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Google Search Quality Adjustments for April

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Google just announced via their [URL="http://insidesearch.blogspot.com/2012/05/search-quality-highlights-53-changes.html"]blog[/URL] the official search quality and algorithm adjustments made in April. They made sure to say that is was the real list since they had announced some fake ones in honor of April 1st that did not make it to this official list. Here are some of the main changes that affect us as internet marketers.
[LIST][*][B]Anchors bug fix.[/B] [launch codename "Organochloride", project codename "Anchors"] This change fixed a bug related to our handling of anchors.[*][B]More domain diversity.[/B] [launch codename "Horde", project codename "Domain Crowding"] Sometimes search returns too many results from the same domain. This change helps surface content from a more diverse set of domains.[*][B]More local sites from organizations. [/B][project codename "ImpOrgMap2"] This change makes it more likely you’ll find an organization website from your country (e.g. mexico.cnn.com for Mexico rather than cnn.com).[*][B]Improvements to local navigational searches. [/B][launch codename "onebar-l"] For searches that include location terms, e.g. [[URL="https://www.google.com/search?q=dunston+mint+seattle"]dunston mint seattle[/URL]] or [[URL="https://www.google.com/search?q=Vaso+Azzurro+Restaurant+94043"]Vaso Azzurro Restaurant 94043[/URL]], we are more likely to rank the local navigational homepages in the top position, even in cases where the navigational page does not mention the location.[*][B]Improvements to how search terms are scored in ranking.[/B] [launch codename "Bi02sw41"] One of the most fundamental signals used in search is whether and how your search terms appear on the pages you’re searching. This change improves the way those terms are scored.[*][B]More text from the beginning of the page in snippets. [/B][launch codename "solar", project codename "Snippets"] This change makes it more likely we’ll show text from the beginning of a page in snippets when that text is particularly relevant.[*][B]Smoother ranking changes for fresh results. [/B][launch codename "sep", project codename "Freshness"] We want to help you find the freshest results, particularly for searches with important new web content, such as breaking news topics. We try to promote content that appears to be fresh. This change applies a more granular classifier, leading to more nuanced changes in ranking based on freshness.[*][B]Improvement in a freshness signal. [/B][launch codename "citron", project codename "Freshness"] This change is a minor improvement to one of the freshness signals which helps to better identify fresh documents.[*][B]No freshness boost for low-quality content. [/B][launch codename “NoRot”, project codename “Freshness”] We have modified a classifier we use to promote fresh content to exclude fresh content identified as particularly low-quality.[*][B]Tweak to trigger behavior for Instant Previews.[/B] This change narrows the trigger area for[URL="http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2010/11/beyond-instant-results-instant-previews.html"]Instant Previews[/URL] so that you won’t see a preview until you hover and pause over the icon to the right of each search result. In the past the feature would trigger if you moused into a larger button area.[*][B]Improvements to news clustering for Serbian. [/B][launch codename "serbian-5"] For news results, we generally try to cluster articles about the same story into groups. This change improves clustering in Serbian by better grouping articles written in Cyrillic and Latin. We also improved our use of “stemming” -- a technique that relies on the “[URL="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stem_(linguistics)"]stem[/URL]” or root of a word.[*][B]Better query interpretation.[/B] This launch helps us better interpret the likely intention of your search query as suggested by your last few searches.[*][B]News universal results serving improvements.[/B] [launch codename "inhale"] This change streamlines the serving of news results on Google by shifting to a more unified system architecture.[*][B]UI improvements for breaking news topics.[/B] [launch codename "Smoothie", project codename "Smoothie"] We’ve improved the user interface for news results when you’re searching for a breaking news topic. You’ll often see a large image thumbnail alongside two fresh news results.[*][B]More comprehensive predictions for local queries. [/B][project codename "Autocomplete"] This change improves the comprehensiveness of autocomplete predictions by expanding coverage for long-tail U.S. local search queries such as addresses or small businesses.[*][B]Improvements to triggering of public data search feature.[/B] [launch codename "Plunge_Local", project codename "DIVE"] This launch improves triggering for the [URL="http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/adding-search-power-to-public-data.html"]public data search feature[/URL], broadening the range of queries that will return helpful population and unemployment data.[*][B]More efficient generation of alternative titles. [/B][launch codename "HalfMarathon"] We use a variety of signals to generate titles in search results. This change makes the process more efficient, saving tremendous CPU resources without degrading quality.[*][B]More concise and/or informative titles. [/B][launch codename "kebmo"] We look at a number of factors when deciding what to show for the title of a search result. This change means you’ll find more informative titles and/or more concise titles with the same information.[*][B]More spelling corrections globally and in more languages.[/B] [launch codename "pita", project codename "Autocomplete"] Sometimes autocomplete will correct your spelling before you’ve finished typing. We’ve been offering advanced spelling corrections in English, and recently we extended the comprehensiveness of this feature to cover more than 60 languages.[*][B]More comprehensive triggering of “showing results for” goes international. [/B][launch codename "ifprdym", project codename "Spelling"] In some cases when you’ve misspelled a search, say [pnumatic], the results you find will actually be results for the corrected query, “pneumatic.” In the past, we haven’t always provided the explicit user interface to say, “Showing results for pneumatic” and the option to “Search instead for pnumatic.” We recently started showing the explicit “Showing results for” interface more often in these cases in English, and now we’re expanding that to new languages.[*][B]Improvements to SafeSearch for videos and images.[/B] [project codename "SafeSearch"] We’ve made improvements to our SafeSearch signals in videos and images mode, making it less likely you’ll see adult content when you aren’t looking for it.[*][B]Improved SafeSearch models.[/B] [launch codename "Squeezie", project codename "SafeSearch"] This change improves our classifier used to categorize pages for SafeSearch in 40+ languages.[*][B]"Sub-sitelinks" in expanded sitelinks. [/B][launch codename "thanksgiving"] This improvement [URL="http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/subcultures/inception"]digs deeper[/URL] into [URL="http://insidesearch.blogspot.com/2011/08/evolution-of-sitelinks-expanded-and.html"]megasitelinks[/URL] by showing sub-sitelinks instead of the normal snippet.[*][B]Better ranking of expanded sitelinks.[/B] [project codename "Megasitelinks"] This change improves the ranking of megasitelinks by providing a minimum score for the sitelink based on a score for the same URL used in general ranking.[*][B]Sitelinks data refresh. [/B][launch codename "Saralee-76"] Sitelinks (the links that appear beneath some search results and link deeper into the site) are generated in part by an offline process that analyzes site structure and other data to determine the most relevant links to show users. We’ve recently updated the data through our offline process. These updates happen frequently (on the order of weeks).[*][B]Less snippet duplication in expanded sitelinks.[/B] [project codename "Megasitelinks"] We’ve adopted a new technique to reduce duplication in the snippets of expanded sitelinks.[*][B]Keyword stuffing classifier improvement. [/B][project codename "Spam"] We have classifiers designed to detect when a website is [URL="http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=66358"]keyword stuffing[/URL]. This change made the keyword stuffing classifier better.[*][B]Better HTML5 resource caching for mobile.[/B] We’ve improved caching of different components of the search results page, dramatically reducing latency in a number of cases.[/LIST]

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