Google has got another new major update (contrary to Matt Cutts tweet as a minor one) – the EMD (Exact Match Domain) update that ensures all low quality exact match domains to outrank in Google search results. He also told that “New exact-match domain (EMD) algo affects 0.6% of English-US queries to a noticeable degree. This update is unrelated to Panda/Penguin.”
EMD Algorithm – Not a sudden update
While many webmasters have reported that they are massively hit by this update, Barry Schwartz of SEO Round Table says that it’s almost two years ago that Matt Cutts told about this and it has taken such a long time for Google to implement this update. However, the correlation data of SEOmoz has shown that EMDs were declining in performance or were not performing well enough for the past two years. So, it means that Google has started filtering low quality EMD sites even before two years.
Are U Hit?
If you find sudden drop in traffic after Sep 28th and if you own an exact match domain, then you are probably hit by this algorithm change. It doesn’t mean that all sites with exact-match domains are targeted by Google. If your site is of good quality and offers a great user experience, then you need not worry. Lot of sites got hit by this update including non exact matching domains.
EMD .vs Penguin Update
When Google rolled out Penguin update, EMDs and PMDs (Partial Match Domains) were hit tremendously. That too, EMDs and PMDs focussing on exact-match anchor text for link building got hit aggressively. So, my view is EMD algorithm update and Penguin is inter-related, no wonder non exact matching domains also were hit with this EMD update.
Webmasters are confused if there might be some other updates as well, since lot of non exact-match domains were also affected with this EMD update. Waiting for another week might give a clear picture.