Google’s Latest Algorithm Shakes the Link Building Community

Chances are, even if you have a friend of a friend who works in the digital community or is involved with SEO, you’ve heard news of Google’s latest algorithm that may-not-be-an-algorithm, affectionately named “Fred” for all intents & purposes. But to the link-building community, this algorithm will greatly impact the quality of links moving forward.

Forums on Black Hat World and WebmasterWorld have received insane amounts of traffic over the past week, with active members reporting significant drops in traffic to their websites. This algorithm hasn’t been publicly announced, and direct confirmation has neither been confirmed nor denied by Google. According to Search Engine Roundtable, the first signs of the update occurred on March 8, 2017.

What We Know

Both John Mueller and Gary Illyes from Google have been evasive in answering questions regarding the algorithm update. Here’s what we know so far:

  • This latest update mainly affects the quality of links on websites
  • Though the algorithm seems to take aim at Black Hat tactics, webmasters have reported dips in traffic to legitimate link-building websites
  • Ad-heavy, low-content sites seem to take the biggest hit in traffic initially

What it Means for Your Business

Say you’re visiting one of the websites you frequent and see something that piques your interest. You attempt to get connected only to discover that the link is broken. Frustrating, right? Well, that’s what your prospects could be experiencing right now. While the majority of the penalized websites are limited to spammy, low-value URLs that focus on quick conversions and revenue above a quality user experience, some websites actually provide useful, relevant information and have been unfairly hit.

If you feel that your website has received a dip in traffic and that the algorithm update shouldn’t be affecting you, I’d recommend contacting your agency of record. It may be a case of algorithm mistaken identity, or the individuals responsible with building your links may be using less than credible ways of building that backlog. Either way, you’ll get answers.

Time to Panic?

Does this mean you need to pull the fire alarm and cancel all your meetings to ensure your website isn’t affected by this latest algorithm update? Probably not. As John Mueller states, Google makes changes to its algorithm almost every day.

Hopefully your website was only positively affected by Google’s latest algorithm update. Check out our coverage of previous Google algorithm updates, like Possum, and subscribe to our email list to stay up to date on the latest news and developments.

Have an update to the latest update? Contact us and don’t be shy.

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