Google recently rolled out its August 2023 Core Update as part of its ongoing efforts to improve search engine results. As with all Google algorithm updates, it may affect a site positively or negatively, or it could have no impact whatsoever.
However, understanding the goals of the update can help you adjust your site to improve the chances of a favorable outcome once all the dust has settled.
First, it is important to keep in mind that the first few days and weeks after Google algorithm updates can be a tumultuous time. Your site could end up in a different position for some time before things balance back out.
This means you should not overreact if you see a sudden steep drop in the rankings. If this occurs, you should certainly start thinking about how you might remediate it, but it is still smart to wait a few weeks to see where your site ends up before taking any drastic actions.
Focus on Quality
The main purpose of every update is to ensure that for each specific query the best-quality websites are the first ones displayed to searchers. Therefore, the most effective approach to adjusting your site is looking for ways to improve its quality.
Google likens the need to adjust its algorithm to making a top 100 list of your favorite movies; the list you made a few years ago will naturally be different than the one you’d make today as new movies are regularly released, and the same is true of web content.
The internet’s constantly changing nature means that over time, some new or revised sites or pages are going to prove to be better resources than the previous top choices.
Google does not reveal the particular changes that are made to the ranking algorithm with these updates, but they do provide a list of questions that you can ask yourself to ensure your content is as good as possible.
These should help guide your adjustments as you try to improve your standing following the update. Outlined below are four key takeaways from these questions.
1. Provide Original Insights or Research
Authority is a major factor assessed by Google when determining search rankings. Ideally, your content will be written by an expert in the field or a prolific enthusiast on the topic.
It should display first-hand knowledge of the content topic. Posts that contain original research or insights will often rank higher than those that are simply rehashes of such information from other sites.
2. Ensure Your Content Provides Value to Readers
Much of the information found on the internet is a slightly different version of content that can be found elsewhere. Even if your content is fully original, some topics are very straightforward leaving limited ways to present the basic facts.
This is the case when, for example, you are listing the requirements for something or providing instructions for carrying out a task. To make your content stand out to Google, avoid simply copying or rewriting existing sources, and ensure you are actually providing additional value with an original take on the matter.
One component of providing value that should not be overlooked is choosing titles and headers that accurately reflect the information in the content. Avoid using clickbait; your content should clearly address everything that is promised by the title.
3. Give Readers a Comprehensive Overview That Goes Beyond the Basics
Many informational websites contain content that provides an overview of a particular topic. However, Google rewards sites that go beyond the obvious and take a deeper dive into the different aspects of the topic to provide readers with a more thorough analysis of the subject.
4. Write Content That Users Will Want to Share
To determine if your page is high in quality, one of the questions Google suggests asking yourself is whether it is the type of page you would want to bookmark, recommend to others, or share with a friend or on social media.
5. Evaluate the Competition After A Google Core Algorithm Update
If you have lost a significant amount of traffic from the latest update and the situation does not improve after a few weeks, it can be helpful to look at the pages that are now outranking you for those keywords.
Is there anything the other sites are providing readers that you are not? Do their pages load faster or provide a more streamlined experience? Do your best to determine where you might be falling short and improve your content to close the gap, letting the customer experience guide every decision you make.
Schedule a Consultation with 321 Web Marketing
It is still too soon to provide a full analysis of what the latest update means for every site, but Google algorithm updates are always a good reminder that top-quality content should be your top consideration.
For help optimizing your site and ensuring your content has the highest quality possible, reach out to the experienced digital marketing team at 321 Web Marketing today.