Google’s monthly series on algorithm changes set a record in February – reporting 40 new changes. “Each individual change is subtle and important,” said Google, “and over time they add up to a radically improved search engine.” By the end of 2012, Google is expected to make over 500 changes to its algorithm.
Several of the changes appear to be rolling updates including tweaks to the Freshness Algorithm and Google Panda. Notably, Google has disabled several query classifiers for link and freshness evaluation.
Here are some highlights from the update:
- One stand out February tweak is the Link Evaluation change. Notably, Google said, “We have changed the way in which we evaluate links; in particular we are turning off a method of link analysis that we used for several years.” With the heavy emphasis on link-building in many SEO firms, it will be interesting to see if the effects of this change are noticeable.
- This one could help local businesses. Improved local results is a new system that Google claims is “better able to detect when both queries and documents are local to the user.”
- This one might be of interest for online stores with foreign customers. The international launch of Shopping Rich Snippets helps you to see product prices, availability, rating and reviews, to more quickly help you find the products you need. You can provide the info to Google that shows up in your snippets through merchant center feeds. Previously available in only US, Japan and Germany.
- Disabling of two old fresh query classifiers. Looks like Google is continually placing an emphasis on improving the freshness of content.
- And again. A freshness update, codenamed “news deserving score” uses online signals to detect current topics spiking in popularity.
- For the world traveler. Google made improvements to try to help users get more accurate flight results. Originally created in December, the feature was developed to help users find the most useful online travel resources.
Check out our earlier post on Google’s algorithm updates in 2012.
The Klik Marketing Blog is your source for Charlotte SEO and Small Business topics. It is written by Klik Marketing founder and President Eric Fransen. Eric has been involved with the Internet Marketing industry since the late 1990’s.