Google’s latest Helpful Content System update is the first since August 2022.
The rollout of the Update on December 5th to the initial algorithm update from August targets content that may be ranking well, but is not useful for consumers. By doing so, Google aims to increase the level of satisfaction for people using the Google search engine.
While no niche is specifically targeted by the update, the types of content that may be impacted the most are online educational materials, technology, shopping, arts and entertainment. The reason is, content written for these areas has historically been written more for search engines. For example: when searching for information on a new movie, previously you would have been presented with articles that aggregate reviews from other sites, rather than finding something new that you haven’t seen before.
These updates are designed to clear out the copy designed for search engines that clog the higher rankings so that fresh, original content will be lifted higher.
If your ranking takes a downturn due to the new update, take a look at your content and ask yourself the following questions:
- Is your content written for a specific audience?
- Is your content demonstrating your expertise?
- Is your site’s primary focus evident?
- Is your content designed for search engines or people?
- Is your content too general?
- Is your content original or does it summarise what others are saying?
- Are you following trends or leading the way?
- Does your content promise information but doesn’t deliver it?
If you are hit by the new algorithm, it can take several months to recover. By improving your content in ways that make it genuinely helpful, honest, accurate and compelling, you increase the chances of your rankings improving over time.
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