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April 12, 2011

Google launches improved search algorithm updates

Intended to help both users and publishers

By Vinod

Google has introduced new search algorithm updates to weed out low-quality content from its search results and help users find more high-quality sites.

The updates will be available for all English-speaking Google users and will incorporate new user-feedback signals, said the company in a blog.

It said, "Today we’ve rolled out this improvement globally to all English-language Google users, and we’ve also incorporated new user feedback signals to help people find better search results. In some high-confidence situations, we are beginning to incorporate data about the sites that users block into our algorithms."

"In addition, this change also goes deeper into the ‘long tail’ of low-quality websites to return higher-quality results where the algorithm might not have been able to make an assessment before," the company said.

In the US, where the changes were launched in February, it was found that both users and publishers were happy with them.

Google employee Amit Singhal said in the blog, "We’ve gotten a lot of positive responses about the change: searchers are finding better results, and many great publishers are getting more traffic."

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Singhal said that those who are unhappy with the search results should evaluate their websites using Google’s quality guidelines and send their feedback.

"While we aren’t making any manual exceptions, we will consider this feedback as we continue to refine our algorithms."

In a recent study, Experian Hitwise, a part of Experian Marketing Services, found that though Google remained a dominant player in the global search market, it slipped below 65% to 64.42% in the search category in the US in the four weeks ending 2 April 2011.

The report said Bing-powered Yahoo search comprised 30.01% of searches for the month.

It is believed that Yahoo and Bing may be gaining popularity because of more accurate searches. The report said that Yahoo Search and Bing achieved the highest success rates in March 2011. It said 81.14% of Yahoo Search users and 80.32% of users clicked on a search result and visited a website. The figure was 65.91% with Google.

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