Latest Google Algorithm Change Revealed
It is not common for Google to release any information on their upcoming algorithm changes before they go live; in fact Matt Cutts did just that during his SXSW panel in March. Cutts explained that Google will update their algorithm to target websites over doing their SEO and penalize their search engine rankings. This will not come as a surprise to many in the industry, especially to those who use the proper SEO techniques against competitors who abuse SEO practices.
Many might ask what does Google consider “over optimization” or what makes a website “overly SEO’d”? According to Cutts, they will be looking at websites which have “too many keywords on the page or exchange way too many links or go beyond what you normally expect.”
The “too many keywords on the page” penalty refers to the page content and the frequency of keyword mentions also referred to as keyword stuffing. Google has always stressed the importance of well written and relevant content. This change further strengthens Google’s algorithms to detect good content versus poor content written to improve keyword rankings. Webmasters should continue to perform keyword research and optimize their content with highly relevant terms with the primary goal being to develop engaging content for the user.
Linking was also mentioned as a contributing indicator of overly SEO’d sites. For years, search engine ranking algorithms placed an importance on linking, and in turn, linking strategies were developed to improve the authority of websites. However the rules of the game have changed throughout the years. Initially, every external link was a good link; then, Google began to recognize bad links or irrelevant links and ignore them. The latest change that Cutts refers to says that Google will no longer ignore bad links but, rather, penalize a website with bad links.
One might wonder how a webmaster can control all of their external links and regulate who might link to their site. In reality, Google recognizes that not all external links are controlled by the webmaster and will not penalize a website if it has one or two bad links. This change will, however, apply to websites which only have two way links, links from link farms, or websites which employ other non organic link building strategies.
Overall, the “over optimization” algorithm change is not a new concept for Google; the only difference is the fact that previously Google ignored these SEO tactics, and now it will penalize websites for utilizing them. Cutts hinted that the release date would be in the next couple of weeks or month. So stay alert, and monitor your website performance.