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Google bids goodbye to Google Webmaster Guidelines; enters Google Search Essentials

October 18, 2022 0 comments

Google has done a major refresh of Google Webmaster guidelines and rebranded it as Google Search Essentials. Apart from the rebranding, Google has updated and streamlined the guidelines for website owners and content publishers.

No more “webmaster”

One of the motivations for the rebranding is to move away from the word “webmaster.” This is in line with Google’s previous actions. For example, Google also rebranded Google Webmaster Central to Google Search Console.

What’s new?

As mentioned earlier, the new Google Search Essentials guidelines are now more streamlined.  The guidelines are categorized into three sections:

  1. Technical requirements — This section outlines the technical prerequisites that every website should take care of if they want to rank higher in search rankings. This includes ensuring that the page has indexable content, is functional, and isn’t blocked.
  2. Key best practices — This section contains additional considerations that can help Google find and rank better content on the SERPs. That includes key practices that revolve around creating high-quality and helpful content, using the right keywords in the right places, crawlable links, using structured data, JavaScript, images, rich snippets, etc., as per the best practices.
  3. Spam policies — This section contains all the behaviours and tactics that are prohibited by Google and can lead to a penalty and/or demotion of your site in search rankings. This section includes prohibited spam policies such as cloaking, doorways, link spam, keyword stuffing, sneaky redirects, thin affiliate pages, user-generated spam, spammy AI content, misleading functionality, etc.

Takeaways

There are multiple takeaways for local businesses that are serious about local SEO, organic traffic, and organic sales.

First, Google Webmaster Guidelines are no more. It has been rebranded as Google Search Essentials.

Second, the guidelines are now more streamlined than ever. It’s extremely easy now to find the right information because everything is neatly categorized into appropriate sections.

Third, Google has updated some of the guidelines to add more information or clarification. It’s important to go through the Google Search Essentials guidelines at least once to fully familiarize yourself with how to create and maintain your website content.

Here are two resources that can help you:

If you have any questions or if you’re struggling with local SEO, get in touch. We’re more than happy to help.

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