Google’s John Mueller says that broad core algorithm updates do not aim to penalise webpages and instead merely push content that is deemed more relevant at a specific time higher in search engine page rankings.
In the latest Google Webmaster Hangout, Mueller went into greater detail about the process of core updates and how long brands can expect to wait before they recover.
The advice comes three months after the much-talked about June 2019 update that caused havoc for webmasters after many reported seeing a notable decline in rankings after it went live.
Mueller stressed that a loss of traffic is not in any way a penalty and Google is not concluding that webpages are poor in quality.
Instead, the update ranks pages better if they are deemed more relevant, but it is possible to make ground again before the next update by focusing on the publication of ‘quality’ content.
Mueller added: “So it’s not a matter of doing anything wrong and then you fix it (and then Google recognizes it and shows it properly).
“More it’s a matter of well we didn’t think these pages were as relevant as they originally were.
“And these kinds of changes they can happen over time.”
Google recommends addressing any quality and technical issues before making a significant effort to improve content with a laser focus on the factors that may have contributed to lower rankings and, in particular, anything related to relevance.
Google recently published official guidance to help webmasters to prepare and respond to changes in core algorithm updates.