Last updated on September 14, 2021.
It’s Olga from SEOSLY here. Welcome to episode #13 of the SEO Newsletter.
Before we start, I want to invite you to join SEOSLY Pro which is my SEO project thanks to which I hope to be able to spend more time sharing my knowledge and teaching SEO.
I’ve been working on SEOSLY Pro like crazy for the past weekend and added new videos with mini SEO audits, SEO auditing tips, and more.
I invite you to give SEOSLY Pro a try. You don’t risk anything because:
- You can get the first month for $1
- There is a 30-day money-back guarantee for the second month
Okay, that’s all regarding the self-promotion part 😎 Let’s get into the SEO news and pro SEO tips I have prepared for you.
📰 SEO NEWS OF THE WEEK
July 2021 Core Update Complete
Google confirms that the rollout of the July 2021 Core Update has been complete. If your site has been impacted by the update, then you should have seen the impact by now.
Google changes how it handles soft 404 for desktop and mobile
Google has changed how it handles soft 404s and now it looks at mobile and desktop differently. Google Search Console will now only report soft 404 for mobile. Soft 404 for desktop may still be shown in search results and won’t be reported in GSC.
Google explains when to expect positive changes from the Page Experience Update
John Mueller explains that you can expect to see the positive effects of the Google Page Experience Update once the site gets out of the “poor” area in Core Web Vitals and moves into either Needs Improvement or Good.
Google comments on third-party “PageRank” metrics
There are a lot of third-party tools that try to replicate the PageRank metric that has not been public since… 2016. Google – again – comments saying that they don’t have any real value in terms of SEO and can at best serve educational purposes.
Google on hiding affiliate links
In #AskTheGooglebot series, John Mueller talks about whether you should hide affiliate links from search engines and explains what the correct uses of affiliate links are. Generally, Google is OK with affiliate links which are a perfectly fine method of monetizing the site. That’s why there is no need to try to hide them from Google.
⚙️ SEO TOOLS OF THE WEEK
The SEOSLY newsletter is sponsored by Sitebulb, an awesome desktop site crawler I use every day.
Just for the reminder, Sitebulb has just been upgraded to version 5 which introduces a lot of cool changes:
- Brand new Performance report that collects Web Vitals metrics with the Chrome Crawler as you crawl,
- Running Lighthouse audit on every web page of the site,
- Calculation of performance scores based on the Lighthouse Scoring Calculator,
- Performance budgets,
- And more!
My newsletter subscribers can try Sitebulbcompletely free of charge for 60 days (no credit card information is required).
WP Rocket is the most powerful caching plugin in the world that requires no technical knowledge to set it up. Thanks to WP Rocket, I have 100% of GOOD URLs in Google Search Console (my URLs pass Core Web Vitals).
☝️ SEO TIPS OF THE WEEK
And here are the pro SEO tips for you.
#1: Google on whether you will get an HTTPS boost even if you don’t pass other Page Experience signals.
The HTTPS boost is separate from other Google Page Experience signals (Core Web Vitals, mobile-friendly, safe browsing, intrusive interstitials). So, yes, if you have HTTPS but are lacking in terms of Core Web Vitals, your site will still get a boost for HTTPS.
#2: You should stick to the rule of having one primary language per page.
Mixing different languages on the same page is not a good idea and will only confuse Google. To stay in the clear, make sure to stick to one primary language per page.
#3: Google reminds us that link exchanges are against their guidelines.
Link exchanges with the sole purpose of manipulating Google and trying to improve keyword visibility are obviously against Google guidelines. In one of the recent SEO office hours, John Mueller explains in more detail when link exchanges are totally out of the question and when they are kind of OK. He says that it is OK to recommend your content to others but without clearly telling them how to link it, where you link it from, etc.
#4: Google treats 308 redirects as 301 (permanent) redirects.
You probably don’t come across 308 redirects very often. But when you do, you should know that Google treats them as 301 (moved permanently) redirects.
#5: Crawled – Currently Not Indexed can be a sign of a site-wide quality issue.
If you produce new content and all (or the majority) of what you see in Google Search Console is “Crawled – Currently Not Indexed”, then your site may have a site-wide quality issue. Google reminds us that they are not obliged to index every page that they crawl.
🤓 DON’T MISS THESE ARTICLES
Here are the articles you don’t want to miss this week:
The analysis of the July 2021 Core Update from Sistrix
Here is an in-depth analysis of the most recent Google Core Update by Steve Paine. A must-read if your site has been impacted or you suspect it has been impacted by the July 2021 Core Update.
Google’s July 2021 Broad Core Update – Rapid-fire Insights From The Summer of Two Core Algorithm Updates from Glenn Gabe
You won’t understand any Google Core Update fully unless you read Glenn’s analysis of it, so here you go.
Google does not provide tips on how to get featured snippets. However, SEOs have shown time and time again that there are at least a bunch of things you can do to increase the likelihood of your page being featured in SERPs.
How to Create a Winning Content Strategy from Ahrefs
Articles from the Ahrefs Blog are simply good. This article is no exception and will tell you how to approach creating a content strategy that works and achieves its purpose (to win).
Evergreen Content Study from Backlinko
Brian Dean from Backlinko shares his insights after analyzing more than 3 billion articles. It looks like podcast content isn’t reshared often, Reddit-friendly content stands a chance of becoming evergreen content, and lists and how-to posts are still the most popular formats that stand the test of time.
🙏 SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS
Feel free to reply to this email if you have any SEO news to share, what to be featured in the newsletter, sponsor the newsletter, or anything.
And note that I am getting hundreds of messages and I am not always able to respond to all of you quickly. Please be patient. I am doing my best.
See you next week!
Olga Zarzeczna is a senior SEO specialist with 8+ years of experience. She has been doing SEO for both the biggest brands in the world and small businesses. She has done more than 150+ SEO audits so far. Olga has completed SEO courses and degrees at universities, such as UC Davis, University of Michigan, and Johns Hopkins University. She also completed Moz Academy! And, of course, has Google certifications. She keeps learning SEO and loves it. Olga is also a Google Product Expert specializing in areas, such as Google Search and Google Webmasters.