Ross & Scott started the show by paying homage to SEO legend Bill Slawski, who recently passed away. They then discussed the activation of WordPress 6.0 ‘Arturo’, Google’s May 2022 Broad Core Update, tips for marking up FAQ pages, a Google Ads cost per click (CPC) bug which inflated click prices by 300% – 400%, and much more!

Noteworthy links from this episode:


Transcription of Episode 432

Ross: Hello, and welcome to SEO 101 on WMR.FM episode number 432. This is Ross Dunn, CEO of StepForth Web Marketing and my co-host is my company’s senior SEO, Scott Van Achte. 
Scott, thanks again for the trip. I went over and hung out with Scott in his trailer this weekend and we just got to chill. We haven’t done that in ages. 
Scott: Oh, since pre-COVID, which is a long time now. It’s been over two years. 
Ross: Yeah, the only thing lacking was Johnny. We would have had a blast but I was thinking of him, I definitely was. We had a good time just catching up and chillin’ in the woods, just a beautiful thing on the Pacific West Coast many may know. That was nice. Then on the way back home I went past.. well, they went past me, a few 100 million dollars worth of cars flew by me. It was the Diamond Rally. If you look up Diamond Rally sports cars or anything like that online, even Diamond Rally I think, you’ll find it. Even to qualify to pay money to be in it, you have to have Lamborghinis, Aston Martin’s, Bugatti. I mean, it was insane. I’ve never seen so many nice cars in my life. 
Scott: So my, and yours for that matter, Toyota’s probably won’t cut it.
Ross: No, maybe extra souped up with Lamborghini parts? 
Scott: That would be interesting, actually. Lamborghini engine in a Toyota pickup. Awesome. 
Ross: Anyway, it was pretty cool.
The Industry Mourns the Loss of Bill Slawski
Ross: Well, we got lots to share today. But first, I want to start off with, sadly, another loss in our industry. Bill Slawsky. Those of you who have ever read on Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Land, watched anything about any kind of search engine patent, Google patent, anything like that, chances are good that you’ve read something from Bill Slawski. He was one of the absolute leaders in the industry. He helped a lot of people, he was a major fixture in the creation of site forums back in the day where he was a moderator. Although my connection with him is not super strong, other than reading his excellent writing, and I respect him a great deal, I know many people were mentored by him. He was always there and very reliable and had a very unique take on search, from the perspective of facts. Based on what he learned from all the patents and his experience. There are some really touching memorials right now on Search Engine Journal, on Search Engine Land, pretty much everywhere that is to do with search engines, because again, he was a massive figure in our industry. It was sudden, happened on May 19 or the day before, and it was just another shock, another blow. Our heart goes out to all his friends and family and I hope the healing will…what do you say? 
Scott: What do you say, really? 
Ross: It’s a big loss, we’re gonna miss him. I don’t think there’s gonna be anyone who can step into his place for the patent aspect of things. Nevermind all the other areas that… again, I didn’t have a lot of experience with, but people I respect say many things about him that are just incredible. We’re getting old, I guess because we’re losing people. It’s weird. 
Scott: It is absolutely weird, to reach that point in life where, like you said, you start losing people, because it’s kind of new territory for us. 
Ross: And we’re not that old. I’m 46 but I gather he was in his late 50s. I’m not sure. Still seems really young these days. Maybe early 60s. Anyway, just astonishing. 
Let’s jump to the next bit here. This is one of those days where I have to thank you again for putting all these notes together. I’m sort of in touch with what you’ve written here but I think you’re going to be leading, so what’s up? 
Scott: Yeah, I’ve forgotten all the notes I put in so you just have to take it.
WordPress 6.0 ‘Arturo’ Is Here With Nearly 1,000 Changes
Scott: Just a couple little non-SEO things that sometimes are a bit SEO anyways, WordPress 6.0 Arturo has been activated, I guess. You may not want to update just yet. I know I tend to wait when you get these bigger releases until the next release comes out or the next little version, because there are always some kind of bugs. If you’re one of those eager folks, you might want to give it a shot and update today. They apparently have over 1000 updates with this latest version, which I’m gonna go through every single one in detail now. Could you imagine? Six hour- episode or probably longer than that.
Ross: That would be so much fun. We’d have so many more listeners. 
