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Google Discusses Natural Backlinks

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Google Discusses Natural Backlinks

In a Google SEO office hours hangout someone asked John Mueller to explain what Google means by quality backlinks. John offered a recommendation on how to approach the problem of attracting natural backlinks.

What are Backlinks?

A backlink is a link from one web page to someone else’s web page.

The term backlink probably came about from when websites engaged in reciprocal link strategies and one website linked to a second website in exchange for a link back to the first site. The link back to the site was called a backlink.

They are also called inbound links. That name came about as a way to differentiate them from outbound links (links that point out from a site to another site).

And lastly they are also called external links as a way to differentiate them from internal links. External links are links that point to a page from outside a site. An internal link is a link that points to a page from within the site.

Natural Links

There are many ways of classifying backlinks. There are paid links, reciprocal links, guest post links and so on.

It’s possible to classify backlinks with two categories. There are natural backlinks and there are unnatural backlinks.

One can say that there are quality backlinks as well but for the purpose of this article, quality backlinks can be classified as a natural link.

And a natural link is simply a link that happened after a web page came to someone’s attention.

How Does Google Identify Natural Links?

Here’s a spoiler: John Mueller doesn’t reveal how Google identifies natural and unnatural links.

But he does talk about the mindset to be in order to earn the kinds of links that Google prefers.

The Question:

“I’ve heard a lot about backlinks, that that Google considers quality backlinks.

When it comes to quality, what exactly do you mean for quality backlinks and how Google analyzes between natural and paid backlinks?”

Google’s Mueller paused and looked up as he considered how to answer the question.

Screenshot of John Mueller considering how to answer a question about backlinks

John Mueller’s Answer:

“So my recommendation… I think especially if you’re getting started is not to focus on backlinks because it’s very easy to get stuck into the situation of, like you said, Google wants quality backlinks or Google wants natural backlinks therefore I will make my backlinks look like quality or I will make my unnatural backlinks look like they’re natural.

And it’s very easy to spend a lot of time focusing on that.

So that’s something where, from my point of view, I would focus on your site first and really work to build that up really strongly first.”

The Mindset for Spotting Opportunities

Mueller next explained being ready to spot opportunities for self-promotion, one of the most basic aspects of getting a site noticed.

Mueller explains:

And then over time you’ll see maybe there are opportunities where you can mention your site with other people with regards to advertising perhaps, with regards to other ways where you can create something really fantastic and point that out to other people and say, like at this cool stuff that I did.

And then they link to your page because they think, oh this is really neat.

And essentially, when it comes to links, Google’s point of view is that these should be things that are not organized by you, that are not paid for by you, that are not created by you.

But rather they should be naturally people who say well, this is really cool, I really like that.

Similar to how if you make a website, you probably have seen lots of other sites where you say, this is cool, I will link to that, I will refer to that because it’s something useful for my users.”

Obviously (and Mueller’s said this in the past), links don’t happen by themselves. He is on record stating that website publishers can’t just wait around for people to find your site.

Mueller has also said that self-promotion is important.

How a site is promoted is where Google and SEOs diverge in their approach. Build and tell is very simple.

The first part is to build. That means researching what people want to read or tend to link to then creating something that will appeal to them.

The outreach is the second part, which is to tell others about what was built, especially the people who tend to link to that kind of content.

The Build and Tell approach could very well be one of the best ways of promoting a site in a way that encourages natural links. Building without telling won’t necessarily work.

Mueller has recommended self-promotion so instead of focusing on the link, maybe it might be useful focusing on building and telling.

Citation

Watch John Mueller discuss quality backlinks beginning about just after the 35 minute mark:

Searchenginejournal.com

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Exploring the Evolution of Language Translation: A Comparative Analysis of AI Chatbots and Google Translate

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A Comparative Analysis of AI Chatbots and Google Translate

According to an article on PCMag, while Google Translate makes translating sentences into over 100 languages easy, regular users acknowledge that there’s still room for improvement.

