I polled some fellow consultants in the industry and most agreed with me that the following are likely to be some of the significant changes in SEO next year.
In recent times Google updates have been more impactful and what was fine in the world of SEO is no longer acceptable (think of Pandas and Penguins). Heres some posts about some of the more interesting updates and how they may affect you.
Another domain diversity update was confirmed by Google last week.
In addition to already trying to reduce domain crowding in SERPS by having at least one similar algorithm update already and recently reducing the number of search results for branded terms to 7 (as I reported a week or so ago) Google is really trying to prevent sites from dominating page 1 organically. I think more so its aimed at whittling out aggregators in preference of brand owners who may have 2 or more pages ranked for the same search query which may reduce the ability of the brand to receive traffic. Im especially convinced that ‘domain diversity’ is less applicable to non branded terms as a search for a branded term e.g. ‘marriott london’ returns just 1 non marriott.co.uk page on page 1 of the organic search results.
I wrote earlier about what some were calling the Google Pirate update, which was affecting those sites with DMCA requests against them. Since then ive seen and heard of a number of sites which rely heavily on branded terms with severe ranking and traffic fluctuations from Google with ended as abruptly as they started. In addition to this theres a few reasons why I think that there is either a new update of Google Pirate 1.2 update imminent.
Fri 10th Aug 2012 a new but potentially site killing Google ranking algorithm update rolled out which went largely unnoticed amongst the SEO community. Without an official name (yet) the Google ‘Pirate’ update seeks to remove domains/urls from its search results, or in what seems to be alot of cases simply render those sites lower in its search results, that it deems is pirating other sites content.