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Google Webmaster Hangout Notes: February 5th 2019

google webmaster hangouts recaps - SEO tips

Notes from the Google Webmaster Hangout on the 5th of February 2019.

Use JSON-LD Expiration Date to Remove Old Videos from SERP Features

Set an expiration date for videos within the structured data to stop them from appearing in search features once they become outdated.


A Sitemap File Won’t Replace Normal Crawling

A sitemap will help Google crawl a website but it won’t replace normal crawling, such as URL discovery from internal linking. Sitemaps are more useful for letting Google know about changes to the pages within them.


Location Identifiers That Require Interaction Won’t Affect Google

If a user’s location is identified in a way that requires interaction which would then change the content, this won’t impact Google because it does not interact, click or type like a user would.


Rel=Next Shouldn’t Be Used for Related Content

Rel=”next” should only be used within paginated sets, and shouldn’t be used to refer to another related piece of content. Instead, use regular internal linking for this.


Speed is a Minor Ranking Factor Compared to Content Quality or Relevance

Improving site speed alone probably won’t change rankings or visibility for a website because it is a very small factor compared to the relevance and quality of a page’s content with regards to rankings.


Sharing the Same Server or Owner as a Problematic Website Isn’t an Issue

The only instance when other sites will be impacted by a problematic site is if there are obvious interlinking and efforts to manipulate rankings between them. If two sites only share the same server or owner it isn’t a problem.


Robots.txt Testing Tool Will Be Moved to the New GSC

There have been no announcements around removing this feature, so it should be moved across to the new Google Search Console. There isn’t a timeline on when this will happen yet.


Use Redirects Rather Than Orphaning an Old Page Before a Site Migration

When implementing a site migration, redirect old pages as soon as possible rather than removing internal links (creating an orphan page) to them to try and encourage Google to drop them from the index.


Same URL Can’t Be Used for Mobile & AMP if Serving Different HTML

You can’t use the same URL for both mobile and AMP if they’re both using different HTML as Google wouldn’t know what to show for mobile users. You can use the AMP as your main mobile page instead.


Organic Ranking Factors Also Apply to SERP Video Carousels

The same organic ranking factors apply to video carousels in the SERPs, so an increased number of backlinks alone won’t improve the chances of a video being shown in a carousel.


Sites Removed from Google My Business Won’t Also be Removed from Search

If a website’s Google My Business listing is removed by Google, this doesn’t mean that the website will also be removed from organic search as GMB listings and organic results work separately from one another.


Make Key Content Available for All as Personalised Content Won’t be Indexed

Google will only be able to see and index the non-personalized, generic content on a page. Personalized content won’t be indexed so make sure the key content you want to rank for is available for Google.


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Rachel Costello

SEO & Content Manager

Rachel Costello is a former Technical SEO & Content Manager at Lumar. You'll most often find her writing and speaking about all things SEO.


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