I’d say the past month was a time where Google ramped up their testing of the mobile first index. In fact, they already rolled it out for a few sites they said. So we have a lot more around that below. We did see some algorithm updates and fluctuations, none of which Google confirmed, although they did say they plan on confirming some in the future.

Google killed off the first click free program for flexible sampling and is strongly encouraging schema use for paywalled content. Also Google changed how they show country specific search results a week or so ago.

On the SEO front, Google talked about improving vs pruning content, how AMP works with the mobile first index and hinted at off site signals they may be using.

Let’s not forget that Danny Sullivan became a Googler this month.

The ongoing WebmasterWorld thread is relatively quiet for the first couple days of November.

There is a lot but it was not one of those crazy months. Here are the stories I pulled out for the past month:

Google Algorithm Updates:

  • Google Search Algorithm & Ranking Update : October 7th – 9th
  • Google Search Algorithm & Ranking Update Brewing?
  • Google Mobile Ranking Search Update, Mobile First Index Related?
  • Google Says They Are Not Done Announcing Future Algorithms

Google Mobile First:

  • Google Testing Mobile First Index In The Wild
  • Google Has Started The Mobile First Indexing, For Some Sites At Least
  • Google Mobile First Index Is Live For Few Sites & Never Will Stop Rolling Out
  • Google: Mobile First Index Rolls Out On Host Level Per Site
  • How To Tell If Google Is Testing The Mobile First Index
  • Google May Message Webmasters With Mobile First Indexing Issues

Google Search:

  • Google: Strongly Encourages Paywalled Content Markup With Flexible Sampling
  • Google Won’t Change Search Results Based On Google Domain Names Anymore

Google SEO:

  • Google Ranking Algorithm Same For Top Ten Results As Top Hundred Results
  • Google Retake: Improving Content & Pruning Content Are Both Valid Strategies
  • Google: Pruning Content Never Should Have Worked For Panda
  • Google: Pruning Content Is Not Safe; Instead Make It Better
  • Google: Got AMP & Desktop But No Mobile Page? Google Will Index The Desktop Page.
  • Google Short Webmaster/SEO Question & Answer Videos
  • Google: Penguin Is On Autopilot & Only Tweaked Occasionally
  • Google Suggests They Use Off-Site Sentiment Analysis For Ranking
  • Google: Featured Snippets Are Evolving & Changing
  • Did Google Say Affiliate Sites Are Not Quality Sites?
  • Google Does Not Want To Depend On Structured Data & Schema In Future
  • Google: Structured Data Not Required For Rich Snippets But Recommended
  • Google Date Bylines In Search Results Snippets Penalty
  • Google May Stop Crawling Old AJAX Scheme With Escape Fragment URLs Soon
  • Google Ignores Symbols For Rankings
  • Google: Grammar Does Not Impact SEO & Search Rankings
  • Google: Duplicate Content Issues Are Rainy Day Tasks
  • Google: Your Multilingual Pages Shouldn’t Be Word For Word Translation
  • Google: Use Fetch & Submit To Increase Indexing Speed
  • Google Measures Server Response Time In Milliseconds, Is 200 Milliseconds The Benchmark?
  • Google’s John Mueller Comments On PageRank For Internal Links
  • Google: Avoid Changing Images URLs
  • Google: Disabling Right Click & Content Selection Doesn’t Impact SEO
  • Google: Comments Better On Your Site Then On Social Networks
  • How Cyrillic Script Impacts Google Search Rankings
  • Google: HTTPS Migrations Don’t Result In Traffic Loss

Google Search Console:

  • Google Search Console Beta Launch Should Give Us A Years Worth Of Data
  • Google Sends Survey To Search Console Beta Testers
  • Google: The Link Report Is Not A Real Time Monitor Of Links
  • When Is Voice Query Data Coming To Google Search Analytics?
  • Google Crawl Stats Report Includes HTML, Images, PDFs & Even AdBot Crawler

Google Local:

  • Google My Business Integrates Booking Partners To Book Appointments & More
  • Google Tests Local Q&A Feature On Desktop Search Results
  • Google Test Hotel Pricing Slider On Desktop
  • Google My Business API Supports Google Posts
  • New Google My Business Go-To Guides

Google User Interface:

  • Google Tests Blue Instant AMP Label In Search
  • Google Tests Single AMP Icon In Search Results Again
  • Google Mobile Search Tests New Design For Did You Mean
  • Google Rounded Search Results Design Interface Tests Continues
  • Google Shows Emojis Again For Some Search Results
  • Is Google Pushing The Local Q&A Feature To Desktop? I Think So.
  • Google Tests Image Thumbnails In Search Results Snippets, Again
  • Google Tests New Desktop Sitelinks Format

Google Misc:

  • Danny Sullivan As A Noogler, New Googler
  • Google Ranking Fair: Where Google Engineers Show Off Future Search Changes
  • Google Is Hiring Webmaster Trends Analysts, Like John & Gary

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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