Google Reviewing “Not Provided,” Withholding Keywords From Organic But Not Paid Search Clicks

not-provided-featured When Google moved to secure search in October 2011, it was a blow to publishers, who began losing data about the search terms used to reach their sites. It also opened Google up to claims of hypocrisy, in that advertisers continued to receive the terms. Now, Google says it's reexamining the issue and seeking a better solution. Will clicks on non-paid listings go back to passing along search term data again? Will ad clicks have that withheld? Google didn't say either way, and there could be other possibilities, as well. Google Looking For Solution The news came out of a keynote convers [...]


Live Blog: Head Of Google Search Amit Singhal Keynote At SMX West 2014

amit-danny-smx-west Good evening/afternoon (or early morning for our European readers!) from sunny San Jose, Calif., where day one of our SMX West conference is almost finished. We're wrapping up the Marketing Land Digital Marketing Summit with a keynote conversation between Google's Amit Singhal and Danny Sullivan, founding editor of both Marketing Land and Search Engine Land. Singhal has overseen Google's search engine ranking algorithms since 2000. From the Knowledge Graph, to Google Voice Search, to Google's new "Hummingbird" algorithm update, no one has better insight into Google's many methods of trying [...]


How 90s HTML Coding Will Save The SEO World In 2014

Sprite sheets are a cutting edge technique for mobile SEO strategies.

A surprising blast from the coding past has been making a comeback via SEO, and is frequently making its way into the core of advanced responsive design thinking: the humble sprite.


Google Now Targeting Italian & Spanish Link Spammers

google-links-featured Less than a month after Google targeted Polish link spammers and German link spammers, Google's head of search spam, Matt Cutts announced that the company is targeting more countries. Cutts announced warnings to Spanish and Italian webmasters and SEOs not to use unnatural links to promote their sites. He posted both announcements on Twitter and the localized Google Webmaster Blogs. Here is the Spanish warning on Twitter and it links to the Spanish webmaster blog at Google. A reminder (in Spanish) about unnatural/paid links and that we're willing to take action on them: http://t.co/uTBdJ [...]


Matt Cutts Video: How Google Determines What’s A Paid Link

google-war-links-featured Google head of search spam Matt Cutts released a pretty detailed video discussing the Google webspam team's criteria for determining whether a link is considered a paid link or not. There are five basic criteria Google uses in this determination. The first is the most obvious, is the link an explicit link for sale; then, the others are less obvious. The others include: how close is the value to money, is it a gift or a loan, what is the intent of the audience and is it a surprise or not. Explicit Link Sales Links that are explicitly sold for money are the most obvious. A webmaster sells a [...]


Google Bug Turned Entire Web Into “Lorem Ipsum”

oops-mistake-error-600 Lorem Ipsum is boilerplate text commonly used by the design community to illustrate how the text on a website or print design will look within the visual graphical creatives. It turned out that the boilerplate text of Lorem Ipsum was used on every webpage, according to Google. On Friday, Gabriela Vatu picked up on the weird issue with Google showing Lorem Ipsum content in the search results snippets when you search for the term [Consectetur] plus any site name. We were able to replicate the issue and asked Google what was up. Google told us this was "an internal indexing issue," and they [...]


Tweet Showing How Google Itself Is A “Scraper Site” Goes Massively Viral

gone-viral-600 Perhaps it's SEO's "Oreo moment," a tweet relating to search engine optimization that's gained nearly as much attention as Oreo's famous Super Bowl blackout tweet. But the subject was a perfect storm of goodness -- a real-life example of Google doing the type of thing in search it seems to be telling others not to do. Yesterday, the head of Google's web spam team Matt Cutts announced a new Google Scraper Report for publishers to use if they see a site that has copied or "scraped" its content and which outranks the publisher in Google searches. That quickly brought up a number of people j [...]


