Ranking for Google is the ultimate search engine optimization endpoint. True, because SEO is Google-centric, and experts in the industry who claim otherwise are sorely mistaken. Google search is this generation’s and the coming generations’ starting point to Internet content.
Now, more than ever, having a website that’s niche-specific is the name of the game. Search engine marketing might be a living, breathing “thing” now. However, relying on excessive Internet marketing without focusing first on the website and its content may become the ultimate demise of a business.
PageRank, Google’s main ranking tool for websites, mostly judges through relevance and content. Truth is, there’s no definitive way to rank in search engines. There are only guidelines webmasters and SEO experts follow.
Meanwhile, said giant company has always been upfront about user experience being the most important factor in their ranking, but, quantifying this by their algorithm has just recently begun. Nevertheless, their algorithm is updated almost yearly, whether minimal or major updates.
Google is directed to making user experience the best there is in that field, and so far, they have succeeded. It’s one of the biggest technological companies, up there with Apple in terms of income and reach. With its wide-spanning product lines, from mobile computing to software and cloud computing, its a juggernaut to beat.
Having more knowledge on the roll-outs that Google intermittently releases is one helpful trick. Here’s a rundown of the recent roll-outs, from the latest major updates to touch-ups:
Pigeon (Everflux, Expands) – December 2014
1. The Pigeon release is pegged as the start of local searches’ importance.
2. The update focuses on an accurate, more useful local search results.
3. The first countries to experience the roll-out are US, Canada, UK and Australia.
4. As of late, Pigeon has been rolled out to most English-speaking countries with the exception of India.
5. With Pigeon, local searches now yield more accurate city and locality results, especially with business establishment searches.
6. Some big multi-location brands have seen a dip of 5-10% in their rankings post Pigeon update.
7. Google has officially said that Pigeon is focused on the importance of three factors: web ranking results (backlinks), knowledge graphs, and location.
Penguin 3.0 – October 2014
1. Penguin is historically the most controversial major algorithm update of Google. It changed the game in SERP’s, promoted healthy SEO techniques and made user experience all the more accurate.
2. It’s probably the first of several to-be updates which will roll-out globally. Penguin 3.0 is also arguably the most anticipated roll-out.
3. Google has said Penguin 3.0 will “delight” many webmasters and businessmen.
4. The previous Penguin updates are focused on targeting spammy links on questionable websites. Penguin 3.0 is all about external links, spammy or not.
5. Penguin 3.0 is not an update. It’s a refresh of the first and second iterations.
Panda 4.1 – September 2014
1. Panda 4.1 continued the filtering of generic content from ranking in SERP’s top page.
2. Reportedly, 3-5% of searches have been affected by the roll-out.
3. Search engine marketing expert Search Engine Land confirmed that un-penalized websites may or may not be hit by the update, depending on their on-site content. The opposite is also true to previously-hit sites.