As compared to the more than 50 updates made in April, the number is significantly lesser for search updates made in the month of May. Google has released the number of search quality updates it made in the month of May 2012- a total of 39. Among the more important changes made are Inorganic backlink signals and improvements to the Penguin update.

“Better application of inorganic backlinks signals. [launch codename "improv-fix", project codename "Page Quality"] We have algorithms in place designed to detect a variety of link schemes, a common spam technique. This change ensures we’re using those signals appropriately in the rest of our ranking.

Improvements to Penguin. [launch codename "twref2", project codename "Page Quality"] This month we rolled out a couple minor tweaks to improve signals and refresh the data used by the penguin algorithm.”

Other important changes include the variations in the way Google displays page titles. The search engine has rolled an update which allows it to present the best possible result titles, in case the extra-long current title gets truncated (in other words pages with two to three long tail keywords in the title will now be edited, and only the first keyword would show). There is another update regarding page titles where Google has bettered the efficiency of title generation systems, leading to a focused set of titles finding their way in the search results. The boilerplate anchors have been demoted in alternate title generation. Anything which does not describe the page accurately will go.

Freshness Updates Continue

The updates in May also have their share of freshness updates where we are again reminded that Google likes fresh content and fresh search results. These are the latest freshness updates:

  • Better detection of major new events. [project codename "Freshness"] This change helps ensure that Google can return fresh web results in realtime seconds after a major event occurs.
  • Smoother ranking functions for freshness. [launch codename "flsp", project codename "Freshness"] This change replaces a number of thresholds used for identifying fresh documents with more continuous functions.
  • Better detection of searches looking for fresh content. [launch codename "Pineapples", project codename "Freshness"] This change introduces a brand new classifier to help detect searches that are likely looking for fresh content.
  • Freshness algorithm simplifications. [launch codename "febofu", project codename "Freshness"] This month we rolled out a simplification to our freshness algorithms, which will make it easier to understand bugs and tune signals.”

Read the complete list of updates here. What do you think of these changes?


Navneet Kaushal is the Editor-in-Chief of PageTraffic Buzz. A leading search strategist, Navneet helps clients maintain an edge in search engines and the online media. Navneet is also the CEO of SEO Services company PageTraffic which is one of the leading search marketing company in Asia.