Search News Round-Up
The search marketing industry is always changing, so it’s important to stay up to date on the latest news and best practices. Here’s a round-up of some of the most recent updates and trends. Hope you enjoy!
1. Google Panda Refresh is Here
After months of waiting, Google announced a Panda refresh has taken place. You probably won’t notice any immediate changes as Google is rolling out the update at an incredibly slow pace. Google said the update has only affected two to three percent of websites so far, so it could take months before you see an algorithmic impact on your site.
The new update means that sites who suffered or were penalized from the last Panda update have the potential to rise up in Google’s search results again. If you were hurt from the last Panda refresh, expect to see a gradual change in organic rankings over the next few months.
2. How Does Google Handle the New Top Level Domains?
After a lot of questions and misconceptions about how Google handles the new top level domains, Google’s John Mueller published a blog post to clear the air.
For those who don’t know, a Top Level Domain (TLD) is the most general part of a domain name in an internet address and always comes after the last dot in a URL (.com, .org, etc.). Search marketing practitioners often believe that Google prefers some TLDs over others. John Mueller squashed those beliefs when he stated there are no TLDs that Google finds more important than others–they are all treated equally when it comes to rankings.
Google said new TLDs like .BRAND and .how will be treated the same way as old TLDs like .com and .org. Mueller said the new TLDs won’t influence the way they crawl, index or rank URLs.
Don’t go running to a new TLD just yet. Moving you website to a new domain can have big impacts on your SEO efforts. Domain changes take time to adjust to, so it’s best to stick with a domain that will benefit you for the long-run.
For more info, check out Mueller’s blog post.
3. Bing Search Traffic Decline
Notice a big decrease in Bing organic search traffic? You’re not alone. Webmasters everywhere are wondering if this could be due to an algorithmic update. Turns out it might have to do with Google Analytics. Barry Schwartz at Search Engine Land analyzed dozens of websites in Google Analytics and noticed the same pattern—about 20 percent declines in Bing organic search traffic across the board. On the flip side, he also saw about a 200 percent increase in referral traffic.
Sounds fishy. Both Google and Microsoft are investigating the issue.
4. Google Maps Rolls Out Location History Timeline
Ever wish you had a way of remembering the restaurant you went to at the beach last summer? Well, if you used Google Maps to get there, you’re in luck! Google announced they are producing a new feature in Google Maps that lets desktop and mobile users see a timeline of where they’ve traveled in a given period. Google hopes its users find this feature beneficial for remembering and viewing the places they’ve been in a given day, month or year.
For more information, read Google’s blog post.
5. Most Googled Products On The Planet
Kidneys, Nose Jobs and Cows… Oh my! Ever wonder what people are searching for the most around the world? Check out this cool map showing what different countries are filling in the phrase “cost of ____” with.