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Things to Know from Google’s Big Dog

Okay, Matt Cutts’ actual title isn’t Big Dog, but perhaps it should be. He’s the head of Google’s webspam team, which makes him one of the biggest influences in how Google determines the quality of websites and their rankings.

 
Cutts spoke to SEO experts and webmasters at a recent conference in Las Vegas, providing some tidbits all business owners should know. Here are a few of the highlights:

 
Spam algorithms: The tweaks to Panda and Penguin over the past year were just the tip of the iceberg. More algorithms are on the way as Google continues to reward sites with high-quality content and natural link profiles. If you’ve been using techniques Google dislikes and have flown under the radar so far, the ride might be ending soon.

 
Building natural links and content: Google is going to be hammering sites that purchase links or content that’s duplicated, “spun” or otherwise considered inorganic. While that’s been an element of its recent efforts, you can expect the detective work to escalate in 2014.

 
Optimize for mobile users and fast response times: Again, we touched on this in the previous section, but Google is laying down the law on sites being optimized for mobile. That also means ensuring your site and its included pages load as quickly as possible.

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