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Need to Know: 6 Key Google Algo Updates for December 2011

Posted on 12.04.2011

Google published another list of algorithm changes last week, following up on set of improvements it announced last month. Here’s what digital Web workers need to know and can expect on the search results pages in the future:

 Original Content Signals: In perhaps the most important of the changes, Google indicated that it has added “new signals” to indicate which page is original and which is not. While Google obviously won’t reveal what those individual signals are, over time you can expect less duplicate content in the search results.

Less “Host Crowding”: A modification (and additional processing) on the top set of results ensures that Google won’t show too many results from one site (host crowding). Expect a more fair and balanced search results page.

Related Query Results: A refinement has been made that will ensure that sites/pages which only “partially” match the original query are seen less often. Why Google was in some instances returning only partial matches to a user query is up for debate.

More Long Tail Indexing: Google has made a change to make more long-tail content available in its index. Expect more of your long-tail content to rank for relevant queries.

Blog Search Results: The Google blog search index is now more comprehensive and will feature fresher results in the natural search results. If you’re not blogging now, you should be.

Parked Domain Classifier: In an update that should have happened many years ago, Google finally released a new algorithm for automatically detecting placeholder sites (parked domains).

Google has also made some layout changes to improve usability on tablet devices, made modifications to better determine image freshness, and is now offering more autocomplete predictions.


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