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@DannySullivan : 2011: The Year Google & Bing Took Away From SEOs & Publishers

@DannySullivan is one of the smartest guys in tech. The latest example for why is attached.. HG

2011: The Year Google & Bing Took Away From SEOs & Publishers

Jan 8, 2012 at 8:50am ET by 

Increasingly over the years, search engines — Google in particular — have given more and more support to SEOs and publishers. But 2011 marked the first significant reversal that I can recall, with both linking and keyword data being withheld. Here’s what happened, why it matters and how publishers can push back if Google and Bing don’t change things.

Where We Came From

Some might believe that search engines hate SEOs, hate publishers and have done little over the years to help them. They are mistaken, either choosing to deliberately ignore the gains or, more likely, are simply unaware of how far things have come.
When I first started writing about SEO issues nearly 16 years ago, in 1996, we had little publisher support beyond add URL forms. Today, we have entire toolsets like Google Webmaster Central and Bing Webmaster Tools, along with standalone features and options, which allow and provide:
  • Ability to submit & validate XML sitemaps
  • Ability to view crawling & indexing errors
  • Ability to create “rich” listings & manage sitelinks
  • Ability to migrate a domain
  • Ability to indicate a canonical URL or preferred domain
  • Ability to set crawl rates
  • Ability to manage URL parameters
  • Ability to view detailed linkage information to your site
  • Ability to view keywords used to reach your site
  • Notifications of malware or spam issues with your site
There’s even more beyond what I’ve listed above. The support publishers enjoy today was simply unimaginable to many veteran SEOs who were working in the space a decade ago.
The advancement has been welcomed. It has helped publishers better manage their placement in those important venues of the web, the search engines. It has helped search engines with errors and problems that would hurt their usability and relevancy.
That’s why 2011 was so alarming to me. After years of moving forward, the search engines took a big step back.

The Loss Of Link Data

One of the most important ways that search engines determine the relevancy of a web page is...