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4 Google Search Changes That Affect Your Business

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Nothing is permanent and Google is no exception. Recently it made some changes to its algorithm that they say will improve how Google ranks websites. Parts of those changes include timely content of a website, meaning that it reviews and calculates how recently you’ve made changes to your website. They are looking for relevancy in hopes to provide users with the most recent and appropriate website. The other change was how Google+ is ranked and indexed and incorporated into search results using the ‘“Search plus Your World” tag.

Relevancy and Freshness

I am sure you’ve searched and clicked what you thought was a website with great information only to find it was a 3 year old blog post or page. In today’s environment that is ancient. Google recognized this. Businesses now need to concentrate on keeping content up-to-date as well other search engine optimization techniques like meta tags, quality links, and code. Their plan is to feature more fresh results encouraging website owners make an effort and publish and edit their website more regularly.

Read more about Google’s ‘Freshness Algorithm.’

“…this change noticeably impacts 6 – 10% of searches, depending on the language and domain you’re searching on.” – GoogleBlog.blogspot.com

Anchor Text.

Another change is that Google has started devaluing the value of anchor text within inbound links. Rather than incorporating keyword anchored text SEO professionals now need to focus on stronger calls to action that might get noticed by Google. Click here for an explanation of anchor text.

Micheal Cutts wrote, “We look at a number of signals when generating a page’s title (the meta title you see in search results). One signal is the anchor text in links pointing to the page. We found that boilerplate links with duplicated anchor text are not as relevant, so we are putting less emphasis on these. The result is more relevant titles that are specific to the page’s content.”

Website Reviews.

Google will pay attention to websites that have reviews or what we can call ‘Social Signals.’ This means that as your website is mentioned on various social sites like Yelp, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, you can expect Google to use social signals as forms of ranking, authority, reputation, etc. These are becoming the new ‘backlinks’ or quality links to your website.  Review our blog on Mobile Marketing to learn how you can help with these social signals.

Google+

If you have noticed yet, your search results should show two buttons on the upper right. The new search features fully integrate Google+ profiles, photos, and other content into Google’s main search. If you are logged into Google, you’ll notice your search results are affected and can change based on what you might have shared before. You can neutralize this effect by clicking the world button.
This has caused some to criticize Google’s search monopoly. Twitter’s General Counsel, for example, released a tweet saying “Bad day for the Internet. http://bit.ly/Am5bqz. Having been there, I can imagine the dissension @Google to search being warped this way.

John Battelle (one of the founders of Wired Magazine) says, “And it sucks for the web. The unwillingness of Facebook and Google to share a public commons when it comes to the intersection of search and social is corrosive to the connective tissue of our shared culture. But as with all things Internet, we’ll just identify the damage and route around it. It’s just too bad we have to do that, and in the long run, it’s bad for Facebook, bad for Google, and bad for all of us. (BTW, Google also doesn’t show Twitter or Flickr results either or any other “social” service. Just its own, Google+ and Picasa.)”
http://battellemedia.com/archives/2012/01/search-plus-your-world-as-long-as-its-our-world.php

Google will always come up with changes to help users find more relevant content.  It intends to deliver the users more up to date results that are relevant and its main consideration is to promote freshness of a website. With this in mind, everyone needs to modify their SEO campaign for acquiring more accurate ranking on Google.

Read more about Google Algorithm Changes.

Christina Hawkins is the President of GlobalSpex, Inc., an internet marketing company, in the Houston, TX area since 1999. Follow her on Twitter #globalspex  or become a Fan on Facebook.

If you learned from this article, be sure to invite your colleagues to sign up for the GX Web Wire – An Internet Marketing Newsletter so they can receive similar articles in the future and download her 101 Internet Marketing Tips and Techniques Free!

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