Someone Outranking You With Your Own Content? Use The New Google Scraper Report

google scraper One of the most frustrating experiences for any publisher is discovering that someone not only has copied your content but outranks you on Google for searches related to that content. Now, Google seems to have heard the complaints and has launched a tool to help. Called the Google Scraper Report, it was announced by the head of Google's web spam team Matt Cutts on Twitter: If you see a scraper URL outranking the original source of content in Google, please tell us about it: http://t.co/WohXQmI45X — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) February 27, 2014 The Google Scraper Report form doesn't pro [...]


Hiding From That Google Penalty? It May Find You At Your New Home

hiding-afraid-scared-600 Did you know that even if you try to run away from your Google penalty, it might end up finding you anyway? In a recent Google Webmaster Hangout, hosted by Google's John Mueller, John said that even if you move your penalized site to a new domain name and don't redirect the penalized site, Google may still find it and pass along the bad signals. In the video, 23 minutes in, John answers my question about penalties following sites. He said that if the site is extremely similar and you simply move the site from domain A to domain B, that Google may pick up on the site move without you even gi [...]


Google’s Matt Cutts: While Scientific Content Is Great, Clarity & Focusing On The Searcher Is Important

matt-cutts-clarity In today's video from Google's Matt Cutts, Matt answers a question asking if Google prefers ranking content that is more scientific in nature or content that is "easier to read" with greater clarity. First off, Matt said it was a question that made him think, which implies that there is no exact answer. If you think about it, it depends on the searcher. If you have a more scientific or technical searcher, who may be an expert in the topic you are covering, then writing a more scientific response with detailed technical jargon is probably a good strategy. But probably there would be more vol [...]


Movie Sites Ranking Better In Google, Now That “Transient Issue” Fixed

slashfilm A couple days ago, we reported that Google was investigating an issue where several movie blogs lost their rankings in Google. The head of search spam Matt Cutts himself said, "I hope to dig into this soon." Well, he did and he restored the rankings for those movie blogs calling the ranking problem a "transient issue." Matt Cutts of Google told us: This was a transient issue that affected a small number of sites, and the issue is now fixed. It is indeed fixed. When I asked the owner of /Film, Peter Sciretta, if his traffic is back, he told me "yes, most of it but not all." Google told Pet [...]


The Secret To Staying Relevant With Authorship

author At PubCon last year, Google's Matt Cutts discussed big changes to the search results, many of which we've seen played out over the past several months. In his talk, he mentioned upcoming improvements to authorship results. A couple months later in December, Google confirmed it had started tightening the belt when it came to authorship results after many had experienced a drop. The authorship update, which has been called a "shake up," "authorshipocalypse" and other endearing terms, focuses on the quality of content and the authority of the author, where higher quality in both areas [...]


Google Targets Two Polish Link Networks While Continuing To Target German Link Networks

google-poland-600 Google lead of search spam Matt Cutts posted on Twitter that Google has taken action on two link networks operated in Poland this week. Matt wrote that Google is "not done with Germany yet, but we just took action on two Polish link networks." The Google Poland Webmaster Blog posted a reminder today about unnatural links and how to submit a reconsideration request. Matt Cutts didn't drop a hint on which Polish link networks were specifically targeted, like he has done in the past. But he did specifically say Google did take action on two link networks within Poland. Here is Matt's twe [...]


Google To Look Into Movie Blogs Losing Traffic

the-internship-movie About eight different movie blog sites, including Slashfilm.com, have apparently lost traffic in Google — and the issue is big enough that Google is looking into it. The owner and editor of /Film called out to Google's head of search spam, Matt Cutts, about this issue on Saturday: @mattcutts any ideas why so many movie blogs are losing more than half their google traffic this past month? Very troubling. — Peter Sciretta (@slashfilm) February 21, 2014 Cutts replied: @slashfilm I hope to dig into this soon. Sorry it's been a few days. — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) February 22, 201 [...]


