Thread: Katrina Effect?

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    The Katrina Update?


    Hey guys... with all this news about Katrina and the horrible devastation it cause I guess I was just had it on my mind or something. Anyway I started wondering something... since Katrina knocked out so much power and put such a large area under water do you think this will have a large effect on the SERPs as well? I mean with so much out you would expect to see pages down all over the place. While I am sure this is the least of most people's worries, it could be really tough on anyone who depends on website etc for income. Also with so many pages down wouldnt that shake up the SERPs quite badly? This along with Google's tradition of updates over holiday weekends has me expecting a very active weekend. How has this type of thing(natural disaster etc) affected SERPs in the past or is this on such an unprecedented scale that no one really knows what to expect from it?

    NOTE: I dont mean to belittle the tragedy in any way but rather was just wondering about the different effects it might have that people wouldn't usually think about...
    Last edited by WeRASkitzzo; Sep 2nd, 2005 at 03:30 PM.
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    I guess that would depend on how many Host companies are in that region. And if the are a decent size host in that area, they probably have major backups in place to prevent these types of issues.

    If I had to guess I would say very minimal. Most companies gravitate aroung larger hubs like chicago, LA, New York or Silicon Valley.
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    I think thats a great question! And I'm a heartless b@stard anyway so I don't care if someone has a "feeling" about your post.

    My answer is: I don't know.

    My speculation is: it should have an effect on the SERPs as many of the businesses online in those areas are literally swimming with the fishes. However, since they probably purchased hosting by the year, their sites are likely still going to remain.

    But! Those sites that are up are not being updated, so that opens things up.

    The sites that are down because the servers are in the drink also opens things up. Does anyone know if G pings a site before refering it? I hardly ever get 404 pages from the SERPs anymore.

    Another effect is the amount of sites that are going to be created and/or change focus to comment on the tragety. With their attention over there, that may take focus off of us for now, but once the buzz settles, our sites may get higher placement if we've been working them.

    Interesting point WeRASkitzzo - I guess a natural disaster screws those people virtually as well as phisically.

    That sucks!
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    mick.sawyer
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    Good question and it wasnt in bad taste.
    It is already having an effect on the serps.
    Firstly from people haveing more important things to worry about than buying their children a pink fluffy bunny.
    Second - People are busy watching the news (same in the iraq war)
    And there has been a large chunk of the world that is not searching or is more interested in searching for news of what has happened.

    If you find a way to capitalize on this and make money, do share it because the more money we can make, the more that we can share with those that dont have anything.

    Comments on this post

    • rmccarley agrees : Or buy a new car.
    • WeRASkitzzo agrees : if I figure one out I will let you know for sure...
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    If there is an update this weekend, I want to be the first to coin it the Katrina Update.

    Comments on this post

    • sorvoja agrees : According to SEO tradition that is up to the good people at WebmasterWorld.com to decide.
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    Yeah the lack of fresh content on pages would seem to affect the SERPs as well. I realize most hosts have backups etc but I would still think that something this large would catch more than a few companies unaware. I mean almost an entire city is under water as well as the areas which were flattened by the winds etc. If nothing else, there probably will be less people coming online from those areas for quite a while. I know that our company usually gets about 20-50 visitors a week from New Orleans (we are working on getting our customers in the affected areas free service for at least this month as they wont be able to use it, its hardly fair to charge the service fee's) but anyway I guess I was just kind of pondering the "virtual effects" of something like this. Thats something you dont usually hear about on the news etc. so I was wondering your guys' take on it.
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    It would make a hell of a press release if someone came up with actual data instead of just speculation.
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    Originally Posted by rmccarley
    It would make a hell of a press release if someone came up with actual data instead of just speculation.
    The best I might be able to do is the effect on our company or our site's traffic... I think its going to take YEARS to figure out all the different ways Katrina screwed us and for how much etc...
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    What about past "big world" events like the tsunami or invasion of Iraq? Anyone got logs that go back that far?
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  19. SEO Chat Good Citizen (1000 - 1499 posts)

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    Originally Posted by rmccarley
    What about past "big world" events like the tsunami or invasion of Iraq? Anyone got logs that go back that far?
    I wondered about the tsunami but it would obviously be a different situation as the area hit by Katrina was in the US. I think last years hurricanes might be the best indication although on a much smaller scale. I have heard a few people mention the invasion of Iraq but I wasnt SEO'ing then so I dont have any experience to report... anyone have info to share on this?

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