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Not a ton of news this week, my friends, but some really big things regardless, like the mobile-first index rolling out, or nearly forty new languages in Google Maps. I bet the algorithm update noted below is just one of Google’s normal updates, but news is news to some folks. 

Google News

  • Mobile-First Index Rolling Out To More Sites – Google recently announced that it’s rolling out its mobile-first index to more sites, and will alert webmasters via Search Console when their site is pulled into the index. According to the announcement, the sites they feel adhere closest to their best practices will be the next sites to be brought into the index. We’ll have more for you as this develops.
  • Possible Algorithm Update? Again? – According to chatter on various social media networks, forums and the like, many webmasters are surmising there was another possible algorithm update around 3/21-3/23, which would coincide with instability found in various tools that measure such things. According to Google’s John Mueller, the fluctuations are unrelated to the mobile-first index rollout.
  • Google Maps Adds Support For Thirty-Nine New Languages – Google Maps has added an impressive amount of new languages to its roster, thirty-nine in all, allowing over a billion more people to read Maps — and more importantly, business — listings in their native languages. Some of the new languages include Armenian, Czech, Filipino, Hebrew, Indonesian, Persian, and Vietnamese. You can read Google’s announcement here.

  • SEO Finds Security Bug In Search Console XML Sitemap Submission Tool – Google has a Vulnerability Reward Program in which they pay people for successfully finding vulnerabilities in their services. Recently, Tom Anthony of Distilled SEO received a reward for finding an unusual bug. He was able to, essentially, submit an XML sitemap for a site he didn’t control, which ended up receiving rankings in the SERPs as a result, even with no links pointing to it. Google has acknowledged the bug and doesn’t believed it’s ever been used.
  • Google Acquires Animated GIF Curator Tenor – Finding the right animated GIF to respond to someone is something of an art form, and services like Giphy and Tenor cater to this new, fun form of communication. Google sees the importance in curated GIFs as well, apparently, as they’ve just acquired Tenor. Tenor will be integrated not only into Google Images, but also into other products like their Gboard keyboard.  

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