Too Much SEO? Google’s Working On An “Over-Optimization” Penalty For That

Google’s Matt Cutts announced that Google is working on a search ranking penalty for sites that are “over-optimized” or “overly SEO’ed.”

Matt announced this during a panel Search Engine Land’s Editor-In-Chief, Danny Sullivan and Microsoft’s Senior Product Marketing Manager of Bing at SXSW named Dear Google & Bing: Help Me Rank Better!. The audio for the session has been published where I learned that Google has been working on a new penalty that targets site’s that overly optimize for search engines for the past few months.

Matt Cutts said the new over optimization penalty will be introduced into the search results in the upcoming month or next few weeks. The purpose is to “level the playing field,” Cutts said. To give sites that have great content a better shot at ranking above sites that have content that is not as great but do a better job with SEO.

Here is the audio clip, you can find Matt saying this about 1/3rd the way in. (Note: We’ve expanded it from what we originally posted,

Here is the transcription (note: we’ve expanded this from what we originally posted, based on Rob Snell’s transcription of the entire session):

The way that I often think about SEO is that it’s like a coach. It’s someone who helps you figure out how to present yourself better. In an ideal world, though, you wouldn’t have to think about presenting yourself and whether search engines can crawl your website, because they’d just be so good that they can figure out how to call through the Flash, how to crawl through the forums, how to crawl through the JavaScript, how to crawl through whatever it is.

And, for the most part, most search engines have made a lot of progress on being able to crawl though that richer content.

Now, what’s interesting about your question is you went a little bit deeper and you said, “Well, what about all the people who are sort of optimizing really hard and doing a lot of SEO?” And, uh, normally we don’t sort of pre-announce changes, but there is something that we’ve been working on in the last few months. And hopefully, in the next couple months or so, in the coming weeks, we hope to release it.

And the idea is basically to try and level the playing ground a little bit. So all those people who have sort of been doing, for lack of a better word, “over optimization” or “overly” doing their SEO, compared to the people who are just making great content and trying to make a fantastic site, we want to sort of make that playing field a little bit more level.

And so that’s the sort of thing where we try to make the web site, uh Google Bot smarter, we try to make our relevance more adaptive so that people don’t do SEO, we handle that, and then we also start to look at the people who sort of abuse it, whether they throw too many keywords on the page, or whether they exchange way too many links, or whatever they are doing to sort of go beyond what a normal person would expect in a particular area. So that is something where we continue to pay attention and we continue to work on it, and it is an active area where we’ve got several engineers on my team working on that right now.

In 2009, Matt did a video on over optimization penalties saying there was no such thing. Here is that video:

This is the latest penalty related algorithm Google is working on since releasing the Pages With Too Many Ads “Above The Fold” Now Penalized By Google’s “Page Layout” Algorithm.

We reached out to Google about the new over optimization penalty but Google told us they have nothing to say at this present time. Maybe we’ll hear more when Cutts speaks during the “You&A With Matt” session at our upcoming SMX Advanced show in Seattle this June.

Postscript From Danny Sullivan: See my follow-up analysis on the news here, Is Google’s “Over Optimization Penalty” Its “Jump The Shark” Moment In Web Search?

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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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  • Paul__Harvey

    As far as getting a penalty for spam links, I think the only feasible thing that google can do is disregard them, otherwise it would be very easy to bring down any website you wanted. It would be impossible for google to differentiate the difference between a company actually doing the spam links themselves or someone else doing it for the sole purpose of getting the website penalised. 

    Regarding content, I would say that still having all the right things in the right places i.e H1 tags, meta description etc. etc.. are still going to be required as well as having good content with some relevant keywords so that google can determine what the pages is all about.

    All pretty simple and basic stuff and when implemented with a proper link building campaign then there should never be a need to worry. Comes back to the same old thing CONTENT IS KING!  
    Or it should more likely be Good, Relevant Content is KING….. 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/5WRLAUI2PMD65EIECPSSQGGSPU Christian

    Barry, I had always thought that there were already some penalties for sites that were built for too much SEO. You wrote about an aspect of this back in 2007 http://www.seroundtable.com/archives/013473.html#comments.

    Given the history of Google’s aim to find the best content to return on a query, is this really that big a deal?

    Could this be little less of a todo than some are making it out to be? My first reaction was pop  goes the industry and I am sure there are some agencies and internal SEO’s having some odd conversations with their principals now, but maybe it isn’t as terrible as that.