Scott: Do you think even one person would hang on?  It was just a few of the key things. Search Engine Journal covers it, you can go to and find their release there about all the things that have happened. Some of the big ones are performance improvements, with fewer database calls and improvements of how queries are executed. So that’s great. Anything that helps speed up WordPress is very welcomed, they really need to start to catch up to some of their other competitors who are doing a great job at speeding up sites. They’ve added a function for page creation patterns, which allows themes to have a starting layout. So rather than building a page from scratch, you can select from predetermined page layouts and build from that, which I feel like I’ve seen with some themes, but maybe it was more difficult for them, and now it’s more widespread that your custom favorite theme can add that functionality. They’ve included block locking, which I wasn’t sure what that meant. 
Ross: That’s for the Gutenberg. We don’t use Gutenberg in house.
Scott: That’s why I wasn’t really sure. But what block locking allows you to do is to prevent accidentally moving or deleting a block so you can lock it in place. Then I guess you have to unlock it in order to delete it or move it. Which I can see being handy. Not even just WordPress, but anything in general, when have you deleted something by mistake and went “Oh crap, where did that go?” Your key blocks would be good to be saved that way. Also some style variations that they’ve included to allow theme developers to make it much easier for end users to update their styles of their website without having to edit CSS or go through a big cumbersome process. So you know, those are just a few that were highlighted in the Search Engine Journal article. I’m sure at some point I’ll go through the other 996 changes that they made. 
Ross: Knock your socks off. Just don’t put it on the air. 
Scott: Yeah, I’m gonna record it all and I’m going to do every single bit of that research on company time. So that’s my week next week. Yeah, so anyway, there you go. WordPress update 6.0 update it if you are feeling lucky. Otherwise, maybe wait until 6.01 or whatever the next version is going to be. 
Ross: Alright. This is rare, we usually don’t have so many non-SEO news ones. Now I should note though, that WordPress is pretty fundamental to many websites these days. So it’s very nearly connected to SEO.
Google Ads CPC Bug Inflates Click Prices By 300%+
Ross: But this next bit is a little bit off track. It’s about Google ads but this is significant. A cost per click bug inflated click prices by 300%. Some non-US campaigns saw cost per click rise by as much as 400%. They’re aware of the issue and working on it, that is Google. They said that those overcharged are refunded but I would love it if someone did an audit of that. 
Scott: Well, that’s the main reason why I wanted to make sure to include this, even though it’s not SEO-specific, a lot of listeners have pay per click campaigns and Google ad campaigns. Just check your cost per click over the past few weeks. And if you see anything weird going on there, you might want to double check and then make sure that you do get a refund. This occurred as well back in November and those people were all refunded, apparently, so that was good. This is just happening right now. So these ones wouldn’t have been refunded yet. But definitely check your accounts, make sure that they’re on the up and up and if you see any weird click costs drastically increase, then, make note of that and watch for a refund. If you don’t get it, then reach out to the appropriate channels and make sure that it’s fixed. I’m sure it will be but if you don’t know about it, and they don’t catch your account, then you might never know about it. 
Ross: You spend enough money there. You should get that money back.
Google releases May 2022 broad core update 
Ross: The next broad core update is being released as of today. That’s Google, and its first one of 2022. What will this mean? We have no idea — that is what the article says. 
Scott: That’s what all the updates are and everything we can see about it. Yeah, nobody knows. It launched at 8:30 this morning, our time while we’re recording this, so that’s May 25. When you’re listening to this, it probably won’t be finished. It should take one to two weeks to fully roll out as they all do, but keep your eyes peeled and see what’s going on there. Last update was back in November. So it’s been a while, you might see some ranking turmoil, or what did we see? Tremors. I think that’s what Barry said.
Ross: Google ranking tremors..that sounded good, I like it. We will say this again and again, because it happens all the time, don’t panic. You’re gonna see some fluctuations. Oftentimes, they will restabilize, and you’ll be back near the position you were, if not better, depending on what kind of tactics you’re using, and how fresh your website is, etc. Again, it does happen that things will fluctuate during these updates. If you do end up on the bad side of things after a few weeks, give yourself a month to be sure. Well, by that point, there’s usually a bit of intelligence out there on what exactly was impacted and how to respond. So just keep an eye on things, listen to the podcast,  we’ll be updating you, as soon as we know, and either respond accordingly, based on the recommendations or reach out to an SEO you trust. We can always help you out and guide you through the process to ensure that further mistakes aren’t made, or if indeed, it was a mistake, sometimes it’s just simply clarity of the website. 
Scott: Yeah, absolutely. Like you said, if you notice today or right away that rankings are dropping for you, don’t panic and start doing stuff. Unless you can see that the rollout is completely finished, don’t react too quickly, or you might regret that.
