Why Does Hidden Content Rank? We’ve got the tests to find out…
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We decided to send our Weekly Update email today, so you can find the SEO Mad Scientist Update, the SEO Vault podcast episode & more below…
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On this week’s episode of the SEO Vault, we discussed Google’s new feature that allows users to search within videos, how to use ChatGPT to create relevant content, the effect of Google’s helpful content and link spam update + other SEO news (you can find below)!
SEO Updates & News:
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Local SEO Case Study For A Multi-Location Franchise Business In The Sports Medicine Industry
Are you looking to dominate the 3 Pack for a multi-location client?
Read this case study to see the strategies and techniques we used that brought our client unparalleled success in their local SEO efforts.
One key factor in their success was the use of bulk onboarding and implementation capabilities. This allowed them to efficiently set up their local SEO across all locations and hit the ground running.
This Week in the Local SEO Community…
This Week On The SEO Mad Scientist
Hidden Content Ranks! We think we know why now…
Welcome back to another update with the SEO mad scientist. The final update of 2022!
It’s been an exciting year of SEO test data and discovering some of the most powerful signals currently in search…
Will be closing this year with a final update on our hidden content tests but don’t worry as the ability to leverage hidden content will continue to be tested into 2023!
Last week we clearly saw negative impacts from our over-optimized hidden content. Changing the site we did had drastic effects not only on organic rankings but also on the local rankings.
So the question was, “Once we restore the content to something that is not over-optimized, but still continue to hide a majority of the site’s/page content, will the rankings recover or even be better?”
If we continue to use a majority of our hidden content but just optimized it better then we should definitely see a return to our test term’s previous positions.
Not only have our organic rankings begun to recover as Google reindexes the site but we can clearly see changes in our local results.
Some local terms actually seem to be performing a little bit better than previously before the update.
It seems pretty clear at this point that hidden content is being indexed, even when the front-end user has no way of accessing that back-end information.
In our previous tests when using drop-down boxes or other methods to hide the content where the user could still view it made perfect sense, but why would this content still index and rank?
We speculate this might have something to do with the way Google crawls and indexes content that may be behind an opt-in or a paywall.
Oftentimes you can find the full content when looking at the source code. This allows news sites to easily have their content crawled by Google bot but still block it with a paywall.
We speculate that this is why our hidden content tests work. Googlebot and its current indexing can’t differentiate if the content is accessible through other means or not. You could just be required to become a website member to have the option to view that content. Since Google bought is not a member of your website it will not be able to crawl any buttons or UI that would be available if you were logged in.
This is all speculation of course but so far the only reason we can come up with as to why Google would index and rank this type of content.
What do you think?
Join us next year as it’s going to be a great year of tests that you won’t want to miss. See you in 2023…
This Week on The SEO Vault
Hosts: Chaz Edwards + Bucky Helms + Mike Milas
What we discussed this week…
Google’s new feature that allows users to search within videos
How to use ChatGPT to create high-quality content
The effect of Google’s helpful content and link spam update
> Watch the Latest SEO Vault episode to catch up on the most recent local update and so much more.
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