Google’s Potential for “Freshness” Spam

So it seems that Google has updated its algorithm to improve freshness rankings based on some of the various authority websites out there, but there’s really only one that matters when it comes to this: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/11/giving-you-fresher-more-recent-search.html

So, based on this, it’s obvious why so many webmasters become nervous, especially since the Panda update a few months ago which affected sites’ rankings based on the quality of their content and various other metrics.
So for now, it’s clear that all SEO agencies and companies alike, as well as online business owners, need to direct their attention and focus towards updating their content more frequently. Not only is this often times difficult, but it requires a lot of resources. If you find yourself to be outranked by queries from fresh and new content which you use to rank for, then you’ll obviously have to think about creating new content more often.

What Google said:

“We completed our Caffeine web indexing system last year, which allows us to crawl and index the web for fresh content quickly on an enormous scale. Building upon the momentum from Caffeine, today we’re making a significant improvement to our ranking algorithm that impacts roughly 35 percent of searches and better determines when to give you more up-to-date relevant results for these varying degrees of freshness.”

Now, if you go ahead and think of that 35 percent figure again, what I’m thinking is that, potentially, Google means to say that around 1/3 of search engine related queries involve or relate to fresh and/or updated content.

Freshness ranking is not new, just apparently improved?! So, this pretty much goes to say that 35 percent of the searches in Google are impacted by this. That is larger than the Panda update which impacted 12 percent of the searches conducted.

What type of searches does it impact? Google said:

  • Recent events or hot topics.
  • Regularly recurring events.
  • Frequent updates.

Well here is my concern and my two cents on this situation:

Has competition and online user activity increased so much that there is not enough room for everyone to compete on only one search engine?
If this is true then that means Google obviously has to find a way to create enough virtual business and information trading space by installing a system whereby being found online and making sales comes down to how active and relevant you are.

This definitely takes the field of SEO so much further and directly creates more work for us SEO’s but, for how long and is this also not going to be responsible for creating a lot of potential spammy results through Google cause, let’s face it, it doesn’t take a genius to update your blog or website and there are numerous plugins that you can install on your blogs that pull in data from various feeds etc.

This situation will inevitably spur on software developers to create even more auto content generating tools to automatically update the content on your site. These days it seems that Google is playing the money game and potentially rigging the system to its advantage. Have a look at the posts below and make up your own minds.

Brand VS Affiliate Spam
Google enters Make Money Online Niche

Other factors that have also created concern are the fact that Google has implemented ads at the bottom of search results, (read more here) which, combined with video & image results on the first page of Google, basically means that we are now competing for the first five of the ten spots available on the first page of Google seeing that most users only click on the results in the top fold of their screen which happens to display only between four or five results unless you scroll down of course. Some of this is old news to some but for the uninformed, this stresses a huge area of concern which has pros and cons for online users from all walks of life.

Resources:

http://searchengineland.com/google-search-algorithm-change-for-freshness-to-impact-35-of-searches-99856

http://www.webpronews.com/google-algorithm-update-focuses-on-freshness-and-recency-2011-11

http://socialmediatoday.com/jamesamartin/384642/google-algorithm-update-freshness-counts-even-more-now

http://econsultancy.com/us/blog/8244-google-s-freshness-update-what-s-the-effect-on-websites

daniel

Daniel Buys

Danny is curious by nature and knows a bunch of facts about everything, making him a highly sought after guy around the R.O.I. kitchen table at lunchtime. I couldn’t live without my iPhone, Guitar and laptop, and that the best thing about working at R.O.I. is ‘the feeling you get when a clients website begins to climb in traffic, rankings and revenue’

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