February 2017 Google Webmaster Report

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It was not a slow month when it comes to Google webmaster topics. We saw an unconfirmed Google algorithm update that hit spammers for the most part. We saw Google confirm a Japanese algorithm update but we had a couple smaller updates as well. Google did tell us the mobile-first index is not rolling out any time soon. But they did confirm the mobile interstitial penalty is rolling out on a recrawl basis. That penalty can hurt but has seen some minimal impact thus far.Google officially killed the link operator this past month but promised to keep the site operator. They explained what crawl budget is and released infrastructure updates to the Google Search Console. There were tons of local/map tests and user interface tests as well.Finally, Matt Cutts officially resigned from Google and his boss, Amit Singhal joined Uber.Overall, the ongoing WebmasterWorld thread is still talking about the Google algorithm update and some zoombie chatter.Here is January’s recap and here are some of the more important posts from the past 30-days or so:Google Algorithms:
New Google Algorithm Update Targets PBNs & Links, Penguin Tweak?
Google Japan Algorithm Update Lowers Ranking Of Low Quality Sites
Google Update Brewing? Chatter & Tools Point To Algorithm Update
Google Algorithm Update On January 16th, MLK Day?
Google: We’re Done With Big Numbered Penguin Releases & Updates
Google: We Try To Launch All Our Algorithms Globally Now
Google Mobile-First Index Not Launching Too Soon

Google Mobile Intrusive Interstitial Penalty:
Google Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty Does Hurt
Google: Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty Still Rolling Out Based On Recrawl
Google Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty Having Minimal Impact
A Google Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty False Positive

Google SEO:
Google: The Link Operator No Longer Works
Google Won’t Tell Webmasters Which Links They Do Not Count For Spam Reasons
Google: Crawl Rate & Crawl Demand = Crawl Budget
Google: No Plans Or Desire To Remove The Site Command
Google: The Site Command Not Ranked In Any Defined Order
Google On Negative SEO: Keeps Competitors Busy While You Get To Move Forward
Google Structured Data Testing Tool Validates Multi-Typed Entities MTE
Google: Use Nofollow When Linking To Bad Sites
Google Adds Preview Button To Structured Data Testing Tool For Some Types
Google: Tell Us About Your HTTPS Migrations Again
Google: Don’t Build Links From Google Sheets
Google: Folder Level & Hierarchy Not That Important For Google
Google Tips On How To Block User Generated Spam
Google: AMP Not Ranking Factor But If AMP Page Is Canonical, It Will Be Used For Site Quality
Google: International Targeting In Search Console Doesn’t Reduce Visibility In Other Countries
Tell Google What Technical SEO Topic They Should Write About
Google Has Search Quality Raters In Tons Of Countries
Google Search Console Warnings For Infrastructure Updates
New Google Mobile-Friendly Test API

Google Maps / Local:
Google Horizontal Scrollable Local Pack Ads
Google Local Panel Business Owner Promotions Box
Google Local Knowledge Panel Tests Showing Phone Number
Google Tests More Carousel Features In Local Card
Google My Business Shows Adds Temporary Closed Status
Google Hotel Search Results With Pricing Trends & Top Rated Data
New: Google Local Pack Showing Google Shopping Ads

Google Search:
Google Jump To Links In Mobile Search Snippets
Google Search Testing Box Layout Design Again
Google AMP In Google News More Than Doubles, Hits 70% Of Results
Google News Removes Shareable Sections
The Google Spinner In Search
Google Adds Book Previews Now On Mobile Search

Google Industry:
Matt Cutts Officially Resigns From Google
Amit Singhal, The Man Who Built Google Search, Joins UberForum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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