Google’s Matt Cutts: Black Hat & Link Spammers Less Likely To Show Up In Search Results After Summer

matt-cutts-seo-futureA video from Matt Cutts, Google’s head of search spam, today answers some of the questions about what webmasters and SEOs should expect in the near future in regards to SEO.

The primary question Matt asked and answered was, “What should we expect in the next few months in terms of SEO for Google?”

Matt addressed 10 points, all summarized at the end as helping improve the search results by awarding the good sites and hurting the spammers and black hats in the search results. Here are the 10 points Matt addressed in his video, followed by the video itself:

1.  Penguin Updates

The next generation Penguin update, Penguin 4 (AKA Penguin 2.0), which is expected to launch in the next few weeks, will go deeper and have more of an impact than the first version of that Penguin update. So expect that we will hear more of an outcry from the SEO community when this does launch.

2.  Advertorials

Earlier this year, Google went after some websites for using advertorials as a means to artificially inflate their link profile. Matt Cutts said Google will soon take a stronger stance against those using advertorials in a means that violates their webmaster guidelines.

3.  Spammy Queries

While queries that tend to be spammy in nature, such as [pay day loans] or some pornographic related queries, were somewhat less likely to be a target for Google’s search spam team – Matt Cutts said Google is more likely to look at this area in the near future. He made it sound like these requests are coming from outside of Google and thus Google wants to address those concerns with these types of queries.

4.  Going Upstream

Matt Cutts said they want to go more “upstream” to deter link spammers and the value of the links they are acquiring from the sources. This seems to imply to me that Google will go after more link networks, like they’ve done in the past.

5.  Sophisticated Link Analysis

Matt promises that Google is going to get even better at their link analysis. Google’s head of search spam explained that Google is in the early stages of this much more “sophisticated” link analysis software but when it is released, they will be much better at understanding links.

6.  Improvements On Hacked Sites

Google has done a lot of work with hacked sites and their index, specifically labeling the search results of potentially hacked sites, removing those sites and also warnings webmasters about the hack. Matt said Google is working on rolling out a new feature to better detect hacked sites in the upcoming months. Cutts also added they plan on improving webmaster communication in regards to hacked sites.

7.  Authority Boost

Google hopes to give sites that are an authority in a specific industry, community or space a ranking boost. So if you are an authority in the medical or travel spaces, Google hopes that related queries will return your site above less authoritative web sites.

8.  Panda Sympathy

While many sites have been impacted by the Google Panda update, Matt Cutts said that many of those impacted are borderline cases. Google is looking for ways to “soften” that impact by looking at other quality metrics to move those on the line to not be impacted by the Panda algorithm.

9.  Domain Clusters In SERPs

The number of clusters of the same domain name showing on the first page of Google’s search results should lessen this year. Google’s Matt Cutts said they want to make the search results on the first page even more diverse, but when you click to the second results page, you may be more likely to see clustered results from the same domain name. Google is constantly tweaking how many search results from the same domain name show up on a single page of search results.

10.  Improved Webmaster Communication

As always, Google is always saying they want to improve their communication with webmasters. Matt Cutts said to expect even more detailed examples within webmaster notifications received within Google Webmaster Tools.

Toward the end of this video, Matt Cutts explains the purpose of all these changes is to reduce the number of webmasters doing black hat spam tactics from showing up, while giving smaller businesses that are more white hat the chances to rank better.

Here is the video for you all to watch:

Related Topics: Channel: SEO | Features: Analysis | Google: SEO | Top News


About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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    Exactly. Google is trying to make ppl opt for ads. May be in the future Google might make the first page of result completely a sponsored one.


    I have seen websites with poor content rank for competitive keywords and even gets higher page rank. Sometimes Google seems weird.

  • Alok Gangrade

    Can someone explain me why this IP rank on 1st page of on “Bulk SMS” w/o having anything on website.

  • Martin Alberts

    let see …. what hpnd

  • Mark Hughes

    Now that’s what I call a “real life” paid link on a semi-relevant site! He’s clearly being paid a handsome $100 per year to wear that, in a prominent location, on the homepage that is his body.

  • Apex Pacific

    Do you guys really believe Google can do a good job with these updates? I don’t think so. Matt Cutts Is a Liar ! Penguin and Panda Update Did Not Work at all.

