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Episode 31 - May 7, 2018 (Light Version)

Click here for the paid members version

Once again we have what looks like another significant algorithm update to talk about. It seems that Google is continually doing significant refinements to how they assess quality. In this episode we talk about some significant upcoming changes to Google news, info on Moz’s new and improved link explorer and much more. Paid subscribers get loads of practical tips in this episode. We’ll talk about my thoughts on a new Google algorithm framework and how it will affect SEO, a fantastic eCommerce link building tip and the most common reason to see rank decreases on a newly produced page.

In this episode:



Paid members also get the following:

  • Why are desktop-only sites being switched to mobile first indexing?
  • Seeing nice rankings for a new page and then a drop? Here is the most common reason why
  • Information on a new Google algorithm framework
  • Big change to Disqus services
  • An example of a really smart link building idea for eCommerce
  • More evidence that folders are better than subdomains for SEO
  • Use Screaming Frog to determine whether your Javascript links are indexable
  • If you migrate to a new domain, do you need to move your images too?
  • What you need to know about GDPR and Analytics, even if you are not in Europe
  • Important news if you use Amp on a WordPress site
  • Do you run a recipe site? Here is what you need to do to have your recipes used on Google Assistant
  • Google is ranking shopping results with numbers
  • Can NSFW content on parts of your site can affect the rankings of your entire site?
  • Should Google be able to crawl your search results pages?
  • Negative SEO via canonical tags?
  • How to see if you are next in line for a featured snippet
  • Local SEO: Everything you need to know about GMB Descriptions
  • Local SEO: How long does it take for a flagged review to get removed?
  • My tl;dr summary of some awesome SEO articles

Note: If you are seeing the light version and you are a paid member, be sure to log in (in the sidebar on desktop or below the post on mobile) and read the full article here.

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Algorithm Updates

April 30, 2018 algorithm update

I didn’t hear much chatter about this update, but it actually looks like it was a significant one. A large number of sites in my database saw either increases or decreases around this time.

Here is one site for which we worked with to improve quality by trimming out thin content and greatly improving the user experience:
Here is one for which we did a site review last year. We had recommended trimming out a large amount of thin content, but it looks like this hasn’t been done yet. They saw a hit with the April 16, 2018 algorithm update which was an announced broad core quality update. And now, they are seeing further hits:

At this point, I am guessing that this update had to do with overall site quality. If we get any more specific findings, I will keep you updated.


We’re offering a new service: Weekly analytics assessment

Want to know whether you were affected by the latest algorithm update? We’re starting to offer a service in which we’ll keep an eye on your analytics for you. As this is a new service, we’re currently just taking on a few new clients. Here is what is included:

  • Every week the team at Marie Haynes Consulting will review your Google organic traffic and tell you whether it looks like you have been affected negatively or positively by any known or suspected Google updates.
  • The reviews are done by hand and take into account seasonal changes as well.
  • You’ll receive a weekly email including screenshots of your Google organic traffic, pointing out the important changes.
  • If you were affected by an algorithm update, we’ll share with you my thoughts on what types of issues each algorithm update went after. If we get new information about a past algo hit, we’ll share that with you as well. For example, March 9, 2018 was a big algorithm update. Several weeks later, after we analyzed several sites that were hit, we could see some patterns as many of the sites that were hit had content that was repurposed from other places.
  • While there is no individual one on one consulting involved in this report, if you were negatively affected by an algorithm change, we can give general advice on recovery. Or, if you feel you need more specific advice, individual consulting can be purchased.

The cost for this service will be $49 USD per month, or, you can get a discount by paying for a full year at one time, for a total of $550.

For more details, contact me.


Some more changes appear to be happening with featured snippets


Changes coming to Google news

Ron Amaeo with Ars Technica reports that there are going to be some changes coming to Google news in the form of a redesign as they look to incorporate elements of the Google Play Newsstand app and YouTube. The new Google News will be run through Google’s new AMP technology and is expected to be launch at Google I/O 2018. The rumours about the redesign appear to suggest that it will streamline all the ways Google currently offers users to receive news updates and Ron comments that this move could be part of a trend in closing down/consolidating the ‘awkward Google Play branding’.


