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Google Webmaster Hangout Notes: March 3rd 2020

Lumar - SEO and Digital Marketing Industry News

Notes from the Google Webmaster Hangout on the 3rd of March 2020.

Sudden Changes in Traffic Suggests Algorithmic Impact Not a Technical Issue

If you see a sudden drop in traffic on a single day, it’s more likely to be due to an algorithmic update than a technical issue, which would require crawling over a longer period.


Detailed PageRank Optimisation May Be a Wasted Effort

Provided that Google can discover all your pages through internal linking, detailed optimisation of PageRank optimisation is probably a waste of effort.


Google Has Changed its Policy on Treatment of Nollow Links but There Are No Details Yet On Actual Changes

Google has changed its policy on crawling nofollow links, but it’s up to individual Google teams to decide how they will utilise the new policy.


Structured Data Should Be Equivalent for Bots and Users

Structured data on a page should be available to both bots and users, and not delivered conditionally to only bots.


Merging/Splitting Websites May Result in Changed Rankings

Merging multiple websites to a single domain, or splitting a website onto multiple domains is much slower to process, with a less predictable outcome than simply moving a website to a new domain, and may result in different rankings than before.


Link Paginated Pages With Regular Links

Google doesn’t use rel next/prev links, so you should link paginated pages together with regular links. It’s best to have a clear hierarchy where each page links to the next page, instead of linking to many other paginated pages. If you see deeper paginated pages ranking instead of earlier pages, it may be due to the internal linking.


Consolidate Thin Pages to Create Higher Quality Pages

If you have pages which have thin content, consider merging them into few pages to create higher quality pages with more content.


Google Will Not Render Noindex Pages

If a page has a noindex tag, Google will not render the page with JavaScript to discover any javascript based content or meta data.


Google Uses Lab Tests and Field Data (Including AMP Pages) for Page Speed Measurement

Google uses both lab tests as well as field data (what a user sees), which would include AMP page speed.


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Avatar image for Ruth Everett
Ruth Everett

Technical SEO

Ruth Everett is a data & insights manager at Code First Girls, and a former technical SEO analyst at Lumar. You'll most often find her helping clients improve their technical SEO, writing about all things SEO, and watching videos of dogs.


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