Recently Google made new update called page layout algorithm improvement update which targets website, blogs having excessive ads on Above the fold page area. if you are experiencing sudden traffic drop from last Friday 20th January 2012 , you are most likelyaffected by Google page layout algorithm update. This Recent Google search update is causing severe drop more than half of normal trafficto various sites and blogs which has two or three ads around header and above the fold area.here are important points I have read and collected regarding Google page layout algorithm update and how it affecting various sites and blog:
Google page layout algorithm update and Above the folds ads.
1) Google Page layout Algorithm improvement update was done around 19th- 20th January 2012. So if your website traffic is down or reducing from that period and you have ads above the fold you may be affected by this Google update.
2) Search engine rankings are reordered, no matter whether you are logged in or not, based on page layout algorithm update. so yousee sites ranking down which has more ads on above the fold or there is absolute or minimal unique content above the fold.
3) How many ads are excessive, which positions are crucial is not very clear but what I read from matt cuts update all over
internet is that is not the number of ads above the fold but how the whole area above the fold is used matter. so if you have
some ads but lot of unique content above the fold you may not be affected by this page layout algorithm update.
What to do if you have affected by Google page layout algorithm update:
As I said if you see traffic going down from last week around 19th - 20th January than chances are that you are affected with Google above the fold issue. here are few suggestion you can take which may work in your favour and get your site out of above thefold penalty Google page algorithm layout is imposing:
1) keep only one ad above the fold. you may keep two if your ad size are less (just an observation).
2) change your page layout so that more unique content is available above the fold.
3) Use browser tool to see how much content is available above the fold.
4) reduce header size.
5) if you have blog than make sure title of post should be clearly visible above the fold along with some content.
There are just my observation and worked well for some of my friends who were affected by Google Above the fold update and itmay also work in your blog, please try and let us know if it works so that other blogger and publisher may benefit.
Matt cutt pointed out that once page layout is update , this algorithm takes that change when Google bot crawls your site and depends upon how many pages you have in your blog and website it may take few days or few weeks. My suggestion is update your page layout now and wait for Google bot crawling your site or blog and hope for best.
Open questions regarding Page layout algorithm update
There are lot of open questions relate to this recent Google algorithm update which I don't know answer and hopefully things will be more clear after few days when webmasters and publisher will write there experiences:
1) Does ads means only adsense or other other ad network also?
2) will text ads exempted ?
3) which side of page layout is more important for content. (my guess is left side for content and right side for ad)
4) how many ads are normal and how many are more ?
let us know what's your thought on these questions and what is your experiment with recent Google page layout algorithm update andabove the fold ads issue.