June 21, 2024

What the Google Leak Really Means

SEO Trends

In late May, news broke of an internal document leak from Google, revealing information about how the search engine ranks content.

Many SEO experts have reviewed the data, and while many are concluding the information is contradictory and may not be the most updated version of the algorithm, there are still things we can learn.

Here are a few of the applicable takeaways from the 2,500+ GitHub modules with 14,000+ attributes leaked earlier this spring.

    • Tracking: If you use the Chrome browser, Google is tracking everything you do to learn more about user behaviour
    • Spam Triggers: While it’s good to optimize your pages for SEO, over-optimized links (exact matching keywords) and keyword stuffing (re-using the same keyword over and over) triggers a spam demotion
    • Navigation: If your website has poor navigation, your ranking will be lower than websites with good navigation
    • Font Size: Google rewards larger links and bolded text (this is also good for accessibility)
    • Video: If a site has more than 50% video it is re-classified as a video site

Why This Matters

No one really knows what Google’s algorithm is looking for, so this document leak has shed at least a little light onto how the search engine ranks and categorizes content.

While we aspire to create outstanding resources that people discover organically, we rely on search engines to boost our visibility. When a search engine ranks a site highly for specific keywords or themes, it naturally attracts more visitors.

The biggest takeaway from this leak is that Google is looking for the best content to present in response to user queries and it’s continuing to try and figure out how to do so. This means the rules for ranking will keep changing, and so rather than chasing rankings, our focus should be on creating high-quality content that can withstand even the most arbitrary algorithm change.

Next Steps

If you’re curious about the technical aspects of the Google document leak, read this article from Search Engine Land.

When is the last time you updated your search engine optimization strategy? If it’s time for an audit, get in touch. We stay on top of the ever-changing algorithm shifts so you don’t have to.

Robyn Roste
Media Manager | robyn@eaglecom.ca