As the year end, we look back to the updates that occurred this 2017. As Per MOZ, Google changes its algorithm around 500 to 600 times; and listed only FOUR updates on Googleâ€™s Search Engine Result Page (SERP).
January 10, 2017: The Intrusive Interstitial Penalty
Google started rolling out a penalty to punish aggressive interstitials and pop-ups that might damage the mobile user experience.
February 1 to 6 2017: Unidentified Major Update
According to experts, there were at least two updates on Feb dated on the first and on sixth. There were report from various Webmasters that most of their SERP rankings had changed. Pointing out that the update is somewhat related to Panda â€“ a Google update that was launched last February 2011, meant to stop poor quality content websites away from Googleâ€™s SERPs.
March 8, 2017: â€œFredâ€ Update (unconfirmed)
Fred Google Update is said to be major update though it is unconfirmed that was named by Gary Illyes, a webmaster trends analyst and is contributing to the Webmaster Central Blog and helps users debug their websites in the Google Webmaster Forums. This was an unconfirmed SERP update that seemed to target the link quality.
The other famous updates that shook the SEO world before were: Penguin, Panda, Hummingbird, RankBrain, Possum and Pigeon. These updates focus on giving searchers a more relevant search experience on Google. Bringing more quality contents, user experience and non-spammy website.
With all the said updates and changes, we ask the same question â€“ What should we be doing this 2018? Below are tips on how we can set our website that would help our business perform better this year:
- Continue to be Responsive â€“ with the continuous rise of mobile searches, it would be best for your website to keep its responsive design. Keep in mind that user experience matter in terms of engaging to customers. If there is a plan for update or re-structuring of your website, make sure that rankings will be preserve, and site migration is done correctly, else you can always contact a professional web development agency.
- Ongoing increase of Local Searches â€“ The influence of local search updates on SERPs has been huge. Hyperlocal results will pave way to searchers targeting customers based on physical proximity, radius scale, or nearest service related search as whatâ€™s seen on Google Business Maps. By this way, Google Maps for your Business will play a huge tool for local searches.
- Visual Availability â€“ the gradual interaction using visual display are becoming more popular. As the internetâ€™s speed continues to grow, so does the user interaction to videos and images. SERP will continue to improve for sure, there will come a time that Google will evaluate the accuracy of images and videos on your website. Got to make sure images and videos on site are well optimized and of good quality.
- Growth of Featured Snippets and Knowledge Graph â€“ a Google featured snippet is a summary of an answer to a user’s query displayed search results. Googleâ€™s knowledge graph will be a huge factor as the year progresses. These two gives searchers a more relevant and concise information to their posted query.
- RankBrain & Hummingbird, know more about it â€“ RankBrain is Googleâ€™s name for a machine-learning artificial intelligence system to help process its search results while Hummingbird places greater emphasis on natural language queries, considering context and meaning over individual keywords. It was said before that RankBrain is part of Googleâ€™s Algorithm that sorts out billions of data to bring out best relevant search that is said to be part of Hummingbird update. This is how smart Google is, being precise and fast it looks deeper into our website to lead user to the most appropriate page. This encourages web developers and online marketers to encourage to quality website optimization with proper content writing than forced keyword topics; â€œContent is Kingâ€ and it will still be this 2018.
Overall, we should keep one thing in mind, Quality! Get quality works for your website and never stop exploring brand new opportunities and strategies to enhance your websiteâ€™s potential, talk to an SEO expert today to learn more.