    My second question what would you feel the long term ramifications of this change be for agencies and internal SEO’s? I think it could have a chilling effect on budgets and clients. I think this may finally kill the SEO only firms to the extent there are any left.

    Additionally, the notion of “quality” content is very subjective. To what degree can Google try to lessen the weight of tags, links etc and make calls on what constitutes good content.

  • http://twitter.com/seowebmexico Seo Web Mexico

    interesting to know how is that going to work because there are many sites with good content and good optimization, but I feel that if you dump some sites in recent months.

    hopefully see the results of these changes

  • http://twitter.com/Content_Article Free Articles

    This is a great idea but remember, it’s just Google’s definition of something, in this case “Over-Optimization”.

    If it helps to minimize the number of high-ranking sites in Google SERPs that keyword stuff, great! I guess we’ll see what their definition of over-optimized looks like in the future.

  • http://twitter.com/linkhunter Link Hunter

    Interesting choice of words from Mr Cutts. I’d venture to guess that because he’s used the words “overly seo’d” vs “spam sites” they will hit a bunch of white hat sites with this update. Just because you think you are “white-hat” don’t assume you are immune from Google algo updates. Take a look back at the last 12 months and how many non-content farms have been hit by Panda. Fingers crossed.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PG4QV3NLSZTGHGXCWCKS7KNT3I Ron

    Every search engine should gladly welcome SEO. SEO does not change the relevancy of the document and does not alter the content of the document. All SEO does is make it easier for search engines to index the site and make search results better and more targeted. SEO makes it easier for people to find what they are looking for. In fact, who came up with the stupid term “over optimization” anyway? Basically what you are saying with this stupid algorithm is that a perfect content match with perfect layout and navigation is now an attempt to exploit Google and you will penalize them. How dumb is that?

    Nobody in this forum can even answer the question “what is over optimization”. If you can not answer this question how in the world are you going to write an algorithm to combat it? Doing a search on Google for:

    definition: search engine optimization

    Google proudly present en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Search_engine_optimization page which states:

    Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in search engines via the “natural,” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”), search results.

    Now what in the world would “over optimization” be? We are talking about “natural”, “organic” and “unpaid” search results. How can we make sure we do not “over optimize”?

    Confusing “over optimization” (what ever that is) with dumb algorithms like PageRank, profile filtering and Google+ the world is bad for everyone. Let’s face it, this discussion is confusing Google’s poor relevancy algorithms and other weaknesses with the art of optimization. Anyone who is exploiting Google knows just how easy that is (Danny Sullivan is one example). Here you’ve got a guy that not only exploits Google’s weaknesses, but is even using Google’s own resources to do it. This guy provides a ton of horrible tools that clearly violate Google’s terms and conditions, but Google rewards them with top rankings for all the domains Danny owns. This is the things you should be fighting. Trying to fight “over optimization” is a battle you will not win because there is no such thing.

    And how stupid is an algorithm that penalizes sites for buying or selling links? Google’s entire existence depends on their ability of selling links. Google even pays us to place Google ads on our pages. Why is this any different than us selling links? Can only Google sell links? I’m offended by Matt for even saying such a thing.

    Another stupid algorithm proposed here is this possible penalty of how long someone stays on a page after doing a search at Google. I “use to” use Google and click on a link and open it in a separate window and while this page is loading I click on another link. Doing this would trigger the dumb algorithm proposed here. I also click on my competitors and certainly don’t stay on their site. Now that you this, I’m going to make sure I search for my competition and click and then instantly come back to Google in hopes this will lower their rankings. Of course if my competition is smart, all they have to do is add a little Javascript to prevent me from going back. As I said, this is just another stupid algorithm.

    Let’s face it guys. Working on improving relevancy will take you much farther than you working on dumb things like you have proposed here. All we want is relevancy. I don’t what you altering my search or try to figure out what I want. I know what I want. In fact, I don’t know anyone that welcomes any of the so called personalization Google has been using these last few years and is one reason Bing is gaining ground. Google+ the world is another poor attempt at trying to compete with Facebook and it’s not working. In fact, all your post filtering has done for us is make the Internet smaller because Google does not allow us to search outside our profile box. I no longer use Google because I can’t seem to find anything that my IP and/or profile hasn’t already found. Everything else you have filtered out.

