At SXSW last week, Matt Cutts, head of Google’s Webspam team, announced that Google is working on an algorithm change that will penalize sites the are “overly optimized.” Barry Schwartz, writing for SearchEngineLand, reported the change will take place in the upcoming month or next several weeks.
Depending on how the actual algorithm works, this can be very good news for companies who have tried to develop quality, relevant content that answers the needs of their site’s visitors. It also provides a boost to those companies who couldn’t afford to optimize their websites on a fairly regular basis and continued to blog weekly about topics of interest to their customers.
Google is not saying that companies who optimize their site and employ quality SEO tactics will be penalized. They are targeting those sites who optimize sites too much. Matt Cutts was quoted in the article as saying “We are trying to make GoogleBot smarter, make our relevance better, and we are also looking for those who abuse it, like too many keywords on a page, or exchange way too many links or go well beyond what you normally expect.”
Should you continue or plan on optimizing your website using SEO? Yes, but now you know that quality, relevant content really does matter. For sites that consider the needs of their customers, their expectations and the information they are seeking, this algorithm change could be a good thing.
What do you think?
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