Google’s Matt Cutts: We Reserve The Right To Use EXIF Data For Image Search Rankings

t-google-images-1312982585 Google's head of search spam posted a video today reconfirming that while Google may not be using EXIF, exchangeable image file format, data for ranking images today, they do reserve the right to use the data in the future within their ranking algorithm. Google does recommend you use the EXIF data, if it is readily available but if it is hard to get to the data, then don't bother. EXIF data includes data such as the date and time the photo was taken, the location of the photo, which camera it was taken on, as well as a lot of other technical details about the photo. Here is the vide [...]


Google’s Matt Cutts: Backlink Relevancy Is A Big Win In Terms Of Search Quality

Matt Cutts In today's video from Matt Cutts, Google's head of search spam reaffirms the significance of backlinks. The video is in response to the following question: Does the big G have a version of the search engine that totally excludes any backlink relevancy? I'm wondering what search would look like and am curious to try it out. While Cutts says there is no public version of the search engine that excludes backlink relevancy, he confirms his team has run internal tests to see what would happen. According to Cutts, excluding backlink relevancy resulted in "much worse" search quality. "It t [...]


Google Adds, Then Pulls, Advice Not To Block Ad Landing Pages From Its Crawler

recall-featured On Wednesday/Thursday of last week, Google added a new guideline to their Webmaster Guidelines to "not block a destination URL for a Google Ad product" via your robots.txt file. 24-hours later, Google reversed that guideline and put the webmaster guidelines back to exactly how they were Wednesday morning. Here was the addition and then what they removed: Make efforts to ensure that a robots.txt file does not block a destination URL for a Google Ad product. Adding such a block can disable or disadvantage the Ad. We asked Google why did they make the change and then later, when we noticed t [...]


Open Letter: Why Search Engine Land Will & Won’t Cover Someone Being Penalized By Google

google-flyswatter-penalty-600 It's been big news recently about major brands and Google penalties, and the floodgates feel open on people spotting even more brands possibly hit out there. Some new crackdown by Google? No. It's the rise of hyperactive attention in this area, and that's turning into a problem. Hence this open letter, on how we're planning to address "public penalty reports" here at Search Engine Land. In Summary: Penalties Aren't Always Newsworthy The TL;DR is this. We're not going to be writing about every brand that is suspected to be hit by a Google penalty. Unless there's some exceptional news value, t [...]


Google Offers Advice On Faceted Navigation & Infinite Scroll Web Pages

SEO Google has offered up two very technical blog posts on SEO topics covering infinite scroll and faceted navigation search engine friendly techniques. Infinite Scroll Web Pages Infinite scroll is what you see on a lot of newer style web sites such as Pinterest, Google Image search results, many landing pages with a lot of products on a single page and other methods. Google's John Mueller, Maile Ohye, and Joachim Kupke wrote a blog post explaining various techniques to make those types of pages more search engine friendly. The issue with infinite scroll pages is that web crawlers cannot alwa [...]


Google’s Matt Cutts On Being A Spam Fighter: Looking For Patterns & Always New Spam Efforts

google-matt-cutts-spam-fighting Google's head of search spam Matt Cutts posted a longer video today answering what it is like to fight webspam at Google. The questions posed by Brian Harnish of Westminster, California were: What is a day in the life of a search spam team member like? What is the evolution of decisions in terms of how they decide which aspects of the search algorithm to update? Will certain things within the algorithm never be considered for removal? Matt spent just under eight minutes answering the question, keep in mind, the average video is about two to three minutes. Here is the video: In shor [...]


Get Our News, Everywhere!

Daily Email:

Follow Search Engine Land on Twitter @sengineland Like Search Engine Land on Facebook Follow Search Engine Land on Google+ Get the Search Engine Land Feed Connect with Search Engine Land on LinkedIn Check out our Tumblr! See us on Pinterest

 
 

Click to watch SMX conference video

Join us at one of our SMX or MarTech events:

United States

Europe

Australia & China

Learn more about: SMX | MarTech


Free Daily Search News Recap!

SearchCap is a once-per-day newsletter update - sign up below and get the news delivered to you!

 


 

Search Engine Land Periodic Table of SEO Success Factors

Get Your Copy
Read The Full SEO Guide