Weekly SEO news: 21 May 2013
Welcome to the latest issue of the Search Engine Facts newsletter.

Spammers beware! This summer, Google is going after black-hat and link spammers. Google’s Matt Cutts announced 9 things that Google will do within the next months. How do these changes affect the position of your web pages in Google’s search results and what can you do to protect your rankings?

In the news: Bing has a market share of over 17%, Google penalizes thousands of link sellers, a Google patent might have information about the Panda update, and more.

Table of contents:

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Best regards,
Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. Official Google information: what to expect from Google in the coming months

Spammers beware! This summer, Google is going after black-hat and link spammers. In a video on YouTube, Google’s Matt Cutts announced 9 things that Google will do within the next months. How do these changes affect the position of your web pages in Google’s search results and what can you do to protect your rankings?

1. There will be more Penguin updates

Google is going to launch the next generation of the Penguin algorithm within the next few weeks. The Penguin 2.0 update will go deeper than the first Penguin version and it will affect a lot more sites.

The Penguin update targets websites that use spam tools to create backlinks. If you’re using tools that automatically create backlinks to your site, stop using them now. If any tool that you use contains the words “nuke”, “dominator” or “brute force” then it’s likely that your website will be affected by the next Penguin update.

2. Google does not like advertorials

Some websites use advertorials to get more backlinks. Matt Cutts said that non-nofollow links from these advertorials violate Google’s webmaster guidelines. If you purchase advertorials just to get backlinks, this might have a negative influence on your Google rankings.

3. Google will take a closer look at spammy queries

Some search queries such as ‘pay day loans’ tend to attract more spam than other queries. Google’s search spam team will take a closer look at these queries.

4. Link networks might get in trouble

Matt Cutts said that Google is going to go “more upstream” to make sure that some kind of links become less attractive. This probably affects link networks. Google has penalized several link networks in the past.

5. Google is going to analyze backlinks better

Matt Cutts also said that Google is in the early stages of a much more sophisticated link analysis software that will understand backlinks much better. That probably means that the influence of forum profile links might become even lower while the value of editorial links increases.

6. Better handling of hacked sites

Google is working on a better system to detect hacked sites. The new system should be available later this year. Google also wants to improve webmaster communication about hacked sites.

7. Authority websites will get a ranking boost

Google plans to give websites that are an authority in their category a ranking boost. For example, if your website is an authority in the medical space, Google plans to show your website above websites that are not as authoritative as your site.

8. The Panda update becomes less strict

Matt Cutts said that many of the websites that were affected by the Panda update were border cases. Google is looking at other quality metrics that enables them to make sure that these websites aren’t impacted by the Panda algorithm. The Panda algorithm targets websites with low-quality content.

9. Less domain clusters

Matt Cutts said that the number of same domain clusters on Google’s first result page should lessen this year. Google wants to make the results on page one more diverse. The second result page might contain more domain clusters.

What does this mean for your website?

At the end of the video, Matt Cutts explains that Google wants to reduce the number of webmasters who use black-hat spam techniques. Smaller businesses that use white-hat SEO methods should rank better.

If you want to make sure that your website rankings are safe, avoid spammy SEO methods at all costs. You can get short-term results with black-hat SEO tools but your website will be penalized as soon as Googles detects the spam.

If you want to get results that last, use white-hat SEO methods that play by the rules. White-hat SEO requires more work than spam techniques but it leads to much better results that last. If you use safe SEO methods to promote your websites, you don’t have to worry about Google updates.

SEOprofiler is a sophisticated SEO tool that uses only safe white-hat SEO methods. SEOprofiler helps you to get your website on the first result page. If you haven’t done it yet, create your SEOprofiler account now. You can either create a free demo account, or you can get the full, unlimited version for just $1 (this special offer is available once per customer):

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2. Search engine news and articles of the week

Bing has a market share of over 17%

"Google Sites led the U.S. explicit core search market in April with 66.5 percent market share, followed by Microsoft Sites with 17.3 percent (up 0.4 percentage points) and Yahoo! Sites with 12.0 percent (up 0.2 percentage points).

Ask Network accounted for 2.7 percent of explicit core searches, followed by AOL, Inc. with 1.4 percent."


Matt CuttsWhy does Google show multiple results from the same domain?
Google's Matt Cutts answered this question in a video. He said that  Google is going to launch an algorithm update that limits the number of search results from a domain if  the same domain was displayed three or four times before in previous results.

Once you have seen a cluster of results from a domain name, it will be less likely that the subsequent pages show results from that domain.


Patent: how Google may rank web sites based on quality ratings

"The patent provides more details on how human ratings and signals from a website might be used to create a model for quality rating that can help determine how pages are ranked in search results, using a machine learning approach to generate ratings for pages based upon the sample set of pages actually rated.

One thing I found really interesting was the patent’s description of when pages might be re-rated, or reclassified. One possibility might be that pages would be re-rated on a periodic basis. That seems to have been what had been happening with Panda updates."



GoogleGoogle penalizes several thousand link sellers

"Matt Cutts, head of Google’s web spam team, announced on Twitter that Google took action against several thousand link networks.

It’s hard to tell which link network was hit by this update but it’s clear that all link networks will be penalized sooner or later."

Study: Bing more popular in some regions of the USA

"Despite being located in Washington, Bing adoption has been slower on the Google-dominated west coast. Bing also struggles in the population-dense east coast in states like New York and New Jersey.

North Dakota tops the list of states with the highest Bing market share at 14.68%. Wyoming, Delaware, Iowa and New Mexico follow as the states that have the highest Bing usage.

Not surprisingly, California has the lowest Bing market share with 5.28%. Both Yahoo and Google are located in California. Other states with the lowest Bing usage include population centers like Massachusetts, New York and District of Columbia."

Search engine newslets

  • Bing Ads announce new features.
  • Google updates AdWords Express.
  • German online copyright law to take effect in August.
  • Yahoo acquires Tumblr for $1.1 billion.
  • How can Google be confident with their SERPs, when relying on inherently subjective signals.
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3. Recommended resources

Get a detailed SEO audit of your website for $1

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The new website audit tool in SEOprofiler automatically checks your web pages once per week. Then you get a report that shows all the issues that should be corrected. By correcting these issues, you make sure that search engines can index all of your pages correctly. Here’s a screenshot of the overview page:

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