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More Google Algorithm Changes Revealed, No Panda?

Jan 8, 2012 by     14 Comments    Posted under: Gooogle, SEO Tips

More Google Algorithm Changes Revealed, No Panda?

Image Credit : tech2digest.com

Google is becoming more transparent, just lately they have blog about the changes that they have made last December. Just for information, I have felt the changes for this blog just after new year.

Here’s the list for December: Google Inside Search

  • Image Search landing page quality signals. [launch codename “simple”] This is an improvement that analyzes various landing page signals for Image Search. We want to make sure that not only are we showing you the most relevant images, but we are also linking to the highest quality source pages.
  • More relevant sitelinks. [launch codename “concepts”, project codename “Megasitelinks”] We improved our algorithm for picking sitelinks. The result is more relevant sitelinks; for example, we may show sitelinks specific to your metropolitan region, which you can control with your location setting.
  • Soft 404 Detection. Web servers generally return the 404 status code when someone requests a page that doesn’t exist. However, some sites are configured to return otherstatus codes, even though the page content might explain that the page was not found. We call these soft 404s (or “crypto” 404s) and they can be problematic for search engines because we aren’t sure if we should ignore the pages. This change is an improvement to how we detect soft 404s, especially in Russian, German and Spanish. For all you webmasters out there, the best practice is still to always use the correct response code.
  • More accurate country-restricted searches. [launch codename “greencr”] On domains other than .com, users have the option to see only results from their particular country. This is a new algorithm that uses several signals to better determine where web documents are from, improving the accuracy of this feature.
  • More rich snippets. We improved our process for detecting sites that qualify for shopping, recipe and review rich snippets. As a result, you should start seeing more sites with rich snippets in search results.
  • Better infrastructure for autocomplete. This is an infrastructure change to improve how our autocomplete algorithm handles spelling corrections for query prefixes (the beginning part of a search).
  • Better spam detection in Image Search. [launch codename “leaf”] This change improves our spam detection in Image Search by extending algorithms we already use for our main search results.
  • Google Instant enhancements for Japanese. For languages that use non-Latin characters, many users use a special IME (Input Method Editor) to enter queries. This change works with browsers that are IME-aware to better handle Japanese queries in Google Instant.
  • More accurate byline dates. [launch codename “foby”] We made a few improvements to how we determine what date to associate with a document. As a result, you’ll see more accurate dates annotating search results.
  • Live results for NFL and college football. [project codename “Live Results”] We’ve added new live results for NFL.com and ESPN’s NCAA Football results. These results now provide the latest scores, schedules and standings for your favorite football teams.
  • Improved dataset for related queries. We are now using an improved dataset on term relationships to find related queries. We sometimes include results for queries that are related to your original search, and this improvement leads to results from more relevant related queries.
  • Related query improvements. [launch codename “lyndsy”] Sometimes we fetch results for queries that are related to the original query but have fewer words. We made several changes to our algorithms to make them more conservative and less likely to introduce results without query words.
  • Better lyrics results. [launch codename “baschi”, project codename “Contra”] This change improves our result quality for lyrics searches.
  • Tweak to +1 button on results page. As part of our continued effort to deliver a beautifully simple user experience across Google products, we’ve made a subtle tweak to how the +1 button appears on the results page. Now the +1 button will only appear when you hover over a result or when the result has already been +1’d.
  • Better spell correction in Vietnamese. [project codename “Pho Viet”] We launched a new Vietnamese spelling model. This will help give more accurate spelling predictions for Vietnamese queries.
  • Upcoming events at venues. We’ve improved the recently released places panel for event venues. For major venues, we now show up to three upcoming events on the right of the page. Try it for [staples center los angeles] or [paradise rock club boston].
  • Improvements to image size signal. [launch codename “matter”] This is an improvement to how we use the size of images as a ranking signal in Image Search. With this change, you’ll tend to see images with larger full-size versions.
  • Improved Hebrew synonyms. [launch codename “SweatNovember”, project codename “Synonyms”] This update refines how we handle Hebrew synonyms across multiple languages. Context matters a lot for translation, so this change prevents us from using translated synonyms that are not actually relevant to the query context.
  • Safer searching. [launch codename “Hoengg”, project codename "SafeSearch"] We updated our SafeSearch tool to provide better filtering for certain queries when strict SafeSearch is enabled.
  • Encrypted search available on new regional domains. Google now offers encrypted search by default on google.com for signed-in users, but it’s not the default on our other regional domains (eg: google.fr for France). Now users in the UK, Germany and France can opt in to encrypted search by navigating directly to an SSL version of Google Search on their respective regional domains: https://www.google.co.uk, https://www.google.de and https://www.google.fr.
  • Faster mobile browsing. [launch codename “old possum”, project codename “Skip Redirect”] Many websites redirect smartphone users to another page that is optimized for smartphone browsers. This change uses the final smartphone destination url in our mobile search results, so you can bypass all the redirects and load the target page faster.

