Keep Your Website Off of Google's Naughty List

Google's principal engineer, Matt Cutts, dropped serious hints in March about an imminent that will penalize websites for being "overly optimized". Unfortunately, he didn't specify exactly what "overly optimized" means, or when this big shift will come--but you'd be wise to prepare your website now.

I contacted an industry expert to sort out exactly what you should and should not fear about GoogleGoogle's upcoming algorithm change. Judith Lewis is head of search at Beyond, which handles search engine optimization and digital marketing for clients including FacebookFacebook, IBMIBM, and the Hilton hotel chain. Alles zu Facebook auf Alles zu Google auf Alles zu IBM auf

Google Takes Aim at Trashy Search Results

Lewis thinks Google's impending algorithm change acknowledges a problem with junky search results. Thin affiliates, or sites that scrape content from other websites, are ranking too highly in the results, as are pages that purchase links requiring specific keywords included in the anchor text (the text you see when you hover over a hyperlink). For example, one of Lewis's clients had a few bad results for one of its preferred key terms, including a foreign language page from Belgium that had to be translated although obviously English terms were used. Google is likely taking measures to fix such problems.

Legitimate Businesses Are Caught in the Crossfire

Some legitimate businesses have had to go above and beyond with search optimization efforts to make up for a deficiency--such as a site using a shopping cart that doesn't translate well for Google search. Google is now effectively saying that you have to correct the core problem rather than trying to prove that your website is actually relevant for a term by engaging in excessive search engine optimization efforts.

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