An SEO Guide to the Google March Update

Google has updated its search engine algorithms again. If you don’t follow all things Google, you may not have noticed anything. But this update has definitely affected search ranking. Like with most updates, Google isn’t sharing how the algorithm. Nothing makes business owners and SEO specialists more frantic than seeing their ranks drop and not knowing why. So far, many SEO experts have shared their theories on how Google’s March update is functioning. If you or your client’s website ranking has taken a hit, continue reading. We have compiled all the leading theories and probably solutions

Links & Anchor Text

A famous blackhat SEO strategy is link farming. Google has gone a long way to categorize good backlinks and spam backlinks. Google’s algorithm is designed to penalize websites with backlinks located on spam sites. Based on some of the websites that have dropped in ranking, it is possible the algorithm has been adjusted for this reason. But there is more evidence that the March update is targeting anchor text. Recently, Google updated its patent around anchor text. Traditionally, Google looks at the hyperlinked text for keywords about where the link is going. For example anchor text that says “window cleaning” should lead to a window cleaning website. Google now looks for keywords not just in the anchor text, but around it as well. This means, if a link with accurate anchor text isn’t supported by it’s surrounding content, it may not be as valuable to your site’s ranking.

Click Metrics & Bounce Rate

Another dominating theory on the March update is that the update is based around click metrics. The theory suggests, that websites are being ranked based on bounce rate, click through rate, and session duration. Although these metrics are important, and good indicators of how your content is performing, it is unlikely that they are ranking factors. The health of these metrics won’t penalize your website, but if these metrics are not good that is most likely a sign of other problems that are lowering your rank. Even if they don’t directly affect rank, click metrics are still an important gauge of your success, and there are ways to improve your click metrics.

Rank Fixing Solutions

Regardless of which theories about the March update are true, it is clear that ranking has taken a dip for many websites. If your ranking has dipped, check your links and metrics. Remove backlinks to your site that have unrelated anchor text.  Make sure your content is relevant and answers projected user queries. Consider creating content around FAQ pages. FAQ pages are a great way to design content that Google ranks highly.

For more SEO information, check out our other blog posts. For a free SEO website analysis contact us.

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