Google’s Danny Sullivan announced via Twitter this Monday morning that the search colossus was rolling out a new core update.
Essentially, this means that Google has revised its search algorithm (again), with the aim of modifying the way that it returns relevant and useful search results. In the past, such updates have had clearly discernible effects, with some sites suddenly ranking higher than previously and others ranking lower.
The net result of these core updates is intense anxiety for webmasters across the globe as they brace themselves for the latest impact on their ranking.
It’s become customary for Google to launch these core algorithmic updates once every few months. On this occasion, Sullivan stated in his Tweet of 13th January:
“Later today, we are releasing a broad core algorithm update, as we do several times per year. It is called the January 2020 Core Update. Our guidance about such updates remains as we’ve covered before.”
Just one hour later, at 5.00pm GMT (mid-day US Eastern Time), Google released another statement confirming that the new update was now live. In Google’s own words, “The January 2020 Core Update is now live and will be rolling out to our various data centers over the coming days.”
This means that we’ve had a three-month update-free adjustment period following the previous core update, which spread across the web in September last year. That one had little of the impact that previous core updates have had. There was a more limited update in November, but that one was confirmed to local rankings.
However, all concerned with having a web presence and ensuring that their high-quality content marketing gets the ranking it deserves will be asking, “What happens if this update hits me badly?”
If you’re affected, the first port of call is to follow Google’s link to a post from August 2019 where the search giant details the significance of what it refers to us “broad core updates”.
Naturally, content marketers who notice a ranking drop following such an update want a remedy, and fast. The post warns marketers not to thrash about attempting to remedy the “wrong things”, as in many instances there “might not be anything to fix”.
It’s best to revisit Google’s existing advice on what counts as quality content. For example, does it provide original information, fresh reporting, new research or analysis, comprehensive coverage of a topic, draw on validatory sources without simply copying them to add value?