Plenty happened in 2020 for SEO. Google has been extremely busy and launched over 4,000 search improvements among new features to improve the search experience.
Some of the fundamental changes were:
- Refocusing the Structured Data Testing Tool: Originally, Google suggested that it would deprecate the SEO tool; however, the SEO community hit back and complained about this announcement. People who do not know the Structure Data Testing Tool are a handy tool that allows you to test structure data and validate JSON-LD, RDFa, and Microdata formats. As this tool is famous across the SEO community, Google decided to listen and keep the device but move it too schema.org. Schema.org is a website that provides an all in one collection of vocabularies that webmasters can use to mark up their pages with structured data so that search engines can easily make sense of the information on the web page.
- In January 2020, Google added the Removals report to Search Console. This allowed SEOs and webmasters to hide a page temporarily from the Google Search results. If you're reading this and are not sure what Google Search Console is, it is a free tool from Google that monitors and maintains a website while discovering any issues that a site is experiencing.
- In November, Google announced that voice search is developing new capabilities and improving. In short, this means that voice search can better understand the searchers' real intent and provide better results to their voice query.
- Google released an update for Google Search Console in November 2020 which improved the Crawl Stats Report. The Crawl Stats Report shows you statistics about Google's crawling history on your website. The new, improved version now allows you:
- See the total number of group requests by response code, Google bot type, crawl type file & crawl purpose.
- URL examples
- Summary of properties
- Host status report
- Google announced BERT in October. We're not talking about Bert the muppet from Sesame Street but the BERT language understanding system. In short, this means Google has used machine learning technology better to understand the relationships between search queries and content.
- Finally, in March, Google rolled out com/covid19 website which illustrated country information and statistics, prevention and safety tips, plus search trends related to COVID-19.
To enable comments sign up for a Disqus account and
enter your Disqus shortname in the Articulate node settings.