    Please just do a search for “seo software” on Google, 3 out of top 10 positions are SEO spam software. Here is the proof:

  • Apex Pacific

    Woody, 100% agree with you. Matt Cutts Is a Liar ! Penguin and Panda Update Did Not Work at all.SEO spam still work and works well after Penguin and Panda Updat. Here is the proof:

  • Apex Pacific

    100% right. Google has not idea about what’s “quality content”. I tried to post a comment on Matt Cutts’s blog to ask him why 3 out of top 10 positions for keyword “seo software” are the web sites selling SEO spam software, he so scared my comment and remove my comment 3 times. If Google cannot stop SEO spam software to show up on the top 10 positions, it means that SEO spam works, and works even better than ever before.

  • Kumail Hemani

    Hi Barry! I wrote a blog that is kind of same to this post: – that is written a week ago and scheduled to post it today.

  • CandleForex

    Does point 7 imply that Wikipedia will rank even better, even though some dont consider it an authority site….food for thought

  • getspread

    There is a new site to link up ur url must check it out

  • Chris Watts

    I’m hoping that the ‘Sophisticated Link Analysis’ actually works. We were hit with an un-natural link penalty, and after having removed the links and shaken the penalty, our positions have been in freefall and natural traffic has dropped 70%. It’s a joke. A blatant case of Google realising we’re a business who can ‘afford’ to pay for AdWords if the naturals got hit…

  • Srinivas Reddy Seo Analyst

    Good one…Matt is trying to warn the webmasters with this announcement.. thanks Matt

  • macseotips

    Google’s Penguin 2.0 can start with slapping TUMBLR off of endless _multiple_ Page 1 SERP positions. money-keyword(dot)tumblr(dot)com sub-domained blogs have been clogging up the top of medium-to-low competition SERPS for months on end now – and displacing real sites.

    Free money-keyword(dot)wordpress(dot)com sites are getting an easy ride too, and of course Google’s Blogspot blogs still enjoy favor… These three are the current power linchpins of ‘push-button’ Link Wheel/Pyramid schemes and they need to stop being the darlings of Google SERP power.

    The sooner Penguin 2.0 is unleashed the better. And we can all know which if any of our site(s) are allowed back in – and those domains which are totally, and permanently worthless.

  • Peter

    I wish he could touch into detail about links…what exactly about links? Link sources, directories, blog commenting, etc…

  • Adam Boulton

    Goolge needs to stop wasting it’s time trying to battle the black-hatters (a losing battle) – and focus on returning the best results for it’s users.

    Black-hatters don’t care about these updates, when they can build 10 more sites that can withstand the latest and greatest “black&white animal update.” They don’t care about penalties, they care about profit and numbers. And trust me when I say, they are always 3 steps ahead of these penalties. The only people Google is hurting with these updates are the legitimate websites that get caught in the collateral damage. People that don’t build their site for SEO, but for their readers and/or customers.

    At the end of the day, it’s a search engine. A search engine needs to return relevant results for it’s users. That’s it. This is becoming a search engine about ads and penalties – not it’s users and searchers. Penguin 2.0 is just another crapshoot update that will keep repeating itself year after year unless a change in focus and some perspective is gained.

  • LeadGenix

    It’s cool that Google put out this video. It helps websites to see what is coming on the horizon.

  • Adam Boulton

    Well, look at how Google got started. They had a simple, clean, uncluttered look and feel. Their entire business model revolved around it. Now look where it is today – anything but simple. The genius in the model is that they have slowly drip fed us with these changes – so we haven’t complained too much.

    More ads, less organic results – that’s the current trend. I don’t think it’s going to stop.

  • Adam Boulton

    I totally agree on the link thing. Ignoring the value seems completely logical to me. Not only do you accomplish the goal of combating spam, but legitimate sites that end up taking collateral damage will have a fighting chance again. I do think negative SEO is fairly rare, but making a false positive on a spammy link is probably not rare. Legitimate sites with legitimate link profiles get hit, when they otherwise wouldn’t have.

  • Adam Boulton

    I think I’ve seen the “it’s about time” statement for every new Google black&white animal update announcement ever. I wouldn’t expect much of a change to be honest.

  • OldBlokeUK

    Never heard so much drivel in all my life. Google have claimed this several times over the years and not once has it been true. Sorry folks but Google have you all goggled, the big disinformation engine grinding again!

  • musa_aykac

    I hate all this misleading crap from Cutts, it just shows how two faced our industry is.

    Its fairly annoying that anyone in our industry has any communication with Google at all. I mean back in the day, SEOs jobs were to be one step ahead of Google and I loved finding the algothirms weakness.

    Fast forward to today and SEOs think its ok to communicate with Google, post every darn method they use publicly and basically do Google’s job for them by filling in countless spam reports.

