Further to our report on the “update that possibly was” on February 7th, which remains unconfirmed by Google themselves…
The update has a name, courtesy of Glenn Gabe, a digital marketing veteran and it is Google Phantom 5. He conducted a deep analysis of the ‘update’ and concluded that it was either an update of the Panda algorithm or one of Google’s ‘phantom updates’. The latter is never confirmed.
— Glenn Gabe (@glenngabe) February 21, 2017
Key attributes that this Google Phantom 5 update aims to achieve: –
- Thin Content Pages/Low quality Content
- Low quality user-engagement (increase in bounce rate, time on site etc.)
- Broken User-Interface (broken elements, broken internal links, menus etc.)
- UX Barriers – (confusing navigation structure, header/footer, irrelevant breadcrumbs, third-party ad placement, interstitials, autoplay videos etc.)
- Excessive pagination (too many paginated URLs displaying negligible amount of content)
- Mobile Usability Issues (No mobile-friendly design, mobile-popups, ads weaved into the content,
- Technical SEO elements (URL Issues, meta robots tags, robots.txt, URL canonicalisation, crawl errors, structured data markup errors etc.)
Glenn recommends, as we would, that you make significant changes on your site if you were impacted by Google Phantom 5. Don’t stick a plaster on it and hope it fixes itself. Here at Broadplace we constantly monitor any fluctuations and were pleased to see that none of our clients had any significant changes around this time, indeed some saw improvement.
Previous Phantom updates include:
- Phantom 2, May 3 2015 – large scale ranking changes, algorithm changes impacted quality signals
- Phantom, May 9 2013 – many sites reported traffic loss
If you’d like to learn more about SEO at Broadplace please visit our SEO pages, where you can discover how we do what we do.