Google changes its algorithm almost every day. However, search results were affected greatly by some major updates this past year. When you know the dates of the most important updates, you can understand changes in your rankings and organic website traffic and ultimately improve search engine optimization. Let’s see how Google changed SEO in 2013:
The year started with the animal that frightened every search marketer. The Google Panda update was meant to stop sites with low quality content from working their way into Google’s top search results. Websites that used scraped content were penalized by Google and disappeared from the Google search results pages. Google says it only takes a few pages of poor quality or duplicate content to hold down traffic on an otherwise solid site, and recommends such pages be removed, blocked from being indexed by the search engine, or rewritten. Continue Reading >>
Since Google announced the Hummingbird update last week, we’ve had to answer to callers every day that SEO has not been killed; it’s just been changed a little. It’s high time to publish a guide explaining how you should change your SEO strategy to adapt to the new Google algorithm.
There are two big news items now being discussed in the SEO community: a new Google search algorithm called “Hummingbird” and the encryption of all search data that Google recently announced.
The Hummingbird algorithm will better focus on the meaning behind the words. However, it still uses PageRank along with other factors like whether Google believes a page is of good quality, the words used on it, etc. Penguin and Panda also stay intact. Hummingbird is a brand new search algorithm, though it continues to use some of the same parts of the old, like Penguin and Panda. This means that the SEO guidance remains the same: build quality websites with unique informative content and receive natural backlinks. Continue Reading >>
The Google Panda Dance is a new SEO term coined last week. It was created after Matt Cutts announced that the Panda algorithm will be updated every month, but that update will be rolled out slowly throughout the month. So now Google will run the update on a particular day and then it will push out that impact over 10 days or so throughout the month.
Spring cleaning continues: Yahoo has shut down of one of the web’s oldest search services. Good bye, AltaVista (a surge of nostalgia here). AltaVista launched way back in 1995 and will be shutting down on July 8th. You can see the full list of retired Yahoo projects here. Continue Reading >>
The new and improved Google Places for Business dashboard is now available for new signups in the USA, UK and Ireland. If you are an existing Google Places for Business user, do not create new pages for listings that already exist, just continue using Google Places for Business or Google+ as you were.
Foursquare has added new search filters that allow Android and iOS users to make very specific searches, filtering by price, locations where users have or haven’t checked in before, locations ‘friends have checked in’, if a location is ‘open now’ and if a location is ‘offering specials’. Continue Reading >>