    And here you say important 301 redirects are and Matt Cutts said right here how important it is to him. In fact he seemed upset because his school would not do a 301 redirect and he proudly says “but I’m Matt Cutts”. But Google has hundreds if not thousands of pages in their very own search results delivering 302 redirects. Just do a simple search like this at Google to expose one example:

    add url google

    Google delivers this URL:

    http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/

    Which does a 302 redirect. Yes, it’s only the https to redirect, but it’s still a 301. Make up your mind Google. Should we penalize Google for this? In fact, Google has a ton of pages in their results that you can’t even go to because they are redirected to something else using that evil 302 that Matt hates.

    As you can see, I dislike hypocrites and Google is probably the biggest hypocrite of them all. They can sell links and make money, but we can’t without fear of being penalized. Google is not evil, but we are. Google does tones of 302 redirects and has tons of pages in results that we can not see. If it were my site you would call it cloaking. What’s good enough for Google is not good enough for us.

    If Google was a good and non-evil search engine, then give us the ability to search filter and profile free. Right now you are controlling what we see and that does not make a good search engine. One simple click should be all we have to do to opt out of all filtering including your dumb ideas of over optimization. I want control over my own results. You let me filter by date, so why not let us remove you filters entirely? If you want to be a great search engine, let us decide what we want.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PG4QV3NLSZTGHGXCWCKS7KNT3I Ron

    Oh yes. Google not only does 302 redirects, but they found out that a Javascript redirect works really good too and is a great way to hide from search engines. Do a search for this at Google:

    google apps

    And Google presents this:

    Google Apps for Business | Official Website
    http://www.google.com/a/
    Get constant enterprise innovation with Google, saving your company the time, money and hassles of managing these IT solutions yourself.

    But that page only contains a Javascript redirect. Here’s the HTML source:

    Google Apps

    location.replace(‘http://www.google.com/apps/intl/en/business/index.html’);

    Again, if this were me, Google would consider this a cloaking attempt. And why not use a 301 redirect like you tell us to do?

    Google needs to put this “over optimization” on the back burner and do more about fixing junk like this.

  • http://www.facebook.com/wendy.piersall Wendy Bauer Piersall

    My concern is that although I’ve always put content quality first, I’ve also spent the last 6 years getting my SEO on. So, could I be penalized even though my content is good? I know nobody can give me an answer on this, but I will be losing sleep every night until this goes live and I actually know if I’ve shot myself in the foot for trying to be ‘informed’.

    And honestly, I don’t buy the idea that if you only do ‘white hat’ SEO that you are ‘safe’. I was caught up in the collateral damage of Panda, and two of my sites never fully recovered. I don’t even touch gray hat stuff – I’m too paranoid. There are plenty of times when Google sacrifices the rankings of a few good eggs to dump a lot of bad eggs. While that makes for a nice business decision for them, it also can make a family financial disaster a reality for me and many others. 

  • http://3jdigitalandsocialhub.wordpress.com/ SEO Blogging

    We have to be careful then, focus on more HQ Content! :D

  • ewanseo

    I don’t think this is bad for ‘good’ SEO guys as we’ve been saying all along that good content for your users is no1 before onsite or off site link building.

  • http://twitter.com/the258webco The 25/8 Web Co.

    I love all of Matt’s answers because it never seems like whatever he says is ever anything that you wouldn’t expect him to say.  Matt’s advice in that we should skate where the puck is going to be instead of where it is is key to not really being surprised by anything Google does.

  • Siva Alagarsami

    After this updates, SEO Analyst have any possibilities to lose them jobs. Share your answer with me mail id is btechsiva.09@gmail.com

  • satz2007

    Hope after this sites with propoer contents will be benefited… SEO is important and there should be proper algorithm in place to judge page ranking based on that….

    http://Crackmba.com 

  • http://SonnyLanorias.com/blog Sonny Lanorias

    This would indeed level the playing fields and awesome update and news to everyone! Content thus have to remain the king! And yeah I see lots of poor content out there that ranks BUT they are showing at the top because of their spamming link building strategy. Thanks Google!

    $onny

  • http://twitter.com/DittoUK Michelle Symonds

    Great news indeed that Google are apparently going to clamp down on those sites not following their guidlines but benefitting from high rankings anyway. But I can’t be the only one who has worked on sites the “right way” and also seen great rankings.

