16 December  2014 - Issue #660
Welcome to the latest issue of the Search Engine Facts newsletter.

Google recently announced that the PageRank toolbar won't be updated anymore. Does this mean that Google won't use PageRank as a ranking factor anymore? A Google patent that was granted in September indicates that Google might use some kind of PageRank 2.0 to rank pages.

In the news: Google announces a new wave of mobile friendly sites, Google Penguin to shift to continuous updates, new TLDs do not get better rankings, and more.

Table of contents:

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Best regards,
Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. Is this what Google will use instead of the PageRank algorithm?
Google recently announced that the PageRank toolbar won't be updated anymore. Does this mean that Google won't use PageRank as a ranking factor anymore? A Google patent that was granted in September indicates that Google might use some kind of PageRank 2.0 to rank pages.

New methods that Google uses to rank web pages

Google's new patent with the name "Onsite and offsite search ranking results" lists several on-site and off-site factors that Google might use to rank web pages. This could be something like PageRank 2.0.

Google insights

1. On-site data that Google might use
On-site data is data that can be retrieved from the analyzed web page and the complete website. According to the patent, Google might consider this information:
  • The frequency of the searched keyword on the web page or website.
  • The location of the searched keyword on the page.
  • The placement of the web page in the structure of the web site. For example, the home page might be regarded as more important than a page the requires several clicks before it can be viewed.
  • How often a web page is linked from other pages of the same website.
How to analyze on-site data:

According to the patent, on-site data is important for Google's ranking algorithm. SEOprofiler offers two tools that help you with on-site optimization: the website audit tool analyzes the contents of your web pages.

For example, you will see how many clicks each page is away from the home page, you will see errors that can keep search engine robots away, etc.

The Top 10 Optimizer analyzes the contents of individual web pages.  The frequency of the keywords is checked as well as the location, the different web page elements, the links, etc.

2. Off-site data that Google might use
In addition to on-site data, Google also uses off-site data to determine the position of a website. Off-site data refers to ranking signals that can be identified without accessing the web page:
  • The number of links to a page or website from other websites.
  • The number of times a web page has been clicked in the search results for a particular keyword.
  • Other statistical data about the relevance of a site.
  • Topical relevance to other sites: if many sites that are relevant to the keyword link to the same site, the linked site becomes more relevant.
  • Authoritative relevance to other site: the number of links to the site can indicate a high authority of the site. Websites with a high level of authority could be trusted more.
  • Web pages that have links from websites with high authority get a higher authority than websites that are linked from sites with less authority.
  • According to the patent, websites with a higher number of links get a higher authority.
How to analyze off-site data:

The Link Profiler tool in SEOprofiler gives you a detailed overview of the backlinks that point to a website. You can sort the links by category, context, quality and keyword.

The link disinfection tool in SEOprofiler shows you the links that can have a negative influence and the hub finder tool helps you to get links from authority websites.

The same website might have more than one page that is relevant to a keyword. In that case, Google might use a combination of on-site data and off-site data to find the most relevant page of the website.

The tools in SEOprofiler help you to optimize both on-site and off-site signals. If you haven't done it yet, try SEOprofiler now and find out how SEOprofiler can help your site to protect your rankings:

Try SEOprofiler now risk-free

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2. Search engine news and articles of the week
Google: a new wave of mobile-friendly sites
"Surfing the web on your mobile phone should be enjoyable and effortless, which is why we’re now helping you find out in advance which websites offer a good experience on mobile devices."

Related: Why your website fails the “mobile-friendly” test (and what you can do about it)



GoogleGoogle says Penguin to shift to “continuous updates”

"A Google spokesperson has told us that they will now be updating the Penguin algorithm continuously, by optimizing it as they go. [...]

Penguin algorithm updates have historically been processed offline and pushed at a specific point in time. Google would process all the Penguin data offline and then pushed the data live, which would produced change in the search results. [...]

Live changes to the Penguin algorithm seems to imply no more large data pushes for Penguin. "


New in SEOprofiler: tutorial videos

"The SEOprofiler manual and the individual tools in SEOprofiler now contain tutorial videos that give an overview of the most important features in SEOprofiler. You can view some of the videos here."


John MuellerGoogle: new TLDs do not get better rankings

"In a post on Google+, Google’s John Mueller said that there is no inherent ranking advantage to using the new TLDs (top level domains).

Some people think that new TLDs such as .club, .xyz, .realtor, etc. rank better on Google than traditional TLDs such as .com."

Google – some days I just shake my head – today is one of them
"Over the past several days, a number of Google 'annoyances' have cropped up…. sometimes it is amazing where a company like Google chooses to put its head. [...]

Name spam, location spam, spam, spam, spam.  Its on the front page, it’s in maps. It’s freakin’ everywhere. When you call many of these listings they often won’t answer with their company name just a 'hello' and when you ask where they are located it will be any place but LA."

Search engine newslets

  • Google mobile search is getting faster - to be exact, 100-150 milliseconds faster.
  • Twitter: the year 2014 in review.
  • How much Google News traffic do publishers get? Here’s data on 80 news sites.
  • Google closes Google News in Spain. Spanish newsletter publishers do not like that.
  • Google AdWords now supports a countdown variable.
  • Google risks fine after Dutch privacy ultimatum.
  • Facebook dumps Microsoft search results.

3. Recommended resources

Everything you need

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  • automatic weekly website audits
  • tools for keyword research and analysis
  • competitive intelligence tools
  • automated ranking checks
  • website analytics
  • tools for spam-free link building
  • link disinfection tool
  • social media monitoring
  • white-label reports (web-based and PDF)
  • and much more.

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4. Previous articles
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