My friends, we actually had a decent spate of news over the last couple of weeks. I mean sure, I still needed to scrape the bottom of the barrel — I know I use that a lot but it works so I’mma keep using it — but having some actual useful news was a nice change of pace, I tells ya. Enjoy!
- Updated Search Console Available For Everyone – Google has announced that, after a lengthy beta period, the revised Search Console is now available for everyone. If you’re not fond of the new interface, you can revert to the old interface at any time.
- Google Partners With WordPress To Help Develop Its Ecosystem – Google announced that it’s recently partnered with WordPress in order to help improve its speed and support for new and upcoming web technologies. As WordPress makes up about 60% of CMS-based websites, and Google’s own AMP is used by apparently fewer than 0.1% of sites, it’s a partnership that makes sense on paper.
- Google Posts Reintroduction To Featured Snippets – In a massive blog post, Google has posted an updated and very effective primer to the world of featured snippets. This includes what they are, how they work, and so on. It’s a good read even if you’re familiar with them.
- Page Speed Update Has No Effect On Indexing – Google revealed recently that its upcoming Page Speed Update — which will make speed a ranking factor for mobile sites — will apparently have no effect on whether a site’s mobile or desktop version can be indexed or not. This means it operates independently of other algorithms that have more of an impact on indexing.
- Mueller Hints At Reading Level Algorithm – When asked about specific algorithms that calculate the value/quality of content, Google’s John Mueller responded, “At least we don’t have anything public that we say this is what we do and this is what happens there.” He then went on to say that they have people working to understand quality algorithmically, but wouldn’t get into more detail.
- Chrome’s Lighthouse Extension Now Includes Basic SEO Audit – Google has updated its popular Lighthouse extension for Chrome to include a basic SEO audit. This audit checks for things like proper redirect usage, titles, crawlability, and, interestingly enough, text size.
- Facebook Updates News Feed With Broader Local Site Support – Facebook has updated its news feed with better support for sites that have local coverage beyond news. This could include blogs or businesses. Now, if a site is on a domain local news or information that’s followed and shared, it could show up more highly in a news feed regardless of whether it’s strictly a news site. This should help make Facebook’s feed more varied and useful.