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How Google works - explained with the help of penguins, pandas and meerkats!

Let’s face it, if you search the internet for a service you won’t go wandering off to page five, six or seven of the Google results pages; you’re only interested in the first or second page of options. To be in front of the eyes of your potential customers your website needs to be fresh, content-rich and written with quality and Search Engine Optimisation in mind. Google is a business, and it wants to give its customers (the searchers) the best results possible. It wants to refer people to good quality websites with the answers to their online queries. Your website needs to be in front of your potential customers, but it will only be put there if Google deems it good enough.

I want to talk animals for a moment; mainly pandas, penguins and meerkats.

Digital Marketing from WarwickTweetupRecently Google changed the way it trawls the information superhighway with its new Panda and Penguin algorithms. Google hasn’t made any products called meerkat, but these new updates do mean great things for anyone looking for meerkats. Confused? I’ll explain.

Imagine you want to find out more about meerkats and you’re in front of Google. You search Google and are immediately given an astonishing amount of results in less than a second – impressive, yes? But what if all those meerkat search results were rubbish? What if lots of those search results were actually about mere cats, not meerkats? Not as impressive and very annoying for the 21st century instant content-rich society. We want results, we want them in 0.23 of a second, but also we want them to be accurate! Google knows this, and it knows we would soon get bored of using its lightening speed service if it offered nothing but inferior desert mammals. So it makes sure that the results you get are not only the right ones, but also the highest quality ones too. Think about it. If I asked you for a recommendation of a good plumber, you would give me the best, but also one that would carry your good reputation on. Google is the same. Google doesn’t want its customers (that’s you, the Googlers) to have pages of cheap and nasty websites with awful quality copy and poor designs. Google wants to provide the best answers it can, and these new updates are aiming to do this.

So what does this mean for the humble meerkats?

Well nothing. Meerkats can’t use Google. But it does mean that we can find the best websites with quality copy, images and content about them. This is great news for us as Googlers and meerkat fans, but not such great news for businesses cutting corners on websites, or just not keeping them fresh. Google wants to show the best quality websites but also the sites with the most up-to-date content. If there was a meerkat outbreak in London and you Googled ‘Meerkat outbreak in London’ then you would not only get the best results, but also the most recent meerkat outbreak in London (not last year’s outbreak) as that's what Google assumes you wanted. With this in mind, you need to keep your website fresh, up-to-date and constantly added to to ensure your potential online customers find it. If you want people to find your website, make sure it’s fresh and of high quality (no one likes an old smelly meerkat).

How can you entice Google to show you to the world?

A great way to keep your website updated and fresh is blogging. Blogs are great because they use all the keywords from your subject (and in a natural form.) Written well, blogs are simple to add to, conversational, informative and engaging. This means your website grows, has quality content which helps, engages, and offers people a solution; something that Google wants to give its customers. If you want Google to help you, then you need to help it by offering the very thing it wants to share.

If you want help with optimising your online copy, managing and writing your blog, or advice on your website then drop us a line.

We’re alert and ready to help with your digital meerkating!




My name is Graham Todd and I’ve been immersed in social media for almost three years. I train, blog and manage social media for business.

Find me on Google+

Leave a comment

Posted by Nick Lucey on
Whilst these algorithm updates do mean good things for the user in terms of finding relevant content, what it does mean is that small (and large) businesses need to be increasingly aware of the service they are getting when it comes paying agencies or consultants that claim to optimize websites for search engines like Google, as these kind of paid services may cause more damage to your business than good.

Your absolutely right that focusing on creating great content through writing a blog is the ideal way to safely improve your search rankings.
Posted by Warwicktweetup on
Great comment Nick, and I completely agree. It's good for businesses AND users, and paying people to do SEO is, and always has been a tricky affair. We prefer to create engaging and quality content for our clients, as we always have for ourselves. We do this because it reads well, and now because Google wants it too!
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