Google Unveils July Algorithm Changes, Get Ready For Another Penguin Update, DMCA Requests Are A Ranking Signal, & More

Google Unveils July Algorithm Changes, Get Ready For Another Penguin Update, DMCA Requests Are A Ranking Signal, & More

This Week’s Industry Update

Compiled By Rocket Clicks Staff

Google Releases July Algorithm Updates

Site clustering within search results, adjustments to page quality measurements, and sitelinks changes are just a few of the many updates Google made to their algorithm throughout the month of July. The site clustering in particular is interesting, as many SEOs have been perplexed as to why Google was increasingly featuring one domain prominently in its results.

Source: Search Engine Land

You Haven’t Seen The Last Of Google Penguin, And Panda Is Now On Autopilot

At SES San Francisco, Matt Cutts unleashed a few (expected) bombshells about the SEO world’s two favorite warm blooded animals. Cutts said the Penguin algorithm is a living, breathing update that will require a few tweaks in the months ahead. In contrast, he indicated that Panda-driven updates are now on a regular schedule, and although they will occur on a monthly basis, will likely cause much less hoopla among Internet marketers than they have in the past.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google’s Search Results Now Show If A Page Is Blocked By A Robots.txt File

A page that has been blocked from the GoogleBot crawler can still show up in search results if there are links pointing to that page. Consequently, Google has begun including a meta description under these pages to let searchers know the page cannot be further explored. The screen shot below explains it all:

Google Robots.txt search results

Source: Search Engine Land

Google Utilizes DMCA Takedown Requests As A Ranking Signal

Has your website received a notification of copyright infringement under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act? If so, Google knows about it. According to a recent Google blog post, the search engine is taking Internet piracy seriously, and using DMCA requests against certain websites as a justification for lowering the ranks of pages across the entire site.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google Acquiring Frommer’s, Basically Admits Zagat Acquisition Failed

Google is buying Frommer’s brand travel guides from publisher John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Terms have not been disclosed. With the move, Google is acquiring a massive amount of travel content that could be useful for their travel and hotel searches.  The content load is bigger and more varied than the haul they received from Zagat in their last publisher acquisition.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google Won’t Play Favorites When It Comes To New ‘Pirate Penalty’

Google claims YouTube won’t receive special favor and that many popular sites will escape their new “pirate penalty.”  Other popular sites may escape unharmed because, according to Google, the penalty takes more into account than pure copyright infringement. Originally, it seemed as if sites with several copyright infringement complaints levied against them would be most targeted by Google’s new penalty. That would put YouTube in an enviable position, given that the site receives frequent copyright complaints but is a Google property. Surely, Google wouldn’t punish their own.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google Adds New Options To The ‘I’m Feeling Lucky’ Button

The Google “I’m feeling Lucky Button” added 8 new options. Now users can feel more than just lucky, they can feel artistic, doodly, hungry, playful, puzzled, stellar, trendy and wonderful. Each of the new options direct users to one of Google’s other properties, like stellar to Google earth and hunger to restaurant search results.

Source: Search Engine Watch

Study Shows Geolocation Is An Incredibly Powerful Ranking Factor

A new study has revealed the ranking power of a searcher’s location. According to Linkdex, 69% of keyword searches are shaken up based on where the search is conducted. The industries that experience the most variability in ranking include tradesmen, restaurants, professional services, digital cameras, top brands, and used cars. This revelation is somewhat predictable, as these are all businesses that often have strong local ties.

Source: Search Engine Watch

Google Was Kind Of Arrogant To A Newspaper

Google is kind of like that rich kid that knows he has money, and will gladly talk openly about his new iPhone while you stand in the corner resetting your Blackberry because it froze up. That’s at least what newspaper ad departments must be thinking about Google after the search engine took out an ad in a Canadian paper to demonstrate why AdWords is a better monetary option than newspaper ads.

Source: Mashable

SEOmoz Acquires, Bundles Followerwonk With Moz Pro

SEOmoz has acquired the well-reviewed twitter analytics platform Followerwonk, and now offers it along with the regular SEOmoz Pro subscription. Followerwonk was acquired in June and went live in Moz Pro on Wednesday, August 15.

Source: SEOmoz

Facebook’s Latest Monetization Attempt Involves News Feed Promotions For Non-Fans

Advertisers may soon be able to show ads in the Facebook feeds of users who are not fans of their brand pages. These ads will look like typical page post ads and will appear on both desktop and mobile.

Source: Mashable

Notable Commentary

Better Than Facebook Stock

A Bunch Of FYIs On The New AdWords Sitelinks Policies

Google is auditing AdWords Sitelinks from a user experience perspective. Mason Garrity runs down what you need to know about the policy change, how to prepare for the impending tests, and how you can use it to your advantage.

Analysis By: Mason Garrity, PPC Associates

What A Long, Arduous Road It Is To Build Links

Eric Ward is one of the most widely respected link builders in the Internet marketing world, and he’s well aware that people are growing to hate the craft. Ward explains that most of this disgust arises from Google’s growing indifference towards anchor text, and many other initiatives that have killed off the easier forms of link building. The solution, he says, is both complex and simple: think differently.

Analysis By: Eric Ward, Search Engine Land

How To Lose Ranks And Irritate Webmasters: 25 Google Penalties For 2012

Are you interested in deindexation, a rapid drop in ranking, or any other digital punishment at the hands of Google? If so, read Sujan Patel’s run down of the 25 easiest ways to get penalized in this, the year of 2012.

Analysis By: Sujan Patel, Search Engine Journal

Bing’s Search Quality Rating Program Uses Real Humans. Here’s How:

Although the Bing Human Relevance System Project sounds like the sinister KARR to Google’s KITT, Bing’s search quality initiative has the same goals as its counterpart. Although Microsoft has traditionally worked hard to keep details of the program out of the public view, a recent leaked guideline document has led to a significant increase in insight as to how Bing seeks to serve human search interests. The authenticity of the March 12 leak was recently confirmed by Bing’s team.

Analysis By: Matt McGee, Search Engine Land

Taking iPad Usage Patterns Into Account When Developing A PPC Strategy

Duncan Parry lays out why it is important to consider iPad usage patterns when developing a PPC strategy for the format. According to data from comScore, Peak iPad uses occurs around 8 am, decreases throughout the workday, and then sees a spike again around 4 p.m. before peaking again at The study also claims iPads play the dual role of laptop and newspaper in the morning hours, function in the same role as a mobile during the after-work commute and replace a laptop in the evening hours at home.

Analysis By: Duncan Parry, Search Engine Watch

5 Tips For Boosting Conversions From YouTube Ads

YouTube can more than just a branding tool. Often YouTube ads do lead to conversions, often very cost-effectively. Purna Virji lays out five easy ways to boost conversions from YouTube ads.

Analysis By: Purna Virji, Search Engine Watch