Google’s Updates and what they mean

Unless you’ve been living under a rock you’ll have probably heard of Google and their search algorithms. But you may be harder pushed to actually describe what it is. Well, a search algorithm is techie speak for the way Google sorts through through billions of web pages to return what it thinks are the best answers relevant to your input into the search engine.

Just as you’ve got to grips with what an algorithm is and what they’re for you might be alarmed to know that Google actually changed their search algorithm around 600 times a year! Most of these changes will be minor tweaks but every now and then they’ll release a major update to their algorithm that will significantly affect search results.

So we’ve put together this brief guide on the latest updates, what they mean for search and then we’ve come up with an easy and affordable solution so that you can concentrate on the day to day running of your business.

Hummingbird is Google’s latest search algorithm. Google have reported that its name came from the algorithm’s speed and precision much like the beloved bird. It’s a complexly new algorithm and with it comes a completely new way it appraises search engine entries. Instead of seeing keywords within a search as separate entities, it cleverly looks at the context of the query producing more relevant results.

So, what are Panda and Penguin updates then? Well if you think of the algorithm like an engine, hummingbird is the new engine but it still uses new and improved parts of the old engine like the oil filter (penguin) and the pump (panda).

Penguin updates help Google catch sites that are spamming their search results by ‘cheating’ through buying links and mean websites need to remove any bad links. The latest penguin update is the 5th incarnation and no doubt there’ll be a 6th revision in the near future.

The next addition to the Google ‘Zoo’ is the Panda update. This is basically a filter that stops websites with poor quality content from ranking highly in SERPS. Even if a website happens to escape one round of Panda filtering, it’s constantly updated so is in jeopardy of being caught the next time around. To be sure your site has the best chance of ranking highly, then don’t forget that content in king.

Now you know in a nut shell what the updates are, what can you do about them? You want to make sure your site still has good SEO and all your hard work so far won’t go to waste. White Hat SEO, aka ethical SEO, are strategies and tactics that follow search engine rules and focus on a human audience rather than ‘robots’. There are lots of tricks of the trade to make sure you maintain and build great SEO from keyword analysis, link building, blogging and other regularly updated and well written content.

SEO is so pivotal to online success these days that it really can’t be ignored. If you’re looking to make a long-term investment in your business and website then ignore SEO best practices at your own risk! If you’d rather concentrate on the day to day running of your business then just give us a shout and we can help fulfil all your SEO needs using completely ethical SEO techniques.