Big Daddy Update – Logical…?
As hard as it may be to believe, the latest incarnation of Google’s algorithm update has been going on since September 2005! Google however, is not referring to this as an “update” but rather an “infrastructure change”. In addition to this change, Matt Cutts (Google’s link to the real world) states that “There was a completely unrelated data refresh that went live at every data center on December 27th.” According to Matt this update was completed sometime in March, however I bet there are a few thousand webmasters who would dispute this point!
While Webmasters and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) professionals try to figure out what has changed and why, web site owners languish on page 8 or worse, and Google results change daily. The only positive silver lining is for owners of Pepto Bismol stock. Normally I have Google set as the default on my browser for search engines, but I have to admit the last few months have caused me to change my mind and use either Yahoo! or MSN. Odd as it sounds, even to me, both Yahoo! and MSN bring results that are more relevant to what I am searching for. Google unfortunately has become increasingly frustrating, bringing results that make no sense from either an SEO or a user perspective.
The main job of an SEO professional is to optimize your web site to conform to the Search Engine(s) guidelines. While none of the engines give us an outright list of what is good (white hat) and what is bad (black hat), we have a basic understanding of what they are looking to see. Well written, pertinent content, clean “non-spam” code, quality and relevant back links. Generally that’s it. Of course there is wide latitude in the details, which are amorphic at best.
What you do in the details can either make your business, by being recognized on the search engine’s front page with your designated key phrase(s) search, or break your business by dropping your designated key phrases all together. And with Google’s latest update entitled “Big Daddy”, many, many, quality web sites are seeing their once strong rankings diminish down to a chosen few. This would be an easier pill to swallow if it wasn’t for the new results which range from key-stuffed, duplicate content, bad links (if any), to a plain PDF file. How does a PDF file rank better than a page that follows the rules?
I realize there are now over 200 separate items that help calculate the final page ranking of any given result(s), but when there is no discernable linear logic to follow there is bound to be an equal, and often more powerful, opposite reaction. Basic physics. The opposite reaction will come in the form of web site owners, webmasters, and SEO experts the world over screaming in utter frustration!
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