Website owners, developers and SEO specialists consider Google Webmaster as an effective tool to monitor the health and success rate of their website. As its sole purpose is to diagnose, monitor and optimize the site, Google Webmaster tool can improve the SEO strategy and help you get better rankings. Google has formulated some set of practices termed as Google webmaster guidelines, which has to be followed by the experts in order to maintain a search engine friendly web presence. Google updates its webmaster guidelines occasionally. In most cases, the updates tend to be more like a clarification than big news. Recently, Google has released a new update for the Webmaster and it includes significant changes.
The new Google Webmaster Guidelines consist of entirely new guidelines, several clarifications, separation of former guidelines, combinations of former guidelines and complete removals of guidelines. Some of the noteworthy guideline additions include guideline on HTTPS, guideline on making site mobile-friendly and guideline on accessibility. On the other hand, existing guidelines on links, site structure, XML and HTML Sitemaps also received new updates.
Overall style and documentation of Google Webmaster Guidelines document has changed with the recent update. Google Webmaster is no longer just a single long page, as it is broken into expandable content blocks. The first content block is about the ‘General Guidelines with indexing, content and usability’ whereas the second content block displays ‘Quality Guidelines with basics and specifics’. Contents in the ‘General Guidelines’ have updated, but the ‘Quality Guidelines’ contents remain consistent.