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April Round Up- Google Webmaster Blog

In this months round up of Webmaster, we take a look at how Google judge a webpage for good SEO or bad SEO. We find out how Google picks out its pictures in a Google image search and we discover what Google have been adding and deleting from webmaster tools to improve the user experience.

Another step to reward high quality sites.

Effective SEO can make a site more crawlable and make individual pages more accessible to find. Search Engine Optimisation can include things as simple as keyword research to ensure the right words are on the page and it is not just industry jargon that normal searchers will not understand.

When we talk about SEO, there are two different approaches to

There are two different approaches people can take to Search Engine Optimisation. White Hat or Black Hat.

White Hat SEO- You improve your visibility of a site Create good content and make sites faster for your user. The main interest of a white hat SEO is the users experience on the web site.

Black Hat SEO- Their main objective is to pursue higher rankings, whatever the cost. A few sites use techniques that do not benefit the user and mainly target their websites to the algorithms as opposed to the user. Their intention is to look for shortcuts or loopholes that will rank pages higher than they should be.

Google’s advice:

Our advice for webmasters is to focus on creating high quality sites that create a good user experience and employ white hat SEO methods instead of engaging in aggressive web spam tactics.’

It seems that you are better off spending your time creating a decent website with good content, relevant links and keywords rather than wasting your time web spamming.

How to move your content to a new location

Whilst maintaining a website, webmasters may decide to move the whole website or parts of it to a new location.

To help the search engines understand your new site structure and to make your site more user friendly make sure you follow these guidelines.

  • Re-direct users and bots from the old site to the new one with a 301 redirect

  • Make sure you have old and new location verified in the same Google webmaster tools account.

  • Check if the new location is crawlable by Googlebot

  • If moving to an entirely new domain, see the change of address option under site configuration

  • Check sitemap is up to date.

1000 Words about images

The images you see in a Google image search come from publishers of all different sizes such as bloggers, media outlets and stock photo sites who have all embedded these images in their HTML.

So, how does Google know what to search for? How does it know the difference between a picture of tea and a picture of coffee?

When algorithms index pages they look at:

  • Textual Content

  • Page title and body

  • Image File name

  • Anchor text

  • Alt text.

All these aspects help Google decide what pictures should be shown for each keyword.

Updates to rich snippetsrich snippets webmaster blog

Google have announced two updates to rich snippets.

Product rich snippets- Previously only available in a limited set of locales are now supported globally. Users can now preview information about products available on your website, regardless of where they are searching from.

Rich Snippets testing tool- Updated to support HTML input. Users can now test their HTML source without having to publish it to a webpage by using the new tool.

Webmaster tools spring cleaning

Webmaster have announced that they will be deleting some of their features that they feel do not improve the site in any way.

In the next two weeks, we will loose:

  • Subscriber stats feature

  • The Create robots .txt tool

  • Site performance feature.

 

Even more Top Search Queries data

Google recently updated the top search queries data to take into account the average top position. They have enabled programmatic download and made sure you can still get all the queries that drive traffic to your site.