Some of you out there may have heard about Google’s major algorithm update called Caffeine, which can currently be tested here (they have already revised it a few times, so don’t be alarmed if it is down for a few hours at some point with a maintenance message). This algorithm update is mainly related to how Google indexes websites, but as we have seen here at Beanstalk it has given even better results to most of our clients. For instance we have a client on Page 3 for the phrase Shade Sails (still mid promotion), but on the sandbox he is in the top 10. Another client on the 7th page for California Health Insurance are on the 1st page on the Sandbox. And lastly one of the largest campaigns we are running for the phrase Web Hosting shows only a variance of 1 position (lower on Caffeine).
From what I can see not only has the indexing changed but so has the value of higher numbers of links. We are being out ranked by a company called Rankpay for the phrase SEO Service almost purely by paid links (Sample Paid Link), and links from their clients websites (Rankpay uses the anchor text SEO Service and SEO Services) whereas we rank #1 on the current Google search algorithm. Reviewing the major phrases we rank for (SEO Service, SEO Services, and SEO Consulting), there is no more than a one position difference in our rankings. Needless to say in the long run paid links will get you penalized from the rankings, so we aren’t going to change our tactics.
Below is a video produced by Michael McDonald from WebProNews and Matt Cutts (one of the top Google engineers) discussing the Caffeine update and its affects on rankings.
SEO news blog post by Dave Davies, CEO @ 1:05 pm