Howdy folks, and welcome to another Smattering! October is rolling along like a juggernaut for SEO news, and this week is no exception! We experienced not only one, but TWO algorithm updates within the last week. Read on to check it out.
- Penguin 3.0 Released – Google has released the first update to the Penguin algorithm in over a year. Last Friday, Google confirmed that their update — which should affect around 1% of queries, they say — has gone live. Many webmasters are noticing significant changes in their rankings, both good and bad. Google is calling this update a “refresh,” meaning that it’s meant to help hurt sites that took steps to correct their issues recover from the last update. We’ll bring you more information as we have it.
- Google: For The Best Crawling Possible, Use Both An XML Sitemap And An RSS Feed – Google recently released a set of best practices for XML sitemaps and RSS/Atom feeds to help webmasters and site owners get their site crawled as efficiently as possible. While an XML sitemap has always been important for Google to fully understand your website, we’ve now learned that an RSS/Atom feed is useful in helping Google determine which pages were most recently updated. There are also tips that refer to only using canonical URLs and URLs that Googlebot can fetch. It’s interesting stuff, and it makes me happy to see RSS feeds used for something so important (I kinda love RSS feeds).
- Google Announces Update To Pirate Algorithm – Back in 2012, Google released a little algorithm that was meant to devalue and penalize sites that were determined to violate copyright laws. In the wake of increasing criticism that Google is doing very little to fight piracy, they’ve announced an update to this algorithm for the first time in two years. As this algorithm hopes to filter out sites with pirated content, it will be interesting to see how many new sites will be affected by this update.
- Google And Stephen Colbert Take Potshots At Each Other – Recently, comedian Stephen Colbert took Google to task for incorrectly listing his height as five feet ten inches. Colbert obviously took this as a personal affront on his five foot, eleven-inched self. Google responded by updating the height they have for Colbert in their results to five feet, ten and a half inches, or “1.79m -ish,” which I personally found hilarious. The Colbert Report seems to be off this week, so I’ve not yet seen a rejoinder from Colbert, but I’m definitely hoping he makes one.
- Yahoo’s Q3 Results Had An Interesting Surprise – While Yahoo’s third quarter results were fairly modest ($1.094 billion in revenue, up 1% from a year ago), the most interesting tidbit was the shocking mobile revenue numbers. Yahoo said that in this quarter alone their mobile revenue exceeded $200MM, and is “now material” to their success. It will be fascinating to see if growth continues in their mobile sector.
- Study: More Businesses Opting To Upload Videos To Facebook Rather Than YouTube – According to a study released by Socialbakers, by the end of the year more businesses will be posting their videos directly to Facebook than YouTube, bypassing Google’s video platform entirely. This is from a study of 180,000 video posts from 20,000 pages, which showed that there was a significant rise in marketing videos being uploaded directly to Facebook. The study also showed that during the same time period, YouTube posts were relatively flat by comparison. If the trend continues, Facebook will be getting more videos from businesses than YouTube. When you couple this with recent news that more people watch videos on Facebook than YouTube, you have to wonder how this is going to play out.