When Matt Cutts talks the Digital world listens. And why not, he is an important man for the SEO and SEM community. Recently, Matt disclosed that the search engine behemoth Google is working on a search ranking penalty for Websites and WebPages that are “over-optimized” or “SEO’ed too much.”
This announcement came at a recently concluded panel discussion at SXSW named “Dear Google & Bing: Help Me Rank Better!” The SEO professionals and clients have a new learning. Google has been working on a new penalty that will target websites that over optimize pages for search engines.
Matt Cutts mentioned that the new over optimization penalty will become a part of search results parameters as soon as a few weeks.
The purpose is to “level the playing field,” Cutts said. Given Google’s unwavering loyalty to relevancy, the idea is to give websites that have great content an opportunity to rank above sites with basic SEO hygiene, than those with not-so-great content but do a better job with Search Engine Optimization.
Let me try to put across what Matt said (this is not a transcription or translation but our understanding of a part of Matt speech)
The idea is to create a level playing field. That’s because there are sites with great content and poor SEO and these are very relevant to the search engine users, and then there are those who are doing good SEO with good content, and those who have poor content but tend to over-optimize as a balancing act. So, there are all those indulging in over optimization or overly SEO – versus those making great content and great websites. The idea is to make the GoogleBot smarter, increase relevance and find those who abuse the system, like using too many keywords on a page, or exchange too many links or go beyond what you normally expect of good SEO.
How is Google going to find the abusers and differentiate between the good and the bad is a question we all are waiting to get an answer for. It’s not only going to be difficult but I believe it will probably bring focus on SEO basics of On-page optimization, and there is room to define inbound links relevancy as well. What Google will also need to look for, is websites which have good content but zero SEO, surprisingly high PR and high SERP rankings.
While this is good news for all those who believe in websites with highly relevant content, it could mean another drop in rankings for those who have not understood the search engines move to increase relevancy since the Panda update.
Is there a solution to this optimisation er..over-optimisation bit. Well yes there is