I like to burn high quality Japanese incense while I work. It’s relaxing but at the same time I maintain more focus when I burn a stick or two of my favorite incense. It sets a mood, and keeps me on task. But this addiction presents a few problems, because my typical American neighbor does not buy Japanese incense, so the stores don’t carry it. I buy incense online.
And while buying incense online today, I discovered an SEO oddity.
Using IE8 I googled “Japanese incense” and I got a search results set that included just one website (Shoyeido, the defining brand in the marketplace), surrounded by ads, shopping results, and related searches. Nary a wikipedia page in site. No other sites at all, actually. Just the Big Brand, plus the ads.
I’ll post a screen cap later, if helpful. I saved all of the screens mentioned in this post.
Confused, I checked the settings and no ad blockers, js was on, etc. Everything seemed normal. I don’t use IE much, so no plugins or toolbars in the way. Odd.
I did the same search in Chrome and saw a more typical Google results set. Shoyeido at the top of the organic results, with the ads and shopping results mixed into a typical Universal Search results page. And of course all the exact match domains, a supplier in San Francisco I will investigate later, and Nippon, the company that made Esteban’s incense.
I did the search in Firefox and also saw the more traditional results set, with one exception. No sidebar ads. No ads at all, in fact. Hmmm.
What’s going on here? How did Shoyeido.com, the defining brand in the incense marketplace, get into that result set when no other organic search result was able to appear (for whatever reason)?
Was there a glitch in the matrix? Does that glitch suggest that the BigBranded default #1 result is hard-wired somehow into the SERP, separate from the
probably temporarily broken way the rest of the organic results get loaded up?
I’m curious.What’s going on here?