Some of Google's biggest SERPs changes of recent times took place during the last few weeks, and we've been analyzing the data to assess exactly what the "Fred" update was all about. It seems it's a quality-related update which was targeting low value sites. It appears that the shakeup hit quite a few sites, and it's not likely to be over for a while yet. Let's have your feedback in our threads on the subject so we can better assess the impact.
Another Google topic worth a mention was the updated Google rater guidelines, which takes a new focus on sites with fake news, inaccurate content, and hate sites. These guidelines are a continuation of the extensive rater guidelines published previously, and if you want to get your updated copy, follow the link in our thread to download one for yourself. It's well worth reading.
There are some new statistics published which show that the number of hacked sites were up 36% since the previous year. This just goes to show how webmasters need to be vigilant and to follow the advice about keeping their systems up-to-date and backed up.
One quick note to acknowledge the end of an era with the closing of the Open Directory, DMOZ, on March 14, 2017. RIP.
WebmasterWorld's free tools always seem popular, so they'll get a mention here each month, along with the specialist web developers directory, and our Pro Area site reviews.
In the meantime, here is a selection of some topics and news discussed in the last few weeks. See you in the forums.
We're Feeling Lucky
Jim and Neil
Here are some of WebmasterWorld's Hottest Discussions and News this month.
Google Updates and SERP Changes - March 2017
Google Updates and SERP Changes - February 2017
Google's Gary Illyes Names Latest Algo Change: Fred Update
Updated Google Rater Guidelines: Fake News, Inaccurate Content & Hate Sites
Google Fred Update Targets Ad Heavy, Low Value Content Sites
RIP DMOZ: The Open Directory Project closes
Approaching Google SEO as a Zero Sum Game
Mobile Page Bounce Rates and New Benchmarks
Hacked Sites up 36pct in the Last Year
Google Reacts to Advertisers Suspending ads on YouTube
SEO Weather vs SEO Climate
Firefox 52 Released, With WebAssembly Support
Uniregistry Price Increases of 3000pct For Some New gTLDs
Google To Deprecate and Remove Trust From 30,000 Symantec-issued Extended Validation Certificates
Twitter Considering Enhanced Version of TweetDeck for Professionals
Android Comes Close to Challenge Windows For Top OS World-Wide
Google AdSense WordPress Plugin Deprecated
Twitter to Start Selling Pre-Roll Video Ads in front of Periscope Videos
Google Exposes IE and Edge Vulnerability "type confusion flaw"
Snap Inc. Trading 41pct Up, Valuing the Company at $33.6 Billion
Mozilla Acquires Read it Later Inc., Developers of Pocket
Vimeo Opens Up 360 Video With Revenue Earning Opportunities for Creatives
Apache Struts: Possible Remote Code Execution
Microsoft Docs.com Exposed Sensitive Files
U.S. Senate Says ISPs Can Share Your Browsing History Without Permission
Take the Facebook Demographics with a Pinch of Salt
Hackers Claim Access to 300 Million iCloud Accounts
Google adds Real-Time Location Sharing to Maps
LinkedIn adds Trending Storylines on Mobile and Desktop