In theory, large language models (LLMs) such as ChatGPT are expected to bring about a new era in language translation. These models consume vast amounts of text-based training data and real-time feedback from users worldwide, enabling them to quickly learn to generate coherent, human-like sentences in a wide range of languages.

However, despite the anticipation that ChatGPT would revolutionize translation, previous experiences have shown that such expectations are often inaccurate, posing challenges for translation accuracy. To put these claims to the test, PCMag conducted a blind test, asking fluent speakers of eight non-English languages to evaluate the translation results from various AI services.

The test compared ChatGPT (both the free and paid versions) to Google Translate, as well as to other competing chatbots such as Microsoft Copilot and Google Gemini. The evaluation involved comparing the translation quality for two test paragraphs across different languages, including Polish, French, Korean, Spanish, Arabic, Tagalog, and Amharic.

In the first test conducted in June 2023, participants consistently favored AI chatbots over Google Translate. ChatGPT, Google Bard (now Gemini), and Microsoft Bing outperformed Google Translate, with ChatGPT receiving the highest praise. ChatGPT demonstrated superior performance in converting colloquialisms, while Google Translate often provided literal translations that lacked cultural nuance.

For instance, ChatGPT accurately translated colloquial expressions like “blow off steam,” whereas Google Translate produced more literal translations that failed to resonate across cultures. Participants appreciated ChatGPT’s ability to maintain consistent levels of formality and its consideration of gender options in translations.

The success of AI chatbots like ChatGPT can be attributed to reinforcement learning with human feedback (RLHF), which allows these models to learn from human preferences and produce culturally appropriate translations, particularly for non-native speakers. However, it’s essential to note that while AI chatbots outperformed Google Translate, they still had limitations and occasional inaccuracies.

In a subsequent test, PCMag evaluated different versions of ChatGPT, including the free and paid versions, as well as language-specific AI agents from OpenAI’s GPTStore. The paid version of ChatGPT, known as ChatGPT Plus, consistently delivered the best translations across various languages. However, Google Translate also showed improvement, performing surprisingly well compared to previous tests.

Overall, while ChatGPT Plus emerged as the preferred choice for translation, Google Translate demonstrated notable improvement, challenging the notion that AI chatbots are always superior to traditional translation tools.


Source: https://www.pcmag.com/articles/google-translate-vs-chatgpt-which-is-the-best-language-translator

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Google Implements Stricter Guidelines for Mass Email Senders to Gmail Users

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Beginning in April, Gmail senders bombarding users with unwanted mass emails will encounter a surge in message rejections unless they comply with the freshly minted Gmail email sender protocols, Google cautions.

Fresh Guidelines for Dispatching Mass Emails to Gmail Inboxes In an elucidative piece featured on Forbes, it was highlighted that novel regulations are being ushered in to shield Gmail users from the deluge of unsolicited mass emails. Initially, there were reports surfacing about certain marketers receiving error notifications pertaining to messages dispatched to Gmail accounts. Nonetheless, a Google representative clarified that these specific errors, denoted as 550-5.7.56, weren’t novel but rather stemmed from existing authentication prerequisites.

Moreover, Google has verified that commencing from April, they will initiate “the rejection of a portion of non-compliant email traffic, progressively escalating the rejection rate over time.” Google elaborates that, for instance, if 75% of the traffic adheres to the new email sender authentication criteria, then a portion of the remaining non-conforming 25% will face rejection. The exact proportion remains undisclosed. Google does assert that the implementation of the new regulations will be executed in a “step-by-step fashion.”

This cautious and methodical strategy seems to have already kicked off, with transient errors affecting a “fraction of their non-compliant email traffic” coming into play this month. Additionally, Google stipulates that bulk senders will be granted until June 1 to integrate “one-click unsubscribe” in all commercial or promotional correspondence.

