Google is always looking to improve the quality and relevance of search engine results for its users, often rolling out major updates that can potentially shake up website rankings. This means search engine optimization best practices continue to evolve as well. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the major August 2022 change, named the “helpful content update.”
Why Does Google Update Its Algorithms and What Does This Mean for My Website?
Google uses highly complex algorithms to present the best possible query results, sorting through vast numbers of websites to deliver the most relevant, useful information in a fraction of a second. According to Google, “Search is always working to better connect people to helpful information.” This means that Google is constantly working to improve its understanding of query meanings, search intent and the semantic nature of words. At the same time, Google is also evaluating websites by relevance, reliability, content quality, usability (e.g. mobile friendliness) and contextual information (e.g. location or past Search history).
Google uses many signals to evaluate and rank content, refining and adding more as time goes on. The resulting algorithm updates can range from minor to major; some will affect your website traffic while others may not. One fact you can count on is that Google will continue to improve Search results, so companies should aim to cultivate authoritative websites with helpful content that is relevant to their target audience while highlighting their first-hand experience and knowledge. The helpful content update is another example of Google codifying best practices into their algorithm results – let’s explore how you can evaluate your website’s content and reduce the chance for penalities (not being shown in search engine results).
Details About the Helpful Content Update
Google launched the helpful content update on August 25, which values original content written for people while devaluing content intended for search engines. In essence, Google is seeking to boost sites that deliver accurate, useful information for their audience base while penalizing companies that publish content intended to game search engines.
Companies should aim to demonstrate in-depth knowledge and first-hand experience regarding subject matter. Original photos and insights on a topic are also value indicators that elevate your content in Google’s (machine-based, artificially intelligent) eyes. The copy also needs to sufficiently answer the searcher’s question or help them accomplish a task without users having to navigate through a wall of unbroken text. Google stresses that this update follows past guidance on content development, and that companies should still adhere to search engine optimization best practices. It’s also important to remember that this is just one of the signals Google evaluates when ranking content and web pages.
How to Boost Your Website Rankings
Improving your website’s credibility, content library, backlink profile, on-page ranking factors, review count, local authority signals (such as Google Business Profile) and more can all impact your position in search results over time. A search engine optimization campaign to boost on-page and off-page signals will generate rankings improvements over time. With Google placing such high importance on well-written, authoritative, helpful content, it’s also crucial to have an inbound marketing strategy that includes ongoing development of such assets as part of the overall SEO effort.
Search engine optimization is a long game, and best practices will assuredly continue to evolve over time. Partnering with a trusted digital marketing firm experienced in improving their clients’ site rankings and navigating algorithm changes is highly recommended for those seeking to outperform their competitors online now and in the future.
Improve Your Rankings with a Reputable Digital Marketing Agency
Adhering to search engine optimization best practices isn’t easy for a business without an in-house marketing team. When you need professional help boosting your website rankings, contact Bleevit, a trusted digital marketing firm with a proven track record. Reach out today and get started on improving your site rankings, local presence and web traffic today.
Rick Hogan, CEO & Co-Founder – Bleevit
Rick possesses over 20 years of digital marketing experience and started Bleevit with the primary mission of helping local businesses succeed online. When he is not working he can often be found hiking Great Falls, Virginia with his Labradoodle Lily, or sailing the Chesapeake Bay.
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