What You Need to Know About Google’s March 2019 Core Update
Anyone working in the digital marketing world knows the importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and staying on top of Google algorithm updates. We repeatedly fine-tune our SEO techniques in hopes that our websites find their way to the top of a Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Google makes updates to its search algorithm approximately 500-600 times a year, so it’s crucial that we at least understand the most significant updates.
While the majority of core updates are minor, there are instances where we will see a substantial percentage of websites affected. Maintaining awareness of these fluctuations may be the most important indicator that there has been an algorithm change, as Google often times doesn’t hurry to make any official announcement. The March 2019 Core Update, now official, is the most recent update worth mentioning – so let’s see what’s changed.
August’s “Medic” Update
Last August, an update was implemented where a substantial amount of websites relating to wellness, lifestyle, fitness, and health were affected. In conjunction with Google’s Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T) SEO guidelines for Page Quality, all of the affected sites were within the “Your Money or Your Life” (YMYL) category. The takeaway from this update was to stress the quality and reliability of these health websites’ content due to its sensitive and intimate nature for users.
March’s Core Update
What’s interesting about this most recent update is the reversal of winners and losers from August’s update, or as some are calling it, an update to the update. After March, the websites that were hit hardest in August seem to come out on top due to the reduced SEO visibility of their competitors taking an SEO ranking dive. Based on user signals (signals a user sends to search engines based on their interactions with a website), websites with longer site navigation times, more page views, and lower bounce rates proved to have the best SEO visibility. As these ranking factors may be some of the most difficult to come by, optimizing for these metrics is essential. However, shortcomings of these metrics arise if users’ queries are answered so quickly that navigation is not required, ultimately reducing the time spent on a site. Although, we’re sure user intent is already making its way into the next update.
The Big Takeaway
Overall, we are seeing the growing importance of building reputable, trustworthy websites, but this is nothing new. The continued focus to build brand trust and authority should always be the goal of all businesses, especially those exclusively offering informative and educational content.
Are you looking to increase your search ranking by keeping up with the latest Google algorithm updates? Kraus Marketing is your go-to digital agency. Contact us today!