    And for those who seem confused about what SEO is (judging by some of these comments) – it includes creating good content both onsite and via guest blogs/articles etc. IMO being able to write good content is a vital skill for any SEO consultant.

  • http://www.new1000ad.com/ Jack Jones

    Im guessing this is going after Black hat seo ?

  • http://www.seothomas.com Thomas

    We are already seeing this movement now with all the buzz around having a diverse anchor text link portfolio. I wonder what other kinds of signals Google will be looking for…..KW density? Maybe matching Page Titles and s? Who knows….but I would love to read more on over optimization. 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PG4QV3NLSZTGHGXCWCKS7KNT3I Ron

    Danny, above you said this:

    ===
    In 2009, Matt did a video on over optimization penalties saying there was no such thing. Here is that video:
    ===

    But that’s not correct either. Matt Cutts and Google has had “over optimized” algorithms for years. In fact, if you want to know the truth, Google dropped the “over optimized” bomb on the world in the later half of 2007 (right around election time). Matt can not deny this. In fact, in early 2007 Matt was already mentioning penalties for “over optimization” in this post:

    http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/infrastructure-status-january-2007/

    which demonstrates “over optimization” was something that was there even before this post. Google has been lying to us for years. It first started when Sergie and Larry said that search engines who advertise in results are bias. So what happened? Was it Wall Street that did this to you Google?

    And about November of 2007 we started tracking this so called “over optimization” penalties and what we found was quite interesting. Many of the so called “over optimization” algorithms were just plain dumb just like what has been proposed here. Like every previous algorithm propsed by Google, this hasn’t worked well for them. In fact, for the last two years Google has been criticized about how horrible their results are and this things are not any better today because Google is still struggling with it as you can see here. This only shows that Google does not know what they are doing in this area. Bing however has been doing a fantastic job. It took them a few years, but now they have cleaned up the results and results are highly targeted and spam free for the most part (like old Google0. Bing is a company that has been around a long time and they understand what make sense.

    Question: why can Google deliver us such targeted ads, but fails miserably when it comes to delivering relevant results? I’ll tell you why. It’s because the money isn’t in quality search results. The money is in delivering ads. Ads are what pays the bills for Google. Search is only a playground for Google so they can test algorithms they might use in Adwords. If results are poor, ads get clicked. It’s as simple as that folks. I think they call this greed!

    We have only one on-line business and one domain name and we follow every recommendation Google has put out there. We had a top ranking for 12 years and was number one the very first day Google opened their doors to the public. We have NEVER “over optimized” and have only suggested ethical optimization to our friends. We are programmers, we deliver and produce what people want and our content is rich and easy to navigate. Our programs are excellent (nobody in the world can touch them) and our site navigation is second to none. We have NEVER used stupid rank checking tools (clear violation of Google’s TOS) or done anything that would in any way violate any search engine’s TOS. We never created web pages just for the sake of having “more” content for Google to digest (our site has maybe 50 highly focused pages). We have never purchased additional domains in order to exploit Google’s dumb PageRank algorithm either and we have never purchased a link or even advertised on another site. That leads us to believe there is something else Google is doing to bury us.

    According to Google’s own “Webmaster Tools”, we have:

    Total links
    3,319,025

    but this seems to have triggered one of those stupid “over optimization” algorithms Matt is talking about here because you won’t be finding our site in Google very easily these days. It’s unfortunate for us that Google sees these links as spam, purchased or over optimization. After all, that’s the only thing that I can think of that would cause us to be lost in Google results.

    Our great content and huge following has only triggered Google to place the absolute worse sites above us in their results. The first site to top us in early 2004 or so was Google’s very own. Now the top rankings for the most important terms for our site is dominated by sites that haven’t been touched in years. Sites that have dead links, horrible navigation and content that is completely worthless, old and out-of-date. One trend we did find is that these sites have tons of pages. Pages with worthless content, but that seems to be what Google wants. It’s not about quality, it’s about quantity. That’s an algorithm that will certainly fail. If this is Google’s idea of an algorithm to fight “over optimization”, then Google is going to lose this battle to Bing. When people can’t find what they are looking for, they go somewhere else (I have). Sites that steal and clearly violate Google’s TOS are the ones sitting on top of Google’s results today.

