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Busy Week for Google: New CEO, Groupon Competitor, Spam Fighting, & More

There have been a lot of announcements coming from the Google camp over the past week.  Here's a quick recap:

Larry Page Replaces Eric Schmidt as CEO

It was announced last week that current Google CEO Eric Schmidt is moving into a new Executive chairman role to make way for co-founder Larry Page.  Schmidt led Google as CEO for 10 years.  The new position will allow him to focus on Google's many business relationships as well as continue to be an advisor for founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.  The $100 million payoff won't be that bad either.

Moving Larry Page into the Chief Executive spot is a good move for the company.  With competition heating up in the search realm and Google's eye on the social sphere, Google really needs to revive their image and vision.

Google Prepping Groupon Competitor

Although it hasn't launched yet, Google has been releasing marketing materials for it's Groupon competitor, Google Offers.  Not a lot of details are known, but at least we can stop speculating about Google launching a Groupon killer.


2011 is the Year of Mobile for Google


Eric Schmidt laid out Google's vision for mobile which includes superfast networks, mobile money, and really cheap smartphones.  It will be interesting to see where Google goes with mobile.  These are hardware and infrastructure changes, definitely a huge undertaking.

Matt Cutts Announces Spam Crackdown

Since Matt Cutts said it, the search industry has been abuzz: Google is addressing spam concerns.  Over the past month or so, there have been an increasing number of blog posts criticizing Google for having less than relevant search results.  Whether or not it is an issue is up for debate, but regardless, Cutts says Google is hard at work:

"we recently launched a redesigned document-level classifier that makes it harder for spammy on-page content to rank highly. The new classifier is better at detecting spam on individual web pages, e.g., repeated spammy words—the sort of phrases you tend to see in junky, automated, self-promoting blog comments. We’ve also radically improved our ability to detect hacked sites, which were a major source of spam in 2010".

What does this mean for websites?  It's simply an extension of the crackdown that happened last May.  If your site has strong original content, you're in the clear.  If your site has a lot of shallow, scraped, or spammy content, expect to see some impact.

First Toolbar Page Rank Update of 2011

Not quite as significant as the other stories but still news nonetheless.  Google updated Toolbar Page Rank.  Check your green bar because it may be different.  If it is, does it matter?  Not really.


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