Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Google launched a ton of new features across search, maps, shopping and more. Google said rich result manual actions can lead to broader spam penalties. Google said redirects from non-relevant pages won’t hurt the destination page. Google said don’t change your author names on your content randomly. You should be aware of a rise in fake ownership requests for Google Business Profiles. And I posted my weekly video recap, have a good weekend.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
- Google: Rich Results Manual Actions Can Lead To Removal Of Rich Results & Broader Spam Penalties
Google’s Danny Sullivan said that not only can a rich result manual action result in the removal of your rich results from displaying in Google Search but also it can lead to a wider “broader spam manual action that involves ranking.”
- Google Rolls Out Multisearch, Lens, AR, Maps & Other Expanded Search Features
Google announced a bunch of features around Google Search, Google Maps, Google Lens and more that are now rolling out in the US and some other regions. This goes across new features for Multisearch, Google Lens, AR, Maps and much more.
- Beware Of Fake Ownership Requests From Google Business Profiles
I am sure many of you have received one or two (or more) requests from Google Business Profiles saying the owner is requested access to maintain your business. I just delete them but I am hearing from Local SEOs that this is becoming more and more of an issue.
- Google: Don’t Randomly Change The Author Name, Use Author Annotations & Updated Content Use New Author
Google’s John Mueller was asked about the impact of changing the author’s name on an article. John gave three pieces of advice in response to the question, (1) use author annotations, (2) rewritten content should use the new author’s name and (3) do not randomly change author names.
- Google: Redirects From Non Relevant Pages Won’t Cause The Destination Page To Be Less Relevant
Dawn Anderson asked Google’s John Mueller if redirecting a non-relevant page would cause the destination page (where the redirect it going towards) to be less relevant and cause any ranking issues for its relevant queries. John said no, “I can’t think of a way that would have a negative effect there,” he added.
- Search News Buzz Video Recap: Google Coati Update, More Weekend Tremors, Local Reviews Bug, Google Ads Bribe, Apple Search Delayed & More
This week, we learned that Google’s Panda update at one point in time evolved into what was called the Google Coati update. Google also had another weekend update last week. Google Search Console added a new shopping tab with more…
- The New Google Viger Montreal Office
Google shared some photos from its new Viger office which is in Montreal, Canada. Here is the lobby but the office is supposedly jammed packed with reminders of the history of that location.
Other Great Search Threads:
- New to me in Google Ads! Just logged in this morning & noticed these Workspaces. Instead of just sorting by campaign type it lets me create and save filters based on campaign name, bid strategy, label, & more. There ar, Christine Zirnheld on Twitter
- Probably ok, but you’re dancing around the question a bit which makes me worry that there’s much more involved :-). “Email provider” vs “Your email” pages seem fine. “Email provider” vs, John Mueller on Twitter
- Users want to see what you’re promising with a rich result, so it should be visible when the page loads., John Mueller on Twitter
- I work for the Google Search team. Most searches don’t have ads, Danny Sullivan on Mastodon
- It keeps them busy (making these “bad links”), so I’d say that’s a win. Spend your time on improving your site instead & ignore them., John Mueller on Twitter
- No, you should not do link building with sites like that. (reading between the lines, you probably shouldn’t be doing that kind of link building even with sites that hav, John Mueller on Twitter
Search Engine Land Stories:
Other Great Search Stories:
Industry & Business
Links & Content Marketing
Local & Maps
Mobile & Voice
Have feedback on this daily recap; let me know on Twitter @rustybrick or @seroundtable, you can follow us on Facebook and make sure to subscribe to the YouTube channel, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts or just contact us the old fashion way.
Search Engine Roundtable’s 19th Anniversary
It has now been 19 years that I’ve been writing on this site, covering what you – the search marketers are talking about from within the search community. Today marks the 19th anniversary of the Search Engine Roundtable. I’ve been writing about search for over 45% of my life – which is insane – it is like almost half of me. More importantly, I’ve been doing it consistently every workday, several times per day, no matter how I feel, for 19 years straight. And as I say every year and think almost every day, it is hard for me to fathom that I still can find several new things to write about every single day on this niche topic of SEO, PPC and search marketing.
19 Years Of Passion:
19 years ago today, I started this site as a way to kind of keep notes on what the search marketing community was talking about. A roundtable of discussions between the smartest search marketing minds, if you will. That passion and that mission have not changed – I still try to cover what the search marketing community is buzzing about, what the community cares about, and what the community is saying about those changes in our space. It is fewer stories pointing to the forums these days, as sadly most of the old fashion online forums have slowed down, but social media platforms have picked up in their place and hey, who knows what will happen with Twitter (at least we got Mastodon…). But the community is chatting and discussing and I try my hardest to find that discussion, no matter where it is (public only) and highlight it here for you all.
