Google Core Algorithm Update – Who wins, who loses?

On 4th May 2020, Google announced a core algorithm update regarding Google’s Search Engine Optimization. The announcement was made through their official Twitter account. As a result of this update, many websites were affected by the loss of visitors and an overall dip in search engine rankings. But at the same time, many websites also moved up in the rankings overnight.

“Why such reshuffle in rankings?” – is the current trending gossip among internet marketers.

So, let’s learn about the Google Core Algorithm.

What is the Google Core Algorithm Update?

Google introduces various updates in its algorithm throughout the year. But the update, which to a wider extent, brings about massive changes in search results, is known as a core update. Thus, the recent update was a core algorithm update with the following crucial characteristics:

Core update does not apply only to a specific category of websites or a specific country. Rather, it applies to all websites, in all languages, for every country.
As soon as the core update is executed, many websites will automatically gain or lose their ranking.

New guidelines of the core update should be followed if you want your website to rank well.

What’s there in this Google Core Algorithm Update?

Though this algorithm update was released on the 4th of May 2020, it was previously already a guideline from Google. This guideline was published by Google on the 1st of August 2019. Therefore, it is clear that this guideline was effective since then but Google didn’t accept it as an algorithm at that moment. Only on the May 2020 algorithm update did Google officially declare this guideline as a new algorithm. So, let’s investigate what remains in this guideline –

Content Should Be Prioritized

Google awards those who prioritise content. This means that the websites that dipped in rankings from this new update should review their content according to the new guidelines. If you want to remain in the competitive rankings, this has to be done. Several points are showcased in the guideline (i.e the algorithm update at present) that instructs the proper arrangement of content.

Google also has a specific questionnaire for your content that includes 4 categories of questions of which will result in better ranking. These questions are –

Questions on the value of content

  • Is there enough information, research, report, and explanation in your content?
  • Does the content provide full and detailed emphasis on the topic; the topic on which your content is based?
  • Are the websites, from which you have gathered the information for the content referenced accurately?
  • Do your title and meta description portray the summary of your content?
  • Did you make sure your title and meta description isn’t too exaggerating or shocking?
  • Will people be interested in a bookmark or share your page?
  • Does your content bear the potential to be referred to by encyclopedias or other sources?

Questions on reliability

  • Is your content credible? Does it provide clear information and evidence?
  • Will the visitors of your website trust and accept all your given info?
  • Does the content writer have good knowledge on the topic at hand?
  • Are the website content free from false or incorrect information?
  • Can your website content be trusted?

Content presentation and preparation based questions

  • Is your content free from spelling errors and grammatical mistakes?
  • Is the arrangement of the content well-structured?
  • Different writers write content for you. For this, are any important pages of the website left out?
  • Does the content contain so much advertisement that readers find it annoying to read?
  • Is the content responsive, i.e can be opened in any device like mobile, tab, etc?

Comparative questions

  • Is your content comparatively more valuable than other pages?
  • Is your content written to satisfy the visitors’ needs or just to gain search engine rank?

The four points that we discussed above are the new guidelines from Google. Content has been of most importance to Google when it comes to ranking, which is evident from the discussions above. That’s why Search Engine Specialist quote that, ”Content is King”!

Having said that, let us take a closer look into content marketing.

EAT Criteria

Another notable addition of the Google algorithm update in May 2020 is the EAT criteria. At present, this criteria largely impacts the ranking factor. EAT is an abbreviation where,

E stands for Expertise,

A for Authoritativeness, and

T for Trustworthiness.

Expertise (Skills and experience)

How skilled and experienced is the content writer on the topic written is addressed as expertise. That is, whether there is a deep understanding and knowledge of the content as a whole.

Authoritativeness (Authenticity)

Here, authoritativeness is used to refer to the authority or authenticity over the content of your website. Your authoritativeness is proven when other famous websites refer to your website (i.e external link or backlink). This proves that your website is the prime informant on that particular subject matter.

Trustworthiness

When your website proves to be trustworthy in terms of providing information and safe transaction, this is termed trustworthiness. For websites with monetary transactions, trustworthiness is of immense importance for them. Especially for e-commerce websites, trustworthiness is the most significant aspect. Having an SSL certificate bears proof of the trustworthiness of a website.

Who wins, who loses?

Informative and content dependent websites are the winners of this latest update. Simultaneously, new websites with instant rankings lost a great number of visitors which subsequently caused them to fall in ranking. In this case, Google has given priority to older domains. Most local sites, affiliate sites, and e-commerce sites were among the ones who lost rank. On the other hand, health, education, and news sites shot up in the rankings.

However, the websites that fell in ranking should not be misinterpreted to have lower standards. This fall is just largely due to the recent change in the algorithm. For a full list of who wins and loses from this update, marketing analytics software company SEMrush has published a comprehensive report that you can refer to.

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