A couple of days ago I mentioned the new Google patent that reveals a lot about the ways Google is now indexing sites. The patent is long and if you don’t know the ins and outs of the technical stuff can be a bit overwhelming – so I’ve been checking out what it all means from a few bloggers and webmasters who have the gift of translating it for dummies like me.
What they are saying is fascinating stuff (I’m shocked more people are not talking about it in the blogging community) – let me give you a few snippets.
Inside Google has these tips worth taking into account:
• PageRank isn’t about the number of links, its about link growth. Sheer volume of links is meaningless, because Google tracks historical link volume data, determining rises and falls in the number of links. If your site earns a steady number of links every month, it may never move up in the rankings, because it is not gaining in popularity. Link building campaigns are one step removed from meaningless, because they can never gain momentum. In a sense, web spam won’t help rankings as much as might be thought, because you cannot infinitely increase the rate of spammage, and the moment it drops off, your site is dead.
• How often you update affects everything. If you update every day, and then start updating once a week, your site is dropping, no two ways about it. In addition, Google keeps a close eye on sites that shoot up quickly, and checks if its spam related or a Slashdotting-type event.
• How long you register your domain name for affects your rankings. There’s a boost for sites registered for longer. How many websites will we see buying 100-year registrations now?
• Google also knows who owns more than one site, because of its registrar data. Linking from one of your own sites to another is useless, because Google knows.
SEOmoz has the most comprehensive commentary on the patent I’ve seen so far:
How Changing Content can Affect Rankings. Changing content over time has a huge impact in Google’s measures according to this patent. They use changes to determine “freshness” or “staleness” of websites and pages and how that data impacts the value of the links on the page as well its rankings. They’ll also measure large, “real”, content changes vs. superfluous changes and rank based on that data.
Spam Detection & Punishment – Google is employing many new systems of spam detection and prevention according to the patent. These include:
• Watching for sites that rise in the rankings too quickly
• Watching for registration information, IP addresses, name servers, hosts, etc that are on their “bad list”
• Growth of off-topic links
• Speed of link gain
• Percentage of similar anchor text
• Topic/Subject shifts or additions
Other discussions on this:
– Information Retrieval Based on Historical Data – Sandbox Explanation, Aging Delay?
– Google’s War on SEO – Documented
– Sandbox Explained by Google? “Information retrieval based on historical data
– New Google patent proves “sandbox” exists