GSQi Blog

September 2023 HCU

The September 2023 Google Helpful Content Update – Did Google’s Announcement in April About Page Experience Foreshadow What We’re Seeing With The Current HCU(X)?

Based on what I’m seeing with sites heavily impacted by the HCU, and what Google explained in its April documentation update, the combination of unhelpful content and poor UX can be an extremely problematic combination for site owners. Update: 10/2/23:Included a section about Google’s latest blog post on which covers how to effectively run … Read more

Bing's Sitemap Index Coverage Reporting

How To Find Lower-Quality Content Being Excluded From Indexing Using Bing’s XML Sitemap Coverage Report (and Its “Content Quality” Flag)

Bing finally rolled out its XML Sitemap Coverage Report in Bing Webmaster Tools, which is a great addition for site owners. Using the report, you can check indexing levels based on the urls being submitted via XML sitemaps. This is similar to what Google offers in its Coverage reporting, but it’s great to have another … Read more

Exporting data for specific urls via the GSC API and Analytics Edge

How To Bulk Export GSC Performance Data For A Specific List Of URLs Using The Google Search Console API, Analytics Edge, and Excel

As I’ve been analyzing the impact from the August broad core update (I’ll have more to share on that soon…), I’ve been digging into drops and surges across sites. For larger-scale sites, I often come across pockets of content that I want to take a closer look at from a quality standpoint. And as part … Read more

Google removing FAQ and HowTo snippets from the search results

Analyzing the removal of FAQ and HowTo snippets from the Google search results [Data]

Update: September 14, 2023Google just announced that HowTo snippets will now be removed from the desktop results as well. The original announcement explained desktop HowTo snippets would remain, but Google reversed course and has now removed them. Update: September 13, 2023Google finally removed FAQ snippets from the desktop results. Learn more about the removal. —–On … Read more

Syndicated Content SEO Case Study

Why Noindexing Syndicated Content Is The Way – Tracking 3K syndicated news articles to determine the impact on indexing, ranking, and traffic across Google surfaces [Case Study]

Last month John Shehata from NewzDash published a blog post documenting a study covering the impact of syndication on news publishers. For example, when a publisher syndicates articles to syndication partners, which site ranks and what does that look like across Google surfaces (Search, Google News, etc.) The results confirmed what many have seen in … Read more

Google patent covering machine learning models to predictions

Jarvis Rising – How Google could generate a machine learning model “on the fly” to predict answers when Search can’t, and how it could index those models to predict answers for future queries [Patent]

After analyzing a Google patent related to PAA and PASF, I started reviewing other recently-granted patents. And it wasn’t long before I surfaced another very interesting one regarding the use of machine learning models. The patent I just analyzed focuses on using and/or generating a machine learning model in response to a query (when Google … Read more

Analysis of Google’s Perspectives Filter and Carousel – A New Mobile SERP Feature Aiming To Surface Personal Experiences

On June 10, 2023 Google rolled out the much-anticipated Perspectives feature in the mobile search results. This was teased at Google I/O in May and aims to bring more personal experiences to the SERPs. For example, many people append “Reddit” to their searches to find personal recommendations and advice. Google basically knew that was a … Read more

People Also Search For, Or Do They Always? How Google Might Use A Trained Generative Model To Generate Query Variants For Search Features Like PASF, PAA and more [Patent]

I was checking out some patents from Google the other day and surfaced an interesting one that was granted and published on May 30, 2023. It was titled “Generating Query Variants Using A Trained Generative Model” and it definitely piqued my curiosity. It was originally filed in 2018, but was granted in late May. And … Read more

Disavowing The Disavow Tool [Case Study] – How a site owner finally removed a disavow file with 15K+ domains, stopped continually disavowing links, and then surged back from the dead

There aren’t many topics in SEO as controversial as disavowing links. Ever since Google introduced the ability to disavow links, there has been a ton of confusion about how to use the disavow tool, what types of links should be disavowed, when to ignore the disavow tool altogether, and more. Then add third-party tools that … Read more

Google’s April 2023 Reviews Update – Exploring its evolution from PRU to RU, a powerful tremor on 4/19, and how its “Review Radar” found larger publishers

Google launched the first Product Reviews Update in April of 2021 and it’s been fascinating to watch the evolution of the system over time. With each successive update, you can see Google fine-tuning the system, expanding to other languages, and more. And now we have the next step in its evolution, and it was a … Read more

Google’s Video Thumbnail Apocalypse Is Causing A Huge Drop In Video Snippets In The Search Results (But Traffic Could Remain Stable)

On April 13, Google announced a change to how video thumbnails would be presented in the search results. Until now, a listing could receive a video thumbnail even when that video content was not the main content on the page. Although that was a nice benefit for the sites receiving the video thumbnail, it was … Read more