Top SEO News, 2018
Google will keep in secret the number of search quality algorithms
How many search quality algorithms does Google use? This question was put to the John Mueller, the company’s employee during the last video conference with webmasters.
The question was:
"When you mention Google's quality algorithm, how many algorithms do you use?"
Mueller responded the following:
"Usually we do not talk about how many algorithms we use. We publicly state that we have 200 factors when it comes to scanning, indexing and ranking.
Generally, the number of algorithms is a casual number. For instance, one algorithm can be used to display a letter on the search results page. Therefore, we believe that counting the exact number of algorithms that Google uses is not something that is really useful [for optimizers].
From this point of view, I can’t tell you how many algorithms are involved in Google search."
Gary Illyes shares his point of view on how important referential audit is
At the Brighton SEO event that took place last week, Google rep called Gary Illyes shared his opinion about the importance of auditing the website's link profile. This information was reported by Jennifer Slagg in the TheSEMPost blog.
Since Google Penguin was modified into real-time update and started ignoring spam links instead of imposing sanctions on websites, this has led to a decrease of the value of auditing external links.
According to Gary Illyes, auditing of links is not necessary for all websites at the present moment.
"I talked to a lot of SEO specialists from big enterprises about their business and their answers differed. These companies have different opinions on the reason why they reject links.
I don't think that helding too many audits makes sense, because, as you noted, we successfully ignore the links, and if we see that the links are of an organic nature, it is highly unlikely that we will apply manual sanctions to a website.
In case your links are ignored by the "Penguin", there is nothing to worry about.
I've got my own website, which receives about 100,000 visits a week. I have it for 4 years already and I do not have a file named Disavow. I do not even know who is referring to me.
Thus, in the case when before a website owner was engaged in buying links or using other prohibited methods of link building, then conducting an audit of the reference profile and rejecting unnatural links is necessary in order to avoid future manual sanctions. It is important to remember that rejecting links can lead to a decrease in resource positions in the global search results, since many webmasters often reject links that actually help the website, rather than doing any harm to it.
Therefore, referential audits are needed if there were any violations in the history of the resource. They are not necessary for many website owners and it is better to spend this time on improving the website itself, says Slagg.
Googlebot still refuses to scan HTTP/2
During the last video conference with webmasters Google rep called John Mueller said that Googlebot still refrains to scan HTTP.
The reason is that the crawler already scans the content that fast, so the benefits that the browser receives (web pages loading time is decreased) are not that important.
"No, at the moment we do not scan HTTP / 2. We are still investigating what we can do about it. In general, the difficult part is that Googlebot is not a browser, so it does not get the same speed effects that are observed within a browser when implementing HTTP / 2. We can cache data and make requests in a different way than a regular browser. Therefore, we do not see the full benefits of scanning HTTP / 2.
But with more websites implementing push notification feature, Googlebot developers are on the point of adding support for HTTP in future.”
It should be recalled that in April 2016, John Mueller said that the use of the HTTP / 2 protocol on the website does not directly affect the ranking in Google, but it improves the experience of users due to faster loading speed of the pages. Therefore, if you have a change, it is recommended to move to this protocol.
Google does not check all spam reports in manual mode
Google employee named John Mueller stated that the search team does not check all spam reports manually during the last video conference with webmasters.
The question to Mueller was the following:
"Some time ago we sent a report on a spam, but still have not seen any changes. Do you check each and every report manually?"
The answer was:
No, we do not check all spam reports manually. "
Later Mueller added:
"We are trying to determine which reports about spam have the greatest impact, it is on them that we focus our attention and it is their anti-spam team that checks manually, processes and, if necessary, applies manual sanctions. Most of the other reports that come to us is just information that we collect and can use to improve our algorithms in the future. At the same time, he noted that small reports about violations of one page scale are less prioritized for Google. But when this information can be applied to a number of pages, these reports become more valuable and are prior to be checked.
As for the report processing time, it takes some considerable time. As Mueller explained, taking measures may take "some time", but not a day or two.
It should be recalled that in 2016, Google received about 35 thousand messages about spam from users every month. About 65% of all the reports led to manual sanctions.
Publishers have found a way to beat Facebook's ranking algorithms July 25/2017
The AdAge Edition noted that publishers have found a way to beat Facebook's ranking algorithms. They began to attach short videos in MP4 format instead of pictures; since videos re usually given priority in the users' tapes.
New tactics are used by large publishers, such as BuzzFeed, and smaller ones, among them is ForShitsAndGiggles.
For example, the 48-second "video" published by BuzzFeed has received more than 1.4 million views in just a couple of weeks:
Other examples also include short videos that last only a few seconds.
The Facebook representative in the AdAge commentary says that the social network does not prioritize the video before other types of publications in the news line. But if the user usually interacts with the video, he will often see posts of this format in his tape:
"We are constantly improving the news line to show you the most relevant stories, and prevent attempts to deceive the system."
Nevertheless, Russ Torres, the USA Today Network vice president of video content and strategy believes that in fact Facebook promotes the video in line.
BuzzFeed and ForShitsAndGiggles have not yet commented on this aspect.
How Google processes pages with the Canonical and noindex attributes Aug 14/2017
During the last video conference with webmasters, John Mueller answered the interesting question: how does the search engine process pages that both contain the Canonical and Noindex attribute?
