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For months, J.C. Penney (JCP) turned up as the #1 result on Google (GOOG) queries for dozens of...

For months, J.C. Penney (JCP) turned up as the #1 result on Google (GOOG) queries for dozens of items, even beating out Samsonite in a search for ... Samsonite. The NYT delves into the shady world of search engine optimization as well as the man in charge of policing it, Google's powerful Matt Cutts.
Comments (12)
  • mytradinggroup
    , contributor
    Comments (5) | Send Message
     
    Who really cares if they get an unbiased result when searching for "little black dress"? You expect it to be biased towards those who are selling something. What is interesting is the fight $JCP has shown to stay competitive and relevant. Will that translate to a higher stock price? We shall see.
    13 Feb 2011, 09:46 AM Reply Like
  • mikeybronx
    , contributor
    Comments (347) | Send Message
     
    this is how we do business, nothing unlike thumbing through a Yellow Pages publication and calling the first entry, or the one with a large full page ad. i am quite sure JC spent a substantial amount of money to be the #1 search engine result. illegal? or just smart?
    13 Feb 2011, 11:39 AM Reply Like
  • wyostocks
    , contributor
    Comments (8696) | Send Message
     
    Does this surprise anyone?
    Money talks, nobody walks.
    13 Feb 2011, 11:54 AM Reply Like
  • spald_fr
    , contributor
    Comments (2793) | Send Message
     
    If you type in 'liar' in google search and hit enter, there's a list of definitions from Wikipedia and Webster, followed by a list of books from Amazon.

     

    The first actual person associated with the term 'liar' turns out to be Michael Bloomberg:
    www.google.com/search?...
    13 Feb 2011, 12:32 PM Reply Like
  • spald_fr
    , contributor
    Comments (2793) | Send Message
     
    Three thumbs down for stating the facts of a google search?

     

    Well, then type in 'Samsonite' (as the article suggests). Guess what? JCPenny doesn't even show up!! Some of these Market Current articles are just plain incorrect. I thought I would highlight with the 'liar' search, but obviously 'Samonsite' is more politically correct.
    www.google.com/search?...
    13 Feb 2011, 03:49 PM Reply Like
  • SA Editor Stephen Alpher
    , contributor
    Comments (548) | Send Message
     
    "For months, J.C. Penney (JCP) turned up as the #1 result ..."

     

    "turned" is the operative word here, i.e. it's the past tense. I don't know if you read the NYT article, but it states that JCP has been "penalized" for their aggressive tactics. I doubt you'll find them anywhere near the top for any of those searches for awhile.
    13 Feb 2011, 04:37 PM Reply Like
  • mikeybronx
    , contributor
    Comments (347) | Send Message
     
    actually as we comment they are still in the top three searches in the sponsored links box, but so is zappos and macy's.
    13 Feb 2011, 05:40 PM Reply Like
  • SA Editor Stephen Alpher
    , contributor
    Comments (548) | Send Message
     
    Sponsored links is a different story ...
    13 Feb 2011, 06:06 PM Reply Like
  • lizcpa
    , contributor
    Comments (4) | Send Message
     
    I've never had JCPenny come up on a search I've done!
    13 Feb 2011, 02:35 PM Reply Like
  • Jackson999
    , contributor
    Comments (468) | Send Message
     
    The NY Times article was really interesting and worth reading!

     

    Penny denied any knowledge of how they were achieving such high rankings consistently. But it was also noted that they had retained a a search engine consulting firm called SearchDex, whom they have since fired.

     

    I suspect that Penny management really did know what was going on but told their now former search engine firm not to give them any formal status reports. That way they had "plausible deniability".

     

    The real question and not really well explained in the article was how (or why) did Google manage to keep their own heads buried in the sand while this was going on for months? The implication is that Penny paid enough for keywords and sponsored ads to make Google turn a blind eye to the hanky panky.

     

    Speaking of "hanky panky", this might be a good example of search manipulation. Most people would probably see this phrase and think of "mischief" or something similar. But if you search these two words on Google, you find that there is actually a company named Hanky Panky which sells "The World's most comfortable thongs, panties, boyshort, bralettes, and lingerie!" and owns the number one position on a Google search. [lol]
    13 Feb 2011, 09:10 PM Reply Like
  • Paul Zimbardo
    , contributor
    Comments (576) | Send Message
     
    I wrote an article on this very topic last night. This could have a notable impact on JCP's stock.

     

    seekingalpha.com/artic...
    14 Feb 2011, 01:46 PM Reply Like
  • mikeybronx
    , contributor
    Comments (347) | Send Message
     
    greetings Paul,
    if anything it will show shareholders that corporate has vision and should be applauded for initiative. think of all the great free press they have obtained. i and many others will still shop there.
    14 Feb 2011, 01:58 PM Reply Like
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