Google Algorithm Updates – What you need to know!

Lucy Mander 23rd October 2018

Google makes changes to its ranking algorithm almost every day. Sometimes we know about them, sometimes we don’t.

Here are the most important algorithm updates of recent years…

Panda – 2011

Google’s Panda Update is a search filter introduced in February 2011 meant to stop sites with poor quality content from working their way into Google’s top search results. Panda is updated from time-to-time. When this happens, sites previously hit may escape, if they’ve made the right changes.

Main Focus:

  • Duplicate Content
  • Keyword Stuffing
  • Thin Content
  • User-Generated Spam
  • Irrelevant Content

Penguin – 2012

Google launched the Penguin Update in April 2012 to better catch sites deemed to be spamming its search results, in particular those doing so by buying links or obtaining them through link networks designed primarily to boost Google rankings.

Main Focus:

  • Links from spammy sites
  • Links from topically irrelevant sites
  • Paid links
  • Links with overly optimized anchor text

Hummingbird – 2013

Unlike the previous Panda and Penguin updates which were initially released as add-ons to Google’s existing algorithm, Hummingbird has been cited as a complete overhaul of the core algorithm. While it’s believed that many preexisting components of the core algorithm remained intact, Hummingbird signaled Google’s commitment to an increasingly sophisticated understanding of the intent of searchers’ queries with the goal of matching them to more relevant results.

Main Focus:

  • Long-tail keywords
  • Unfamiliar search queries
  • Natural language

Pigeon – 2014

The Pigeon update rolled out in 2014 and was designed to tie Google’s local search algorithm closer to the main one. Location and distance started to be taken into consideration while ranking the search results. This gave a significant ranking boost to local directory sites as well as creating a much closer connection of Google Web search and Google Map search.

Two years later, when the Possum Update was launched, Google started to return more varied search results depending on the physical location of the searcher. Basically, the closer you are to a business’s address, the more chances you have to see it among local results.

Main Focus:

  • Showing more authoritative and well-optimized websites in local search results
  • Showing search results that are closer to a searcher’s physical location

Mobile Friendly Update – 2015

On April 21, 2015, Google released a significant new mobile-friendly ranking algorithm, also known as Mobilegeddon, that’s designed to give a boost to mobile-friendly pages in Google’s mobile search results.

Main Focus

  • All sites (both mobile-friendly and not)

Page Speed Update – 2018

The Page Speed Update rolled out in July of this year, finally making page speed a ranking factor for mobile devices. According to this update, faster websites are supposed to rank higher in search results.

Main Focus:

  • Slow sites with low Optimization score

If you would like any further information then please give the Dental Design team a call on: 01202 677277

Source: Search Engine Watch

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