Google’s Search Liaison announced a “change” that will reduce duplicate site listings in the search results. The goal of this change is to show more diverse websites. This change is called the Site Diversity Change. It’s a change to how Google shows websites in the search results, but it’s not a change to how Google ranks websites.
Site Diversity Change Takeaways
1. Not Part of June Broad Core Update Although this change launched roughly at the same time as the June 2019 Broad Core Update, it’s not a part of that update.
2. Not an Update – It’s a Change Google made a point to refer to this as a change and not an update. Danny Sullivan explicitly stated that it was his opinion that this is not an update because this involved no update to the ranking algorithm.
Some people have a wide definition of an update. For them, if it changes the way the search results are displayed, then it’s an update. But under that overly broad definition, if Google changes how many ads are displayed before the organic SERPs, then that’s an update, even though it has nothing to do with the ranking algorithm.
Is this an update or not an update? That depends on how broad your definition of an update is. I believe Danny Sullivan has a reasonable definition.
3. Site Diversity is Not Across the Board The diversity change does not affect all search results. Some search results will continue to show more than one result if Google decides it’s relevant.
In my opinion, depending on the context, when Google says “relevant,” it can be helpful to understand that word in the context of the user. SEOs commonly think in terms of a web page being relevant to a search phrase.
But many times it makes more sense to think about relevance in terms of how the web page is relevant to the user who is typing the search phrase.
When put into that context, Google’s use of the word “relevant” makes more sense because if users expectations are such that they are satisfied with more than one page from a single site, then it makes sense for Google to continue showing more than one page from that site.
4. Subdomains Will Be Treated as Part of the Site
Subdomains will be treated as if they are a part of the main domain. But not all the time.
Here is the original tweet by Google SearchLiaison:
“Have you ever done a search and gotten many listings all from the same site in the top results? We’ve heard your feedback about this and wanting more variety. A new change now launching in Google Search is designed to provide more site diversity in our results….
This site diversity change means that you usually won’t see more than two listings from the same site in our top results. However, we may still show more than two in cases where our systems determine it’s especially relevant to do so for a particular search….
Site diversity will generally treat subdomains as part of a root domain. IE: listings from subdomains and the root domain will all be considered from the same single site. However, subdomains are treated as separate sites for diversity purposes when deemed relevant to do so…
Finally, the site diversity launch is separate from the June 2019 Core Update that began this week. These are two different, unconnected releases.”
Google’s Danny Sullivan Reveals Site Diversity Launch Date
It was Google’s Danny Sullivan, tweeting from his own Twitter account who tweeted that the change launched approximately on Tuesday June 3rd, 2019.
“It started a little bit about two days ago but went fully live today. Personally, I wouldn’t think of it like an update, however. It’s not really about ranking. Things that ranked highly before still should. We just don’t show as many other pages.”
Google’s Danny Sullivan clarified the date of the site diversity launch and emphasized that he would not characterize it as an update, which is why it’s being referred to as a change.
Google posted a notice that between the dates of June 5 through June 7, it was unable to capture data around image search traffic. This is just a reporting bug and did not impact actual search traffic, but the Search Console performance report may show drops in image search traffic in that date range.
The notice. The notice read, “June 5-7: Some image search statistics were not captured during this period due to an internal issue. Because of this, you may see a drop in your image search statistics during this period. The change did not affect user Search results, only the data reporting.”
How do I see this? If you login to Google Search Console, click into your performance report and then filter by clicking on the “search type” filter. You can then select image from the filters.
Here is a screen shot of this filter:
Why we should care. If your site gets a lot of Google Image search traffic, you may notice a dip in your traffic reporting within Google Search Console. You may have not noticed a similar dip in your other analytics tools. That being said, Google said this is only a reporting glitch within Google Search Console and did not impact your actual traffic to your web site.
About The Author
Barry Schwartz is Search Engine Land’s News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on SEM topics.
Facebook announced a change to it’s algorithms that will affect the reach of comments on a post. Comments that have specific quality signals will be highly ranked. Low quality comment practices may result in less reach.
Comment Ranking in News Feeds
Facebook noted that not only are posts ranked in news feeds but comments are also ranked as well.
Posts with comments that have positive quality signals will be seen by more people. Posts with low quality signals will have their news feed reach reduced.
Facebook Comment-Quality Signals
Facebook noted that their updated comment algorithm has four features:
User indicated preferences
User interaction signals
Integrity Signals are a measure of authenticity. Comments that violate community standards or fall into engagement-bait are negative signals. Violations of community standards are said to be removed.
Facebook engagement bait is a practice that has four features:
1. React Baiting
Encouraging users to react to your post
2. Follow and Share Baiting
This is described as telling visitors to like, share or subscribe.
3. Comment Baiting
Encouraging users to comment with a letter or number are given as examples.
. Monetization Baiting
This is described as asking for “stars” in exchange for something else, which could include something trivial like “doing push ups.”
User Indicated Preferences
This is a reference to user polls that Facebook conducts in order to understand what users say they wish to see in comments.
User Interaction Signals
These are signals related to whether users interact with a post.
This is a reference to how users hide or delete comments made in their posts.
Here is how Facebook describes it:
“People can moderate the comments on their post by hiding, deleting, or engaging with comments.
Ranking is on by default for Pages and people with a a lot of followers, but Pages and people with a lot of followers can choose to turn off comment ranking.
People who don’t have as many followers will not have comment ranking turned on automatically since there are less comments overall, but any person can decide to enable comment ranking by going to their settings. (See more details here.) “
Facebook Targeting Low Quality Comments
One of the stated goals of this update is to hide low quality posts from people’s Facebook feeds and to promote high quality posts by people you might know.
This is how Facebook described it:
“To improve relevance and quality, we’ll start showing comments on public posts more prominently when:
The comments have interactions from the Page or person who originally posted; or
The comments or reactions are from friends of the person who posted.”
Read Facebook’s announcement here: Making Public Comments More Meaningful
Need to quickly build a campaign or add keywords to an existing one? This script will do the work for you!
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I’m a firm believer in Single Keyword per Ad Group (SKAG) structure – it increases ad/keyword relevance and therefore improves quality score, makes CPCs cheaper, gets you a higher ad rank and a better CTR.
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What does the script do?
This tool will save a lot of time with small-scale builds where you know exactly which keywords and ad copy you need, for example when you’re adding a few keywords to an existing campaign.
You input your campaign name, keywords, headlines, descriptions, paths and final URL, and it will output three tabs for you: one with keyword combinations, one with negatives, and ads to upload to Google Ads Editor.
It creates one exact and one broad match modifier campaign and creates a list of keywords as exact negatives in the broad campaign to make sure that search terms that match exactly will go through the exact keyword.
I’m sure you’re dying to give it a whirl, so let’s get cracking!
How do you use it?
Make a copy of this spreadsheet (note: you’ll need to authorize the script to run). You’ll find all the instructions there as a future reminder.
Once you’ve got the spreadsheet ready, input the following:
The campaign name
The campaign name delimiter to distinguish between broad and exact campaigns
Headline 1 (if this cell is not specified, then it will be the same as the keyword)
Optionally, headline 3
Optionally, description 2
Optionally, path 1 and path 2
The final URL
The keywords (you can keep going outside of the box with these!)
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You can also optionally create a second ad variant by choosing the part of your text you want to vary (e.g., headline 2 or description 2) and inputting the copy. Otherwise, just select “None” from the dropdown menu.
Once you’re done, click the gigantic “Go!” Button, and wait for the magic to happen.
It will generate three tabs labelled “Keywords,” “Negatives” and “Ads.” If you want to run the script again with different keywords, make sure you save these tabs elsewhere or rename them to prevent the script from overriding them.
Finally, you can paste these tabs into Editor and update all the relevant settings and adjustments. Job done!
DOWNLOAD: You’ll need to authorize the script to run after you make a copy of this spreadsheet.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.
About The Author
Daniel Gilbert is the CEO at Brainlabs, the best paid media agency in the world (self-declared). He has started and invested in a number of big data and technology startups since leaving Google in 2010.