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What we know about Google’s latest core update


What we know about Google’s latest core update

This week, Google has announced that it will begin rolling out its second core update of the year.

The update is officially known simply as the ‘May 2020 Core Update’ and was announced on Twitter through the Google Search Liaison account. It came at around 7:30pm UK time and was followed up with another tweet almost an hour and a half later confirming that it was now live.

As has become common with these updates, Google has given no prior warning that it would be taking place nor has it provided details about what the update is about or what to expect from it. Instead, Google suggests that webmasters and SEO specialists take a look at a blog that it created in August 2019 which acts as a general guide to what core updates are.

Google’s first core update of the year came in January and was announced in a similar, mysterious fashion to this update. Google is constantly making minor updates to its algorithms to allow users to get the most out of its services, but in the past, it used to make a big deal about these major core updates.

At one time, webmasters and SEOs were given ample warning about these updates and they had a different naming convention to the date format it takes today, with updates known as Hummingbird, Panda and Penguin. Furthermore, Google outlined in detail what these updates entailed.

Google issues these updates every three months or so and calls them “core updates” because they can provide noticeable effects across all search results. Since quality of content is considered very important to Google, websites must ensure that they are updating their websites with relevant content to the services and products they provide.

The search giant also acknowledged that the update has come in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic and also offered an update on how it is helping with this, as it realises that the situation is affecting the way the world is using the internet and that people require different results to usual for searches relating the coronavirus.

While some websites may notice no immediate changes to their rankings, Google does warn that the update can take a week or two to completely roll out. It is also worth highlighting that not all websites will see negative swings in their rankings either, some will see a positive change and some will see no change at all.

Even if your website does see a negative change, this doesn’t mean that your site has done something wrong or is being penalised. These algorithm changes can see temporary fluctuations before going back to where it was before the update.

If you find that your website has been adversely affected by Google’s latest core update, or have found that you are not getting the most from your online endeavours, then get in touch with the team at Engage Web.

Alan Littler
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