Friday, December 30, 2022
You know what time it is: year in a review. With only a few days left of 2022 and with all the quiet in the office, we thought it would be nice to reflect on this year from Search Central's perspective. Search Console launches and guides, weird and welcome documentation updates, videos, events, social networking online and in-real-life; boy what a year this was! Definitely looking forward to what 2023 might have in store for us!
First, just when we thought Search Console would finally slow down with adding more reports and features to the product, they added more. The Video Index report launched in July is one of the best ways for video publishers to debug and monitor how Google perceives and indexes the videos they produce. Helping merchants around the world, the team added new reports designed specifically for online sellers and product review publishers. And to put a cherry on top, the Search Console folks also added a new API for URL Inspection. While launching new things is great for products, code health is just as important. To wit, the team cleaned up some legacy tools that had little impact on Google Search, such as the URL Parameter Tool and the International Targeting report.
Daniel, our team's resident Search Console spy, also didn't hold back: he taught us new ways of visualizing and thinking about data provided by Search Console. Honestly, until March when he published his guide about connecting Search Console to Looker Studio, we didn't even know that's possible. Plus, his guide about search performance data visualization to help with search performance felt like giving out secrets for free.
Speaking of overcommunication, this year we introduced SpamBrain in our annual WebSpam review post. Surprisingly to us, the larger search ecosystem seemed to have liked our new friend. Danny and Alan blogged quite a bit about ranking updates: Core updates, Product review updates, Helpful Content update. Then these blog posts magically turned into stand-alone help documentation.
So what about documentation updates? Well, Lizzi got rid of webmasters—the term that is. The herculean work of revamping the old Webmaster Guidelines into something more manageable took many months, but it was definitely worth it. Together with Cherry, Lizzi also replaced the old Search result screenshots with abstract diagrams that will help a lot with localization.
Then we published a single-line update to our documentation that wreaked havoc on the internet. It was 15 MegaBytes, and this is the last time we talk about it.
But let's talk about even more exciting stuff: we are back to in-person events and we couldn't be happier! Cherry brought back our first in-person events since 2019; it was fantastic to see the community face to face, so we'll try to do more of them. Martin went to way too many events as usual, John and Lizzi recorded a podcast at a SEO conference (<- weird). Speaking of podcasts, we have recorded over 50 episodes by now and somehow people still seem to like them.
We expanded our social circles, too. Now you can find most of the Search Relations team members on Mastodon and we also started experimenting with LinkedIn. Quite the change, considering none of these platforms make it easy to post JIFs. But fear not, you can also catch us on Twitter. In fact, why don't you drop us a tweet if you have comments, suggestions, or funny cat pictures?
Here's to a fantastic 2023!