If your traffic or ranking reduces from May 2021, you can blame it on Google’s core algorithm update.
Usually, Google is very guarded when it comes to announcing algorithm updates. This is simply because it doesn’t want the system to be cheated. It usually doesn’t give clear updates or responses to why things have changed or are changing rapidly in search.
However, in November, they were very clear in announcing what was going to change, and when it would change.
What’s the update? And how big would it affect SEO?
What’s the Update?
Before I get into that, note that Google releases updates often. It has since released another unannounced update after this upcoming update was announced.
This update affects what it calls Core Web Vitals. Google has said that this update rolls out in May 2021.
What is Core Web Vitals?
Core web vitals affect a user’s experience on a web page. It will play a crucial role in determining how Google will rank your website.
We won’t go deep into it in this blog post because we have already explained every nitty-gritty about it, including the parts and all in our digital marketing training website. Here’s the link to the blog post on core web vitals. Read it carefully; it will help you overtake those competitors of yours that don’t already know.
How Would Google’s Core Algorithm Update Of May 2021 Affect My Website?
The update has to do with user experience and website speed for the most part. It affects website speed and how/when users can interact on your website. Given its focus on the user’s experience, if your website’s user experience isn’t good, your website won’t be ranked as highly as it is now.
If your website doesn’t already rank high, you can use this as an opportunity. Note that every other thing comes into play as well. So, use these SEO strategies to improve your website. You can also learn SEO from here.
Why Is Google Introducing This New Algorithm?
Google always releases algorithm updates multiple times in a year. Industry research and studies have shown that users prefer sites that offer them a user-friendly experience more than anything else.
Google always updates the algorithm, and in recent times has paid greater attention to some factors, including:
Google is still looking out for websites with the best backlinks to show expertise and trust; it is always looking out for the best content. But at the core of its algorithm is user experience.
If you and your competitor have great content and backlinks, what would make you rank number one instead of that competitor is how much you have optimized your website for PageSpeed and mobile responsiveness.
What Should I Do To Retain And Grow My Ranking In The Face Of This Algorithm Update?
1. Reduce 400 Errors and Optimize Your Speed
We both know that the faster a website loads, the better experience you’ll have navigating through that website. You should try to get your website to load faster on both desktop and mobile devices.
You can optimize your website by getting a web developer to minify your website code, remove unused codes on your pages, and in general, write better code. Image optimization is still a big deal for website speed.
Also, your website hosting provider matters; if you are using a bad one or a too cheap one, your website will be slow. If it seems too cheap to be true, it is bad.
Also, ensure that you don’t have broken pages on your website. These broken pages create a bad user experience, and you don’t that for your business and your customers. Redirect the links to any deleted pages to other pages on your website.
2. Understand That Content Is Still King
This isn’t about to change anytime soon. Everything on the internet rises and falls under content. It’s no surprise that Google added that great content will still rank well on the Google search results.
So even if you have a great website that loads fast and no broken pages, but you have poor content, you won’t still rank high enough. You have to ensure you have creative, authentic, and customer-centered content on your website.
An average of 80% of web users use their mobile devices to access the internet, so mobile-friendliness is a huge factor in user experience.
When mobile users visit your website, your website content should adjust to their devices. It’s weird that some web designers in Nigeria still give their clients websites that aren’t responsive. That’s wrong, especially in this day.
There are free tools to check if your website is mobile-friendly and suitable for mobile browsers.
4. Analyze Your Design
Google doesn’t want a situation where users try to click on “Yes, place my order” instead of “No, go back” due to your design issues. Here’s what we mean:
Most of the time, you won’t have that problem, but your users will have that and other usability issues.
5. Provide A Safe Browsing Experience
As online threats and cybersecurity issues continue to grow and evolve, it’s crucial to ensure you’re providing a safe browsing experience for your website visitors to build trust and avoid being filtered out by Google’s advanced tool.
Google doesn’t like piracy/plagiarism, social engineering (contents that make visitors harmful activities), or websites with malware. So, all those should not be found on your webpages.
Google is taking user-experience very seriously, and user experience is crucial now and would always be relevant. If people love your website, it will eventually rank high. Create great content, create and implement an awesome distribution strategy, and you’ll get the customers you are looking for.
On the flip side, if everyone feels your website has a terrible user experience, your website won’t rank high. If it already ranks high now, that wouldn’t last. You have the notice now about this Google’s core algorithm update. Fix your site!