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Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
Google Search Algorithm Update On January 9th?The Google search results and rankings have been pretty unstable the past week or so. There are a lot of fluctuations happening from earlier this week and also as of yesterday. Both the automated tracking tools and the SEO communities are taking notice.
Knowledge Panel Exploit Is Embarrassing For GoogleA lot of news came out yesterday evening around an old Google knowledge panel exploit that let’s you manipulate almost any query to show any knowledge panel. Yes, this is embarrassing for Google but even more so because it is something that was reported back in 2016.
Google Search Results Rich Snippet With Asked X Years/Months AgoI am not sure if this is a new snippet, but I don’t think I’ve seen it before where Google shows how many years ago the question was specifically asked in this format. Bhumika Kateliya shared on Twitter an example of this and I was able to replicate a similar one in Google’s search results.
Google Webhook For Google My Business Reviews Delayed, Working On A FixKara from the Google My Business team confirmed Google is working on a fix for the delays in getting review data from the Google My Business API, specifically webhooks. Kara said “Our teams are working on the issue but they don’t have an estimate for when the issue will be resolved.”
Google Beijing LED Strip Christmas TreeHere is a photo from the Google Beijing office showing a Christmas tree made out of LED light strips. It looks pretty cool, don’t you think? It was shared on Instagram just a couple days ago.
Other Great Search Forum Threads:
I didn’t know you could search for “[location] closed” and get a knowledge result #local #seo #google, Valentin Pletzer on Twitter
Is this new? A carousel of top or related posts under a serp listing? cc @rustybrick…, Bill Hartzer on Twitter
Since this comes up from time to time — it’s fine to use the x-robots-tag HTTP header with “noindex” for XML sitemap files. They don’t need to be indexed to work as sitemap files, they’re more like robots.txt files (made for m, John Mueller on Twitter
Usually having these files ranking for normal keywords is a sign that your site is really hard to understand. On most sites we’d find the “rankable” content on normal pages, and if a sitemap were indexed, it wouldn’t show up hi, John Mueller on Twitter
A page can’t both be returning 404 and 301.…, John Mueller on Twitter
Need help increasing backlinks/link building, WebmasterWorld
Wow. Looks like the days of text-only Ads are over for Google serps. #google #seo #seo cc @rustybrick…, Valentin Pletzer on Twitter
Search Engine Land Stories:
Other Great Search Stories:
Analytics
Industry & Business
Local & Maps
Mobile & Voice
SEO
PPC
Search Features
Other Search

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