Round 3 *ding ding*! Welcome to the third instalment of our weekly round-up of search engine optimisation news and tips.

The Next Generation of Ranking Signals – We discussed a great post on SEOmoz exploring the The Next Generation of Ranking Signals. This delves into the future of ranking signals, exploring different ways that search engines could rank results to avoid obvious gaming of results, such that was made all too clear by Google’s recent penalties on J.C.Penny. In summary there are 3 ways that could be used for future ranking signals, these are:

  • Brand Signals – Using associations from the brand to avoid a situation like with J.C.Penny where they are dominating rankings for items that they may not even be selling.
  • Entity Associations – Search embracing the metaweb more by associating obvious terms such as ‘governator’, ‘Kindergarten Cop’ and ‘Arnold Schwarzenegger’ to produce cleaner organic results.
  • Human Quality Raters – Search changing from the algorithmic + crowd model into something more integrated and advanced. This is very much a nod towards the Wikipedia model. With Facebook Connect spreading at a rate of knots a huge amount of user data is becoming available. A way to utilise this effectively could make a real impact on search and also allow us to see accurate, richer universal search results.

When Are Penalties Lifted? – Matt Cutts stepped up to the plate and answered a question that many SEO’s have been wanting answering in light of the penalties given to J.C.Penny. The video is well worth a watch and explores the difference between algorithmic and manual actions that Google take and how to resubmit your site should your site be penalized.

Google Spamming SERPs again? – A interesting article cropped up exploring Google spamming search results again, using Google News as the example and reminding us all to pull our socks up and keep an eye on our robots.txt files.

Humans.txt – While we’re on the subject of robots.txt files an interesting new movement has began for adding humans.txt files to your sites. Don’t know what a human.txt file is? Well, in short it’s a file that operates much like a robots.txt but is targeted at us humans, documenting who built the site and how the site was built; providing us geeks with the information that we sometimes want to know. A good example can be seen here.

SEO’s Vs. Domainers FIGHT! – People are starting to discuss whether Google Chrome are going to scrap the address bar and, if they do, will Microsoft (Internet Explorer) follow? Will Google Chrome to Scrap the address bar? Really? What do you think?

Is Google Changing our Title Tags?
Ransom Note Snippets
This image was created using this cool ransom note generator.
An interesting post showing that in some instances Google is reserving the right to change title tags.

Finally, the grammar police are in town so please let me apologize for the typos in Mark and Kieron’s previous posts. We will continue with our weekly ‘Round-up’ next week.

Have you seen any news that’s interested you this week? Get in touch and let us know, we’re always open to learning and sharing new things…