Tom Williams brings you the latest in search engine optimisation news, including SEO advice for item page updates and repeat events; new expandable sitelinks; and why you should stop watching Google’s algorithms.
Picture this – you host an annual business event but need to release next year’s schedule. Do you keep this information on the current event page with this year’s schedule, or do you create a new page?
To clarify the best practice with regards to repeat events and updates to item pages, Google’s John Mueller took to Google+ to impart his wisdom:
Whether it's an event, a recurring report, an updated product, or anything else that has a current version and previous versions, this is a really simple way to help make sure that search is able to easily find the current version:
- Place the current version on a generic, non-versioned URL
- Copy last year's version onto a versioned URL
- Browse Twitter or Google+
(Technically the last step isn't necessary, but if someone asks, you can say you're just following instructions.)
According to Barry Schwartz, John gave some very different helpful hints a long time ago. However, the advice above seems to be working across the board and is the most up-to-date in techniques.
Barry Schwartz claims he was “tipped off” on 30 August 2017 by Sparefoot’s Matt Schexnayder about another Google local packs test.
Apparently, Google now shows when a question (asked by users) matches up to content that exists on a local business’ site. Google will outline relevant content from snippets that align to queries in results, which proves Google understands and recognises content on local sites.
Barry Schwartz wrote:
I always thought the content on the website of the local business was not a factor for local rankings. But here, Google is showing content on the local business website that matches the query searched for.
Enough already! Google dislikes it when webmasters and automated tools report algorithm changes and updates.
According to Google’s John Mueller, the search engine giant would rather we shift our focus onto marvelling in the continuous improvements provided for us, instead of always hunting for fluctuations.
Here’s what he said on Twitter:
Act naturally, like you don't notice the algorithm watching.
According to Barry Schwartz, Google wants to follow through on promises of good results, while we concentrate on delivering the best content and experiences we possibly can.
For a number of years, Google has been trialling and testing expandable sitelinks on mobile.
Now, the search engine giant has been testing a new look for these, especially since the recent rollout of carousel sitelinks.
Take ‘AllSaints’ the shopping brand for example – if you click ‘Men’s’ in the AllSaints sitelinks, it will expand and show two further links; ‘Men’s Best Sellers’ and ‘Ramskull’, which links to the men’s collection detailed with iconic ramskull motif.
This test is just another way for Google to improve its user experience and maximise performance and efficiency.
What are your opinions on creating one large website as opposed to numerous microsites?
When asked for Google’s viewpoints, John Mueller stated:
I’d recommend trying to focus on like a smaller number of websites and keeping everything together in a reasonable way so that when users find your content, they can easily kind of move along that path to actually converting into whatever you want them to do, if you want them to buy something or sign up for something.
From an SEO perspective, it boils down to the quality of microsites aligned with a standalone site’s potential for raising and maintaining brand awareness. As long as everything links well together to provide a smooth buyer’s journey, a small number of sites is definitely something worth investing in.
Last week, Rand Fishkin went geographical on us in his latest Whiteboard Friday post.
Many SEOs find they rank particularly well in one country/city, but as soon as they conduct a search elsewhere, the rankings drop. But why is this?
Watch Rand’s latest video and discover more.
Read last week’s SEO News Roundup: Warning Webmasters – Your Forms Are Not Secure
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