Google Tops 50 with March's Release of Search Quality Highlights
Google sheds light on 50 (!) algorithm updates for the month of March - a new record since the inception of Search Quality Highlights. While most changes are fairly minute, here are the ones we think are most important.
Better Indexing of Profile Pages
What it is: Better indexing for public social profiles
Why it is important: This further stresses the importance of Social Media in relation to SEO. Google already considers Social Media profiles as a ranking signal and this recent update proves their impact is only growing.
High-Quality Sites Algorithm Data Update and Freshness Improvements
What it is: Ranking signals in favor of more high-quality sites AKA Panda
Why it is important: Panda is not going anywhere and even though it is not as intimidating as it once was, Panda serves as a reminder to keep content relevant, and to get rid of excessive advertisements.
Tweaks to Handling Anchor Text
What it is: Google turned off a classifier related to anchor text
Why it is important: While it's most likely a minimal change, it always sparks a little anxiety for SEO's when Google turns off a certain classifier, especially one related to anchor text links.
Improvements to Freshness
What it is: Previously rolled out for only news related traffic, Google has now rolled out the freshness update for all queries
Why it is important: Now Google is placing more weight on fresh results and content for all queries. So it's important to keep rolling out new and stimulating content.
Improvements to Processing for Detection of Site Quality
What it is: Improvements to a long-standing system for detecting site quality
Why it is important: Ditch excessive advertisements, keyword stuffing and crummy content. Focus on creating a user friendly site and you will not suffer lost rankings from quality updates.
What it is: Improvements made to a system which interprets anchor text and its relevance to the linked website
Why it is important: Get the most out of your links by using more keyword rich links that explain the landing page, rather than 'click here' on your website and blog posts.
In addition to these changes, there were improvements to synonym accuracy and image search relevance as well as deprecation of some older signals. If you have any questions about Google's algorithm updates, or how they may affect your website, contact your SEO agency.Submitted by Erica Machin, Titan Growth