Is Google Search worse? Many seem to agree

One Reddit member asked if Google search had gotten worse and thousands of others responded overwhelmingly that Google Search isn’t showing what they’re looking for. The SEO community on Twitter chose the discussion and largely agreed.

Has Google’s search quality decreased, according to users?

While a few Reddit members (referred to as Redditors) said Google search was worse than that and asserted that Google is now better, those who advocated Google search were in the minority.

Apparently, most of the commenters on the Reddit thread claimed that Google search was worse and for a variety of reasons.

Articles with bad user experience

A common theme on Reddit was that Google was showing content with a poor user experience.

Web pages in one sentence

An example of poor user experience that Google ranks would be menu pages that force the user to keep clicking to read an article one sentence at a time.

One Redditor commented:

“I am not an expert in SEO or anything else, but how much [redacted] The blog posts I get when searching for silly stuff. I think the worst culprit are those sites that offer “top 10 of X things” that legally interest you, but instead of just listing them in order on the page, they use…slices…”

Every site in SERPs wants to sell you something

Another common complaint was that sites ranked according to informational queries had a sales trend. This results in a situation where a search for information leads to sites that advertise or sell a product.

One Redditor complained:

“Most of the results are just roadmaps to direct you toward buying something rather than giving you information.

I searched for something that day…something rather ordinary and I was hoping to find information about it.

All Google gave me was a bunch of Amazon, eBay, Walmart, and other big retail links. … just wanted to know this thing, I’m not looking to buy … if I wanted to use the shopping tab.”

Another Redditor agreed, writing:

“Agree. What is the point of having a shopping tab if everything is shopping?”

A later comment from another member noted that searching for information about dental fillings resulted in low-quality lists of the best fillings to buy and other content focused on selling dental fillings rather than providing information about them.

Pages that force scrolling to find content

Another form of bad user experience complained of are sites that display an informational query that forced the user to scroll past paragraphs of content to get to the answer they were looking for.

One Redditor explained:

“The worst is when I’m looking for a release date, for example, which is a 5-paragraph article.

“Do you want to know the date? We will tell you the release date.

Just keep scrolling past these announcements to see the release date.”

…unrelated backstory

Release date soon. Everyone is excited about the release date.”

More ads

“Now a lot of people are wondering about the release date. Currently we don’t have a release date.”

Google provides a response

A Google spokesperson contacted Search Engine Journal and provided this response:

“We are constantly making improvements to our systems – 5,000 in 2021, based on more than 800,000 quality tests – to ensure we provide useful and relevant information.

Over the past seven years, we’ve reduced irrelevant results by more than 50%, and our AI has identified nearly six times more spam sites than last year, making more than 99% of our search spam-free.

We value user input, and anyone can report any issue they may find through the search comments function.

  • We have made significant investments in understanding language and artificial intelligence to advance research in tandem with the Internet and the world around us, which is constantly changing.
  • Search contains automated processes designed to identify and prevent spam or machine-generated content from affecting results.
  • We always value feedback in areas where we might not get it right, and use that input to help improve the product along with quantitative feedback from live trials and qualitative feedback from human reviewers.”

Search community opinion on Google search

On the SEO community side, there were many who agreed that Google Search is worse.

Representative tweet:

Someone else gave the opinion that AI content creation was ranking highly on Google.


Big Brands and Clickbait Dominate Google?

Others offered their opinions that big brands and clickbait were dominating Google search results.

They tweeted:

Why is Google search worse?

The Reddit and Twitter communities have been divided over why Google search is bad.

Some have blamed publishers for manipulating Google into rating content that does not respond to media inquiries or provides a poor user experience.

Others have blamed Google’s search algorithms as this is what decides to rank poor quality content.

A good example of the content and order problem can be seen in recipe search queries.

The recipe blogging community believes that Google only rated long-form content. In response, recipe bloggers posted recipes with long and irrelevant personal anecdotes that sometimes forced site visitors to scroll past paragraphs of irrelevant content to the bottom of the page to find the recipe they were looking for.

It seems that the discussions eventually led to this one question:

Are Google search results worse or is the content being posted nowadays too poor?


Read the original Reddit discussion

Does anyone else think that Google’s search quality has deteriorated rapidly?

Read Twitter search forum Discuss whether Google is worse

Do you think Google search is getting better or worse?

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