Recently implemented changes and updates to Google’s search algorithms mean real estate agents will need to tweak their real estate websites if they want to maintain their current search rankings. Agents that fail to adjust and re-maximize search engine optimization (SEO) of their real estate sites to accommodate Google’s new search parameters will see themselves drop down or even disappear from Google search results.
For real estate professionals, the most critical changes are to Google’s Link Evaluation (discussed in our previous post) and the search engine’s year-old Panda search-ranking program. Before focusing on Panda, one more important comment on Link Evaluation changes: In new algorithms, Link Evaluation not only weights new information on Google+ heavily in determining search results across the board; but, among members of your friend circles, it also continues to push your site to the top of search results as long as an individual remains a member of your circle. Google’s new search emphasis on its new social media network makes opening a Google+ account a smart move, if only for the SEO benefits.
Panda created a SEO firestorm when it was released a year ago. Designed to cull low-quality and low-content web pages from Google’s massive index, Panda heralds a major shift in the way Google’s search algorithms evaluate and rank web pages to derive search results. Overnight, many of the SEO tricks that had been commonly employed to boost web page search rank became not merely ineffective but actually counted against pages under the new Panda system. Pages with little original content or with an abundance of links and ads plummeted in the rankings, consequently losing traffic.
Many real estate sites took a major hit after Panda’s implementation. Panda took a poor view of the copied material from authoritative sources and home office libraries that forms the backbone of many real estate web pages. Panda devalues websites that carry material available on other sites in favor of websites that display original content.
To be continued