Barry Schwartz

Heather Fletcher is senior content editor with Target Marketing.

And the chatter begins anew about “Google Penguin 4.0.” Since Christmas, marketers have been waiting to see site traffic fluctuations indicating an algorithm update. On Wednesday, they started reporting them on the WebmasterWorld.com forum.

Google's search engine results pages (SERPs) are now not only revealing which sites are mobile-friendly, but which ones aren't, according to the Search Engine Roundtable. On Tuesday, Barry Schwartz's article "Google's Text Version of Mobile-Friendly Web Pages in Search Results" shows significant progression during the past month in Google's SERP labeling. He found mobile icons appearing this month next to mobile-friendly results. On Monday, he saw crossed-out mobile icons next to some results that led to mobile-unfriendly sites. On Tuesday, Schwartz spotted text ("mobile-friendly") to the right of the appropriate URLs. [Editor's note: Searches on an Android device did not yield the same results as Schwartz found.

In the first half of this year, there has been a lot of SEO-related news coming out from Google. Google has pushed out many new algorithms, made many changes to the search result interfaces, penalized many websites and tactics, as well as sent out many warnings about upcoming penalties or actions. … I will summarize the changes in order of Google’s Panda algorithm Penguin algorithm, and other algorithm updates and launches. I will then discuss some of the manual actions taken and then some of Google’s warnings and statements. Google’s Panda algorithm launched in February 2011 and has since been

What’s that, a Panda Update you just felt? Some believe so. But Google says it is unlikely to confirm that or any future Panda Update, as it has done in the past, because of the new “gradual” rollout infrastructure it is using for Panda Update changes. Earlier this week at SMX West, Google’s Matt Cutts said a new Panda Update might hit this week, then later said that the update—and future updates—would no longer be apparent as an abrupt change. Rather, Panda changes would roll out over a series of days

Google’s head of search spam, Matt Cutts, announced new updates with Google’s Penguin and Panda algorithms and new link network targets in 2013. ... Cutts said there will be a large Penguin update in 2013 that he thinks will be one of the more talked about Google algorithm updates this year. Google’s search quality team is working on a major update to the Penguin algorithm, which Cutts called very significant. ... Cutts also announced there will be a Panda algorithm update this coming Friday or Monday

While unconfirmed, it is possible that Google rolled out a semi-major update over the past weekend, as webmasters have taken to the forums to complain about loss in traffic. Barry Schwartz points to one WebmasterWorld thread in particular, in which a bunch of webmasters seem to think Google has indeed made a significant change. The person who started the thread says some webmasters are experiencing a 30 to 40 percent drop in traffic. Another user says they saw a 30 to 40 percent drop for a ten-year-old “authority site.”

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