We just published an article on the most recent Google changes as per Google’s own blog. However, the latest update was leaked by Matt Cutts, head of Google’s search quality spam team, during the SXSW conference.
The purpose of the session was to discuss what webmasters can do to please people and the search engines. Representatives from Google and Bing were present.
The session was Q & A. Matt joined the conference remotely because his wife was undergoing foot surgery. He answered questions from webmasters.
One of the webmasters inquired as to how a “mom and pop” shop that does its own SEO can compete with companies spending thousands of dollars on heavy SEO campaigns.
Here is Matt Cutts’ answer:
Matt went on to say that he doesn’t normally announce changes early, but he is working on an update right now that is set for release in the next few weeks to months.
Now here comes the good stuff…
According to Matt, “And the idea is basically to try and level the playing ground a little bit, so all those people who have sort of been doing, for lack of a better word, ‘over-optimization’ or overly doing their SEO, compared to the people who are just making great content and trying to make a fantastic site, we want to sort of make that playing field a little more level. So that’s the sort of thing where we try to make the website…the Googlebot smarter, we try to make our relevance more adaptive, so the people who don’t do SEO, we handle that, and then we also start to look at the people who sort of abuse it, whether they throw too many keywords on the page or whether they exchange way too many links, or whatever they’re doing to sort of go beyond what a normal person would expect in a particular area. So that is something where we continue to pay attention, and continue to work on it…we have several engineers on my team working on that right now.”
Here at Marketing Resource Index, we always stress the importance of valuable content in addition to sound SEO strategies. But, to those who “over-SEO” their sites, the next update could prove troublesome.
This update is not widely known and the details are still muddy. We can’t say we didn’t see this coming with the widespread emphasis on great content that serves the audience of a website. But, we might not have expected it this soon.
What does “over-SEO” mean? We don’t know for sure. But one could surmise that it will be a big change. Google has already been very active with rewarding content and doing away with suspect link building practices so this update should be even more intense than anything already released.
For those webmasters who are not very “SEO savvy” and continue to publish great content, this update may give them a boost in the rankings. For the big companies who pay thousands of dollars trying to manipulate the search rankings, only time will tell how this will play out. Matt Cutts did not mention any more details. We will just have to wait and see what happens.
Here is a link to the entire audio of the SXSW session: Dear Google & Bing: Help Me Rank Better!
Special thanks to Search Engine Roundtable for publishing the details of the session.
What do you think this update will do to websites?