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This is an extract from TWIS SEO News & Updates 04 August 2017.

Read the surprising details behind how Google’s algorithm has been exposed in two flaws recently: Pinterest spam and the cure for cancer.

Contact me to discuss how the Google ranking algorithm works .

#SEO #GoogleAlgorithm #WebSpam #Pinterest

Two Google Algorithm Flaws Exposed


  • Google’s algorithm has plenty of flaws, but this last week, two fairly egregious examples have been exposed.
  • Firstly, there has been widespread commentary on the prevalence of Pinterest holding pages in certain queries, with up to 8 normal listings and similar numbers in image listings. This domain crowding is poor, and should have been resolved a number of years ago.
  • Secondly, and  perhaps worse, the top result for “cure for cancer” is (or was), effectively, carrot juice. This is a flaw of linking and algorithmic flaws in dealing with it.

Actions to take:

  1. Generally, there is little that can be done when algorithm flaws are exposed. Google will work to eradicate them, normally.
  2. If the poor results are the result of spam, then Google will take action if reported.
  3. If the result of an algorithm error, then Google is often less inclined to admit it is an error, but will usually work to remedy the situation.
  4. Don’t start thinking carrot juice is a cure for cancer. The chances are that it isn’t.
  5. Contact me to discuss how the Google ranking algorithm works .


The Pinterest domain crowding example is horrible. This was supposed to have been worked out a number of years ago, when Wikipedia and YouTube completely ruled every query. It still works for branded search terms, which is fair enough, but it doesn’t, or shouldn’t work for non-branded terms.

The other thing it may be is spam. If you look at the Pinterest title tags, they are all variations on a theme, and no terribly inventive ones. It is possible that Pinterest has enough content categorised accurately enough, but chances are that it doesn’t. Unless something really bad has happened, it is unlikely Google will see this as spam to be pinned on Pinterest, however, there have been many instances of large companies being called out for it.

The carrot juice is a cure for cancer is worse. Not from a spam perspective (it may be the result of link spam), but from an information purity perspective. Google, even though it has a fake news problem, is seen as being authoritative in medical queries, and works hard to maintain that. Having the number one cure for cancer listed  as being carrot juice would be an embarrassment for Google and its engineers.

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The State of SEO Mid-2017 Released

The State of SEO Mid 2017

We recently released the super-exciting The State of SEO in mid-2017. Read it now.

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Thanks for reading. If you would like to discuss what these changes mean for your web property, or would like to know how to implement them, please feel free to contact me.

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