Month: May 2017

Know how to deal with Google updates and their Impact on SEO

Many SEO updates were declared by Google in the year 2016. The entire updates have a significant impact on your SEO in the year 2017. Search marketers have to ensure which update significantly affect their SEO strategy. These updates can help a user in understanding changes in rankings and organic website traffic, and ultimately improve SEO.

These are the SEO Updates that published by Google in 2016.

SEO Updates in 2016

How to Deal with Google’s Algorithm Changes:

In the world of SEO, the only constant thing is “change”. Each year, in various SEO communities, SEO strategists discuss the updates and its probable impact on the various sites.

Alike you all, I am also going through a lot of the changes and they do affect my site. Meanwhile, let us have a look on what the basic strategies and common tips are, for the every webmaster, once a big update is announced.

1. Don’t Take Stress:

As we know, every algorithm update is stressful in terms of their impact on the website. However, here I want to advise that do not take too much stress and not to feel panic about the Google SEO updates. Though Google do inform about the update through the Google Webmaster Central Blog, it never provides a detailed list of changes. Panicking about something, we know little about, is hard to work on it.

2. Impact of the Update:

Once the Google release an update, you have to keep a tight eye on the update. Analyze what the update is, how it affects your sites now, and what impact it can have in future. It may be tempting to instantly act upon the update and make changes to either your site or your process, but that could be a mere wastage of your time and work. The smart way out is to wait and watch if your site has really been impacted and if yes, till what extent.

3. Research the Resources:

Once the analysis part is over, you have to make a note on the basis of the entire researches what you want from the Google and how Google can offer it in a better way. Research a lot on the entire possible changes, their possible best solutions as required improvements, and accordingly craft your SEO strategy.

4. Let’s start:

When you have done all the things then you can start your work as per Algorithm changes. However, while making amendments to your site after an update, ensure you make one change at a time. That way, you can see the impact of the amendment and have a better idea of what is actually going on.

Conclusions

All the Major search algorithm updates can be scary. However, if you are doing SEO in a right way— e.g. creating good quality and user-focused content, earning links from credible and niche-specific sites, and others — you should not be in a worried state. Conversely, if you are doing some unethical or incorrect activities which are subjected to penalize by Google, Google is following you!

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SEO Updates of 2016 that still have impact in the year 2017

Google has a giant record of prominent search algorithm updates, search index changes, and refreshes. Since its launch in 1998, Google has been persistently refining its search algorithm to align search results with users’ intent. Every year, Google comes up with almost 500+ changes in its search algorithm. However, not all but only major updates like Panda and Penguin can have significant impact on search results.

SEO Updates

Search marketers have to ensure which update significantly affect their SEO strategy. These updates can help a user in understanding changes in rankings and organic website traffic, and ultimately improve SEO.

Rumours are flying about Google’s updates; hence, we, at QL tech , have researched a lot. From the research we conducted, bits of reliable information have come from several sources about the all the possible changes which took place in 2016. Accordingly, we have made a note for user experience.

For carving a perfect SEO strategy and boost rankings, each and every search marketer has to be sure about the dates when, and which updates took place.

“Check out the list for all SEO Updates published by Google in 2016.”

1. Core Ranking Algorithm Update (January):

When the update was announced by Google on 8th January 2016, most of the webmasters were expecting it to be a Penguin update. However, on 18th January 2016, Gary Illyes, from Google, officially confirmed on Twitter that this was not a Penguin update, but details remained cloudy.

Google_core_update

Majorly, this update was about shift in rankings of keywords and websites. This update caused much volatile search results for both the automated tracking tools and the chatter in the community

2. AdWords Shake-up (February):

The major update that took place on 23rd  February 2016 relates to Removal of AdWords ads sidebar. Google confirmed that right-column ads have been entirely removed and rolled out 4-ad top blocks on many commercial searches. Now, only 4 ads at the top of the search and 3 ads in the bottom of the search will be displayed, right sidebar ad would never show up again. The site will only display product listing ads (PLA) and knowledge graphs. Being it a paid search update, it had significant repercussions for CTR for both paid and organic results, particularly on competitive keywords.

3. Mobile-Friendly updates (May):

Google indicated in the month of March that they are arranging to boost the mobile-friendly algorithm in May, and clearly, they rolled out on 12th May 2016. This was the second version of an original Google Mobile friendly update which was announced a year back. The new Google mobile-friendly algorithm is hypothetical to give an additional ranking boost for mobile-friendly websites in the mobile search results.

google-Mobile-Friendly-Updates

Since the majority of sites tracked these days are already mobile-friendly, the impact of this update is likely to be very minor.  To ensure that your website is mobile friendly, check the Google mobile-friendly tool and Google’s mobile guidelines. It is never too late to gain from mobile-friendly algorithm; it is real-time based on how quick Google crawls your web pages.

4. Possum (September):

On 1st September 2016, Google simply released a new update, which was nicknamed “Possum” by the SEO alliance. The main purpose behind this update is to diversify the local results and prevent spam from ranking. Through this update, Google applies filters on Local Searches based on address and affiliation. Post this update, businesses that fall outside of the physical city limits saw a huge spike in ranking. For businesses and SEO strategists who depend on traffic generated from local searches, Possum is significant. Experts have quoted, “Google Possum as being the biggest update to Local search since Pigeon in 2014.”

