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Episode 45 - August 15, 2018 (Light Version)

Click here for the paid members version

In this episode, we’ll look at a few more details of the massive August 1 Google update. While the majority of sites that we monitor were not affected by this change, the ones that were were strongly affected. There is a lot of news in terms of local SEO discussed here. We also have a lot of summaries of some really good SEO articles this week.

In this episode:



Paid members also get the following:

  • HTTPS migration advice from Google
  • John Mueller's comments on paginated content
  • Why Google cannot recommend SEOs
  • A good discussion on disavowing
  • Info on more troubles with AMP
  • Making clickable Amazon product affiliate links as images in WP
  • Local SEO: DoorDash ads start appearing in Canada
  • Local SEO: Still more problems with spam on YMYL queries
  • Local SEO: How to contact GMB
  • Local SEO: Don’t delete your GMB profile
  • Local SEO: ‘Your Past Visits’ included in local knowledge panel
  • Local SEO: Slight change to GMB insights
  • Local SEO: More information available on GMB Insights
  • My tl;dr summaries of some awesome recent SEO and Local SEO articles

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Algorithm updates

Danny Sullivan confirmed that the August 1, 2018 update was a broad core update and not just one that affected medical sites.

With that said, a HUGE number of medical, diet, nutrition and supplement sites are approaching us for site quality reviews. But, we do have others in many other niches that are asking for help as well.

In the recommended reading section of this newsletter, there is a special section for articles on this subject. If you missed, it here is my article on the August 1 update.

There are still a lot of things about this update that we are trying to figure out. I do thoroughly believe that a huge component of the update was Google’s attempt to quantify trust. Many sites that dropped were sites that sold diet products that were perhaps a little questionable.

But, we also saw drops in reputable sites selling reputable products. There are a couple of sites with drops that I can’t explain. I’m hoping that these get reversed and it wouldn’t surprise me if Google does a lot of tweaking to this algorithm in the weeks to come.

My advice right now if you were hit by the algorithm update is as follows:

  • Thoroughly evaluate your E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trust). If you are not known as the leading authority in your business, this needs to be your priority. Get press. Find ways to get people talking about you online.
  • Look at your site objectively to see if there is anything there that can be causing people to distrust your site. This could be related to a product you sell, deceptive ads, or any other sort of tricky practice that could deceive people.
  • As always, make sure the site is technically sound.
  • Look at how much value you provide to users as compared to competitors.

We are still taking clients for our site quality reviews. However, we do have a bit of a waiting list for signups right now. I’m really interested to see what we find after analyzing a large number of sites that were hit with this update.

August 13, 2018

I do think that Google may have tweaked the August 1 update at this time as there are several sites in our portfolio that saw changes on this date.

Mozcast showing a bit of flux on this day too:

However, the other algo checker tools are not showing much change. I don’t think there are specific issues to be addressed here, but this is likely just a tweak to the August 1 update.


New additions to Google Search Console

I’m not seeing these yet on my GSC properties, so hopefully they are coming soon.


New Google Images related search box

Google is testing a new feature of the image SERPs with a ‘related searches’ box showing up embedded on mobile.


If you run a forum or Q&A site, this is scary

Apparently this is not new, but it’s the first time I’m seeing it. For many queries, Google is showing several snippets from forum posts right in the SERPS:

When I tweeted about this, several people commented that this could be a good thing as it might encourage more clicks. However, when I first discovered this I was doing a health related query. I found that more often than not, if I saw the answer snippets I either found my answer, or realized that the thread was not worthy of a click. I kept thinking, “Wow, Google just stole ad impressions from that site that I would have visited if this didn’t exist.”

Hopefully this will increase clicks for some of you, but I have my doubts!

Added: Danny Sullivan said that this was a feature that was opt in for just specific forum websites for now and then corrected himself:

If you do want to implement schema to get this markup in the SERPS, you can implement the Question schema.


GoFundme Page set up in Memory of Michael Streko

The search industry lost another prominent and well liked member this week. If you knew Michael Streko, you may want to consider donating to this Go Fund Me page to help give support to his son in his absence.


Local SEO

‘View previous posts’ appears in knowledge panel

Colan Nielsen spotted a new feature to the local business knowledge panel this week with the addition of a button prompting users to ‘view previous posts’. This new feature will hopefully engage users more with Google posts, which currently disappear from the knowledge panel after 7 days, or at the end of a listed event.


New Location tabs with ratings for hotels

A new feature has popped up in the knowledge panel for hotels. The new feature, spotted by Sergey Alakov, provides both a location score and three sub-tabs that provide users information on the hotels ‘highlights’, things to do in a near proximity, and local transport information for getting around near the hotel. The three tabs are all given an individual score of their own scores, but as Sergey observed, these do not appear to proportionally makeup the the general hotel score.


