He’s baaaaack. And Google’s Search Spam God Matt Cutts is NOT messing around.
Last week, Google rolled out yet another change to the way it sees web sites and the content on them. This wouldn’t be worth discussing at all, since Google alters their search optimization algorithm all the time, except that this particular change was big enough to measure. According to Google their latest change should impact what comes back on approximately 2.3% of all searches.
If you know anything about statistics that might not sound significant; the generally-accepted threshold for statistical significance and error is 3%. But in Google/search land, the gross numbers are so big that the rules which apply to everyone else … well … don’t. Google recently revealed that even now, it’s never before seen fully 15% of the 100 billion search requests it receives each month.
Since Optimization is a component of Influency*, this deserves some attention. I could go all commercial-y and tell you that as achieving Influency gets harder you have an ever-growing numbers of reasons to contact The Answer Guy for help. And you do. But even if you believe you can manage your Integrated Marketing efforts on your own—especially if you do—you need to listen to something Matt Cutts just said (jump to the important bit at 2:15 in case you’re pressed for time):
Uh-Oh. Matt Cutts, the guy most responsible for what Google thinks of you and the content on your web site, just said that it’s OK to run advertising, but if you do you need “not to float PageRank“, and that you need to disclose the advertorial nature of what you show people.
The disclosure thing is a good idea. In fact, in many parts of the world including The United States, it’s the law. But seeing as this same Matt Cutts has previously said that PageRank doesn’t even (much) matter any more, and the same guy who regularly preaches that if you create great content you’ll all but automatically garner the search juice you deserve, it’s unsettling to think that Google is now telling us that we need to start being careful about how we use all that great content they want us creating. And remember: Google has actually admitted that they don’t know how to do SEO!
Google is also the same company that won’t run advertisements on this page describing the place where Yahoo!, Tumblr, Business, and Pornography intersect; not because there’s anything salacious on the page, but because the word “Porn” is in its title.
It’s enough to drive an Optimization, Marketing, and Influency consultant crazy. And if you’re a person just trying to do this whole Integrated Marketing thing the right way and are out there on your own? Well, that mess on your chair is probably pieces of your now-exploded brain. Uggh.
If you want to talk, just click that Contact link. And if you don’t … well … I guess it’s a good thing your brains match the fabric on your chair …