Hello friends, and welcome to another smattering of SEO news! I was sick last week, which is why we didn’t have one, but I’m back and mostly better! With that said, we’ve got some fascinating stuff, such as visible PageRank (finally!) going away, warnings to bloggers about transparency, an uptick in HTTPS implementation, and much more. Check it out!
- Google Toolbar PageRank Finally Going Away – I’m a little late on reporting this one, but I was sick, sue me. Anyway, Google is reporting that they’re finally, finally doing away with the Google PageRank indicator on their toolbar. This doesn’t remove PageRank entirely, however, only the publicly visible indicator of it. Denny Sullivan wrote a great retrospective on how it ruined the web, as he terms it, and I fully agree. It won’t be missed, as far I’m concerned.
- Google To Increase Mobile-Friendly Ranking Factors In May – Remember last year’s so-called “Mobilegeddon,” wherein Google launched their mobile-friendly algorithm, and all sorts of havoc occurred with people’s rankings? Well, Google is getting ready to, as they call it, “increase the effect of the ranking signal” which governs this algorithm in a couple of months. While it apparently won’t be as impactful as Mobilegeddon was, it’s yet another signal (hah hah) that Google wants y’all to get your ducks in a row when it comes to making your site mobile friendly. If your site isn’t already passing their Mobile-Friendly test, then you better get on it.
- Google Warns Bloggers On Undisclosed And Followed Promotional Links – Google recently released new guidelines for bloggers to follow in order to make sure their links are transparent and properly used. Links relating to products, such as those used in reviews and the like, should not only be no-followed, but the relationship with the company or brand should also be disclosed, such as whether a product was received for review for free. There doesn’t seem to be any kind of manual action coming for those who choose not to follow this advice, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any action in the future, so this is something to look into my friends.
- Google Considering Manual Actions On Sites Using Fake App Interstitials – One would think, given how serious Google sounded in warning folks NOT to use app interstitials on their mobile sites, that folks would stop using them! Not so! Apparently, Yelp has been doing this thing wherein, if you go to a mobile result on their site, they’ll show what looks like an app interstitial, but is actually just a portion of the webpage put at the top to appear as such. The users can still scroll past it if they’re savvy enough to notice. Skeevy, if you ask me. Welp, Google is having none of that, apparently, and plans to hit sites that use these techniques with manual actions. Good on them, I say.
- Google Launches Analytics 360 Suite To Build Upon Success Of Analytics Premium – While traditional Google Analytics has always been free, it’s been limited in the data it provides to users. If those with deep enough pockets can afford it, Analytics Premium has offered users the full buffet of data, most of which is not visible to free users. Well, Google has built upon their Premium platform with more tools, titling the whole kit-and-caboodle Analytics 360 Suite. This suite includes Analytics 360 (formerly Premium), Tag Manager 360, Data Studio 360, and several other serious-sounding tools for the serious data analyst. I so wish I could see these tools my own self.
- Google Estimating Twenty-Five Percent Of Sites Now Using HTTPS – Based on their findings of the top 100 non-Google sites (which they say they’ll help migrate), about a quarter of sites are now running on HTTPS, according to Google. If correct, that’s quite a bit of the Internet!