Algoroo is back online

Algoroo is a tool that monitors for big algo shakeups, similar to Mozcast and SEMRush Sensor. I really like this tool and am happy to see that it is back online again.


Google Pay is rolling out across the Web and iOS

Although not strictly SEO news, this development is Google related and will no doubt have some effect on how people interact online. Google Pay was initially launched in February with a new Android payment app to replace the previous Pay with Google service. It is now being rolled out across the web on desktop browsers and iOS devices. There are a couple new features that have been added in the last few months as well. Some of the features include integration with Google assistant, use with some transit systems, and the ability to use saved cards across devices.

 


Are you a woman in SEO who wants to get into speaking?

Conferences are always looking for more women to speak. This is an awesome offer:

I got my start in speaking at SEO events in Pubcon, Vegas. If you need tips to help you get your pitches accepted, I’d be happy to give my thoughts as well!


What you need to know about Moz’s new link explorer

Moz announced that they have greatly improved their link explorer. This Whiteboard Friday explains what is new now:

  • The Moz index used to be a fifth to a tenth of the size of Ahrefs and Majestic. It’s now 20 times larger than it used to be and is competitive with other tools.
  • It used to take two to four months for Moz to find and display new links. Data now updates every 24 hours. DA and PA are tracked daily for every site.
  • Spam score metrics have been improved and is reported on a percentage scale now. It’s a machine learning algorithm based on what they find with penalized domains.
  • You can now see which links you have gained and lost over time.
  • Domain Authority was becoming less of a measure that correlated with rankings. It is greatly improved now. Everyone’s DA has changed as a result.
  • You can now do a number of things in bulk such as uploading a list and seeing which of those sites link to your site already.

Local SEO

Agencies on GMB

There will be a couple differences for agencies signed up to GMB as well. Agencies will get a different dashboard that will allow them to manage unlimited different locations (currently max’d at 100 for non-agencies). The latest GMB API changes also appear to be focused towards agency use.


Three GMB updates announced at LSA 18

Mike Blumenthal reports on these changes. There will be some updates made to API functions including the addition of messaging API and department hierarchies.Google are also adding a new partnership program - allowing agencies advanced access and offering a partner directory.  Lastly, there will be an agency dashboard made available to provide some better organisational options for GMB users.


Recommended Reading

The Essential SEO Website Launch Checklist - Ashley Peterson

October 27, 2017

https://www.v9digital.com/blog/2017/10/27/seo-website-launch-checklist/

Ashley Peterson has written a great checklist and guide for making sure a soon to be launched/re-launched website is SEO ready.

Migrating from ccTLDs to a gTLD - The WHY, the HOW, and the WTF - Eoghan Henn

May 7th, 2018

https://www.searchviu.com/en/cctlds-to-gtld/

Eoghan Henn discusses why webmaster’s may wish to move from using ccTLDs (Country code top level domains) to a gTLD (Global top level domain) for SEO reasons.

More hreflang magic tricks revealed: Google can select one country hreflang url to index from across multiple urls in the same language - Glenn Gabe

May 7, 2018

https://www.gsqi.com/marketing-blog/hreflang-magic-trick-same-language-different-countries/

In a follow on from a previous post regarding how Google can still resurface canonicalised urls in the SERPs if they are country targeted with hreflang.

Is responsive web design enough?(Hint: No) -  Kristopher Jones

April 30, 2018

https://searchengineland.com/is-responsive-web-design-enough-hint-no-297150

This is an interesting piece from Kris Jones over at search-engine-land, which is very relevant given the upcoming switch to mobile first indexing.

Big, Fast, and Strong: Setting the Standard for Backlink Index Comparisons - Russ Jones

May 1st, 2018

https://moz.com/blog/big-fast-strong-backlink-index-comparisons

This is a very in-depth piece from Moz Principle Search Scientist, Russ Jones. .

