Today there were no changes to the Webmaster Guidelines but there was a change to the section of the site that contains Google's guidelines.
Previously the Webmaster Guidelines were part of the "Webmaster Tools Help" section. As of today, these are part of the "Search Console Help".
is a "search console"? It appears to be a new way of referring to
Google Webmaster Tools- as seen by a link inviting you to view your
"Search Console", that sends you right into your Google Webmaster Tools
Why make this change?
Google is rebranding GWMT. In the least, this could use a naming
update- I haven't heard someone referred to as a "webmaster" in a long
time. Perhaps this is an attempt to bring this product's name into the
Another way of looking at this is as
further attempts to confuse organic and paid search efforts. Let's face
it: Google doesn't make money from companies who offer SEO (organic
search) services- It's in Google's interest to draw businesses into PPC
(AdWords/paid search), where they make the money. The closer they bring
these marketing channels together, the more they can entice people with
paid search marketing.
I did say, "another" way- the
first way I noticed this is in the way Google presents the Search
Traffic > Search Analytics data in Webmaster Tools/Search Console.
I'm referring to how Google presents organic search data in terms of
impressions, clicks and average ranking- just like you might find in an
What do you think? Why would Google make this change? How have you seen Google confusing organic and paid search data?