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Google releases November 2021 spam update

author image Written by: Rabije Gashi Corluka           Categories - SEO

The rollout for this Google search algorithm update will take about a week

Google has released a new algorithm update, targeted specifically to search spam and it should take about a week for a full rollout. The announcement was made via Twitter saying it is a part of their regular work to improve results, but there wasn’t much more information. Google wasn’t so specific in explaining if this is connected to links, content, or other forms of spam, so they took the opportunity to link to the high-level Google webmaster guidelines.

Why is this important?

Spam updates target specific guideline violations which could affect your ranking or traffic. They are usually designed to cherry-pick low-quality websites that are violating Google’s best practice guidelines  – so, actually listening to their advice and going through the guidelines does sound like a good idea. However, if you noticed some changes with your website traffic – you may have been impacted with the new November 2021 update, but give it some time and wait until the update finishes rolling out, and then check if there are changes you need to make. If you need help – you can always contact us here.

Rabije Gashi Corluka

Rabije always enjoyed finding different angles to a story, so it’s not surprising her curiosity influenced a move to a new continent, widening her perspective. She enjoys hearing people's stories and learning about different cultures and places - but most of all, she loves putting her thoughts on a piece of paper. Her love for writing led to her studying Journalism and PR, but she actually became a storyteller during her radio-hosting era. Now, she uses her skills, experience, and love for writing to help your brand stand out.

Google Helpful Content Update Still Rolling Out

08/30/2022

Update from the future: Two weeks after it started rolling out, the Helpful Content Update is still not showing big ranking changes. Danny Sullivan said the update might get stronger with the next core update. Read more about that here.

More than a week ago, Google announced its biggest drop of the decade – an algorithm update so important no one was ready for. Glenn Gabe shared about this on Twitter, and Barry Schwartz reported on this on Search Engine Land.

Google Helpful Content update is now rolling out and should almost be over.

But, you never know with Google. Just because the update should be rolled out and done in cca two weeks,  the impacts of it and fluctuations can be seen weeks after.

It’s always a good idea to monitor your Google visibility, traffic and ranking and act accordingly. But, sometimes, especially while the updates are in the process of rolling out, it’s better to wait.

What Is Google Helpful Content update?

A sitewide signal that targets websites with high amounts of low-quality content. When I say low quality, I mean not helpful content. What Google means by the same term is: content written for search engines instead of humans.

So, if your content was not directed to humans first and is not helpful to them, but you hit all the right points for Google to rank it well, this update will probably make your website plummet.

The rollout of this update started on August 25th and Google will let us know when it’s finished rolling out.

What If your Website Is affected by this update?

There is a list of questions you can ask yourself about the content on your website. Google shared that a while ago. Some of them are:

  • Do you have an audience that will find your content useful?
  • Does your content show first-hand expertise and a depth of knowledge?
  • Does your site have a primary purpose or focus?
  • Will a person leave your website feeling they’ve learned enough about a topic you wrote about?
  • Will someone reading your content leave feeling like they’ve had a satisfying experience?
  • Are you keeping in mind our guidance for core updates and for product reviews?

Think about these questions. If you answered “yes” to them, chances are – you’re good. If not – you will likely be hit and it will take some time to recover. But, you still have to make changes to your content.

So Far, the Rollout Is Pretty Slow

Given that the update is pretty big and important, everyone thought the hit will be fast and brutal. But at the moment, everything seems kind of calm. For now, most of the chatter in the SEO community doesn’t seem concerning. Is this just the calm before the storm?

Update from the future: The Google Helpful Content Updatefinsihed rolling out on September 9th! Even though not a lot of people reported seeing major fluctuations, the update is still valuable and very important. Read more about it here and find out what to do if you were hit!

 

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Google Releases A New Product Reviews Update

07/29/2022

The fourth version of the product review update is currently in the process of rolling out. Google released a new search ranking algorithm update named – you guessed it – the July 2022 Product Reviews update, and announced the new version on Twitter:

As mentioned, this is not Google’s first rodeo when it comes to product review updates: the first one launched in April 2021, the second one in December 2021, and the last one launched in March 2022.

Read More: Another Search Ranking Update In The Making?

The Update

As usual, the main focus of the update is on reward content that is unique, creative, and factual instead of being a boring template. The better the product review – the higher the ranking. This of course doesn’t mean the “template” content will be sanctioned or punished whatsoever – think of it as a point-based rewards system. Google is just rewarding content that is better than the rest, as harsh as that might sound.

Read More: Customers Want To See Bad Reviews, Too!

What’s new about the update is that nothing is actually new. It seems like Google is now just making minor adjustments, unlike what they did in March when they were full-on inspecting every little thing.

It will take around two or three weeks for the update to fully roll out.  Since these updates can be big, don’t be surprised if you notice some volatility in ranking.

How To Not Be Negatively Impacted By This Google Update?

Follow Google’s list of best practices. Here are some of them:

  • Flex the expertise – offer expert knowledge about products
  • Show what’s the product like, how to use it, say something interesting about it, valuable information people can use
  • Let your readers know why this product is better than the competition’s one
  • Go in-depth and do research – what are your main selling points? What piece of information would convince your readers to buy the product?
Read More: Google Updates Its Rich Results Content Guidelines

Be original and creative, don’t just put in the specs – no one cares about those – at least not so bad to make the buy. You must offer value and a good reason your product deserves to be in their hands. Do your best, follow Google’s best practices and get a reward with each product review update. The devil really is in the details!

 

Update from the future: High volatility was noticed on August 6th, leading the SEO community to think about how the tremors have something to do with this update. Read more about it here

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