Google Froogle Serves Spam? Make Spam Sandwiches
Brian Smith’s Comparison Engines piece on Google’s Froogle and Shopping Search Spam attracted a bit of attention, including Froogle. Brian has followed up to his Froogle Spam story with some changes Froogle has made to their merchant feed index.
It’s a good start, but apparently not enough, as Brian points out the overabundance of spam in Google’s Froogle. I think what Brian is doing is great, and Froogle should really pay close attention. The following is an excerpt from Cleaning Up Froogle – One Post at a Time.
I feel like I should be on Froogle’s payroll (but I’m not – and please note that there are no AdSense or YPN ads on my site). When I wrote about Froogle’s spam problem on December 4, the search results for an iPod nano were so bad that I told consumers and merchants to stay away from Froogle this holiday season. Froogle then cleaned up the search results a little bit, getting rid of one egregious offender.
I followed up my original Froogle spam post with another post entitled Froogle – Leftover Spam, again critiquing the iPod nano search results because there were multiple duplicate stores, a number of eBay expired auctions, and numerous out of stock listings. Looks like Froogle once again paid attention.
The one listing I’ve used as an example has gone from 225 prices to 101 prices to 29 prices; Froogle got rid of all the eBay listings and most of the spam is gone. Froogle could refine the results even more as there are still a number of Amazon affiliates with basically the same listing and MacMall, ClubMac, PC Mall, iBuyDigital, ISS Electronics, DirectDial.com are all listed twice.
While the improvements are welcome, the iPod nano example is just the tip of the iceberg and therefore I’m not changing my opinion of the site. Do a seach for ‘digital camera‘ and you come up with a ton of other issues – in general, any Froogle listing that has over 100 prices and has a large price range seems to have problems.
And since I’m not on Froogle’s payroll, the company’s PR department hasn’t reached out to me this week, and I have more interesting things to write about…Froogle is just going to have to do their dirty work themselves.