    If you want your business to succeed, stop using Google. That truly is the answer. If you optimize for Bing Google will have to follow. I can guarantee you that. Google’s results are poor and the only reason they still have a strong hold is because they have saturated the Internet. Don’t let Google destroy your business. Start using Bing!

  • Michael Eisenwasser

    Facebook should definitely be the first result. I would imagine almost everyone who types “face” is looking for Facebook. Seriously.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PG4QV3NLSZTGHGXCWCKS7KNT3I Ron

    Danny, above you said this:

    ===
    In 2009, Matt did a video on over optimization penalties saying there was no such thing. Here is that video:
    ===

    But the truth is, Matt Cutts and Google has had “over optimized” algorithms for years. In fact, if you want to know the truth, Google dropped the flood gates on “over optimization” in the later half of 2007 (right around election time). If you started noticing your rankings drop around this time, that is the reason why. Matt can not deny this. In fact, in early 2007 Matt was already mentioning penalties for “over optimization” in this post:

    http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/

    which demonstrates “over optimization” algorithms is something that has around at Google even before this 2007 post.

    And about November of 2007 we started tracking this so called “over optimization” penalty and what we found was quite interesting. Many of the so called “over optimization” algorithms were just plain dumb just like what has been proposed here. Like every previous algorithm proposed by Google to clean up their results, this hasn’t worked well for them. In fact, for at least the last two years Google has been criticized about how horrible their results are and things are not any better today because Google is still struggling. This is proof that Google does not know what they are doing in this area because everything they do, their results get worse. Bing however has been doing a fantastic job in recent months. It took them a few years to get on board, but now they have cleaned up the results and their results are highly targeted and spam free for the most part (like old Google). Bing is a company that has been around a long time and they understand what make sense.

    Question for you Matt: Why can Google deliver such perfectly targeted ads, but fails miserably when it comes to delivering relevant search results? Instead of you answering this question, I’ll answer this for you. It’s because the money isn’t in quality search results. The money is in delivering ads. Ads are what pays the bills for Google. Search is only a playground for Google so they can test algorithms they “might” use in Adwords at the expense of quality search. If search results are poor, Google ads get clicked. It’s as simple as that folks. I think they call this greed!

    We have only one business and only one domain name and we have followed every recommendation Google has put out there. We had a top ranking for 12 years and was number one the very first day Google opened their doors to the public. We have NEVER “over optimized” and have NEVER done anything that would even suggest any level of spam or so called “over optimization”. We are programmers and we deliver and produce what people want and our content is rich and easy to navigate. Our programs are excellent (nobody in the world can compete with them) and our site navigation is second to none. We have NEVER used stupid rank checking tools (clear violation of Google’s TOS) or done anything that would in any way violate any search engine’s TOS. We have NEVER created web pages just for the sake of having “more” content for Google to digest (our site has maybe 50 highly focused pages). We have not used 302 redirects to steel PageRank and have not hidden Javascript redirects either. We have NEVER purchased additional domains in order to exploit Google’s dumb PageRank algorithm and we have NEVER purchased a link, traded a link or even advertised on another site ever. This has lead us to believe there is something else Google going on at Google that is burying our site in their search results. One of those triggers we believe is that people like us. I know, this is suppose to increase our rankings. But according to Google’s own “Webmaster Tools”, today we have:

    Total links
    3,319,025

    That’s 3+ MILLION links pointing to our site. This is the only thing we can think of that could have possibly triggered one of those stupid “over optimization” algorithms Matt is talking about here. It’s unfortunate for us that Google sees these links as spam, purchased links or some attempt at over optimization.

    Our great content and huge following has only triggered Google to place the absolute worse sites above us in their results. The first site to top us was in early 2004 and that was Google’s very own page. Now the top rankings pages in Google for our most important terms is dominated by Google at #1 as usual and sites that haven’t been touched in years. These are sites that have dead links, horrible navigation and content that is completely worthless, old and out-of-date. Two of the top 10 are sites that have been dead for over 5 years!

    One trend we did find with these higher rankings pages is that these sites have tons of pages (gibberish if you will). These pages contain worthless content, but that seems to be what Google wants these days. It’s no longer about quality, it’s about quantity. That’s an algorithm that will certainly fail for Google in the long run. If this is Google’s idea of an algorithm to fight “over optimization”, then Google is going to lose this battle to Bing. When people can’t find what they are looking for, they go somewhere else (I have). Sites that steal and clearly violate Google’s and other search engine TOS are the ones sitting on top of Google’s results today. Nobody wants this so they will look elsewhere.

