Google’s June and July updates for SEO are now fully rolled out, and any subsequent changes you might see in your rankings will be likely caused by the normal fluctuations in search results. This means that the new search index is officially rolled out to all of the data centers, and search results could remain relatively unsettled.
If your rankings have dropped once the algorithm has fully been implemented and had time to adjust (generally 2 – 3 weeks from launch), it’s time to get to work determining what has happened and what changes need to be made to regain lost traffic.
Overview of the July 2021 Core Algorithm Update
- Google usually implements a number of core algorithm updates every year, each of which is designed to provide search users with the best and the most relevant search results at the top
- In early June, Google announced that a new core update had rolled out, but didn’t specify exactly what was included.
- The only thing they did share was that some parts of this undisclosed update were not ready at the time, and they would do a second update in July.
- After months of pushback and buildup from Google, the page experience update finally started rolling out.
Let’s dive into the details.
Impact of June and July Google Updates for SEO
Google rarely specifies what is involved in the core algorithm updates. However, Google has said that it’s planning a core algorithm update to bring changes across a wide variety of ranking and indexing processes. The June and July updates of 2021 were preceded by two spam updates, which is quite unusual.
In early 2021, Google announced it would ramp up its efforts to fight spam with a new anti-spam AI, and Google has introduced more efficient spam-fighting features on June 23 that allow it to perform at a much faster pace.
With regards to the spam updates, you can rest assured that it’s unlikely that you were penalized by these updates, so long as you’re running a trustworthy and legitimate website that’s compliant with Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. We recommend that you go through these guidelines to ensure that your website doesn’t violate any of them.
Less Crowding of ccTLD Domains in Search Results
Domain crowding happens when a domain name ranks recurrently in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Previously, certain SERPs would be dominated by websites that have several country code top-level domains (ccTLDs) like .uk, .ca, .tv, etc., despite being under the same domain. So far, some users have noticed that Pinterest ccTLDs lost visibility following Google’s Core Algorithm update for July.
According to Google, websites that dropped in rankings don’t necessarily have anything to fix. Most in the SEO community find this statement from Google debatable. The search community likes to probe websites that appear to lose rankings after such updates to identify the technical and quality issues that might have contributed to it, like ads above the fold.
However, those kinds of technical issues are not likely why websites usually lose rankings, and “fixing” them seems to be what Google is referring to when they say there’s nothing to fix. Still, there are usually things to be fixed. For instance, many sites lost rankings following the Medic Update, specifically for medical and health-related queries.
The reason behind the lost rankings is that the Google algorithm started correlating search queries in the medical domain with results that are scientifically proven. Due to this change, alternative healing platforms like OZ lost traffic. It’s not that the alternative medical sites had something inherently wrong with them; they are simply not relevant for the user intent when it comes to medical search queries, as they generally demand proven methods other than speculative treatments.
Page Experience Update
So far, there seems to be no significant impact from the Page Experience Update. This is unsurprising considering that the update was supposed to take until the end of August. Google has also confirmed that the Page Experience update won’t have a massive impact on rankings as it’s just one of the many factors that decide the pages to rank.
Unfortunately, the slow rollout makes it quite difficult to tell the impact this will have. The best thing you can do is to ensure that your website passes Google’s core web vitals. For instance, you can check your core web vitals in Google’s PageSpeed Insights.
Predator Algorithm Update
Google will continue trying to surface relevant, high-quality content for its users while downgrading websites that might try exploiting people’s reputations. It’s looking to make ranking improvements to enhance its protection against such kinds of exploitative sites.
The search giant will ideally not tackle this on a one-on-one basis, rather, it’s looking to make broad algorithmic improvements. Keep in mind that their ability to address such issues has improved tremendously over the years, and it may enable them to make a more nuanced approach to address some specific kinds of queries.
This technology is helping Google to maintain the efficiency advantage over its alternatives, helping it surface more relevant results in search. With its first application, the Multitask Unified Model (MUM) technology from Google was able to help identify over 800 varieties of vaccine names in more than 50 languages in a matter of seconds.
MUM is built on a transformer architecture (like BERT), though it’s being touted as 1000 times more powerful and able to connect information for users in new ways through multitasking, such as identifying and matching names of Covid-19 vaccine names across languages.
While the impact of this technology is subtle, it goes to show the lengths Google would go to deliver relevant results, which should help it maintain its position as the market leader in search.
EverConvert Can Help If Your Site Was Adversely Affected!
If you noticed your rankings changed in the last few weeks, one of the best things you can do is to analyze the data to establish the exact time frame the change occurred. This way, it will be easier to identify the specific update that hit you.
If your rankings improved considerably, that’s great news! Google’s main motive here is to improve the core quality of search results, and this would mean that it apparently considers your website to provide high-quality content.
If your rankings took a dive, it can be helpful to take a step back and figure out the kind of content you can create to provide real value to your visitors, and how you can present it with the best possible user experience in mind. The team at EverConvert can help you get your site back on track, helping you generate traffic and sign new clients, because in the end: