We hope you are in good health. Here are some of the major SEO news updates of the week that you need to know:
Search Related News and Updates from Major Search Engine
Gary Illyes from Google shed light on the importance of site structure for SEO. He explained that a hierarchical site structure is beneficial for search engine optimization, particularly for larger websites. This type of structure allows website owners to make specific changes or optimizations to individual sections while also providing search engines with the ability to treat different sections differently. The hierarchical site structure has become so highly regarded in the SEO community that it has been given four different names. However, Illyes also acknowledged that the choice between a hierarchical or flat site structure ultimately depends on the size and nature of the website in question.
During a recent Google Office Hours Q & A session, John Mueller addressed a concern regarding a site’s indexing. In doing so, he shed light on an important technical SEO aspect related to domains and subdomains that could contribute to the perception of indexing difficulties. Upon reviewing the site in question, Mueller quickly determined that the MVC framework and HTTPS were not responsible for the perceived indexing issues. Instead, he discovered that the site was indexed without the www subdomain. This meant that searching for the domain alone, without the subdomain, would reveal its indexed status. This insight highlights the importance of considering domain configurations when assessing indexing problems.
Over the weekend, there was a noticeable increase in Google search ranking volatility, causing speculation among SEO professionals. Starting on Friday, December 22nd, and continuing through the weekend, the fluctuations were quite intense. However, on Sunday, December 24th, things appear to have settled down. It is unclear whether this volatility was caused by a deliberate algorithm update or tweak by Google before the holiday break. Regardless, there are clear signals of ranking volatility during this period. This sudden shift in rankings has sparked discussions within the SEO community, both on various online platforms and forums. In addition, automated Google search ranking volatility tracking tools also recorded a spike in activity around the same time.
Bing has made an update to its page insights light bulb feature, enhancing its functionality. Users can now collapse and expand sections within the overlay page previews, allowing for a more customizable viewing experience. By default, the sections are opened, but with the simple click of a button, users can easily collapse the information within the page preview. This new feature provides users with greater control over their browsing experience, allowing them to focus on specific areas of interest and access information in a more organized manner.
In its latest experiment, Google is testing a new design for sitelinks. Sitelinks are additional links that appear below a website’s main search result and provide users with quick access to specific pages within the site. Traditionally, sitelinks have been displayed in a vertical format. However, Google is now testing a new format that showcases sitelinks in bubble or pill designs and layouts. This new design aims to make sitelinks more visually appealing and user-friendly, allowing users to navigate through websites more efficiently.
Microsoft’s recent addition of favicons to the links within Bing Chat / Copilot is aimed at improving user experience and increasing engagement. Favicons are small icons that represent a website or a brand and are typically displayed next to the URL in a web browser’s address bar. By incorporating favicons into the links, Microsoft intends to make them more visually appealing and noticeable to users. This visual enhancement is expected to make the links more clickable, ultimately leading to increased click-through rates and better user engagement. It is a strategic move by Microsoft to enhance the usability and effectiveness of their AI-generated answers within Bing Chat / Copilot.