Google Fred & The February Seven 2017 Algorithm Changes

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Website owners need all the public attention they can get for them to become successful. Without a constant stream of visitors, small and medium sized business’ sites operating online will not be able to last very long, or have a high impact, making them quite problematic to maintain from a time as well as a cost stand point.

Website traffic should help to provide revenue to site owners via clicks, page visits, referrals and buys allowing them to earn some money to at a minimum keep the site running. The formula has been this way for quite some time with website owners producing regular content to keep their target audience engaged and interest. The latest Google update however, has seemed to change the entire formula which is of course posing concern to many.

Let us look at Google Fred update and how it has affected a huge number of websites since February 2017.

Google Fred & The February Seven 2017 Algorithm Changes

It should be noted that Google has engaged in major ranking algorithm changes since its earliest days of influence. This in turn has resulted in wiping out thousands, or hundreds of thousands, of sites on a regular basis which had previously been able to monetise content via advertising due to search referral traffic. The same can also be said in regard to the latest Google’s Fred update hitting low-value content sites that focuses on revenue and not users. Many affected sites have reportedly seen up to a 90% drop in traffic.

The term came from Google’s Gary Illyes, who has jokingly suggested that all updates be named “Fred.”

The update from Google In February 2017 has led to a number of webmasters reporting some notable signal changes that indicate a comprehensive update. This time, Google has targeted those who are into aggressive link building. They seem as though they are trying to pull down black hat link or non-quality link spamming on a grand scale.

This in turn led website owners to the conclusion that the updates made drastic changes to the Google algorithm. Google wants access to content on mobile to be simpler for users and therefore it has proposed to penalize those websites that have annoying pop-ups. With that being said, it seems that out-of-date pop-ups and cookie warnings have been excluded from this update.

Websites who are known to provide ad heavy, low value content were targeted primarily. In an effort to fix the issue, some of the webmasters choose to remove their ads which in turn resulted to huge recoveries. Many however, are speculating that Fred is not new but rather had it’s dial turned up which meant more sites were hit by it than ever before. Maybe some of the previous unnamed updates, maybe the Phantom updates were smaller versions of this Fred update or maybe not – but to have sites recover big time, that means something previous hit them.

Of course this has created something of a catch 22 situation, low traffic means low revenue from ads, less ads and more traffic also means less revenue than usual. For many it’s created a difficult situation and as usual Google has not made the situation entirely clear.

Google Fred has been serving as the buzz around digital communities presently for obvious reasons. Website owners need not panic right away especially if they are known to provide high quality content to their visitors. Websites however, who are spamming the same articles that are filled to the brim with ads will need to make the necessary changes. Of course the same can also be said with regards to websites providing clickbait articles that offer little to no value.

The best thing to do right now seems to be keeping a close eye on traffic, monitoring for any losses and then updating your site with quality content if you start to see losses. Of course quality should always be kept in mind and promoted with fresh and engaging content.


About the Author:

I've been publishing digital magazines since 1999 and had 20 years in hard-copy magazine publishing. I know what Google wants - and our company can very much help your business deliver it!
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