ECommerce SEO - The only guide you’ll ever need - Charles Floate

May 2, 2018

https://charlesfloate.co.uk/ecommerce-seo-guide

This is a good guide from Charles Floate which offers some good insights into the tactics and tools that he uses for eCommerce sites.

Pandora Learns the Cost of Ads, and of Subscriptions - Erin Griffith/Wired

April 30th, 2018

https://www.wired.com/story/pandora-learns-the-cost-of-ads-and-of-subscriptions/

This is a very informative article in Wired about the current state of the Ad vs Subscription based markets for online services.

Efficient Link Reclamation: How to Speed Up & Scale Your Efforts - Darren Kingman

May 2nd, 2018

https://moz.com/blog/efficient-link-reclamation

Darren Kingman writes about different techniques that you can use to up your link reclamation game.

In-House Content Marketing w/ Lead SEOs at Uber and Moz - Ross Hudgens/Siege Media

May 1, 2018

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B04R-gSA40M

A really interesting interview with Brittney Muller (Moz) and Jackie Chu (Uber) from the first in Siege Media’s ‘Content & Conversation’ series.

Search by the Seaside: Spotlight on Brighton SEO April 2018 - Louise Merry

May 1st, 2018

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/spark/marketing-guides/brighton-seo-april-2018/

Louise Merry gave a write up of BrightonSEO in the Telegraph this week.

How to turn a boring email into an irresistible link pitch - Gisele Navarro

May 3rd, 2018

https://searchengineland.com/how-to-turn-a-boring-email-into-an-irresistible-link-pitch-297037

When it comes to link building, you are often reaching out via email to people that you have never really met, and getting people to even read your pitch can sometimes be a struggle, let alone getting a link! In this article, Gisele Navarro writes about 20 different ways to encourage people to open, read and hopefully engage with your emails.


Recommended Reading (Local SEO)

Scammers use Google Maps to skirt link-shortener crackdown - Shaun Nichols

May 1, 2018

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/05/01/google_maps_url/

Shaun Nichols from The Register reports that scam sites have been using a function of Google Maps to direct users to untrustworthy sites.


SEO Jobs


Want More?

Paid members also get the following:

  • Why are desktop-only sites being switched to mobile first indexing?
  • Seeing nice rankings for a new page and then a drop? Here is the most common reason why
  • Information on a new Google algorithm framework
  • Big change to Disqus services
  • An example of a really smart link building idea for eCommerce
  • More evidence that folders are better than subdomains for SEO
  • Use Screaming Frog to determine whether your Javascript links are indexable
  • If you migrate to a new domain, do you need to move your images too?
  • What you need to know about GDPR and Analytics, even if you are not in Europe
  • Important news if you use Amp on a WordPress site
  • Do you run a recipe site? Here is what you need to do to have your recipes used on Google Assistant
  • Google is ranking shopping results with numbers
  • Can NSFW content on parts of your site can affect the rankings of your entire site?
  • Should Google be able to crawl your search results pages?
  • Negative SEO via canonical tags?
  • How to see if you are next in line for a featured snippet
  • Local SEO: Everything you need to know about GMB Descriptions
  • Local SEO: How long does it take for a flagged review to get removed?
  • My tl;dr summary of some awesome SEO articles

Note: If you are seeing the light version and you are a paid member, be sure to log in (in the sidebar on desktop or below the post on mobile) and read the full article here.

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Part of the challenge of SEO is staying on top of industry news, trends, and techniques There is so much information out there that it is easy to get bogged down in information overload and trying to disseminate what's truly important from all that noise can be really time-consuming and challenging.

 Marie's newsletter is a game changer because it manages to cut through the fluff and deliver high-quality information that is not only really important for those that do SEO, but it is presented in a format that is really easy to absorb.
If you are looking for a trusted information related to search that is highly actionable I would strongly recommend Marie's newsletter.
Paul Macnamara - Offers SEO Consulting at PaulMacnamara.com


That's it for this episode! Stay tuned for our Youtube video (my channel is here. If you want to follow me on Facebook, here is my page.


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