Summary of Search December 2012

In 2011, Google said they wouldn’t make large changes around the Holidays. This year, all bets are off. Google released Panda update 23 on December 21, impacting 1.3% of English queries.

Another change Google made on December 13 attracted quite a bit of attention. Google could not confirm there was an update, but the most logical assessment might be seomoz’s idea that it was a “PMD update” affecting domains that partially used their targeted keywords.

Last month, we summarized 3 kinds of content that Google Panda updates penalize:
Scraped content, thin content that isn’t unique, other forms of duplicate content.

Befriending Google Panda
1. Improve the site’s text content
Remove all lower quality content. Invest in good copywriting, written for prospects instead of search engines. Copy should connect with the right audience, solving problems and informing them. Keywords should be used naturally, prominently, but not according to any specific density formulas. If you need help finding a copywriter, let us know: We recommend Laurie Macomber at Blue Skies Marketing.

2. Fix the site.
Broken links, grammatical errors, misspellings, and other aspects of the site must be fixed.

3. Enhance the “richness” of the site.
Use internal links to communicate keyword relevance. Videos, images, animations and other forms of media can also communicate relevance.

Google’s Penguin update
SERoundtable recently conducted a Penguin Recovery Poll:
94% Of Google Penguin Victims Did Not Fully Recover
81% said they had no recovery while 13% claim a partial recovery and only 6% claim a full recovery. That is based on over 500 responses to our poll.

Disavowing links
1. Disavowing links may be seen as a confession. Consider carefully before using the tool.
2. If your site only has spammy links, do not disavow them: You will have no links.

Bing snapshot is much like Google’s knowledge graph. Google’s weakness appears to be freshness of data, but only time will tell which service has the most accurate up-to-date answers at the top of SERPs.

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