Google -Possum-Updates

Possum has enhanced the importance of a searcher’s location on local search engine results pages (SERPs). However, businesses that share the same physical address as other organizations may face challenges. Google does filter out duplicate content in organic search, but ‘punishes’ a business who operates in shared offices. Such businesses may experience fall in SEO rankings since Google aims to become more precise.

“Study shows Google’s Possum update changed 64% of local SERPs”

5.      Image/Universal Drop (September):

Google dropped image results from a large percentage of Google search results on 13th September 2016, which contributes to the instability in search results.  Mozcast recorded a significant nearly 50% drop in search results that feature image results appearing within the organic search results.

These updates play a huge role for all businesses and SEO users who are merely dependent on images from search results for getting traffic from there.

The above chart depicts scenario of 30 days (from 28th August 2016 to 26th September 2016). This shows searchers are only seeing images in 15.8% of search results, down from about 33%.

6. Penguin 4.0 (September-October):

At the end of two year’s wait, Google announced its fourth major release, Penguin, on 23rd September 2016. Primary impact assessments were minor, but it was later revealed that the Penguin 4.0 rollout was unusually long and multi-phase. Its phase 1 and phase 2 was announced on 27th September 2016 and 6th October 2016 respectively.  Penguin was first released in April 2012.

Google-Penguin-4.0-Update

Based on this update, Penguin’s data is refreshed in real-time, so changes will be noticeable much quicker, typically taking effect shortly after Google recrawls, and reindexs a page. Penguin now devalues spam by adjusting ranking based on spam signals, rather than affecting ranking of the whole site.

This update has its impact on all levels of domain, folders, pages and probably also keywords and keyword groups. So whatever that goes into the organic rankings will now be affected by the Penguin algorithm on a fine level. Here, it would be tougher to analyse “small penguin penalties” in many cases.

The Google Penguin positive or negative signal is now recalculated on the crawl.

The penguin updates have corresponded to an algorithm temperature spike (113°) on 27th September and had had one final peak on 6th October (116°)

7.      Phantom 3 (November – unconfirmed by Google):

There was a major algorithm update on 19th November 2016. No one has exact clue about what it is. However, this update is related to Quality update in relation with the previous phantom update 2 of Google. Due to the lack of information (or confirmation) from Google, whatever has affected the search rankings is referred as phantom 3 update. The said update seemed to be connected with the appearance or removal of rich snippets in the SERPs.

8. New Roll out (November-December):

In order to filter out fake news sites, or rather, promote higher quality news sites; it seems that Google has worked on tweaking the top stories algorithm. This is around Google’s efforts to hide fake news including banning some Ad Sense publishers.

Booming SEO Trends In the year 2017

There has always been an inclination on the significance of UX and mobile-based search results by Google. The chief focus of is on advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI). Preferences of search engines have a huge impact on SEO and SEO trends.

Let’s walk through what all trends that have so far marked significance in the year 2017. Keeping an eye on these trends and staying in line with the algorithm updates will make you prepare to amend your on hand SEO strategy in the latter half of 2017.

  1. Powerful content is getting more attention

SEO content is any content created with the goal of attracting search engine traffic.
Wordstream

Content is still king in SEO and it will remain as is in the upcoming years. You should optimize your content rather than optimize for keywords. Searchers are fed up with surfing the messed up content again and again. You should use the words in your content that your users use so that your reader can very well get engaged with your content. Your content should not be too crisp or too comprehensive; however, it should be succinct. Currently, content marketing is overflowing with scattered content, crisp as well as comprehensive. In the year 2017, optimised and powerful content is getting more attention and ultimately more traffic.

Refresh your old content and make it more relevant for your target audience.

  1. Video and image content is ruling

Video-and-visual-content-in-seo

As compared to plain textual content, video and image content has an advantage of providing understandability in an easier manner. It isn’t very easy and straightforward for everyone to read technical content and grasp within seconds. However, if presented correctly, image content and video content can surely grab attention and it helps a user in getting the exact message. In the year 2016, websites that included videos had enjoyed nearly 88% more time by site visitors.

52% of marketers worldwide insist video content has best ROI.
Adobe research

Videos are flexible; it unquestionably adds value to your overall content. Even Google is going to give more importance to the content that will have images and/or videos. Stay updated and optimize your site in view of the search engine algorithm.

  1. Voice search is growing more and more

how-to-optimize-text-for-voice-search

Based on a research conducted by Google, 41% of adults and 55% of teenagers perform at least one voice search per day.

In the last year 2016, voice search was one of the most prominent trends. Industry experts have agreed that voice search is even growing more and more this year, 2017. Customers are also preferring to speak in front of their mobile device rather than typing out. Popular platforms like Google Now, Siri, and Cortana are extensively used for voice searches.

Voice searches are widely used to call someone, ask for directions, and read out texts to help with homework.

Uses of Voice call - SEO Trends in 2017

Consider your website to optimize for voice search. For 2017 and ahead of, websites which most narrowly match the user’s query would be able to defeat their competitors by being the foremost source.

  1. Mobile friendly websites is ranking higher

Mobile searches have already surpassed desktop searches. Top of it, Google has also officially declared that non-mobile friendly sites will get penalized. In fact, many Google actions have symbolized that mobile should be marked as the default user experience. Google favours the websites which have switched over to AMPs. More and more brands are expected to take benefit of this option in 2017.

Apart from these top four trends, do not miss out to follow the most recent SEO trends of 2017. You can also checkout a detailed blog on: https://www.qltech.com.au/blog/. Buckle your seats for the ongoing trends and get a boost in rankings of your website as well as web traffic.