Daily Search Forum Recap: February 5, 2024

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.


Google doesn’t say core web vitals are a direct search ranking factor. Google revised its SEO starter guide, it is worth a review. Google may have issues with XML sitemaps with hyphens in the file name. Bing Deep Search was out in the wild, I played with it, and I was not too impressed. Bing Chat, Copilot, upgrade is being tested, it is code named Deucalion. John Mueller from Google explained why he keeps deleting his old posts on X (tweets on Twitter).

Search Engine Roundtable Stories:

Google: We Don’t Say Core Web Vitals Are A Ranking Factor

Google’s Danny Sullivan said on Friday, “We don’t confirm any of the things [page experience or core web vitals] as a direct ranking factor.” He added, “But to reiterate we look at many things not one thing and even the one thing might not be a direct ranking factor.”

Google Sitemaps Bug With Hyphenated File Names

Google might be having some weird bug with XML sitemap files that have hyphens within the final name. So if your sitemap file name is /sitemap-10.xml it will trigger a “couldn’t fetch” error, but using /sitemap10.xml with the same exact file will not trigger any errors.

I Saw Bing Deep Search In The Wild

On Friday afternoon, I was able to play a bit with Bing Deep Search, Microsoft’s “enhancement” to Bing Search that provides a “deeper and richer exploration of the web.” And honestly, my quick impression was that I was not too impressed, mostly because some results were not returned and because it took about a full minute for it to provide results.

Google’s Revised SEO Starter Guide Is Out – Here’s What SEOs Think

As expected, Google has finally released its updated SEO starter guide and it was cut down in a big way. Google said this update was aimed at making it work for someone first getting into SEO and less for an advanced SEO professional.

Microsoft Copilot (Bing Chat) Upgrade Named Deucalion Being Tested

Microsoft is officially testing a new version of the base model of Copilot (formerly known as Bing Chat), which they code-named Deucalion. Mikhail Parakhin from Microsoft confirmed this over the weekend saying on X, “We are continually improving Microsoft Copilot, testing a new version of the base model in a flight.”

Google’s John Mueller On Why He Keeps Deleting His Old Tweets (Posts)

A couple of months ago, I documented how some Googlers have been removing some of their old posts (tweets) from X (Twitter). John Mueller from Google didn’t really comment on why back then (I asked) but yesterday he finally explained why he keeps removing his old Tweets (Posts) from the platform.

Google Gondola Ski Lifts

We have seen many ski lifts and gondolas at the various Google offices, we even saw this one ages ago. But here is a new photo of the ski lift or gondola at the Google Zurich office from Danny Sullivan. He posted this on Instagram when he visited the Google office there the other week.

Other Great Search Threads:

I backtracked to your forum thread and see what you’ve shared. Yes, that’s odd. File an indexing report, use the path about No it’s not indexed because URL inspector should be saying that. I’m also going to look into improving the reporting flow for a sit, Google SearchLiaison on X

I’ve shared before how Bing explained that with machine learning, even engineers can’t determine the weighting the system is using for various signals. Well, Microsoft is trying to overcome that. And I’m sure Google is too, Glenn Gabe on X

Interested in Discover? I’ve been tracking the changes to my feed since the “follow topics” functionality was added. Well, my feed is currently super-targeted and provides a ton of relevant content. Actually, it’s hard to find anything i, Glenn Gabe on X

Is focusing this much on links still a good use of time?, John Mueller on X

FWIW Google definitely doesn’t care about your sentence or word length. Write helpful stuff for real people. (source: I have eaten toast at Google), John Mueller on Bluesky

Search Console uses CrUX data, which is from real user data. The tests you’re doing are lab-tests, which can differ from what users actually see. There’s a bit more at https://t.co/4m2hCVuNdv & https://t.co/9RF82tWUYD – anyway, it, John Mueller on X

So users are upset with a drop in quality overall (and AI responses), yet Google’s “hidden gems” update rewarded Quora big-time (see screenshot below). Let’s see how things go with the next few major Google algo updates -> A look at, Glenn Gabe on X

Yes, we need to change that, Mikhail Parakhin on X

Search Engine Land Stories:

Other Great Search Stories:

Analytics

Industry & Business

Links & Content Marketing

Local & Maps

Mobile & Voice

SEO

PPC

Search Features

Other Search

Feedback:


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