July 2021

July 2021 Roundup

Learn how to stop worrying and love Google’s updates!

Ask anyone running a website, and one thing sure to send a deathly cold shiver down their spine is whenever Google announces an update. Air raid sirens and red flags swirl in their brains in a cacophony of panic. The sky is falling! The world is over! Your site is lost to the sands of time, or as it’s sometimes called, page 2 of Google.

So, for our July Sparks Roundup, we thought we’d take a look at Google’s June search engine update, and their summer page experience update to see if it’s genuinely time to batten down the hatches or if Chicken Little has lost the run of themselves.

Core Search Engine Update

Core Search Engine Update:

Google is constantly making updates to the search engine. These are generally minor tweaks and testing to specific elements. However, a few times a year, Google will roll out a broad core update that affects rankings worldwide.  

These are the ones that cause mass hysteria!  

Sometimes the effect is mild, and sometimes it’s incredibly volatile. You don’t know whether you’ll be affected by the update, and generally, Google doesn’t give a whole pile of notice. 

The June update began on June 2 and finished on June 12, six months after the last update in December 2020 

In a nutshell, the June update was a bit of a mixed bag. Different industries saw drops and rises, but nobody noticed any ranking changes until three or four days after it started rolling out.  

Another core update is expected in July, which might have more impact, but only time will tell. 

Page Experience Update

Page Experience Update:

Last year, Google announced they were planning to use page experience as a ranking factor in 2021. Google is now looking beyond just promoting the best content and will now consider the user experience of sites.  

Loading speed, mobile-friendliness, secure browsing, and accessibility (which we covered in last month’s Sparks here) will join the hundreds of other factors and data points Google uses to rank sites. 

Starting June 17, Google began rolling out this update, and it won’t be completed until the end of August. Google has said not to expect ranking changes in June. Still, many SEO experts anticipate significant ranking changes by late summer 2021. 

The page experience update may seem scary, especially if you feel your site isn’t up to scratch. However, Google has been clear that highly relevant content is still the priority:

“While page experience is important, Google still seeks to rank pages with the best information overall, even if the page experience is subpar. Great page experience doesn’t override having great page content.”

Why You Shouldn't Panic

Why you shouldn’t panic:

At its core, Google’s search engine is a simple productit’s an information delivery system. Think about yourself; when you search, you want the best information as quickly as possible regardless of the device.  

Well-written relevant content on an easy-to-use website has been and always will be the goal. Everything else is just gravy! 

Google knows their users (sometimes maybe a little too intimately!). So, every update they make is fulfilling their users’ needs. You need to do the same.  

  • Which keywords are your potential customers searching for?  
  • What do they expect from a website in your space?  

Find out the steps you need to take to create the most relevant content and deliver an outstanding user experience and action them. 

Need help with your digital strategy or have a specific topic you want us to cover?

If there’s anything in particular you want us to cover in our future Sparks Roundups, or if you need help planning and implementing your digital marketing campaigns, just pop an email and we will be happy to get back to you. 

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