According to a recent blog post, Google made 39 search engine changes during the month of May. Of these changes, the following three are particularly relevant to the B2B marketing space: improvements to ranking for news results, better application of inorganic backlinks signals, and improvements to Penguin
The changes in news results ranking improve the signals used to rank content in the main search results. News content ranking is not determined by human editors but is filtered based on the freshness and diversity of content that is also textually rich and original. Google News Webmaster and site regulations provide sites with tips and instructions for creating authoritative and relevant site content that results in increased rankings.
Inorganic backlinks threaten the rankings of quality sites that abide by Google site regulations. Google is continuing to improve its approach to detecting link schemes, which create spam on sites and can result in poor site rankings. The recent improvements to backlinks signals ensure better application to site rankings and weed out sites with excessive and irrelevant links. According to Danny Sullivan, editor of Search Engine Land, “You don’t want links. You want good links. And sadly, I think many people have completely lost track of what a good link is.” Google emphasizes that it is not the number of links but the quality of those links that impacts a site’s ranking. If a site contains relevant, informative, and rich content, it will gain popularity and others will link to it.
The Penguin Update is an algorithm created by Google to reduce the issue of backlinks and site spam. Penguin strives to catch sites with excessive and poor quality links added strictly to increase the site ranking, which violates Google’s quality guidelines. Google’s May changes to the Penguin algorithm include minor tweaks to improve the signals and better identify site ranking violators.
For B2B marketers, these changes provide further insight into the influence backlinks can have on a website’s ranking. The signals and filters developed by Google help in preventing quality B2B sites from being discredited by link schemes.