Recommended Reading

15 SEO Experiences I’d Like To Share With You - John W. Defeo

August 7th, 2018

https://www.johnwdefeo.com/articles/seo-experiences-worth-sharing

In his first ever post, John W. Defeo shares some of his experiences from the last 15 years of doing SEO.

How to write a service page that converts - Joel Klettke

August 2018

https://businesscasualcopywriting.com/how-to-write-an-awesome-service-page-that-converts/

Joel Klettke recounts his experience of designing a new service page for Siege Media’s link building service page. As most people who have read through a digital marketing company’s website, and especially their service pages, will know, these sites are often very similar.

Technical SEO Roundup July 2018 - Ryan Siddle

August 10th, 2018

https://merj.com/blog/technical-seo-roundup-july-2018

This is a really good article highlighting all the major changes from Google and technical SEO  in the last month. Ryan Siddle covers a substantial amount of updates, giving some action points to each change.

How to use “Freshness Distance” to Improve Rankings - Ross Hudgens/Siege Media

August 9th, 2018

https://www.siegemedia.com/seo/freshness-distance

This is another great video from the Siege Media team which talks about ‘Freshness Distance’. This is the idea that when you look at the search results and look at how frequently certain types of result have been updated, you can determine better the frequency with which that kind of content needs to be updated to be competitive for that query.

What? You are not optimising for Google’s Featured Snippets yet? Here’s what you should do - Ann Smarty

June 18th, 2018

http://www.seosmarty.com/optimize-for-google-featured-snippets/

Here is an advice piece from Ann Smarty in which she describes some tactics for winning featured snippets for either your site or your clients sites, this includes using her company’s ‘Featured Snippet Optimisation Tool’.

Rewriting the Beginner's Guide to SEO, Chapter 4: On-Page Optimization - Britney Muller

August 8th, 2018

https://moz.com/blog/beginners-guide-to-seo-chapter-4

This is a great article by Britney Muller on the art of on-page SEO, especially technical things you can improve about your site if you’re new to SEO.

What Do Dolphins Eat? Lessons from How Kids Search
August 10th, 2018

https://moz.com/blog/lessons-from-how-kids-search

While there isn’t much in the way of actionable insight here (as author Will Critchlow himself admits), this Whiteboard Friday is a fun watch/read on the way kids search.

Why author reputation matters more than ever for search - Mark Traphagan

August 14th, 2018

https://www.searchenginejournal.com/why-author-reputation-matters-for-search/262799/

This is a great little article for anyone struggling to understand some of Google’s latest update on August 1st with regards to the authoritativeness of your content.


Recommended Reading - August 1st Update

Analysis and Findings From the August 1, 2018 Google Algorithm Update - A Massive Core Ranking Update - Glenn Gabe

August 9th. 2018

https://www.gsqi.com/marketing-blog/august-1-google-algorithm-update-analysis-and-findings/

Glenn Gabe with his findings on the major August 1 update.

Google’s August 1st Core Update: Week 1 - Peter Meyers

August 9th, 2018

https://moz.com/blog/googles-august-1st-core-update-week-1

With the recent algorithm update, algorithm trackers at Moz have detected huge fluctuations in rankings among certain keyword categories.

The August 2018 Google Core Update - Surveying The Aftermath - Mordy Oberstein

August 13th, 2018

https://www.rankranger.com/blog/august-google-core-update

This is a very interesting article on interpreting the August 1 update with survey data. Mordy Oberstein presents different health and wellness sites in the hopes of finding trends in why they dropped.


Recommended Reading (Local SEO)

5 Local SEO myths and misconceptions that Will. Not. Die. - Joy Hawkins

August 9th, 2018

https://searchengineland.com/5-local-seo-myths-and-misconceptions-that-will-not-die-303306

Joy Hawkins talks about 5 common misconceptions she receives about local SEO.

How to win local customers back from Amazon this Holiday Season - Miriam Ellis

August 13th, 2018

https://moz.com/blog/win-local-customers-back-from-amazon

Miriam Ellis talks about some interesting idea’s for small businesses to think about for winning some business from the big internet companies such as Amazon.


Where to find Marie

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Want More?

Paid members also get the following:

  • HTTPS migration advice from Google
  • John Mueller's comments on paginated content
  • Why Google cannot recommend SEOs
  • A good discussion on disavowing
  • Info on more troubles with AMP
  • Making clickable Amazon product affiliate links as images in WP
  • Local SEO: DoorDash ads start appearing in Canada
  • Local SEO: Still more problems with spam on YMYL queries
  • Local SEO: How to contact GMB
  • Local SEO: Don’t delete your GMB profile
  • Local SEO: ‘Your Past Visits’ included in local knowledge panel
  • Local SEO: Slight change to GMB insights
  • Local SEO: More information available on GMB Insights
  • My tl;dr summaries of some awesome recent SEO and Local 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.
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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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