Google is the gift that just keeps on giving with further updates to its search algorithms causing anxt for many business websites. An online strategy for any business nowadays must include continual monitoring and updating of online content to ensure you’re maintaining your online presence as Google continually moves the goal posts.
In the past, Google would announce an update and give information on best practise so site owners could make adjustments prior to the new search algorithms going live. Not so any more. Google has announced it is making “continual” live updates to their algorithm which means a continual headache for businesses trying to stay ahead of their competition.
A past update known as Panda penalised sites over poor content and site performance. Specifically, if you had duplicate content across your site, “thin” content – landing pages which had very little relevant information to visitors with no additional links, or links from Content Farms – sites specialising in providing cheap content to web marketers which were of poor quality. Site performance was penalised if your site code was not up to scratch – missing title and meta tags, high number of advertisements vs actual content, loading time of each page, broken page links, and high bounce rate.
Since that time, Google released its Penguin algorithm update and it’s taking site metrics to a whole new level, releasing continual algorithm updates to keep digital marketers on their toes.
Penguin is in essence Google’s spam fighting filter, and it penalises sites who use the following:
- Low quality bookmarked or directory sites
- Anchor text with an unnatural exact match
- Hidden links
- Paid links
- Links posted by guests/commenters
- Large scale articles
Then there’s the Hummingbird update. It changed Google’s search algorithm to cater to what people do online. It takes data from a user’s search history and social media activity and outputs search results based on the user preference. As a business, it is imperative you have both a web and social media platform to improve your online reputation in Google’s ranking profile.
The latest release Mobilegeddon is now penalising sites which are not “mobile friendly” causing many site owners to completely rebuild their web platforms to be device responsive.
Not all updates were meant to be penalising though. In between the Hummingbird and the Mobilegeddon updates, Google introduced the Pigeon update which aimed to provide better quality local search results. This was good news for local businesses - providing they have a local web presence.
So what’s the secret to ensuring your website doesn’t get penalised and continues to grow?
It’s simple – responsive template builds with clean coding, good quality regularly posted original content, genuine links, and engaged viewers who stay on your site, read the content and further engage through a web enquiry or similar conversion.
PJT’s Digital Marketing Division can assist you in getting your site found, and help keep it ranking well. PJT is offering the first 10 companies to respond, a complimentary online review of their website (valued at $300). If you’re interested, please email [email protected] today.