Google Site Blocking Feature – An Assault On SEO?

by Chris Silver Smith

During this week’s SMX West conference, Google announced a new feature whereby searchers may block domains from appearing in their search results:

Google Block Domains from Results - Rush Limbaugh

The part of Google’s announcement which grabbed more attention from search engine optimization experts is this statement from the end of the post:

“…while we’re not currently using the domains people block as a signal in ranking, we’ll look at the data and see whether it would be useful as we continue to evaluate and improve our search results in the future…”

I think it entirely likely that Google will indeed leverage this signal in improving the quality of their results — it would be surprising if they did not. Addition of this data to their algorithm would likely not even be a significant amount of development, since it would likely leverage the same functionality which already uses data from Google’s team of human evaluators.

Some marketers have theorized that this feature could pose an assault on SEO, but I tend to think otherwise.

Let’s qualify it by saying that it could be an assault on BAD SEO! I’ve stated for some years that usability and user experience are becoming integrated with SEO, so putting forward good quality results is as important now as being able to achieve first position.


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