Google mainly seems to be concerned with spam links and low-quality or black-hat SEO techniques. That’s really nothing new, but if you read the blogs about SEO with any regularity you know that something happened this past week. Check here for how Google’s Algorithm changed in June.
What Changes are Taking Place?
You also may have noticed that Google has rolled out some changes to their Search function. Some of these are new; some of them are old ‘favorites’ which users delight in disabling.
- Easy Inline: One thing that I’ve noticed recently is that Easy Inline is back. Now, this is an advertising portal that’s been around for awhile. I’m not sure if Google decided to put it out there again or if my computer, or most probably I when not quite with it, downloaded the damn thing again. Either way, I had to get rid of it. For anyone interested in that, see the end of the article.
That’s Great, But What About My Site?
- Links: Google is looking for spam links. Are all of your links up to par? Now would be a great time to check them. Get rid of those links that point nowhere and make sure you’re only linking to sites relative to your own content. If you’re linking to something unrelated to you, I’m sorry, but I don’t know what you’re thinking. It’s a bad SEO tactic because it’s clear you’re only trying to drive up traffic to your site. In the amount of time it took you to fiddle around with those links you probably could have produced some quality content.
- Sitemap: Perhaps it’s time to put up that XML Sitemap and submit it to Google as well. You should do this anyway because it’s a quick and easy way for Google to index your site. But now that there’s all these rollouts, why not submit it too? It’s kind of like going to the police and clearing your name before you’re a suspect.
OK, So...Now About My Content?
It was so good, in fact, that it was routinely getting onto the top page of Google, perhaps battling it out for the top 3 positions with the main competitors. Now all of a sudden the rankings are throwing that hunting gear website onto page 2 or 3 of Google and back to page 1 regularly over 10 days. Pretty frustrating, huh?
Now that we know these rollouts are going to be occurring every 10 days out of 30, does that mean we should change our whole site’s content? And how would we do that anyway?
There are a few things that are being discussed:
- Partial-match Domains: These are called PMDs and they’re used a lot. Dr. Pete’s MoZ article on the June 25 Algo Update does a great job explaining this. Let’s say the hunting gear website is called cheaphuntinggear.com and that hunting gear is its main keyword. You can see that it appears in the URL and all over the site in various long and short keyword forms. It appears that sites like this are experience significant fluctuations in Page Rank and traffic. Do you need to change your URL then? I wouldn’t go that far yet, but don’t discount it entirely at this point.
- Targeted Keywords: It’s obvious that a site like our hunting gear site would be targeting it’s keywords effectively already. After all, it’s on the first page of Google most of the time. But now the question becomes where are they targeting those keywords? The geography aspect is coming into play where Google may be putting a higher priority on things like where your local market is. Let’s say cheaphuntinggear.com operates out of New York. If I’m looking for hunting gear in Montana those site closest to me may come up higher, perhaps even if their SEO isn’t as good as yours. Can you compensate for this? Sure, begin doing more regional SEO work by checking out relevant keywords not on a global level but as specific as you can get.
- Advertising: You can definitely place your ads more effectively and change the target language to get better results. Just like you might want to direct your SEO efforts toward a more specific set of regional markets, so to you might want to rethink how you’re operating one or more of your advertising campaigns.
- Content: And of course, nearly always listed last unfortunately, is content. Nothing is ever going to substitute for great content. If you’re providing relevant information that people are looking for, you’ll succeed. If you can find things from multiple sources and put them together succinctly, people will listen. And if you continue with relevant, site-specific, user-friendly, and resource-rich content Google will leave you alone or push you up higher with its algorithmic wave.
Disabling Easy Inline
You’ll also notice there’s a smaller line on top of those ads like this:
Let’s say you click on the YouTube link, this is what you’ll see:
So How Do I Get Rid of This Monstrosity?
The first thing you need to do is click on the little screw/bolt to go to the properties menu. Here it is: