Google is constantly making changes to its protocols to improve user experience. Here is a roundup of changes so far this year alone:
Google PageRank has been removed
redPepper tip: Try MozRank – a free toolbar extension for Chrome and Firefox.
Google AdWords paid search results
February 24th 2016 – Google rolled out the new “4 pack” of paid ads above the organic/natural search results. Previously, it would display a “3 pack” of ads above the organic results and a “10 pack” along the right hand side of the results. What impact does this have for our advertisers? Well, obviously this means there is increased competition – previously to get a page 1 listing, there were 13 paid ad slots, now there are only 4.
redPepper tip: Recent studies have shown that ranks 1 & 4 get the highest CTR (click-through-rate) and it is, therefore, worth trying to achieve a number 1 or number 4 position.
Google My Business
Google uses three factors to determine which GMB listings (previously known as Google Places) to show: Relevance, Distance and Prominence. Prominence has recently been confirmed as a ranking factor and refers to how popular or well known a business or landmark is.
redPepper tip: To find out more about this go to: https://www.searchenginejournal.com/local-prominence-affect-local-seo/161691/
Google confirms top 3 ranking factors for organic listings
Content, Links & RankBrain are confirmed by Google as the top 3 ranking factors (in no specific order). RankBrain is an artificial intelligence system that is used alongside Google’s algorithm to help determine the best result for each search query.
redPepper tip: Read up on this at Google RankBrain: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jaysondemers/2015/11/12/what-is-google-rankbrain-and-why-does-it-matter/#89ada21301ae