I have seen changes in the Google algorithm in Philippine based keywords. Since I optimized with Philippine related keywords and my Google webmaster is set to Philippines, I have noticed an improvement in Philippine traffic. Actually other bloggers have also felt the same as seen in their reply at my Facebook comment. It seems that the dates in the blog post is also important since they are getting signals from the date. Image is always important in every post. The update shows that they have change some algorithm about the image search, make sure that you have images in every post that you make.

In addition make sure that the image is relevant with the post that you are posting.

But what amaze me is that they never discuss about the Panda that hit 40-50% of my visitors.

In my over all observation I think changes is positive for this blog. I have increased about 10% to 20% of visitors from search. More visitors will definitely mean more income for this blog. Google keep giving me visitors.

14 Comments + Add Comment

  • @Dex (I hope you don’t mind me promoting),

    @Vic, Can you please join https://www.facebook.com/groups/pinoyblog/


  • As for my blog I didn’t set any geo targeting and yet my top visits came from PH and second is US.

    • @Arsie,

      Probably your targeted keywords targets Philippines and links are coming from site talking about Philippines. But anyway only Google knows why 🙂 we can just speculate..

  • One problem though, most pinoys are already aware of the ads so setting and gathering more traffic from the Philippines will only lead to lower revenue.

    • @Arsie,
      I agree. But sometimes quantity overcomes quality. I mean if you can have 1,000 visitors from the PH, it just might be better than having a 100 visitors from US. If your niche is on “blogging and making money online”, there’s a lower chance that your visitors will click on you CPC ads, since they are mostly bloggers and online money makers. But of course you can always try to experiment on other schemes, such as affiliate marketing and private advertising.

      • @Vic, I agree. My worries now if I set my geo target to PH is will it affect my top keywords on US.

      • @Arsie,

        It might.. Because it will give preference to Philippine related keywords.. It will still depend on so many signals from Google. As an instance this blog has been set to Philippine for a long time and yet I still have US visitors as my 3rd highest visitors with respect to Country. But I might say that this blog can easily rank on Philippine related keywords compared to US related keywords.

      • @Vic,

        I believe that blog earnings through CPC ads is definitely based on keywords. As long as the keywords are less related to tech savvy guys and the keywords has lots of searches it will definitely bring good amount of online earnings.

      • @Dexter | Tech At Hand Dot Net,
        That’s true, it depends on keywords and the competing advertisers/bidders. 🙂 Actually, I want to bring dotPH to the world. My challenge now is how to popularize our own domain extension in the global scenery. Wish me luck. Haha.

  • Great share. I think Google doesn’t really intend to disclose all of their changes. They might only be telling us the tip of the iceberg. 🙂 But anyway, the old quality content strategy will always be a big player in the SEO game. My site is now returning to normal traffic after the holidays. Since, I use a dotPH, Google automatically giving me local traffic even if I did not optimize my blog for the Philippine traffic.

    • @Vic,

      Great to know that, I would also suggest you to make Philippines as your location at Google Webmaster Tools, Through Google Webmaster Tools, you will be able to tell Google directly that you want to dominate Philippines SERP 🙂 . 100% agree that nowadays quality content plays an important role.

      • @Dexter Panganiban,
        I’ve chosen to not set it in my Google Webmaster Tools, since I’m challenging the global SERP. 🙂 Anyway, my ccTLD is already doing its part to dominate the local SERP. Just my 2 cents.

      • @Vic,

        Ah I thought that you are targeting visitors from Philippines and you want to make your brand in Philippines as a Philippine Business Advisor 🙂 So if you want to challenge Global SEO I believe it is better not to set it in Philippines :).. And get some links not only from Pinoy Blogs or site.

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