The Featured Snippet is the official SEO newsletter of Performics and is dedicated to keeping you update-to-date with the latest SEO industry news, trends, and events – all in an easy-to-read, summed up format. See below for the latest version of The Featured Snippet.
In the May 2019 issue of The Featured Snippet:
Google held its annual developer’s conference in Mountain View and shared big announcements that affect the SEO industry. Here are the highlights from Google I/O 2019:
Google announced that Googlebot is now evergreen, which means it will continuously update with the latest version of Chrome and will now be able to support more features of modern websites. This update will make it easier for developers to ensure their websites are working with Googlebot to be crawled, ranked, and indexed.
Google announced several updates coming to Google image search. Here are some of the highlights:
Google will now start indexing podcasts and could soon be returning audio clips in search results.
Google announced an entirely new Google Search Console site speed report that is currently in BETA. Here’s a quick look at the new report:
Google announced a big change in how it displays its mobile results including adding favicons for organic search listings and black “Ad” labels. Below is Google’s official announcement on Twitter and a look at the new mobile SERP results, which have officially rolled out:
Google released its latest iteration of the Search Quality Evaluator’s Guidelines—a 164-page set of guidelines used to help human “quality raters” evaluate online content and provide feedback to Google. Here are some key changes to the Search Quality Evaluator’s Guidelines:
Content is now more thoroughly graded on a page-by-page and query-by-query basis rather than relying entirely on the site’s authority.
Restrictions on what qualifies as an expert in all content outside of the “your money, your life” (YMYL) category has been loosened. Now, content authors can show their expertise by writing content that demonstrates their level of expertise. For example, a DIY blogger does not need a bio proving they’ve taken home design or woodworking classes. Instead, the quality of the how-to and informational content speaks for itself.
Language around interstitials (like app download pop-ups) is stricter this time around which likely means these will continue to be demoted.
Google announced that starting on July 1, 2019, all new websites that have not been indexed by Google will be using the mobile-first index. Older websites that are not yet ready for this index will remain in the desktop-first index for the time being while Google continues to monitor these sites. Below is the official announcement from Google:
Google released a new feature in SERPs that will utilize the Google Lens and augmented reality (AR). This feature allows searchers to use their cameras to view and interact with 3D models in real time. Below shows the feature in action:
Many retailers, such as Wayfair and Amazon, are already using this feature and allowing customers to view products like furniture and décor in their homes in real time.
You can also check out the announcement at Google I/O at 29:00 mark in the video below:
Bing announced that it had uploaded its open-source algorithm to the GitHub project. The algorithm known as Space Partition Tree And Graph (SPTAG) allows for searching through billions of pieces of information in milliseconds. The algorithm is designed to help search engines deliver more relevant results faster.
Releasing valuable algorithms and data like SPTAG will allow developers to create their own search engines or submit improvements to the already-advanced algorithm. The below video shows an explanation of vector search and why Bing is open-sourcing it:
Bing hit its 10-year anniversary on May 28. Released four years after Microsoft’s first foray into search, MSN Search, Bing has risen to become one of the most-used search engines in the world and has been on the forefront of many SEO tools and features. Bing was the first, for example, to release a disavow tool for spam-ridden links as well as releasing contextual news spotlights in user’s search results.