As usual Google chose a holiday to roll out index and Page Rank updates. This morning many webmasters woke up to see their site’s placement had changed. One of the first things I noticed was many more You Tube listings taking up top spots in the SERPS. This had to infuriate webmasters who worked so hard to obtain top placement, only to have a video take their top rankings. Much like the natives at the first Thanksgiving, Google can either give or take away, depending upon how well we Pilgrims communicate with them.
Over the last two months there has been an unprecedented amount of information pouring out of Google and their voices to the lowly like Matt Cutts and Maile Ohye. They have given a lot of good tips for webmasters to follow including how to avoid duplicate content penalties and why paid links can kill your site. Over the next month I will be digesting these topics and telling everyone what they were really saying.
Take a look at all your placement and Page Rank. You should also manually look at your primary keywords rather than use an automated rank tracking program. I have found that automatic rank tracking tools like Web Position are useful for an overall visibility score, but are useless when looking at Google’s own trends and changes. As they push their own properties to the top of the SERPS other sites have to move out. Hopefully Google will remove spam sites rather than good content producing sites.