The Mayday & Google Caffeine Update


“...Google Mayday & Caffeine Updates... how will this affect your website?”

Google has recently made two big changes to how they rank and index websites. The first change was the "Mayday" update which affects the way Google ranks websites in their search results. The second change was the launch of Google's highly anticipated search index, called "Caffeine", which affects how Google indexes websites.


The Mayday Update


“How do Long-tail keywords affect your website rankings?”

The "Mayday" update has affected how a website ranks for “Long-tail keywords”, keyphrases which are 3-4 words in length and contain a specific, detailed set of words stemming from a generic search term. Long-tail keywords are coveted by site owners as they are generally less competitive than more generic keywords and tend to have a higher rate of conversion. Although fewer people search using long-tail keywords those who do are often looking for a specific product or service making them much further along in the buying process.

This ranking change seems to be affecting large sites with pages dedicated to specific products or services. These types of pages often do not have many links to them, are buried deep within a site and do not contain a lot of unique content.


Google Caffeine and Mayday Updates


Google Caffeine


“...expectations for search are higher than they used to be.”

Google's newest search index system, Caffeine, allows Google to review and store data from websites much quicker than before. As the new data is found it is added to immediately to Google's index and into search results.

According to Google's blog, they built Caffeine to keep up with the web's rapid growth and to be able to better meet user’s expectations by providing the freshest content available. “Content on the web is blossoming. It's growing not just in size and numbers but with the advent of video, images, news and real-time updates, the average webpage is richer and more complex. In addition, people's expectations for search are higher than they used to be. Searchers want to find the latest relevant content and publishers expect to be found the instant they publish.”


What do These Changes Mean for You?


“How do you improve your rankings in the after-shock of Google's changes?”

There are many ways that a website owner can maintain, or even improve, rankings in the after-shock of Google's changes. Here are the three most important:

1. Keep content fresh –Any outdated information should be updated as soon as possible. If your website’s content is not something that will change regularly what can you do to provide fresh content? Blogs, user reviews, FAQs, events calendar, pictures from customers, article or news feeds, and contests are just a few of the many ways to keep your websites content fresh.

2. Keep content relevant – Relevant content is just as important as fresh content. If you find yourself struggling to come up with fresh content it may be tempting to publish something rather than nothing. DO NOT do this, content needs to be relevant. Posting an article on ski apparel when you're selling surfboards will not help; it may in fact hurt your website rankings.

3. Links –Links to the interior pages of your website, not only the home page help to increase rankings. Links to interior pages help the search engines to decipher which pages are important and which are not, in other words, which pages to rank. However, as with most things it’s quality not quantity that matters the most in link building.


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