Google claimed that they are now treating 410 server header page statuses as “more permanent” than 404 errors. This is in response to the fact that most webmasters are using 410 as a signal that page has once existed at a certain URL, but has now been permanently removed. Not just moved to another location (that would be a 301 redirect), but truly “gone” as the name associated with the status would imply.

I think they named the update Penguin to purposely call Panda back into the minds of SEOs. I can’t think of a single naming convention that would ever go from “Panda” to “Penguin” as a natural progression, and the fact that they are both black and white animals supports this suspicion. Or maybe I’m paranoid and they’re just on a black and white kick recently. However, the fact that efforts designed to game the search algorithm is referred to as “black hat SEO” and efforts focused on meeting the ideals of search is referred to as “white hat SEO” has me wondering about the symbolism.

Many people assumed that Google had rolled out their algorithm that punished “over-optimized sites” when webmasters began complaining that their ranking in the SERPs had suddenly plummeted. We were not exempt from this assumption. However, a recent article in Search Engine Land shows Google claiming an alternative explanation for the ranks lost. According to Matt

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There is one thing we know for sure when it comes to SEO: It changes!

There has been a ton of buzz, especially over the last couple weeks, about some changes Google has been implementing. These changes have actually been happening since late January or early February. The truth is that Google and other search engines are always changing, so it really should never come as a surprise to anyone when Google announces changes.