What Google’s Web Spam Algorithm Update Means for Your SEO
Spamming, inorganic and backlink building SEOs beware. Google’s latest update, which went live yesterday, is targeting these tactics to improve search results and reward quality content.
The over-optimization penalty update was announced by Google’s head of the web spam team,
Matt Cutts, at the recent South by Southwest (SXSW). Cutts who had this to say about the update.
“Normally we don’t sort of pre-announce changes, but there is something that we’ve been working on in the last few months. And hopefully, in the next couple months or so, in the coming weeks, we hope to release it. ... 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 bit more level.”
Before you join the bandwagon of angry SEOs, let’s discuss what this update means for your content and your practices.
What is Web Spam?
The fact of the matter is that Google has set guidelines on what it considers “quality” content. If you’re breaking the rules, you probably already know them, but we don’t want to leave any room for confusion.
Google identifies web spam as:
White Hat SEO vs. Web Spam
Cutts made it clear that Google’s intention is not to interfere with white hat SEO, but to eliminate web spam. Their goal is to reward high-quality sites and great content, which you should already be publishing. Actually, web masters should ONLY be linking to quality content. According to Google, this update will only impact about 3% of English sites.
Positive Implications for Content Marketing
The key takeaway from Google’s update is that content is king. Marketers should focus their efforts on creating dynamic, quality, shareable content that creates a good user experience. Aggressive web spam tactics will not be as successful now. Which means, marketers and SEOs should spend more time writing blog posts, white boards, videos, infographics and other inbound types of content that will rank organically.
We’ve written a few blogs about content marketing and inbound marketing that are helpful for SEOs looking to make the shift.