As of this morning, Google has confirmed another update to its Panda algorithm. Panda is focused on rewarding sites that feature the best content and reducing the visibility of sites that rely on spammy content to drive traffic (and in turn clicks on banner ads and content network search ads).
They also announced the new “page layout” algorithm, a change that penalizes sites that feature too many ads above the fold.
The lesson to take away from both of these changes is simple: content remains king, not only in retaining your visitors and converting them to sales, but in leveraging Google to attract those visitors in the first place. Use these updates as the impetus to review your own site. If you feature ads on your site, how much real estate are you devoting to them, and where are you providing that real estate at on the page?
Is the content on your site genuinely relevant and interesting for your audience? Are you emphasizing the details, specs, features, and benefits of your product or service, or are you relying on fluffy, keyword-stuffed copy?
This is not a stance Google is going to change. If anything, we’ll continue to see increased emphasis on quality content, especially as other engines keep experimenting with human-curated results. Make sure you are ahead of the content curve and not trying to catch up after the next algorithm change.