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Google Says HTML Sitemaps Should Never Be Needed

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Google Says Only Keep Old Redirected URLs In Sitemaps Files Temporarily

John Mueller of Google has always downplayed the importance of HTML sitemaps over the years, he is a fan of XML sitemaps, but HTML sitemaps, not so much. On Mastodon the other day, he really showed his dissatisfaction with HTML sitemaps by saying that HTML sitemaps “should never be needed.”

He wrote, “I changed my mind on HTML sitemaps over the years, they should never be needed. Sites small & large should always have a clear navigational structure. If you feel the need for a HTML sitemap, spend the time improving your site’s architecture instead. HTML sitemaps fit into the same bin with HTML loading spinners.”

Did he just equate sites using HTML sitemaps on the same level as sites using HTML loading spinners? Maybe that is Mastodon humor?

In 2019, John said HTML sitemaps are not worthwhile for SEO purposes, then in 2016, John also downplayed the importance of HTML sitemaps. But let’s go back to 2009 when Matt Cutts said HTML sitemaps come first.

I mean, the logic John is using makes sense. If a user can’t find your content using your navigation and they need to resort to an HTML sitemap, you may have a bigger problem with your site…

Oh, later, John wrote that “HTML loading spinners are bad for SEO.”

Forum discussion at Mastodon.

Source: www.seroundtable.com

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SEOs Trust YMYL Content Less If It Is AI-Generated

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Surgery Google

Lily Ray ran a Twitter poll asking SEOs if they trust content in the YMYL, your money or your life, category more, less or the same if it was written by AI. The vast majority of responses said they trust AI-generated content less than human-generated content.

Lily asked, “If a site offering Your Money, Your Life information/advice (health, finance, etc) indicates that the content was partially written using AI, does this make you trust the content:”

About 74% of the over 1,000 votes said AI-generated content would be trusted less, 22% said there is no difference – they would trust it the same and 4% said it would be trusted more.

Here is the poll with the “See answers” option:

Forum discussion at Twitter.



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Google Ads Now Supports Account-Level Negative Keywords

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Google Negative Keywords Ads

We knew it was coming, Google Ads now supports negative keywords for brand safety at the account level. Google has just added account-level negative keywords to Google Ads and the PPC community is happy about it.

I spotted this first via Melissa Mackey on Twitter who credits @NilsRooijmanSEA with the find on LinkedIn. Melissa wrote, “Account-level negative keywords are here! This is big.”

The Google help document on negative keywords has a new section that reads, “Account-level negative keywords.”

When you create your account-level list of negative keywords, it will automatically apply to all search and shopping inventory in relevant campaign types. This allows you to create a single, global, account-level list that applies negative keywords across all relevant inventory in your account.

You can create a single, account-level list of negative keywords in your Google Ads account settings. In your “Account Settings,” you’ll find the “Negative keywords” section. When you click on this section, you can begin creating your negative keywords list.

You can create your list by defining which search terms are considered negative for your brand. You can then enter this all at once in the “Negative keywords” section of your “Account Settings” in your Google Ads account. You can also specify whether you want to exclude these based on broad, exact, or phrase match. A limit of 1,000 negative keywords can be excluded for each account. Learn more about account-level negative keywords.

Here is a screenshot of this setting, where Nils Rooijmans explained, “Google is rolling out this feature in most of my accounts right now.”

click for full size

11 months ago, Ginny Marvin, the Google Ads Liaison said, Ginny Marvin responded to this saying “There are no current plans for a keyword tab in PMax. There are, however, plans to support negative keywords for brand safety at the account level.”

And now we got them.

Bit more history:

And some reaction on this:

Forum discussion at Twitter and LinkedIn.

Update: The Google Ads Liaison has now posted about this on Twitter:



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Google Says Google Search Handles marquee Tags Appropriately

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Google Marquee Lights

Gary Illyes, from the Google Search Relations team, said on LinkedIn that Google Search handles the marquee HTML tag “appropriately.” What does it mean by appropriately? That is Gary for you.

I assume it means Google can read the text within the marquee HTML tag.

The marquee HTML element is used to insert a scrolling area of text. You can control what happens when the text reaches the edges of its content area using its attributes.

Google even has this long standing marquee tag new easter egg that looks like this:

Google Marquee Easter Egg

Here are some funny comments in the LinkedIn thread:

Linkedin Comments

Again, Gary wrote, “Please note that, after digging through some ancient code, I can confidently confirm Google handles marquee tags appropriately. You’re welcome, internet.”

Forum discussion at LinkedIn.

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