• http://managinggreatness.com Gil Reich

    I look forward to this piece every year. One more thing BTW. The NFL owns a site called SuperBowl.com that has been down all day, and for most of the past few months. Oops.

  • greggersh

    HuffPo used the incorrect “Superbowl” (one word, instead of the correct ‘Super Bowl’) in their title, which seems to be causing google to ask me if I meant to type “what time does the superbowl start” (Either that, or your query). Go robots!

  • http://www.highrankings.com/seoservicestwitter Jill Whalen

    The Huffpo page did at least provide the answer, and that’s all that Google cares about right now, not how the page got there. It’s disheartening to see that spam is the way to go right now, but you can’t blame websites for giving the search engines what they want.

    I addressed this issue last week, at least as far as sites getting to the top through anchor text spam, in my article “Google (and Bing) Love Anchor Text Spam.”

  • http://mikecanex.wordpress.com/ Mike Cane

    How funny! I just did that search last night and the results were appalling. Why wasn’t TV Guide one of the top results too? Pathetic!

  • http://ninebyblue.com/ Vanessa Fox

    Excellent question, Mike! The TV Guide web site also has all kinds of Super Bowl-related content that would likely engage those doing this query…. if only they showed up.

  • http://ninebyblue.com/ Vanessa Fox

    greggersh, I think HuffPo likely used the incorrect spelling because that has higher search volume. Sigh.

  • rpauli

    Thank you for listing the time in the very first line.

    I spent many frustrating minutes trying different queries only to learn of this search fail.

    Looking forward to next year’s report.

  • DTS

    Note that both google and bing list the time prominently by itself on the search page, so you don’t really have to click anything at all. Google’s little entry is attributed to http://www.nfl.com , which would seem to get points for authority; Bing goes to Fox Sports. Both google and bing had links to the NFL and Fox Super Bowl pages, respectively.

    I also did the search I would have done on my own, “superbowl time”, got a different set of news sites but the same on-page reference from both. Google instant search, or whatever they call the search-as-you-type thing, turns up the on-page blurb after “sup”. Turning that off and using the old-fashioned “I feel lucky” button, it goes to answers.com, not ideal but they give the time on the first line.

    Google could improve by putting the in-page link above the news, and the other results are admittedly not that good, but the info you need is pretty prominently displayed without going anywhere.

  • http://www.robertdenton.org/ Robert Denton

    The first result for me on Bing is a nicely formatted link to Fox Sports with this in the teaser:
    Sunday, Feb 6th, 6:25PM ET on FOX – The NFC Champion Green Bay Packers and AFC Champion Pittsburgh Steelers will go head to head on Super Bowl Sunday at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Estimated kickoff time is 6:25.

    I don’t find anything wrong with that.

    On Google I get a few news links then nfl.com link with the kickoff time.

  • http://ninebyblue.com/ Vanessa Fox

    DTS and Robert,

    Yes, as I noted in the intro, in 2010, both Google and Bing added a “onebox” to the top of the results that provides this information. The 2010 article goes into detail about where this information is coming from. The Google result, for instance, is coming from nfl.com, but this is only because Google is specifically grabbing a feed for that and manually displaying it.

    Both Google and Bing have manually placed the answer at the top of the results in order to provide a quality experience to searchers.

    The manual onebox display from the engines is different from the algorithmically generally web search results (in the screenshot I show above, these results start with the xomba.com page).

    My point in the article is that neither nfl.com nor fox.com (and as mentioned in the comment above, tvguide.com) is showing up algorithmically in the web search results. Those web sites are not built in a way that’s easily crawable and indexable by search engines and they haven’t used search data to find out what their audiences are looking for and then put that searched-for content on their pages.

    The ideal business strategy for these organizations would be to:

    -Determine their web site goals (looking at the sites, it looks like they have a lot of pre-game content they’d like audiences to interact with).

    -Determine what audience is best targeted to those goals (based on the bullet above, people wanting to know what time the game starts are likely a key target).

    -Make sure they have content on their sites that help that audience accomplish their search tasks (and make sure their sites are architected in a way that search engines could get to that content and index it).

    That would enable those sites to show up in the algorithmically generated web search results and in turn, searchers would click on those results and engage further with the sites.

    None of that is happening now.

  • http://smackdown.blogsblogsblogs.com/ mvandemar

    Bing has nearly identical results to Google

    You might want to be careful saying that these days Vanessa, Bing will attack you these days for making that statement. :)

  • http://www.NerdsToGo.com NerdsToGo

    “And the NFL and Fox? Still nowhere to be found.” The nfl listing seems pretty clear to me. Actually the easiest listing to see.