    Matt Cutts in return teases people with a few videos and tweets, we need to wise up! Without SEOs Google will be at a total loss

    We have all caused this ourselves, why do you think Cutts and other members of the spam team attend SEO conferences, to get info, to get ideas.. We do not need to be communicating with Google at all, they should be banned from these places. Seriously all Cutts and crew care about is Google and their algothirm, theres no such thing as friends to them, only crowd sourcing information. Think of it this way… If you was a spam engineer and had shares in Google would you make friends with SEOs who are trying to manipulate what you have created, the only reason I would is to sit down and have a coffee with them so they can blab about any new methods they have seen being used or any new networks that people are using and then quickly run back to the GooglePlex to fix the floor in my system.

    Hence one of the reasons the SEO scene has become very uninteresting over the past few years and why its gotten a little stale – You have SEOs who stay behind the scenes, then you have these public SEOs who think they are gods gift and who are stuck up Google’s bum and tell them or blog about everything they hear about from the real SEOs of what is working.

    I mean Google are secretive with their algothirm, so why the hell are we not being secretive with our methods! Its time for the SEO industry to come together and be silent, so Google do not have a clue what we are doing or where we have found holes in their algothirm. Why are we openly letting Google know about floors in their system, its astounding. Is our main focus not only for ourselves but also for clients to get them ranking and earning.

    But this will never happen, as most SEOs are not true SEOs, they like to wear suits and think they are working with Google. No mate! Google hates you and you are the mug feeding them with information so they can improve their business and put you out of business!

    Its because the SEO industry has tried to move into becoming a “proper” industry rather then how it started out, pretty shady, secret and always thinking a step ahead, this is when Google was our ***** and when I loved the industry.

    Hence all these stuck up SEOs, posh school boys or whatever you call it think that by speaking to Google, doing huge public blog posts analyzing everything and making everything public it becomes a recognized industry and their job or labeling as “SEO Director or Head of Search” becomes a lot more valuable.

    SEO to me has always been and always will be manipulating the rankings and staying a step ahead of Google (Yes my job may not sound as lucrative being a manipulator, but that is my job and its what I love), whether that’s with blog comments, networks, guest posting, infographics, social signals etc – The methods may change but in the end its all manipulation.. What do I get from listening to Google and doing basically nothing.. In the end I would still end up being hit by algothirm updates, maybe not now, but sometime in the future. As guess what, there’s only 10 organic positions, so every update is going to ***** off one of those 10 and its only a matter of time until its you.

    We all need to wise up! We all need to stick together as an industry and not ruin it by kissing Google’s butts.

  • Patricia Midori

    the fun thing is that i build ios apps just to get the links from itunes, google please penalise itunes :D

  • Kate Moss LA

    It’s pretty hilarious reading all of this. Been doing this too long and have met many of you old and new dogs, so let me give you a tip, ignore all of this crap! Do what YOU need to do to beat your competition and quit following everyone else. Much less stress in your life.

  • soman

    better we find another job auh??? :D

  • Jawad Latif

    Your point is under consideration :)

  • irishsolar

    They haven’t been able to tell up to now so unless some unbelievably amazing technological advancement has been made recently that we know nothing about I reckon this next update will just be an introduction of more pointless garbage rules designed to squeeze more people into the PPC funnel.

    Within 2 months the spammers will be back at the top (after knocking out the irrelevant sites that will invariably be ranked by Penguin 2.0) for big money terms after reverse engineering the latest Google insanity rules and blasting their sites with the “relevant” links.

  • irishsolar

    They aren’t allowed to put telephone numbers in their ads because it would then become unnecessary to click the ad (thus denying Google its adsense cut). You would see the number in the ad and simply ring it without ever clicking the ad…more Google ruthless money-making tactics.

  • SMDigital Partners

    Good information – Google+ Local should be a very interesting platform in the coming months or so.

  • Bindaass Shakti

    What was GOOD is now BAD. I can only see 10 out of 10 results from same domains for a search.

    What improvements Matts is talking here?

    Organic SEO is totally devastated. No hope any further.

  • Tim

    Did you notice that the “fire” is out?

  • Sharad Kukreti

    It seems that Google is after Bad guys by ignoring good ones. The Google search results are not showing any significant improvements despite Panda and Penguin !

  • izolasyon


  • Mashala Foy

    Pandas and penguins, really affected my site.

  • Bijutoha

    What does google mean by Advertorials, is it Guest Blogging ?

  • Jon Scott Boroughs

    Isn’t this algorithm business a way for Google to totally choke out any link building and force people to use the Ads service? I am very suspicious of their intentions

  • Andrew Power

    Someone should fire him for his blatant mozilla advertorial… or at least demote him to a job where he sits behind 100 other irrelevant people…

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