I still continue to publish several stories here a day and on Search Engine Land. I still produce my weekly video recaps, which I think has been improving a lot lately (make sure to subscribe to the YouTube channel). I also continued to do the search vlog where I try to bring more attention to new and maybe old individuals in our community, this has still been a challenge since COVID hit, but things seem to be getting better. I also now publish these videos on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts or your favorite podcast player. Don’t forget about the fun daily photos and big monthly Google webmaster reports. These are all aimed to save you time while catching you up on new topics and making you smile at the same time.
It is nice to see some things get back to normal but now that we are in this recession, it is also sad to see friends lose jobs, struggle and deal with financial issues. That being said, we’ve been through this and we will be through more – we are a strong community and we will get through this, as we did the pandemic and previous recessions.
If you want, you can read last year’s recap – the 18th year anniversary of the Search Engine Roundtable as well.
Our Growth & Analytics:
While in 2020 we saw a 13% decline in traffic, this year we saw a 6% increase in traffic from the previous year. Search traffic increased 11% year over year when we saw it decline over 30% last year. Our direct traffic was also up about 6%, last year it was up a whopping up 22%, email traffic was up 65%, and social was pretty level from the previous year.
Mobile traffic share is 43%, which is down from 47% last year – I am not sure why. I guess people in SEO still love to use their desktop browsers. 70% are on Chrome, then 17% on Safari, and the rest are under 4% share each. US traffic is 30%, then India at 12%, and the UK at 7%, so those are the top countries. 65% of the readers are male according to Google Analytics and about 30% are the age of 25 to 34.
There are now about 34,500 stories on this site, I wrote over 31,550 of them – about 92% of them. I posted about 2,000 stories this year alone! We also had about 9,000 approved comments posted this year on the stories, so thank you for all who comment – I do read them all!
With YouTube, my channel – please subscribe has over 2,200 new subscribers (now at ~15,100 subscribers). I’ve been obviously making an effort to grow that channel, but it is going slowly. I have over 6.5 million views on those videos, with over 60,000 hours of watch time. Oh, and I made just under $1,500 in YouTube ad revenue in the past year, which is $100 less than last year’s revenue. Although, if you watch, you will see I have video sponsors now – thank you sponsors!
Most Important Stories In Past 12 Months:
The story this year was told in the incredible number of both confirmed and unconfirmed search ranking algorithm updates. From the May 2022 and September 2022 broad core updates, to the product reviews updates, page experience update, spam updates and then the new helpful content update – Google is working like crazy to show more relevant and useful content in its search results. We had other updates, all of them are listed below, it might be too much to even scan through. We had a ton of local search updates too. At least we learned that Panda evolved into Coati before it was assimilated into the core updates.
Google replaced Google Webmaster Guidelines with Search Essentials, pushed out an updated search quality raters guidelines, spoke a ton about E-A-T, released some spam updates/guidelines and much more. Search Console and Merchant Center had tons of upgrades this year as well.
Google rolled out tons and tons of features, a lot focused on products and shopping and visual search. We also got the new ad label and new favicons and sitenames in the search results.
Google had far fewer crawling and indexing issues this year than last, so that is a good thing. Google Ads on the other had seemed to have way more lag and issues this year than previous. FLoC to no one’s surprise turned out to be a flop. And Google launched a more acceptable Google Partners program.
Bing continued to push IndexNow and at the same time, pushed the new BingBot.
Oh and of course, the Google Analytics 4 news.
There was a lot that I wrote, like I said above, but here is what I think are the most important stories over the past 12- months or so (if I missed any, let me know in the comments):
Google Broad Core Updates:
Google Helpful Content Updates:
Google Spam Updates:
Google Product Reviews Updates:
Google Page Experience Updates:
Misc Google Search Algorithm Related:
Unconfirmed Google Search Algorithm Updates:
Crawling & Indexing:
Google Search Console / Merchant Center:
Most Viewed Stories In Past 12 Months:
Here are the most viewed stories in the past 12 months of 2022 based on Google Analytics. I should note that my analytics does not combine AMP URLs with the canonical non AMP URL, so this might not be in exact order of popularity:
Looking Forward To 2023:
Last year I said it I would expect a ton of announcements from Google around MUM and more AI/machine learning efforts in search in 2022. You will see more with local search, you will see more with multimedia and that. So I was kind of wrong but Google did tout a ton of AI things this past year, just that MUM didn’t go as wide as I thought (at least Google didn’t communicate that). I also said Google would do “a big revamp in quality algorithms.” I think that is dead on with the updates listed above between the core updates, product reviews update, spam updates and the new helpful content update.
In 2023, I think we will see a lot more for the helpful content update, in a very big way. The core updates, I think, may be lighter and less impactful. I do think we will see stronger spam updates in 2023 as well.
I hope MUM will expand more and be used more in more places in web search. I do think AI will become used more in SEO, for better or worse. And I do think we will continue to see a trend in more visual search interfaces, because of the TikTok effect.
And of course, on the ad side, more AI, more automation and Performance Max really taking over more than it has already (but everyone knows that).
As I said last year, I deeply appreciate and thank you all so much for reading every day, commenting (or ignoring the comments) and for sharing the stories here. Keep up the chatter and let’s build an even better search community this coming year. Everyone stay safe and healthy!