    If you truly want your business to succeed on the Internet, all you have to do is stop using Google. If you optimize for Bing, Google will have no choice but to follow and you will soon regain your top rankings at Google. This I can guarantee will happen. Google’s results are poor and the only reason they still have a strong hold today is because because they have saturated every page and site you visit on the Net. Google knows what you are doing, but they can’t deliver quality search results. Don’t let Google destroy your business. Start using Bing!
     

  • http://profiles.google.com/jwaccardi jim accardi

    why do you care. If you rank higher than me or someone else all they have to do now is over optimize your site themselves and get you penalized. 

  • http://profiles.google.com/jwaccardi jim accardi

    yeah awesome anyone can send anyone 1 million backlinks to their sites and get them banned. 

    as soon as someone ranks higher than me all I have to do is over optimize their site and they will get penalized. 

    awesome you have unique content and now you rank high ? great let me send you a ton of spammy backlinks so your site gets de indexed. Welcome to the world of black hat seo. Google just gave every blackhatter the best tool ever to kill their competition. 

  • http://profiles.google.com/jwaccardi jim accardi

    nah, all you have to do is start a new company.A destroy your competition  by hiring me to over optimize their website so they are penalized company. you will make boat loads. People say hey so and so rank higher than me how can I get ontop. You say dont worry we dont touch your site with one backlink or seo. we just kill their website by over optimizing it and soon you will rank first. 

  • mikaelus

    But who said it will focus on off-site linking? I think Google is smart enough to try to identify the sites with the best content by examining only the pages in question.

  • http://www.fulltraffic.net/ Fede Einhorn

     overly done seo refers to on-page seo. There’s no way for google nor anyone to control backlinks; and Google already knows how to control that. You see a page with hundreds of backlinks, you just avoid all of them…

  • johnandterri

     WOW! Finally someone who knows what they are talking about. I stopped using Google about the time they launched Panda and started using Bing, but then I found scrubtheweb.com and couldn’t be happier. They have no Google code on their site at all and their search results do not have any advertisers either. Scrubtheweb.com blocks Google with the robots.txt which I think shows they have balls. I know I can not hide from Google, but I sure wish I could at least visit a web page without Google breathing down my neck. It’s really creepy knowing they are watching my every move.

    Google does have some cool things, but I found out a long time ago that nothing is free. I decided to removed all Google code from my site and have opted out of Webmaster Tools. Webmaster Tools did nothing for me except provide statistics that only include Google so I could not find the value in that. My hosting provider gives me great stats anyway.

    One thing that stood out in your post is that you called Google and Matt Cutts hypocrites. That is soooooo true! After listening to this audio I did my own research and found the same kind of lies. On Google’s Webmaster Tools help pages located at http://support.google.com/webmasters/?hl=en Google has the following link:

    Search Engine Optimization
    Improve your site’s performance in search [PDF]

    That makes me sick as hell specially after hearing this audio here. Google says that SEO will “Improve your site’s performance in search”. I’m totally confused now. Do we do SEO or not do SEO? I also found a post by Matt from 2007 where he talks about “over optimization” penalties. So in 2009 he lied and in 2012 he lies to us again. Google is not good for us and I sure hope something is done before they destroy the Internet.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/M-Christopher-George/602996730 M Christopher George

    I don’t think so. What I think this means is that Google is going to discount all of those Xrumer made useless profile and forum links. In other words, it’s not going to help you AT ALL to have 1,000,000 links. On the other hand, it’s not going to hurt you either.

    That would make ZERO sense.

    Why would Google allow blackhatters the “best tool ever”? That’s the dumbest idea ever.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/M-Christopher-George/602996730 M Christopher George

    No way. By discounting the value of shit links, they will discount the value of shit links… I think the only way you could sabotage your competition would be if you very meticulously and manually built shit links. And if anybody is going to waste all of that time, why not just put that effort into your own site?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/M-Christopher-George/602996730 M Christopher George

    Nice Ron. Great comment.

  • http://twitter.com/Adis4Truth Adis Pilavdzic

    About time to clean the house

  • John Hacking

    I think it’s just more Google spin. They don’t have enough CPU power to process every page on the internet and apply all the rules that they talk about.

