• http://www.webconnoisseur.com/blog/ Dustin Woodard

    So quality raters affect the measuring stick, which indirectly affects not just one site, but all sites.

  • http://joehall.me/ Joe Hall

    If they can’t affect a site/URL’s rankings, then why do they exist? Does Google employ quality raters for shits and giggles?

  • http://www.brianlafrance.com Brian LaFrance

    Matt’s probably not lying. That’s not what causes the drop. It’s the response of his team to those reports that causes the drop :)

  • http://makeitrank.com Kevin Spence

    @Joe
    There are a lot of possibilities. One is that quality raters really aren’t measuring the quality of individual sites (even though that’s how it looks on the surface). Instead, maybe, they’re measuring the quality of Google’s search product as a whole.

    Maybe Google doesn’t do a very good job of returning relevant results in particular vertical. How would they know? Well, maybe they’re looking for correlation between what they return for a particular query and what the quality raters mark as highly relevant or spam. Ideally, their rankings would match up very well with the quality raters rankings. And if they don’t, they probably need to make some changes.

    There are other possibilities as well, but of the ones I’ve run through my head, this is the most likely.

  • http://joehall.me/ Joe Hall

    @Kevin

    If you read the quality rater’s guidelines its specific to URLs, not SERPs.

  • http://makeitrank.com Kevin Spence

    Right. That’s how it works on the quality rater’s end, and that’s what their job is. But that doesn’t mean that that’s what Google is actually measuring.

    Ultimately, Google wants to know if a particular page is relevant for a particular query. One reason that they might want to know that is so they can take that crowdsourced relevancy data and map it against the results they’re returning against that query. Are they showing content that quality raters marked as relevant? Or are they showing spam?

    It could be a very useful measure of what they’re doing right or wrong from a SERPs point of view.

  • http://always10.blogspot.com A.T.

    @Joe Hall has a point. The rater’s specifically on tune with the URLs and not the SERPs. Though in some point the reason behind why there’s a rater is to measure how a particular page is relevant to search query returns. This is a big puzzle to me. Let me think and I’ll comment again after I got some research.

  • http://www.clifhaley.com Clif

    Perhaps if enough quality raters give a URL negative ratings there is no automatic system in place that reduces ranking based on a certain percentage of negative ratings, but the URL is flagged for further human review by higher level Google reviewers to make a final judgement call.

    Obviously the notion of a quality rater suggest that their task would indeed have impact, at least in some part, or in an internally influential way, on a URL’s ranking in the Google serps.