The Evolution of Google's Rankings
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The Evolution of Google's Rankings

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Rand Fishkin's presentation from Be Wizard, San Marino 2011 on the evolution of Google's rankings and how marketers can optimize for the next generation of ranking signals.

Rand Fishkin's presentation from Be Wizard, San Marino 2011 on the evolution of Google's rankings and how marketers can optimize for the next generation of ranking signals.

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  • I have always wondered how rankings evolve on Google thanks to this slide now I have an understanding as to why this happens...
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  • Nice and valuable information about google ranking @enuke
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The Evolution of Google's Rankings The Evolution of Google's Rankings Presentation Transcript

  • The Evolution of Google RankingsHow Google’s algorithm has changed over the years and where it’s heading in the future
    Rand Fishkin, SEOmoz CEO, March 2011
  • At SEOmoz, we make SOFTWARE!! We don’t offer any consulting.
  • Ranking in Google: 1999-2002
  • On-Page Optimization
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/perfecting-keyword-targeting-on-page-optimization
  • PageRank
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.elliance.com/aha/infographics/Google-PageRank-Explained.aspx
  • PageRank
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/the-science-of-ranking-correlations
  • Ranking in Google: 2003 - 2005
  • Anchor Text
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/learn-seo/anchor-text
  • From 1999 – 2008, What Page Ranked #1for the Queries “Exit” and “Leave”?
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://searchengineland.com/google-kills-bushs-miserable-failure-search-other-google-bombs-10363
  • From 1999 – 2008, What Page Ranked #1for the Queries “Exit” and “Leave”?
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://searchengineland.com/google-kills-bushs-miserable-failure-search-other-google-bombs-10363
  • Keyword Match Domain Names
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/exact-match-domains-are-far-too-powerful-is-their-time-limited
  • Registration & Historical Information
    http://www.seobythesea.com/?p=1121
  • Topic Modeling
    LDA correlates w/ Google rankings better than any other on-page feature
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/content-optimization-revisiting-topic-modeling-lda-our-labs-tool
  • Ranking in Google: 2006 - 2009
  • Domain Authority
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/whiteboard-friday-domain-authority-page-authority-metrics
  • Diversity of External Link Sources
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/10-illustrations-on-search-engines-valuation-of-links
  • Nofollow, Sitemaps & Webmaster Tools
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/google-says-yes-you-can-still-sculpt-pagerank-no-you-cant-do-it-with-nofollow
  • Search Quality Raters
    http://www.seobook.com/archives/000915.shtml
  • Ranking in Google: 2009 - 2011
  • Twitter Data
    Danny Sullivan: If an article is retweeted or referenced much in Twitter, do you count that as a signal outside of finding any non-nofollowed links that may naturally result from it?
    Google: Yes, we do use it as a signal. It is used as a signal in our organic and news rankings. We also use it to enhance our news universal by marking how many people shared an article 
    http://searchengineland.com/what-social-signals-do-google-bing-really-count-55389
  • Twitter Data
    Page A
    646 links from 36 root domains
    2 tweets
    Page B
    1 link from 1 root domain
    522 tweets
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/how-do-tweets-influence-search-rankings-an-experiment-for-a-cause
  • Twitter Clearly Influencing Google
    Page B – the tweeted version – ranks #1!
    Page A
    646 links from 36 root domains
    2 tweets
    Page B
    1 link from 1 root domain
    522 tweets
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/how-do-tweets-influence-search-rankings-an-experiment-for-a-cause
  • Twitter Data is Very Powerful in QDF
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/tweets-effect-rankings-unexpected-case-study
  • Don’t Try Abusing Twitter for SEO
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/tweets-effect-rankings-unexpected-case-study#jtc133590
  • Author Authority
    Danny Sullivan: Do you try to calculate the authority of someone who tweets that might be assigned to their Twitter page. Do you try to “know,” if you will, who they are?
    Bing: Yes. We do calculate the authority of someone who tweets. For known public figures or publishers, we do associate them with who they are. (For example, query for Danny Sullivan)
    Google: Yes we do compute and use author quality. We don’t know who anyone is in real life :-)
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://searchengineland.com/what-social-signals-do-google-bing-really-count-55389
  • Facebook Likes & Shares
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/facebook-marketing-ultimate-guide
  • Brand Signals
    Brands
    Generics
    • Have real people working at a physical address
    • Have authentic, followed social accounts
    • Display obvious, robust contact information
    • Register with government/civic organizations
    • Receive traffic from diverse sources
    • Generate branded search query volume
    • Run offline marketing/advertising campaigns
    • Often exist only online
    • Rarely have significant social accounts
    • Frequently use email forms only
    • Stay “under the radar”
    • Search is often 90%+ of traffic
    • Have little-no branded search demand
    • Ignore the offline world
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/the-next-generation-of-ranking-signals
  • Entity Association
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/the-next-generation-of-ranking-signals
