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Google keeps search marketers on their toes with frequent updates to its search algorithms. The latest major update, dubbed “Fred,” affected some sites more than others.

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Dieter Hovorka

CTO, Co-founder, Skillz Middle East

In this infographic, digital marketing agency 180fusion decodes what that means for marketers. Google Algorithm for search is a hot topic in many ways, it can also be frustrating if you try to understand but can not fulfill the thoughts of Google.

Changes you need to know. The webmaster and SEO community, along with the automated Google tracking tools, all show strong signs that there was a Google algorithm ranking update. Many are calling this the Fred Update, a name we’re also adopting. That came from Google’s Fary Illyes, who has jokingly suggested that all updates be named “Fred.” It’s sticking with this one.

For starters, the infographic explains that the update “mostly targets sites with ad-focused content that prioritize revenue above helping the users.” So, sites that use multiple affiliate links, for example, likely registered a downturn in traffic after the update went into effect.

It also means that sites that offer valuable content with unobtrusive ads may have had an increase in site traffic, the infographic says.

For more details on Fred and who was affected by Google Algorithm update, check out the full infographic.

Google Algorithm Updates: What You Need to Know About Fred

3 things you can improve your low value affiliate website:

    1. Design your website to be visually appealing for users, not search engine robots. A lot of low value, ad heavy websites are very text heavy, often difficult to navigate and usually follow a typical blog style theme. You can clearly see from the 2 examples above which is designed for humans and which is designed purely to house content and ads.


    1. Check your ad ratio to ensure it’s not over the top! With Google removing the limit on Ad Ratio in 2016, this blurred the line for webmasters and made it difficult to really understand what the best ratio may be. It’s difficult to definitively answer this question but we’d recommend that you ask certain questions of your site such as ‘Is it possible to see more than 1 ad when viewing the site/content?’, ‘Is the user intrusively distracted to view or click on the ad over and above your content?’.


    1. Remove tag pages if you’re running your site like a blog. Webmasters tend to forget about tag pages and when they do these still tend to get indexed in Google and are offering little to no value at all. There has been some discussions suggesting that removing these tag pages as helped improver and even fully recover traffic since this update.

Do you know Fred ?

Frederick “Fred” Flintstone, is the main character of the animated sitcom The Flintstones, which aired during prime-time on ABC during the original series’ run from 1960 to 1966. – Wikipedia

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