My blog has been penalized in Google’s index for a few weeks now. While I would prefer that my content be easier to find, it does not worry me and my readership is not declining. Daniel Tunkelang explains exactly why: while Google brings a lot of traffic to my blog, almost none of it is relevant.
For example, my post on Simpson’s paradox is the most popular page from Google’s search engine. By far. Yet, it is not very exciting nor very representative. It gets a lot of traffic because many people want to compute the “average of averages”.
There is a practical conclusion: forget about most search-engine optimization tricks if you are a blogger. Making some of your pages show up first in Google will generally not increase your readership.