  • User & Usage Behavior
    http://www.quora.com/Did-Bing-intentionally-copy-Googles-search-results
  • How the Search Ranking Factors Have Changed in the Eyes of Experts
  • http://www.seomoz.org/article/search-ranking-factors
  • New data will be available on SEOmoz in April, 2011
  • Big Changes from 2009 to 2011
    • Link-Based Factors are no longer 60%+ of the equation!
    • Social Data is perceived to be a significant player
    • Page-Level Link Metrics Fell the Most (43% - 22%)
    • Keyword-Level Domain Metrics, Brand Data + Social Rose
    • The Survey itself asked for more detail/specificity(which may be responsible for some of these shifts)
    The new version of the ranking factors will be online in April, 2011
  • A Look at Google’s “Farmer”(aka “Panda”) Update
  • Sites that Lost Visibility
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/googles-farmer-update-analysis-of-winners-vs-losers
  • Sites that Gained Visibility
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/googles-farmer-update-analysis-of-winners-vs-losers
  • From the Mouths of Googlers
    Wired.com: How do you recognize a shallow-content site?
    Singhal: (W)e asked the raters questions like: “Would you be comfortable giving this site your credit card? Would you be comfortable giving medicine prescribed by this site to your kids?”
    Cutts: (Using) a rigorous set of questions, everything from. “Do you consider this site to be authoritative? Would it be okay if this was in a magazine? Does this site have excessive ads?”
    Singhal: And based on that, we basically formed some definition of what could be considered low quality.
    http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2011/03/the-panda-that-hates-farms/all/1
  • From the Mouths of Googlers
    Wired.com: But how do you implement that algorithmically?
    Cutts: I think you look for signals that recreate that same intuition, that same experience that you have as an engineer and that users have.
    Singhal: You can imagine in a hyperspace a bunch of points, some points are red, some points are green, and in others there’s some mixture. Your job is to find a plane which says that most things on this side of the place are red, and most of the things on that side of the plane are the opposite of red.
    http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2011/03/the-panda-that-hates-farms/all/1
  • Links Didn’t Seem to Have Much Impact
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/googles-farmer-update-analysis-of-winners-vs-losers
  • How Google’s Interface Has Evolved
  • Old Google SERPs
  • Google SERPs Today
  • Google SERPs Tomorrow
  • How Search Marketers Can Evolve
  • Don’t “Look” Like a Content Farm
    http://www.suite101.com/content/canada-awarded-fifa-2015-womens-world-cup-of-soccerfootball-a356303
  • Don’t “Look” Like a Content Farm
    http://hubpages.com/hub/WomensFashionsofthe1920-FlappersandtheJazz-Age
  • Watch Out for “Classic” SEO Tactics
    Directory Link Building
    Keyword-Variant Abuse
    Reciprocal Link Pages
    Paid Links w/ Manipulative Anchor Text
    Sitewide, Footer Links
    Navigation for Engines, Not Humans
    Low Cost/Quality, Outsourced Content
    Generic Design and Layout
    Anchor-Text Rich Internal Links
    Anonymous Contact Forms
    Keyword Stuffed Titles + Pages
    Ad Blocks Dominating the Page
    It’s great to do good SEO, just don’t look like the only reason the site exists is to draw Google traffic
  • Become a “Brand”
    Brands
    Generics
    • Have real people working at a physical address
    • Have authentic, followed social accounts
    • Display obvious, robust contact information
    • Register with government/civic organizations
    • Receive traffic from diverse sources
    • Generate branded search query volume
    • Run offline marketing/advertising campaigns
    • Often exist only online
    • Rarely have significant social accounts
    • Frequently use email forms only
    • Stay “under the radar”
    • Search is often 90%+ of traffic
    • Have little-no branded search demand
    • Ignore the offline world
    http://www.seomoz.org/blog/the-next-generation-of-ranking-signals
  • Find Where Top Brands Earn Citations
    Where do these brands earn their links?
    http:/googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/06/our-new-search-index-caffeine.html
    http://www.opensiteexplorer.org
  • Investigate Brand “Mention” Sources
    Facebook page
    Blippr?
    Crunchbase profile
    App profile on Blackberry
    Twitter account
    BusinessWeek Profile
    Chrome Extension
    Mashable Article
  • Focus on the User, But Don’t Forget the Engines
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/11/business/media/11search.html
  • Take Advantage of New Opportunities
    http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2009/05/introducing-rich-snippets.html
  • Take Advantage of New Opportunities
    http://www.9e3k.com/9e3k/monday-meme-yoda-spreads-some-9e3k-love/
  • Take Advantage of New Opportunities
    http://outspokenmedia.com/social-media/quora-hipsters/
  • Embrace All of Inbound Marketing
    News/Media/PR
    SEO
    Email
    Research/White Papers
    Blogs + Blogging
    Infographics
    Comment Marketing
    Social Networks
    Online Video
    INBOUND MARKETING!(AKA all the “free” traffic sources)
    Webinars
    Forums
    Document Sharing
    Social Bookmarking
    Word of Mouth
    Podcasting
    Direct/Referring Links
    Type-In Traffic
    Q+A Sites
  • Q+A
    Rand Fishkin, CEO & Co-Founder, SEOmoz
    • Twitter: @randfish
    • Blog: www.seomoz.org/blog
    • Email: rand@seomoz.org
    You can now try SEOmoz PRO Free!
    http://www.seomoz.org/freetrial
  • Summary of This Presentation
    The Evolution and Future of Google’s Rankings:
    • Where Google’s Been in the Past (1999-2010)
    • New Signals in Google: Social Media, User Data & Brand Signals
    • The Evolution of the Search Engine Results Interface
    • What Marketers Must Do to Keep Up with Google’s Evolution