  • LaCoreen

    shut the fuck up please.

  • http://www.antonkoekemoer.com/ Anton Koekemoer

    So in a nutshell: focus more on content and engaging on social media channels.

  • anazcp

    why don’t you add Facebook share button?

  • Animesh Singh

    i think it is generally effect on those site who is using too much software  to rank there site, manually submission is good for search engine ranking and also follow google instruction that no more then 50 link perday for offpage activities.

  • Bob Recchia

    I never believed search engines can tell which site is relevant or not based on the content.
    How can anyone/anything tell if the content is relevant without reading it manually?

     At what number is goog le going to divide sites with too many kwds from those with a fair number? The ones who exagerates yes, but how do they decide who takes the top position based on the over optimization?

  • http://cashinghub.com/ Cashinghub

    Thats another algoritham from google to help Quality authors. It will be the best way to show quality contents over Good SEOs. Some people are getting high ranking due to their knowledge on SEO not in the contents. Visitors should get quality articles 1st. Hopefully this update will help everyone.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Julianne-Freeman/100002193146021 Julianne Freeman

     Yup, that would be my sites LOL. I tend to be a little “anal” about content and it stinks that I can be outranked by content that is highly spun and totally unreadable.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/M-Christopher-George/602996730 M Christopher George

    You’re “anal” about content and “it stinks”… Pun intended?

  • http://www.SocialMediaJobsCourse.com/ Social Media Jobs

    My understanding is that it’s not that you’re spending lots of time on SEO for any length of time, it’s what techniques you are using.  As Matt said, too many of the same keywords on a page so that’s unreadable.  Or too many links too fast and only one type of link… i.e. all directories or just blog posts.

  • http://twitter.com/steveklbnf Steve Klebanoff

    Does anyone have any solid ideas of what ‘over optimization’ may be for white-hat optimized sites?  I feel as though this is so vaguely defined, it’s hard to understand what Matt means by this.  I appreciate the insight into this ranking change, but find it hard to decipher the targets.

  • http://www.developmentcatalyst.blogspot.com/ Development Catalyst Admin

    I hope this will not affect my client sites.I mean most of SEO techniques  are white hat.I’m using some software ,but I am really into decent SEOing.

  • http://www.iexchangeplusone.com/ Get Facebook Likes

    You don’t optimize, you lag behind. You optimize, you are at a risk of being penalized.  Need to find a balance.

  • http://twitter.com/seofreelance Ricard Menor SEO

    This just superfunks me… One of the things I do is building up great performing WP’s using paid optimized themes and dealing with hosting for modules&directives, like Pagespeed 9X/100, same for Yslow, then tunning the right widgets & plugins for the purpose of the weblog and fill it with paid or self-written content (worst case you may say -oh, right, looks bit Wikipedic uh!?-).

    So I do over the average quality content and over the average WPO, OtA experienced white hat onpage, and a number of good & healthy OtA things… Will THESE punish my work??? Really?

    I expect a mechanic to fix my car way better than I would, that’s why I pay them (with my honestly earned SEO money), will a Mechanic Court penalize my magic-car-fixer?

    Nuclear plant techy? Surgeon? Airliner? Bus driver? C’mon!

  • http://www.swifttick.com/ Ron Finberg

    Seems like a nice idea, but something tells me they will put out an official release (sorry, its google, so it will be one of those unofficial – guess what we made some changes a few weeks back) and within 3 months the new “google” friendly blackhat SEO automated strategies will hit the market.  In a way, the big winners from Google’s changes are the sellers of all those software packages on the warrior forums.  

  • http://www.cquinndesign.com Christopher Quinn

    This is absolutely crazy – I can’t believe they are doing this. You know something Matt – there are small businesses that depend on making money by doing SEO – and you should really publish some guidelines so that we can see what you’re talking about.

  • http://www.nwesource.com nwesource

    Good times – Clearly a balanced approach has always been best – Quality Site, Quality Content, Quality Links… The best will finally start to rise now…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=585877171 Brian Michael Craig

    That exists regardless of  this new feature. Its a negative SEO Strategy and already gets used. It makes more sense that this would refer to on page optimization. As you dont always have control over your backlinks. Also if Google is so heavily focused on unique quality content, surely this improvement will apply to content and not link profiles.

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