Mid-Year Algorithm Update

search engine optimization company

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SEO Company Talks Big Updates to Algorithms

Google is the most popular search engine in the world. They are constantly rolling out updates to the algorithms that impact how searches are performed, which search results are favored, and how results are presented. Search engine optimization companies must stay up-to-date with these algorithm changes.

In this article, we’ll be covering Google’s algorithm updates and how they affect search engine optimization.

Mobile-Friendly Updates
The latest change is a second update to Google’s mobile-friendly algorithm, which was initially rolled out in May of last year.

This update increases the effectiveness of Google’s ranking signal on mobile devices. When a user carries out a search on their mobile device, this algorithm finds the best results for their search by presenting the most mobile-friendly webpages.

The algorithm works on a page-by-page basis, so it has been a gradual roll-out process as the update works a bit slower to crawl and assess each page. The good news is that the page-by-page assessment means that a website does not need all of its pages to be mobile-friendly, so companies can focus on making pages that result in conversions mobile-friendly.

Considering how many people use their smart phones and tablets to browse the internet, it’s vital for SEO companies to ensure that their clients are mobile-friendly and ranking well with mobile search results.

Changes to AdWords
One controversial change to Google’s algorithms has been the removal of advertisements in the side-bar, instead using 4 main ads at the top of the search engine results page (SERP).

For your average internet user, this change may not be noteworthy, as the top 4 results still look the same and include rich features like location enhancements and site-links. The right-hand side-bar space will now be taken up by Product Listing Ads or Knowledge Graph Boxes.

However, this is a big deal for companies that make use of pay-per-click (PPC). The update places organic search results even further down the page, and eradicates PPC results from the right-hand column. While the change is in line with Google’s move to streamline mobile-friendly SERPs, it doesn’t bode well for some advertisers. Many SEO experts speculate that the change will drive competition for paid searches, essentially resulting in cost-per-click (CPC) inflation.

The algorithm update tends to focus on commercial searches, and hasn’t been rolled out uniformly or globally yet. The change is still in testing, so Google AdWords may revert to their previous system or try something new with the next update if users find it unfavorable.

Unspecified Updates
There have been two instances this year where SEO experts have detected changes to their search rankings, but Google has been very quiet about what those changes may be.

The first was in January, when Google confirmed that a core algorithm update had occurred, but it was not related to Penguin (the algorithm that penalizes websites for violating Google’s Webmaster Guidelines). The update was unnamed, and thus far details have not been released to the public.

The second potential change took place in May, when a number of webmasters and search result tracking tools seemed to notice volatile fluctuations in search results. However, no update was ever confirmed by Google, so any changes to its algorithms are purely speculative at this point.

Follow our blog to stay informed about coming changes to Google’s algorithms, or contact Connectica today for a professional SEO consultation.

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