Monday Morning SEO Recap (January 9th – January 16th)

How Dirty Are Your Sitemaps?

When Duane Forrester was working with Bing back in 2011, he was interviewed about Bing Sitemaps.

In his interview, he states the need for a clean sitemap. However, he admits that there is a 1% allowance for some degree of dirt within a sitemap. Some examples of dirt can include a redirect, 404 or 500 code when a URL is clicked. If there is more than a 1% variance of dirt, the trust level in the sitemap begins to degrade.

At the time of this writing, it is hard to say with 100% accuracy how true this still is with Bing.

However, Google has come forward and said it is not an issue with their service. John Mueller from Google has stated in an interview that this is not a Google practice. Instead, Google will go from URL to URL and test them. Google is looking to see if they work, if not they simply move to the next in the list.

Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty: Is Your Site In The Bullseye?

January 10, 2017 was a very busy day for Google as the mobile intrusive interstitials penalty began to roll out.

Indeed, both John Mueller and Gary Illyes of Google have confirmed its deployment.


This is only going to impact mobile interstitials when someone clicks an ad from Google’s mobile search and lands directly on your website. This rollout is not going to impact desktop users or anything that you do from within your site.

Take a look at some of the examples below of what Google considers bad mobile interstitials:

  • Popups that are used to cover up an entire page of content as soon as the user lands on the page from a search engine or other direct navigation.
  • Standalone interstitials that need to be clicked out of before the main content can be displayed.
  • The use of a layout that offers an above-the-fold portion of a page that is similar in fashion to the standalone interstitial. However, the original piece of content has been inlined under the fold.

The Intrusive Interstitials Mobile Penalty Will Hurt

As the mobile interstitial penalty began rolling out, we have already seen a path of destruction left in its wake. There have been several websites hit quite hard by this new penalty.

There have been websites that have lost rankings due to interstitials. Keep in mind that this is just the beginning and more sites will likely lose their rankings as well. Here’s Glenn Gabe on the topic in conversation with SERoundTable’s Barry Schwartz on Twitter:


Moz Begins An Update Of Their 302 Help Docs Due To Google Feedback

Over the past year, there has been a disagreement between Moz and Google over how 302 redirects work. This debate went back and forth until recently when Moz finally updated their help documents to offer new information.

This is before:

This is after:

One may wonder why this recently came about.

The debate recently resurfaced on Twitter, with Google’s John Mueller calling them out and saying they were wrong. Moz finally decided to lay down arms and update their documents.

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