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Matt Cutts on Developments in SEO for Google

Web Bureau

16 May 2013 by Web Bureau

Matt Cutts recent video update outlines some of Google’s opinions, objectives, plans in the making and some of the challenges it is tackling at the present. In this article, we summarise some of the key takeaways from Matt’s recent video, and what this means for website owners and SEO professionals over the next few months.

Google is user focused – search results based on what users want to see

  • Matt clearly stated that website owners that adopt a constant and uniform approach to building a great site with great content that users love, want to tell their friends about and will visit over and over again will rank higher – Content is still King! 
  • The Search Results continue to evolve - based on user feedback, changes have been made so you are less likely to see a cluster of results from a single site on the first page of the search results, but more likely to see this in the following pages – in the near future, the latter may change further so users will be less likely to see these clusters in the following pages either.

Google serves worthy results - websites to earn right to sit at the top 

  • Penguin 2.0 is a much more intelligent, comprehensive and accurate system than Google 1.0 and is set to have a greater impact.

Google is getting tougher on webmasters trying to game the system

  • Paid advertorials, although not wrong in principle, will be penalised if they breach Google’s quality guidelines, float page rank and do not make it obvious to users that they are paid for advertisements, not organic results or editorial.
  • Google will be delving more into addressing the results delivered in niche areas and being tougher on sites which are typically considering more spammy, such as pornography
  • Techniques are being introduced to deny the link value to spammers to make it less effective
  • A system for more sophisticated link analysis is on the horizon
  • A process to detect hacker sites better is in testing

Google wants to help small to medium size businesses

  • Google is improving resources for webmasters and small to medium sized businesses, for example, by communicating better to them how they can address issues such as a site hack and providing them with more example urls where they can go to diagnose their site
  • New ways are being introduced to better identify when a website is an authority in a particular subject matter, and thus rank it higher

The Result....

Sceptics advocate that Google is making these changes to make it much harder to rank in the organic search results, and force companies down the paid search route, where it makes the majority of its revenue, however Matt Cutts disputes that algorithm updates such as Penguin and Panda are about boosting revenue for Google, and instead insists they are purely about improving the search results for its users by rewarding good content and penalising the bad.

Regardless of the motives, the result is the same for webmasters – clean up your link profile if needs be, and concentrate your efforts on satisfying users by giving them a website that is easy to navigate and provides great content that they’ll love and want to share. The popularised phrase ‘earned links not easy links’ is clearly one to keep to keep at the forefront of your mind.

If you would like to talk more about the future of your website, traffic levels, conversions, content marketing or any of the other themes touched on it this article, please feel free to leave your comments below or get in touch with The Web Bureau

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