on the Web History page is correct. Like you, I'd never visited that page, and like you, I found that when I did visit it for the first time, the relevant line read, "Disable customizations based on search activity."

However, that line is clickable; I take that to mean that clicking it will disable such customizations—meaning that by default, those customizations are taking place. You can confirm this by reading the bold lines which appear directly above the "Disable.../Enable..." lines when you toggle back and forth between them. See Basics : Personalized Search - Accounts Help for a little more info.

(Aside to alternaut: Given that this personalization appears to be opt-out rather than opt-in, there would seem to be some merit to kevs's complaint.)
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#11271 - 08/01/10 07:14 PM Re: Cache question [Re: dkmarsh]
alternaut Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: dkmarsh
(Aside to alternaut: Given that this personalization appears to be opt-out rather than opt-in, there would seem to be some merit to kevs's complaint.)

I gladly take your word for that, but it's not what I see. When ryck states that '...the Web History link that appears on a web-search results page [...] toggles between "Disable customizations based on search activity" and "Enable customizations based on search activity"', I don't see that toggle option, but the Web History info page with a sign-in option. What am I missing here?
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#11272 - 08/01/10 07:47 PM Re: Cache question [Re: alternaut]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
It was on, I never turned it on. Had to disable it.

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#11273 - 08/01/10 08:51 PM Re: Cache question [Re: dkmarsh]
ryck Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Originally Posted By: dkmarsh
However, that line is clickable; I take that to mean that clicking it will disable such customizations—meaning that by default, those customizations are taking place.

The clicking sound you just heard was the light going on. Thanks.

ryck


Edited by ryck (08/01/10 08:52 PM)
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#11276 - 08/02/10 05:01 AM Re: Cache question [Re: alternaut]
dkmarsh Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09

You don't get a page that looks like this following the initial click on the Web History link that appears on a search results page?

Clicking the Web History link on the page shown in my screenshot takes me to the "Web History info page with a sign-in option" that you describe.
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#11277 - 08/02/10 05:56 AM Re: Cache question [Re: alternaut]
tacit Offline


Registered: 08/03/09
Loc: Portland, Oregon, USA
Originally Posted By: alternaut
Originally Posted By: kevs
It's totally silly and stupid. Google needs to get a life.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but Google's personalized search is an option you actively have to enable yourself. It's not a default setting.


It's a bit confusing how it works. There are actually two things going on here; Google personalizes search histories for folks who have Google accounts (or Gmail/Google Mail accounts), but it ALSO personalizes search results for folks who DON'T have Google accounts but who allow Google to set tracking cookies. The cookie-based personalization is on by default.

A couple of eye-opening links:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/12/07/google_personalizes_logged_out_search/

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/03/03/google_personalized_search_explained/
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#11279 - 08/02/10 06:21 AM Re: Cache question [Re: dkmarsh]
alternaut Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: dkmarsh
You don't get a page that looks like ...

No, I don't, and that explains my previous answer as well as my confusion about this. Note that I am logged into gmail/google by default, and into Web History more recently*. I don't see how even a local cookie issue can fully explain this, if I'm to believe the comments in the various links on the topic present in this thread.

*) When (occasionally) logged into Web History, I get my Web History page and not the general Web History info/login page I mentioned before.

PS, this doesn't mean my search results aren't personalized, but whether that's the case or not is a separate issue.
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#11281 - 08/02/10 07:03 AM Re: Cache question [Re: alternaut]
jchuzi Offline


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: New York State
I'm replying to Alternaut because he's the closest. I don't ordinarily go to the Google search page but use the Google search field in Safari instead. How does this affect the issue being discussed?
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#11283 - 08/02/10 07:46 AM Re: Cache question [Re: jchuzi]
joemikeb Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Jon, from reading the Google Help files carefully, the search personalization is stored on your computer in a cooky (along with your Google logon if you have an account). Based on results from unscientific observations, once that cooky is set it effects all Google searches, whether from the Google search page or from the Google search field in Safari. One of the ways Google Help suggests to disable the search personalization is to delete that cooky (or all cookies). By the way I just checked and there are 87 Google cookies set in my Safari - I did not attempt to identify which one controls the search personalization.

FWIW I like the search personalization if for no other reason than when I do a search, locations in my physical vicinity will be at or near the top of the hit list. It does me little good to find a plumber or a store in New York when I live in Texas.
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#11286 - 08/02/10 04:30 PM Re: Cache question [Re: joemikeb]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
Yeah, but Joe, why don't just type in your city name into the search?

Why do you want results coming to the top just because you clicked on them before?
That said, I don't know how I got that page web history up.

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#11287 - 08/02/10 06:46 PM Re: Cache question [Re: kevs]
joemikeb Offline
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Quote:
why don't just type in your city name into the search?
I'm lazy grin
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#11351 - 08/05/10 04:21 PM Re: Cache question [Re: joemikeb]
kevs Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
Funny, I always put in cities into everything I search.
That said, if a lot of people don't do that, then my SEO may be going to waste!

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Moderator:  alternaut, dianne, MacManiac