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Understanding Google Penalties and Algorithms

Understanding Google Penalties and Algorithms

Pedro Dias

June 01, 2020

Other Decks in Marketing & SEO


  1. @PedroDias 0

  2. @PedroDias Google Algorithms VS Google Penalties Explained by an ex-Google

  3. @PedroDias § Director SEO + DEV & Partner @ apis3

    § Ex-Google Search Quality/Webspam (2006-2011) § Designer, UX, Web Designer, Web Developer (2000-2006) 📝 More about me /in/PedroDias About me
  4. @PedroDias § These are my perceptions; § I’ve been out

    for longer than my tenure at Google; § Google changes fast outside, but faster inside; § People at Google focus on parts (ex: synonyms team, anchors team, crawling team, etc.). No one knows “the whole”; § This presentation should not be interpreted without context. Disclaimer
  5. @PedroDias The same, but different

  6. @PedroDias Algorithms 🤔 Manual Actions

  7. @PedroDias What is quality? * It’s not star ratings *

  8. @PedroDias What is your website? We must talk about quality

  9. @PedroDias The experience users have on it How it was

    engineered to work Service Product
  10. @PedroDias Technical SEO Strategic SEO (Product Quality) Holistic SEO +

    Service Product
  11. @PedroDias SEO, alone, is unlike to create value! Every website

    must solve a problem/need
  12. @PedroDias

  13. @PedroDias Expertise High level of knowledge/skill Be useful to your

    users Authority The power to control/influence Be credible to your users Trust Belief that you can depend on Be useful + desirable + credible, and more…
  14. @PedroDias 🙂 + Technical

  15. @PedroDias 😵 + Strategical

  16. @PedroDias Algorithms

  17. @PedroDias Algorithms look for quality Quality = Performance/Expectation Algorithms look

  18. @PedroDias § 383,605 Search quality tests § 62,937 Side-by-side experiments

    § 17,523 Live traffic experiments § 3,620 Launches
  19. @PedroDias SEO User Algorithms are made to chase users. So,

    if you chase users instead of algorithms, you’ll be on par with where Google is heading.
  20. @PedroDias Quality is NOT static. It degrades with time. Innovation

    Innovation Time Quality
  21. @PedroDias § Act more like filters (focus on resurfacing quality);

    § Applied at serving time (Schrödinger’s?); § You have control (although indirect) on how your site is influenced, as opposed to manual actions; § Act granularly by default. Algorithmic Issues != Penalties (Manual Actions)
  22. @PedroDias § Upper/Lower thresholds (ex: link velocity, SERP growth, etc.);

    § Action/Intensity can be bound to vertical, search intent, query type, seasonality, etc.; § Constantly improved, based on user input (rescoring); § React to aggregate user behavior. Algorithms are dynamic
  23. @PedroDias § Algorithms can be combined; § Penalties can be

    combined; § Penalties and Algorithms can work together; § Not all fluctuations are penalties; § Not all penalties are visible. Now you see it. Now you don’t.
  24. @PedroDias § Your site/page doesn’t fully meet user expectations; §

    Your site/page doesn’t fully meet user intent; § Your site/page is perceived as below average or frustrating; § Your value proposition isn’t strong enough; § Users don’t understand/trust your value proposition; Quality issues arise when
  25. @PedroDias § Solve problems -- what your users want VS

    what you are delivering; § Content != text (necessarily); § Make sure all your pages have a clear purpose (beyond “for SEO”); § Add real value -- different wording often is not enough; § Avoid aggressive content monetization (esp/ if not yours). Dealing with Algorithmic Issues
  26. @PedroDias What would users miss the most, if your site

    disappeared today? Dealing with Algorithmic Issues
  27. @PedroDias Manual Actions

  28. @PedroDias § Applied according to behavior; § Set with expiration

    date (yes, it’s long); § Can be more or less granular (depending on behavior/intent); § A reconsideration request is required to update; § Don’t hold grudges. Manual Actions are static
  29. @PedroDias Linking Content § Unnatural links to your website §

    Unnatural links from your website § Pure spam § Hidden text / keyword stuffing § Thin content § Spammy Structured Markup § AMP content mismatch Manual Actions
  30. @PedroDias Behavior Hacked § User-generated spam § Freehost spam §

    Cloaking / Sneaky redirects * § Hacked content spam Manual Actions * Sneaky mobile redirects have a separate message
  31. @PedroDias § Monitoring systems (algorithmic triggers); § Industry trends (observed

    behaviors); § User reports; What triggers a Manual Action? Manipulative intent
  32. @PedroDias Algorithms Manual Actions § Aim at resurfacing value §

    Work at scale § Dynamic § Fully automated § Undefined duration § Aim at penalizing behavior § Tackle specific scenarios § Static § Manual + Semi-automated § Defined duration (expiration date) Google Algorithms VS Manual Actions (penalties)
  33. @PedroDias § Does the behavior have manipulative intent? § Is

    the behavior egregious? § Will the Manual Action yield impact? § What changes will the impact yield? § What am I penalizing (widespread behavior)? Manual Actions are applied considering
  34. @PedroDias § Understand the issue you need to solve --

    read the guidelines; § Don’t rush! You want to be thorough, rather than fast; § Don't submit multiple reconsideration requests; § Don't submit an empty website; § Even if the issue is specific to a section, make sure you fix it sitewide; Dealing with Manual Actions
  35. @PedroDias § Be succinct and direct; § Avoid being a

    repeat offender; § State you intend to follow Google's search quality guidelines from now on; Dealing with Manual Actions
  36. @PedroDias § Duplicate content; § Having URLs that 404; §

    Hosting a website on a shared server; § Having links from websites that are not in your niche; § Broken internal/external links; § High bounce rate; § [...] Do not trigger algorithmic issues nor penalties
  37. @PedroDias § In removal cases, rankings might return; § In

    linking cases, rankings might not return; § Most hacked cases, come back as before; Recovering from Manual Actions
  38. @PedroDias § Rethink your value proposition and competitive advantage; §

    Treat your website as a product and innovate constantly; § Research your users’ needs, trough User Experience; § Talk to your users and ask their opinions; § Technical SEO matters, but alone will not solve anything;
  39. @PedroDias § 👥 Chase after your users, not algorithms; §

    📖 Read Google’s Search Quality Guidelines and consider the risks of violating them; § ⚠ It’s easier to get in. It’s harder to get out;