As I went to Google to perform a search something struck me as different. New icons had appeared next to each of my search results. At first, thinking that I’d accidentally turned on an unwanted Firefox Plugin, it took me a few moments to realise that this was actually a change to the way Google will provide your search results.
Whilst you are logged in to a Google account there is a new feature named SearchWiki, where you now have the option to remove a listing from your results or promote it to the top of your page. If you own or run a website you were probably asking the same question as I was “Will SearchWiki have an effect on SEO and my websites ranking?”.
For the moment at least you can sit back and play around with this feature to your hearts content. Google has stated “The changes you make only affect your own searches.” Anything you do at the moment will only effect the way that you are provided your results. Having said that with so much user generated input on websites that they may never have fully reviewed before it’s hard to see that this won’t eventually play at ;east some factor in search engine rankings.
The obvious things that will stand in the way of this ever being a completely trustworthy way to generate website feedback is the huge opportunity for Spammers. Less than honest webmasters could potentially manipulate search results hugely in their favour and even launch campaigns to crush their opponents.
Another thing to think about if you use AdWords is the potential knock-on effects for your website. If you are not generating great quality content for your users or providing relevant information on your websites you could get knocked from a lot of people’s search results. There is nothing that I’m aware of to stop Google in future using this information to decide on the charges and position of your AdWords Campaigns. After all the ultimate goal of any search engine is to keep their results relevant and therefore profitable.
In conclusion as long as you are providing great value through your website this should not effect you too much and probably won’t in the future. It’s just something to be aware of and can always be used to filter your own search results as long as you have a Google Account. Below I’ve attached the video from the SearchWiki Post on Google’s Blog so that you can take a look for yourself.