06 Oct 2017

Did Google Update Just Happen? And Other SEO Discussions: Weekly Forum Roundup

The big discussions this week included theories around the recent rankings shakeup and around Googles recent announcement to remove the first click free policy for publishers but is the new approach really a win for publisher?

Google also announced  that a huge increase to Adwords daily overspend budget limits.

Search News Discussions:

WMW members Share  Theories on SERP Shake Up

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Member GoodROI calls for explanations around the recent ‘Fall Follies’ in Google SERPS. The major discussion what was role  HTTPS had in terms of the recent volatility.

Some other noteworthy observations included:

September 8:

Skynet84: “My hosting is in USA my domain .com I have lose -50% of my organic traffic in just one day on the 8 th September and now after 21 days nothing changed. I have respected all guidelines always have minimalist and perfect user experience website with full of self made content.”

Featured Rich Snippets:

“After all, I feel like it’s the “answer box”. Today, I see answer boxes for nearly everything. This would explain why my traffic is down, while my position remains unchanged.”

Mobile vs. Desktop:

“Mostly nailed on the mobile side. Mobile: Down ~12% MoM at peak. Recovered to down ~4% MoM this week. “

Image Indexation:

Google is deindexing my images, I have 5 sites with 10k indexed images, but after oct 1st now they are all at 2-3k, which means they are deindexing around 70% images from all my sites, and the sites are unrelated to each other (different niche).

Google announces new adwords daily budget overspend limit

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Google announced via twitter that Adwords can now overspend double the set daily budget.

In the referenced help page, Google adds that any overdelivery will be credited back to the accounts.

Google Removing First Click Free Requirement For Publishers

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Google announced that they’re removing the controversial first click free requirement for publishers. In its place is ‘flexible sampling’, Google offers two different options:

Option 1: Metering – Requires publishers some number of free clicks, at their own discretion. This policy is like first click free except it allows for a limit on the number of times individual users get to see free content from Google.

Option 2: Lead in – Shows users a snippet of a full article.

In order to take part in flexible sampling, publishers must markup hidden content using JSON-LD, which will allow Google greater precision in terms of aggregating, filtering, and categorizing publisher content.

Featured Discussions:

HTTPS… external links update required?

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Webmaster World members discussed whether its worth updating inbound links to your website after switching protocols. From an SEO point of view, the general consensus seemed to be that it is not necessary but lucy24 did not that for inbound links referring traffic, it may be useful to updated the links for users saying, ”
Don’t forget your human users. Every redirect doubles the time before content starts showing up. For users on slow connections, that’s a measurable lag. For users who pay for bandwidth, that’s a few more bytes added to the total.

For that matter, it counts against your own bandwidth too; it’s one more thing for your server to deal with. Why bother with an extra request-and-response set if you don’t have to?”


Switched To HTTPS- Any SEO value to keeping CSP

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As part of a conversion to SSL (HTTPS), a Webmaster World member instituted a Content Security Policy (CSP) on their sites. The member also noted that they saw a 12% Google referral traffic bump after making the switch.

Should you retain a CSP after moving to HTTPS?

A Content Security Policy is a computer security standard that can be added to the HTTP header that provides an added layer of protection to help detect and mitigate cross site scripting and data injection attacks, which are used for security issues ranging from data theft, site defacement, as well as passing malware. The member was concerned if the CSP should be retained after the conversion to HTTPS and questions if its worth the extra work for the browser.

Member keyplyr recommends keeping it and states that it works in conjunction to HTTPS, and that “A CSP is probably the single most important security measure you can use in defense of you web properties.

Increase in Google traffic after move to HTTPS?

In addition to the Pjman, keyplyer also noted a bump in traffic after moving to HTTPS also. Member Aristole noted that the increase may actually be due to how switching to HTTPS impacts reporting stating that, “That’s probably just a reporting change. The newest browsers don’t provide some referal information to http sites, and as a result it’s reported as “direct” traffic even though it actually came from google. But when you switch to https, it’s reported correctly as coming from google.”

How Do You Promote New Brands, Product Names, And New Words

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Cre8asiteforums member cre8pc asks about using a branded name for a term at the exclusion of the generic version for what the service or product is. For example, ” a website where the company is a software developer and nowhere on the site do they use the word “Software”. They stick to using their product names only.” Cre8pc asks if there is an SEO reason for this this naming and reference methodology.

iamlost recommends, “actually, having unique brand/product names is a business best practice as it differentiates yours from all others. It’s the difference of being ‘Kleenex’ and ‘facial tissue”, ‘Levi’ and ‘buycheapjeans(dot)com’. Not using the latter to leverage the first..”

Member glyn adds, “If you are on brand you can register product names or company names as trademarks and submit that to Google so you can lower competitor QS for bidding on your keywords (but you can’t stop them doing that).

Advertising as thelostone says is the way to go and coupled with remarketing and landing pages this can be a powerful to mitgate the financial ruin that will most likely come if you are just running PPC without it.”



  1. DNN October 8, 2017 at 8:37 AM

    I’ve never heard of a CSP before. Now you have me wondering how i can possibly inquire with my hosting company to acquire such a certificate so I too can possibly see a nice bump in Google traffic.

    Just last month alone, I saw a “very nice traffic increase.” And I also saw a nice revenue increase as well. While I’m inching closer towards my revenue goals but still not there yet completely, I am smiling ear to ear for achieving some ground. As they say “slow progress is better than no progress.” 🙂

  2. Patrick Leonard October 10, 2017 at 11:54 PM

    I definitely advocate making the switch to https but I’ve never heard of CSP either.

  3. Kylian Gibbs October 12, 2017 at 6:56 AM

    In 2014, Google announced that going HTTPS — adding an SSL 2048-bit key certificate on your site — will give you a minor ranking boost. Google has been telling webmasters it is safe to do so for years. But you need to take the proper steps to ensure your traffic doesn’t suffer. That means make sure to communicate to Google that you moved your site from HTTP to HTTPS. So, if you haven’t moved your site to HTTPS you better do now.

    1. DNN October 25, 2017 at 8:59 AM


      Since making the https:// transformation, I can tell you 1st hand that your SEO is guaranteed to improve. But of course, you still have to post content frequently to your site. But your SEO will improve faster because Google and the rest of the search engine cowboys will quietly notice your https:// transformation and give you a nice boost. It takes no more than 5 months to see the positive SEO change. 🙂

  4. Andy Kuiper October 16, 2017 at 1:16 PM

    CSP? I’m going to have to find out more.

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