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Welcome my friends to A Smattering of SEO News! This week it is all about Google. Why? Because BARELY ANYTHING HAPPENED. Seriously, I had to scrounge for this stuff, almost going so far as to look for…tweets…for news…GAH. Pray I never have to go that low my friends. Regardless, here’s some awesome news for your brains. Enjoy!

Google News

  • Is The “Link:” Operator Going The Way Of The Dodo? – Last week, blogger Bill Hartzer noticed that the Link Operator in Google (i.e. “link:example.com”) didn’t seem to work any longer for certain sites, such as Google.com. When he poked around about it on Twitter, and asked whether the operator is done for, Google’s Gary Illyes said the short answer is “no” but the long answer was to…email Google’s press department? That’s confusing. Anyway, right now the operator doesn’t work with a lot of sites, including my own blog (but it does work for wpromote.com, interestingly), so it’ll be interesting to see if the longtime operator is headed for the sunset. We’ll keep you posted.

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  • Google Considering More Days For Search Analytics – The search analytics portion of Search Console is a very useful portion of the tool, but it’s been a frustration to many SEO professionals that it only goes back 90 days. Well, in asking Googler Zenib Ait about it via Twitter (which is apparently the best way to reach someone at Google), they said they’re “thinking” about going beyond 90 days. However, Ait then asked folks on Twitter why they want more data and what they’d use it for. We’ll keep you posted on this one too.
  • Google Has No Plans For A SEO Certification Program – During a Google Hangout, Googlers Eric Enge and Mark Traphagen were asked about the possibility of a Google-backed SEO certification program. The response that was, while they’ve considered it, they decided against it ultimately. They cited costs, the need for training, and more issues that, in the end, had them nixing the idea. It’s probably for the best, really.
  • Google To Block All Results From Right To Be Forgotten Ruling From EU Searchers – You might recall a while back, an EU commission ordered Google to allow users to request links pointing to personally incriminating information be removed under a “Right to be Forgotten” rule. Interestingly, a loophole allowed EU searchers to still see those results when going to Google.com, rather than their country’s version of Google. Well, the party is over my friends, as Google announced they’d be closing that loophole soon. Folks can still use a proxy to search Google.com if they wish, but that’s out of Google’s hands.
  • Voice Searches More Than Doubled In The Last Year – Remember that Google Hangout I mentioned two stories ago with Eric Enge and Mark Traphagen? Heh, good times, right? Well, in that same hangout, they said that the amount of voice searches “more than doubled” in the last year. While we don’t have numbers, that shows that voice search is becoming more popular and commonplace among users. I know I use it all the time with my Android phone, and it’s pretty awesome.

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