Report: Google Showing More Search Results With FAQ Rich Results 
Scott: Alright, what do we have? We’ve got some FAQ news. So about a year and a half, or maybe even two years ago… I don’t know, at some point in the past, FAQ stuff and marking up your FAQs, was resulting in all kinds of rich results and being found in the “People also ask” boxes, and it was a huge increase in the amount of exposure found there. Then that seemed to sort of drop off over the last several months. According to Rank Ranger, FAQ rich results are up about 5% over the last few weeks. So you know, if you’ve got an FAQ page, make sure you’ve got it properly marked up, because the exposure you will likely see is increasing again. I’ve kind of been saying this to a lot of our clients: get that FAQ content, good quality FAQ content out there, because it definitely is getting legs in Google and it’s getting them again. So what’s happening is the number of FAQ rich results snippets are increasing. What that is, is when you do whatever search in Google, and then below the snippet for the website, you’ll see a couple questions with dropdowns and answers. So they can really help increase your click through rate if you are fortunate enough to get those. So you definitely want to try. 
Ross: Yeah, and it’s partly the layout of the page and the other part is the markup. Google does give some advice, and we’ve got a link here. You’ve added some tips here on marking up FAQs: 

  • Both the Q&A must be visible on the page, obviously. Although you can have the answer hidden behind an expandable section or accordion, whatever you want to call it.
  • You can mark up the FAQs with an FAQ page structured markup, that’s what they recommend.
  • They should be on a dedicated FAQ page, such as a product support page. What else you got there?


  • Each question and answer within the markup must be displayed in its entirety. I’ve definitely seen cases where we’ll do an audit on a website, and they’ll have the question and maybe the first sentence of the answer in the markup, but you want to mark it up, like the whole entire answer, make sure that’s included in there.
  • You should not include content submitted by users. If you have user generated content that has users submitting answers to your questions. A good example would be, we’ve been doing a bit of research with BigCommerce lately and there are some q&a sections in there where somebody submits a question, and then the general population submits answers to that question. So those types of FAQs do not qualify for this. So don’t do that.
  • FAQs that are repeated on multiple pages should only be marked up on one single page. So pick the page that makes the most sense for you, the one you want to have rank, or maybe the highest level page of your site that has that question on it and mark it up there and only there.
  • Do not use the FAQ page for advertising purposes. I don’t know what that means. That seems like a bit of a gray area. But I guess if you have heavily commercialized content within your answers, don’t include that stuff.

Ross: I’m sure you’ll see some beautiful examples.
Scott: If I had more time, I’m sure I could have found a whole bunch for sure. This probably goes without saying, but Google lists a bunch of FAQs that will not be displayed. That’s anything obscene, profane, sexually explicit, graphically violent, promotion of dangerous or illegal activities, hateful or harassing language. If you do that kind of stuff, you’re probably not listening to this podcast, you’re probably listening to an SEO Blackhat podcast or something to that effect. But, you know, if you have anything questionable there, it is not going to work for you. 
Ross: As it should.
Scott: And there was a bit more advice from Google. We’ll have it in the show notes, a link to where they have their FAQ page structure data. You could search for it in Google, it’s not hard to find as well. 
Ross: I would love to see examples but I strongly suspect because Google is good at picking out structure. Without having the FAQ structured markup, I bet you there are examples of FAQ showing up in search results just because of the site, the layout of the page. So you know, it’s not the end of the world if you haven’t got the structure markup, but I would say your chances of appearing in search results are significantly higher if you do it. Again, Google deals with people and websites of all levels of understanding of SEO, so they’re always trying to provide the best result. If they discovered that the best result is a site that doesn’t have this structured markup, but it’s obviously an FAQ, it’s probably going to be showing. Just try and increase your odds by doing it right. 
Is Google Search showing fewer sitelinks 
Ross: Google search is showing fewer sitelinks. That’s true. I have noticed that, believe it or not. Usually we don’t notice anything like this, but I have noticed that there’s been less, 
Scott: I didn’t realize it either, until I read it. Because it used to be six, I feel like I’ve seen eight, but now everything’s two to four sitelinks per site. I never really put it together until I saw it in this one article that I think, Barry, it’s always Barry, isn’t it? Barry had mentioned, and it’s true, if you’ve got a site that relies on a lot of traffic from your sitelinks, you might see a hit in your traffic, even though your rankings haven’t changed. So that’s one of the main reasons I want to include this. If you are one of those site owners who, you know, you’ve seen your traffic drop, but you’re still number one, and you’re trying to figure out what’s going on.  It could be related to the sitelinks and what’s going on there. So definitely something you want to keep an eye on. 
