November 13, 2011
It’s been an extremely busy year for the good folks at Google, not only did they roll out the game-changing Panda Updates, but now they have increased the stakes by implementing Google Fresh. This recent algorithm update is based on the Caffeine architecture introduced by Google a year ago and supposedly makes Google’s listings much fresher.
On the Official Google Blog where this new Update was announced, Amit Singhal states:
“We completed our Caffeine web indexing system last year, which allows us to crawl and index the web for fresh content quickly on an enormous scale. Building upon the momentum from Caffeine, today we’re making a significant improvement to our ranking algorithm that impacts roughly 35 percent of searches and better determines when to give you more up-to-date relevant results for these varying degrees of freshness.”
However, in an update, Singhal explains this measurement of 35% only applies to where at least one result was affected by the changes. In reality, this update only “noticeably” impacts 6 to 10% of searches.
“Update 11/7/11: To clarify, when we say this algorithm impacted 35% of searches, we mean at least one result on the page was affected, as opposed to when we’ve said noticeably impacted in the past, which means changes that are significant enough that an average user would notice. Using that same scale, this change noticeably impacts 6 – 10% of searches, depending on the language and domain you’re searching on.”
Regardless, Google Fresh will be influencing what sites/pages get listed in the top spots in Google. Already, these fresher listings are popping up for keyword searches where products or services are constantly changing or evolving such as in consumer electronics.
How Should Webmasters React to Google Fresh?
For the average webmaster or business site owner, this Update will probably mean they will have to examine how often their content is updated. Adding new fresh content has definitely become more important to your site and to your overall marketing strategy.
However, for the small business owner with limited resources, constantly adding new content is not really feasible. These small sites won’t be able to compete with major websites which have hundreds of writers or content contributors. Keeping up will simply be too costly or too time consuming for many small business site owners.
Create Blogs and Forums
Hiring someone or outsourcing your content creation is one option, but in many cases this content is not of the highest quality, which sort of defeats the whole intention. Many SEO experts are already suggesting one way to keep offering up fresh quality content is to run a blog and/or a forum on your site.
Blogs are excellent sources of fresh content and with their RSS feeds broadcasting your news means it is fast and immediate. Blogs are also very search engine friendly so tagging and indexing your content is already built-in and ready to go. They also create a Timestamp with your content so that it can be easily dated and assessed by the search engines.
Having a membership forum or site, where members contribute fresh content, is another viable option for web owners. Appointing moderators to oversee this content is probably a good idea to ensure quality standards and to cut down on spam.
Create Active Online Communities
Along those same lines, another good idea is to create an active online community around your blog, site or any one of the social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter or perhaps Google+. Announcing fresh content to these communities, especially if they are large and active, will get your content noticed by Google.
These social networks are designed to quickly pass fresh news or information along to all concerned and can be a great way to get your message out quickly and easily. Google+ has now opened up their service to accept brands, so you can have an account for your site or business.
Create a Current Sitemap
Any webmaster, no matter how small their site, can create a simple XML Sitemap of their site and submit it to Google Webmaster Tools. Make sure when you create any new content or pages, the new URLs are placed on your sitemap. This can be done manually or you can set up a server-side application or program which does this automatically. If you want help creating a sitemap try here:
Do Press Releases
With the introduction of Google Fresh, having your site or business regularly do press releases is a given. These releases are immediately picked up by Google and indexed. These releases can also be very SEO friendly so you can optimize them for your site’s targeted keywords. Places like PRWeb are extremely professional but they are expensive. There are also free press releases sites or services which you can use to get your fresh content out there.
Don’t Forget Google News Sites
You may or may not be aware that Google keeps a list of hand-picked news sites which they regularly crawl and index. These sites have passed Google’s standards and requirements, so they are excellent places to submit your content. Especially if you have a new site, getting Google to index and crawl your content will take some time, so placing your content and links on any of these Google News Sites may be worth the extra effort since it will help speed up the whole indexing process.
Give Google What Google Wants
Finally, don’t forget to keep adding fresh quality content to your own site on a regular basis. Regardless of your field, industry or subject matter, there is usually a constant flow of news associated with your topic, so placing a “news” section on your site may also help with Google Fresh. Time and time again, those sites and webmasters who give Google what Google wants, reap the biggest rewards.
All views, opinions and conclusions expressed in this article are solely those of the author, Titus Hoskins, who is a full time search engine marketer. He earns his living by ranking high in the search engines for lucrative keywords. His main site offers Free Guides on everything associated with running a business from Corporate Business Gifts to Online Fax Providers to Internet Marketing Tools.