Is Google’s helpful content update a game changer? See Report
This could be huge for many website owners…
Google has just announced the launch of an upcoming search engine ranking signal called “helpful content update.” This new signal should be rolled out around August 25, 2022 and this is a site-wide signal.
Google published one detailed instructions about this upcoming “helpful content update”. Here I’ve summarized Google’s input along with some of my tips for preparing for this upcoming algorithm update.
Table of Contents
What is Google’s helpful content update about?
This update is all about rewarding content that focuses on people first. According to the official site
The helpful content update aims to better reward content where visitors feel they had a satisfying experience, while content that doesn’t meet a visitor’s expectations doesn’t perform as well.
Google has long recommended that publishers create quality content while keeping SEO in mind. Recently, however, we’ve seen the rise of AI writing tools like Jasper, which can generate automated content that looks real and is SEO-friendly, but at the same time gives bad advice because it’s machine-generated.
At the same time, some publishers work with inferior authors and only generate SEO-friendly content without adding any real value. In my opinion, this new signal is aimed at all such content that is written only for search engines and offers no real value to users like you or me.
How do you know you’re happy with Google’s helpful content updates?
Google has published a series of questions, and if you answered “yes” to them, you’re on the right track. Here are these questions:
- Do you have an existing or intended audience for your business or website who would find the content useful if they came directly to you?
- Does your content demonstrate first-hand expertise and in-depth knowledge (e.g. expertise derived from actually using a product or service, or visiting a place)?
- Does your website have a primary purpose or focus?
- After reading your content, will someone feel they have learned enough about a topic to achieve their goal?
- Will someone reading your content feel they have had a satisfying experience?
- Remember our guide for core updates and for product reviews?
Let’s decode some of the questions listed above.
- Question number 2: It seems to reward people who create content based on experience. Using actual product images, travel photos, and personal anecdotes should give Google a better signal.
- Question number 3: This IMO is for niche websites as multi-niche websites don’t have a primary focus. There may be an exception if you are targeting a group with your multi-niche websites, e.g. E.g. “students”, “expats” and so on.
- Question #6: As publishers realize that writing reviews is a gold mine for affiliate conversions, they produce a lot of content. This question focuses on Google’s recently released product rating policy. If you haven’t been through it, this is one good time to see you again it.
Warning Signs for Search Engine Only Content:
Google is not against on-page SEO or creating SEO-friendly content. However, the problem is that publishers focus solely on the search engine and fail to satisfy their end users.
In this section, Google has shared a list of warning signs if you answer yes to these questions:
- Should the content primarily attract people from search engines instead of being made for people?
- Do you produce a lot of content on different topics hoping that some of it will perform well in search results? (My comment: Content cannibalization is something you might want to watch out for)
- Do you use extensive automation to create content on many topics?
- Do you mainly summarize what others have to say without adding much value?
- Do you write about things simply because they seem to be trending and not because you would otherwise be writing about them for your existing audience?
- Does your content make readers feel like they need to search again to get better information from other sources?
- Do you write with a certain word count because you’ve heard or read that Google has a preferred word count? (No, we don’t).
- Have you decided to jump into a niche topic with no real expertise, but mainly because you thought you’d get search traffic?
- Does your content promise to answer a question that doesn’t have an answer, such as: B. suggesting that there is a release date for a product, movie or TV show when one is unconfirmed?
To stay on top of Google’s rollout of helpful content updates:
Google published this signal on August 18, 2022 and suggested that the rollout should take place in a week, i.e. on August 25, 2022. You can monitor it Google search ranking updates Page to be notified when this and other future updates are rolled out.
This rollout should take around 2 weeks and I suggest preparing for a volatile late August and early September.
However, there are a few things you can do in the meantime to ensure your site is not affected by this update.
Also Read: Pro Blogging Tips For a Successful Blog In 2022
- Remove your outdated and unhelpful content. If you are deleting outdated content, the video below will help you clear the SEO backlog.
- Update existing content by comparing it to other sites on the web. Make sure your page is better than other pages for the target query. This does not have to be an SEO comparison, but an overall quality comparison.
- Optimize your website’s home page to provide a clear value proposition. Whenever possible, use social proof so your readers understand why they should believe you.
- Improve internal links, which is a proven positive SEO signal. It helps the search engines understand the context of your entire site.
If you’ve created content based on experience, keeping users in mind, and talking about SEO best practices, you have a little to worry about. However, the rollout of Google search engine updates is never 100% perfect and a good website could often fall victim to rollout.
This upcoming update is fully automated and not a manual action. If your site is affected due to Google’s helpful content update, you need to conduct a full review of your content and take the right action. It may take 2-3 months for your website to recover.
IMO if your website content is worthy and you focus on your readers you should be fine. If you find yourself on the other side of the fence, instead of worrying, try to figure out why Google penalized your site and revise it to improve content quality and give better signals.
I would love to hear your comment on this upcoming update. And if you’re reading this post about August 25, 2022, I’d love to hear; whether your website has gained traffic or lost traffic.