Ross: Yeah, and just so those people who don’t understand what we’re talking about here: when you look at search results, let’s say you do a brand search, so you type in your business name and the first result is you, sometimes below that, you’ll have sitelinks, it’ll say ‘FAQ’, ‘About Us’, ‘Services’, whatever. People can click directly into those sections of your website from the search result. Those are called sitelinks. What they’re saying now is, those used to be six, maybe even eight, now they’re down to four more regularly. I think that’s a smart move. Because frankly, there’s a lot of space being used by that. Space is one of the things that’s pretty rare, especially in mobile. I wonder how much of this has impacted mobile. It’s one thing we didn’t even consider here. Being that Google is mobile first. I do still see sitelinks so it even makes more sense to only have four. So the next result can appear sooner. 
Scott: Yeah, it makes sense for sure. 
Ross: Well, let’s take a quick break. When we come back, we’re going to talk about the Google Search Console and its new indexing report. 
Welcome back to SEO 101 on WMR.FM. Hosted by myself, Ross Dunn, CEO of StepForth Web Marketing and my company’s senior SEO, Scott Van Achte. 
Google Search Console to release new video page indexing report
Ross: So, video page indexing reports. I have not seen this, fill us in. 
Scott: Yes, we’ve got a couple little items here about video, which we don’t actually talk a lot about video. But the first is Google Search Console has released a new indexing report for video within search console, obviously. So if you are a big video producer on your website, this will probably be helpful for you. Within search console, this report is not here yet. It’s been announced by Google that it will be released in the near future. I don’t know what that means ‘in the near future.’ Are we talking next week, next year, but something like this, I would think would be fairly soon, I would say within a few weeks, would be my guess. This new report, you will find, just shows a couple things that we’re aware of so far. It will show how many video landing pages Google has discovered and how many of those are indexed, and it will also give you reasons for the unindexed videos. So just a little bit of extra intelligence there. When the report launches, maybe there’ll be more data as well. It’d be cool to see some extra data on structured markup related to that and more advances. But just having that included is great. 
Ross: I was trying to decide or determine whether or not it was only going to affect sites that have the video on site, like they’re saving the video within their own folders. Or does it work for third party videos that you’ve embedded. So I’m looking at the example of video pages with one of the reports, and the one they used was Google. Well, obviously, Google has it in their own systems. So it doesn’t answer that question. It’s showing only stuff within their sub domain. Interesting. Well, I guess we’ll soon find out. 
Scott: Yeah, my understanding was that it would be primarily video that’s hosted on your own server in your own system, and not so much embedded videos like YouTube and Vimeo, and whatever. But really, if it’s a page on your site that’s dedicated to the Embed of that video, you would want to know if it’s indexed, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they still include that stuff. 
Ross: I mean, they could just say that this was found, but this is not local. 
Scott: That could be why it’s not included, for instance. 
Ross: A lot of us use third party tools. I’m not meaning YouTube or anything like that, to embed video, and simply because it’s smarter. It’s pretty intensive to have a video on your own website. It’s hard on the server. And frankly, there are better systems out there to do it. So yeah, I’m interested to see how this plays out.
Vimeo adds structured data to all public videos to improve Google Search visibility
Ross: You don’t see Vimeo very much. 
Scott: I don’t know the last time I saw any websites who have used Vimeo for video, but maybe you wouldn’t notice it as well, I don’t know. But we don’t see a lot of clients using it. But at any rate, Vimeo is adding structured data now to all their public videos to improve Google search visibility. So if you are one of those people that uses Vimeo, I guess it’s about time, but it’s good to know that they’re doing it now. They’re been working with Google to add the structured data to, “give your videos the best opportunity to appear for relevant searches.” Well, thanks for coming to the party a little late. But you’re here, that’s great. I guess, better late than ever, right? 
Ross: We are actually, you wouldn’t know because you don’t deal with it, we are actually one of the probably few, pro users of Vimeo, we embed it on a few things. I haven’t done a video in a long time. But when we embed videos that I don’t want ads on or I want to have some more control over, I use Vimeo. It’s been a pretty good platform. 
Scott: And you know what, did you know that for their videos, they are adding structured data?
Ross: I know. That’s great. 
Scott: So even though Vimeo was handling all of this, by default, there’s really nothing specific users need to do so more or less, this is just an announcement that it’s done. So you can be happy about that. They do have a couple of quick recommendations that I read up on. One is that they say, make sure you add chapters to your videos, Google looks for both video titles as well as chapter titles so you can add those. Also, to make sure you choose your titles and chapter titles wisely. Be descriptive and use keywords when possible. But it is also worth noting that chapters are only available in the Pro Plan or above. All their advice applies to people who pay them extra. So there you go.