Exclusively Personal Gmail Accounts Subject to Rejection These alterations exclusively affect bulk emails dispatched to personal Gmail accounts. Entities sending out mass emails, specifically those transmitting a minimum of 5,000 messages daily to Gmail accounts, will be mandated to authenticate outgoing emails and “refrain from dispatching unsolicited emails.” The 5,000 message threshold is tabulated based on emails transmitted from the same principal domain, irrespective of the employment of subdomains. Once the threshold is met, the domain is categorized as a permanent bulk sender.

These guidelines do not extend to communications directed at Google Workspace accounts, although all senders, including those utilizing Google Workspace, are required to adhere to the updated criteria.

Augmented Security and Enhanced Oversight for Gmail Users A Google spokesperson emphasized that these requisites are being rolled out to “fortify sender-side security and augment user control over inbox contents even further.” For the recipient, this translates to heightened trust in the authenticity of the email sender, thus mitigating the risk of falling prey to phishing attempts, a tactic frequently exploited by malevolent entities capitalizing on authentication vulnerabilities. “If anything,” the spokesperson concludes, “meeting these stipulations should facilitate senders in reaching their intended recipients more efficiently, with reduced risks of spoofing and hijacking by malicious actors.”

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Google’s Next-Gen AI Chatbot, Gemini, Faces Delays: What to Expect When It Finally Launches

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Google AI Chatbot Gemini

In an unexpected turn of events, Google has chosen to postpone the much-anticipated debut of its revolutionary generative AI model, Gemini. Initially poised to make waves this week, the unveiling has now been rescheduled for early next year, specifically in January.

Gemini is set to redefine the landscape of conversational AI, representing Google’s most potent endeavor in this domain to date. Positioned as a multimodal AI chatbot, Gemini boasts the capability to process diverse data types. This includes a unique proficiency in comprehending and generating text, images, and various content formats, even going so far as to create an entire website based on a combination of sketches and written descriptions.

Originally, Google had planned an elaborate series of launch events spanning California, New York, and Washington. Regrettably, these events have been canceled due to concerns about Gemini’s responsiveness to non-English prompts. According to anonymous sources cited by The Information, Google’s Chief Executive, Sundar Pichai, personally decided to postpone the launch, acknowledging the importance of global support as a key feature of Gemini’s capabilities.

Gemini is expected to surpass the renowned ChatGPT, powered by OpenAI’s GPT-4 model, and preliminary private tests have shown promising results. Fueled by significantly enhanced computing power, Gemini has outperformed GPT-4, particularly in FLOPS (Floating Point Operations Per Second), owing to its access to a multitude of high-end AI accelerators through the Google Cloud platform.

SemiAnalysis, a research firm affiliated with Substack Inc., expressed in an August blog post that Gemini appears poised to “blow OpenAI’s model out of the water.” The extensive compute power at Google’s disposal has evidently contributed to Gemini’s superior performance.

Google’s Vice President and Manager of Bard and Google Assistant, Sissie Hsiao, offered insights into Gemini’s capabilities, citing examples like generating novel images in response to specific requests, such as illustrating the steps to ice a three-layer cake.

While Google’s current generative AI offering, Bard, has showcased noteworthy accomplishments, it has struggled to achieve the same level of consumer awareness as ChatGPT. Gemini, with its unparalleled capabilities, is expected to be a game-changer, demonstrating impressive multimodal functionalities never seen before.

During the initial announcement at Google’s I/O developer conference in May, the company emphasized Gemini’s multimodal prowess and its developer-friendly nature. An application programming interface (API) is under development, allowing developers to seamlessly integrate Gemini into third-party applications.

As the world awaits the delayed unveiling of Gemini, the stakes are high, with Google aiming to revolutionize the AI landscape and solidify its position as a leader in generative artificial intelligence. The postponed launch only adds to the anticipation surrounding Gemini’s eventual debut in the coming year.

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