When Ryan Abood looked at the books for his parents' New Hampshire flower shop, one number popped out. Without a bit of advertising, sales of gift baskets had grown 400 percent. For a year and a half, he worked a hundred hours a week to make his spinoff, GourmetGiftBaskets.com, into the third-largest player in his niche.
Then, one day, he woke up to find that Google, the source of 80 percent of the company's revenue, had banished his site from its search results. His company ended up the better for it.