The question to Mueller was:
"I once was at a seminar where I was told that if you use rel = canonical and Noindex on a page, then Canonical will transmit the Noindex canonicalized page. Is that true?".
"Hmm. I don’t know. We discussed this issue for a long time, at least inside the team. In particular, what should we do in this case.
Using Canonical, you are telling that two pages should be processes identically. Noindex reports that the page that contains it must be removed from the search. Therefore theoretically our algorithms can get confused and decide that you need to delete both pages. Correct? Or they can process them in different ways, taking into account Noindex attribute.
As a matter of actual practice, it is most likely that algorithms will decide that the rel = canonical attribute was added by mistake."
Google will no longer trust WoSign and StarCom certificates July 25/2017
Google reports that in the coming months, it will completely stop cooperation with certificates issued by WoSign and StarCom certification centers. The change will take effect with the release of Chrome 61, which is expected in mid-September. It will affect the certificates issued before October 21, 2016, the period of validity of which has not yet expired.
Last year, Google Chrome 56 stopped trusting the certificates from WoSign and StarCom, released later October 21, 2016. After the release of Chrome 57, the browser partially stopped trusting the old certificates. An exception was made for websites that are among the first million in the Alexa rating. From now on, all certificates from these centers will be banned.
"Starting with Chrome 61, the white list will be removed, which will lead to a complete cessation of trust in the existing root certificates of WoSign and StarCom and all certificates that they have given out. Websites that still use certificates from StarCom and WoSign should urgently consider replacing them, so as to minimize any inconveniences to Chrome users," reports Google.
It should be recalled Mozilla announced about freezing its cooperation with WoSign and StartCom in September 2016. Starting with the Firefox 51 the certificates are considered to be invalid. At the same time, the support of certificates issued before October 21, 2016 is still preserved.
Google Search Console sends thousands of verification requests to webmasters by mistake Aug 14/2017
The webmasters who work with Google Search Console have been receiving numerous letters from the service in the last two days asking them to confirm the data. In some cases, thousands of such messages are going to inbox.
Google’s search quality department specialist John Mueller suggested that the problem may be related to the beta version of Search Console, and apologized:
"I also noticed that it was happening. I think it started yesterday or the day before yesterday. We sorted out the problem together with the Google Search Console team, and, in our opinion, it does not mean that there is something wrong with your websites. It seems that the problem is on our side, we have confused something, I think this is related to the beta version of Search Console. Perhaps there are some processes that need to be re-tested. But this does not mean that you have to make any changes on your websites, or that you have been attacked by hackers, or something like that. I'm embarrassed and apologize for all these messages that dropped to you inbox mails."
It should be recalled that Google is working on a new version of Search Console, which became known in July. The company officially confirmed this information in early August and shared the details of the two reports for testing. The new Search Console version will not only change the interface, but also make more data available.
Google tests a new format for price extension in Product Listing Ads Aug 04/2017
Merkle agency specialists noticed that Google is testing a new format for price expansion in product listings.
Testers put the product price, which is shown at a discount, and the crossed-out original price on the right side. As a result, users immediately see that the product participates in the promotion. Testing is carried out in the mobile and desktop Google versions.
As noted in Merkle, this format of displaying information about the discount allows you to save space in the ad and show other extensions (free delivery, product rating). In addition, it helps to increase CTR ads and highlight company offers among competitors' ads.
Testing is conducted on a limited scale. Google representative said to the Merkle Company that they are constantly testing various formats to give users the most useful information.
Google tests a new search results format with ready-made answers July 11/2017
English-speaking users noticed that Google is testing a new format for the search results that would include ready answers.
From now on the website, the content of which was used to generate a response will no longer be displayed in the search results. The reference to it is contained only in the block with the answer.
"Google removed the result from the search on the page that was already shown in the block with the answer for this query. Now the block with the answer is the only result for the page on a specific request, "says The SEM Post blog
It is noted that the new feature is currently available for many users, but not all of them. This can mean a large-scale testing or a gradual launch.
Seo Facts #55
According to research from RBC Capital Markets conducted in September 2015, 64% of US small and medium-sized businesses had a professional website for their business, and an additional 10% planned to create one. (Source: eMarketer)
Seo Facts #133
Currently adoption rates for social media stand at 76% for those with college or graduate degrees, 70% of those with some college education and 54% for those who have a high school diploma or less. (Source: Pew Research)
Seo Facts #170
As of November 2015 Apple had a 43.1% share of Smartphone subscribers and Samsung had 28% of subscribers. LG was in third place with 9.6% of Smartphone subscribers. (Source: comScore)
Seo Facts #185
Black Friday was “Mobile Friday,” with mobile accounting for 36.1% of orders, up from 30.3% of orders on Black Friday 2014. (Source: Custora)
Seo Facts #130
Fully 55% of small businesses updated social media business content monthly or less frequently, while just 15% did so daily and 30% weekly. This likely means the social followers theses small businesses have—who often demand real-time, or close to real-time, info—are seeing out-of-date content. (Source: eMarketer)
Seo Facts #114
Separate research from Experian Marketing Services is in line with the Yesmail study. According to the Q2 2015 data, 48% of all emails sent by Experian clients were opened on desktop devices and 40% of emails were opened on mobile phones and ereaders. Some 12% were opened on tablets. (Source: eMarketer)