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#ThisWeekInSEO: New Search Console API & Spam Algorithm Update

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This week, August 3 – 8 2015, was an exciting week in SEO, particularly for SEOs who have been dying to better understand the link between their organic rankings and their site traffic.

When Google announced the rebranding of Google Webmaster Tools to Google Search Console back in May, webmasters all over the world rejoiced with the arrival of the long-awaited “Search Analytics” tool.

The Search Analytics tool gave SEOs the ability to check:

  • how many times their site shows up in Google’s search results
  • for which search queries they showed up for
  • how those search queries performed

This week, Google released a new API for the Search Console’s “Search Analytics” tool. While it’s still not perfect, it’s a step in the right direction towards SEOs being able to better understand and quantify the value of each position on the SERP.

This week also brought the arrival of what could be the warning signs of a new algorithm update. Since last weekend we’ve been noticing a lot of fluctuation in SERP rankings for many sites, including instances where sites ranked in one position in the morning, but had dropped to a different position by the afternoon!

While Google hasn’t confirmed an algorithm update is coming, we saw that many of the websites that were experiencing fluctuations have a history of:

  • “spammy” off-site optimization tactics
  • “black-hat” SEO tactics

This leads us to believe that whatever update is causing these fluctuations is most likely meant to fight spam. As these types of fluctuations usually herald in a new algorithm update, now is as good as time as any to check your offsite optimization for any tactics that Google could consider spammy.

If you’re unsure if your offsite links will pass the test, we’re happy to help by offering a complimentary Backlink Analysis. Just send us your URL, and we’ll do the analysis for you to check out your backlinks and review with you what we find.

To get the full scoop on everything that happened #ThisWeekInSEO, check out our Global SEO Head Shawn Swaim break down the new Search Console API and the possibility of a new spam-centered algorithm update over at our YouTube channel!