There is always some kind of “rumor” or “unverified facts”
that float around the Search Engine Optimization industry about what the search
engine use or don’t use in the algorithms. There’s not many times when we SEO Professionals actually get
confirmation of whether the “rumor” is true or false. For a long time it was widely speculated that
certain sites were banned from Google, but, it wasn’t until Matt Cutts actually
verified it on his blog that we as an industry got that “rumor” verified.
So now another rumor has been verified, by two Google patent
filings. For years it’s been speculated
around the SEO industry whether or not Google could tell the difference between
what is navigation on a website or webpage, and what is content. There have been articles written, discussions
in forums and so forth, but really no “genuine” true confirmation from any of
the search engines.
Well the SEO industry just got not one, but two pieces of confirmation on the fact that Google can identify what is navigation in a website with its two newest patent filings.
- Interface and system for providing persistent contextual relevance for commerce activities in a networked environment
- Identifying navigation bars and objectionable navigation bars
Basically, for the focuses of the article – in layman’s
terms, Google’s patents’ show that they can identify what exactly is navigation
on a web site. Now, that we as SEO
Professionals have the verification, the question now becomes, “How does Google
apply this patent?”
That question is probably the one with a million dollar
answer for someone to come up with. We
all know the search engines won’t give us that information, so its’ left for
more rumors and more speculation about how much weight Google puts on
navigational links and the text that anchors them.
For a full “layman’s” look at the Google patent filings, Bill Slawski (SEO By The Sea) has written up a comprehensive post on Search Engine Watch. He also puts into “readable” English other patents from IBM, Microsoft and Napster in his 8/27/2006 article. In addition he gives the same type of translation to more patents from Microsoft, Ask and Yahoo that came up on 8/28/2006.