Remember when an update to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines was spotted prematurely, before Google pulled it back down? Well, Google has officially updated them now.
“Both our basic quality guidelines and many of our more specific articles (like those on links schemes or hidden text) have been reorganized and expanded to provide you with more information about how to create quality websites for both users and Google,” explains Google’s Search Quality team.
“The main message of our quality guidelines hasn’t changed: Focus on the user,” the team adds. “However, we’ve added more guidance and examples of behavior that you should avoid in order to keep your site in good standing with Google’s search results.”
This video is now at the top:
The guidelines are important for not only ensuring that you aren’t manually penalized by Google, but also that you don’t get hit by an algorithm update designed to enforce them (like Penguin). They’re also just good general rules to follow for SEO and user purposes.
The guidelines are still divided into design/content, technical and quality guidelines. Peruse the new guidelines here.