On January 12, 2023, Google confirmed that the December 2022 Link Spam Update had finally finished rolling out. All in all, the update rolled out over 29 days since it was first announced on December 14, 2022.
The main reason for the update was to reduce or eradicate spammy links that don’t abide by Google’s guidelines. The update has been applied in all languages and uses what’s known as SpamBrain, a machine-learning system used to improve the detection of spam. It can detect spam from both the website linking to and the linked-to website, i.e., both incoming and outbound links.
Websites that don’t follow the guidelines will not be penalized per se but instead not be included or ignored. To avoid being hit or bouncing back from dropping ranking after the update, it’s essential to ensure that your links are natural and follow the guidelines.
It’s always better to get links naturally over time. If using affiliate links, ensure that they are tagged correctly.
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Google Says Linking To Multiple Sellers From a Product Review Page Could Boost Your Ranking: Google Developer Advocate Alan Kent recently spoke on a change to product reviews. Kent answered a question via Twitter that product review pages could get a higher ranking by linking to multiple sellers. This is advantageous as it gives readers different choices to consider when it comes to availability and price. By offering various ways for buyers to make purchases, you are essentially showing Google that you are trying to help your customers make the best possible choice. On the other hand, only providing one link may signal to Google that your main focus is generating an affiliate link. In other news regarding product pages and listings, as of February 15, 2023, all Google Business Profiles will only allow single product pricing. In other words, products with multiple prices or a price range will no longer be allowed. Custom call-to-actions will also no longer be allowed.
How Long Does It Take To Recover From Penalties Linke9 to Algorithm Updates: With all the various Google algorithm updates experienced of late, many have been asking how long it would take to bounce back should their website have been affected by any of the updates. In the latest Google SEO office hours podcast, Google suggests that it could take several months for a website that has been deemed “spammy” to be reevaluated. It is, of course, best to try to adjust as much of your low-quality content to align with Google’s guidelines. In a previous comment in November 2021, John Mueller, Google Search Liaison, mentioned that it could even take as long as six months to evaluate the overall quality of a website. It’s also important to note that websites that do not abide by Google’s guidelines and policies will be deindexed from Search results as well as face their ads being disabled.
Google Says Using Multiple Date Signals Helps Maintain the Credibility Of Webpages: Google recently emphasized the importance of including multiple date indicators on webpages. The reasoning behind this is to ensure that the correct date is displayed in search results. Danny Sullivan, Search Liaison for Google, stated via Twitter that this would help to minimize the chances of errors recurring. These errors could cause confusion or detract users from the website, which is why it’s so important for publishers to ensure that Google is provided with the proper signals. There are various ways to do this, one of which is using the correct HTML tags. To reduce confusion, it’s recommended only to use one clear and visible date. The best place would be between the text and the article’s headline.
Microsoft Bing Plans to Integrate ChatGPT In March: Tech Giant Microsoft recently announced that it plans to launch its integration with the artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot, ChatGPT, to help improve search results. In 2019, Microsoft invested $1 billion in OpenAI. The idea is that Microsoft will allow ChatGPT to answer queries in a conversation format rather than simply providing a list of search results. This could potentially give Microsoft an edge over its main competitor, Google if it successfully improves the overall experience for users. Although it has yet to be confirmed when this will change, ChatGPT is currently free. However, there are plans to charge users eventually. This means that Microsoft may be the only free access to ChatGPT.
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