We’ve crawled the web for 32 years: What’s changed?
Ross: Something to add here. There’s an article by Mike Grehan, he wrote something on Search Engine Land called “We’ve crawled the web for 32 years, what’s changed?” That’s the title. We’ll make sure to include the link in our show notes. But when Mike writes something, I tend to read it. He knows his stuff. He’s very eloquent. This looks like a really good read. He gets into understanding search engine architecture, and then gets into where he thinks things are going, and how things have changed. Good stuff. Highly recommended that you give that a read. I would cover it now but you know, these ones can take a whole show. Just this alone. So check that out. As usual, Search engine Land has some great, great stuff. So check it out. I know he’s also going to have his own podcast, or is it a video? I don’t know. It’s something. He’s got lots going on right now and it’s always good to keep in touch with what he’s up to. 
Ross: Now time for the Muller files. Just a little little tickle here. Let’s share what you found.
Scott: Just a little jab. I was looking at John Mueller’s Twitter to see if there’s anything worth talking about. The only thing I found, I guess I could have dug deeper and found something really good, but that the URL in his Twitter profile points to his Google Plus profile. So that’s great that John is on top of things. You know, I saw that and I was like, “Google Plus, how long has that been dead for now” and I had to search it. As Ethan, my son, would say ‘search it up dad.’ So I searched it up. 2019, Google pulled the plug on Google Plus and that kind of confused me, because in my mind, it’s been dead for a decade by now. I don’t know what’s going on with time, my brain can’t comprehend the movement of time anymore. Three years now, come on, John, if you’re listening, just update it to something, something rather than a 404.
Ross: It just maybe shows how much he cares about Twitter too? Although, he is on there a lot. 
Scott: Now that you say that, I should probably check what my link is on Twitter, it’s probably my geo cities homepage or something. I don’t know. It’s gonna be bad, whatever it is. 
Ross: I want to give Mike Grehan a plug here. His new streaming TV show / podcast is Search Engine Stuff, you can go to to check it out. It’s gonna be good stuff. I don’t normally plug stuff but I’m sure it’ll be great. So congrats, Mike, and thanks for that good article. 
Ross: One of the things that we were dealing with today in our discussion. This is slightly off topic, but it’s important. If you do any kind of paid ads online these days, especially through Facebook, you’re probably noticing how…frankly, crap, the results are. It’s astonishing how bad Facebook advertising has turned out these days, compared to where it was before, before the big iOS update. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s okay, I just wanted to plug this at the end here, because it’s based on actual results we’re seeing. Frankly, they haven’t been worth the money. It’s a shame. It plummeted in terms of value. There was a point there for years where Facebook ads were absolutely phenomenal. Their targeting was impeccable. Now we’re seeing… I mean, before, our client would see 30% conversions on what he sells, which are very popular stuff that people want right now. I can see why and I won’t get into what it is. Whereas now, it’s… 
Scott: I think it was just over 1%.  I think it  was like 28-30% last year for him. 
Ross: Same amount spent. That’s insane. If you’re wondering why Facebook’s not working for you, take it from us. You know, this is based on experience. This is just not working. I don’t know when they’re going to change it up but they’ve got a lot of work to do. I would put your money in better places. Google AdWords is still working very well. I’m sure it also diminished, but it’s working very well for us. And just make sure that you don’t use Google AdWords Express. I’ve not been impressed with the results of that for any one of my clients. It’s their free ‘give us the keys to your hen house and we’ll look after all the chickens no problem.’ 
Scott: Give us money and walk away. 
Ross: No wonder it doesn’t work so well. Anyway, we strongly recommend using a Google partner, someone who knows what they’re doing, which we are. Someone who has proven that they do, and they have enough spend that they’ve been doing it long enough. You’ll be looked after. Anyway, I know it’s not SEO, but gosh, when we get true factual data that’s just so profound, I just have to share. Money money, you got to make sure it goes the distance, right? 
Scott: Absolutely. 
Ross: On behalf of myself, Ross Dunn, CEO of StepForth Web Marketing and my company’s senior SEO, Scott Van Achte, thank you for joining us today. 
Remember, we have a show notes newsletter you can sign up for it Don’t miss a single link and refresh your memory of a past show anytime. Have a great week and remember to tune in to future episodes, which air twice a month on WMR.FM 
Scott: Thanks for listening, everybody.