The digital marketing landscape is constantly evolving, and that’s thanks in part to Google’s Core Updates. Have you ever straightened out your search engine optimization only for your traffic to drop significantly 6 months later? Learning how to handle Google Core Updates for business will enable you to keep your Ecommerce game strong throughout the years.
This article will dive into the details of what exactly Google Core Updates are, how they can affect your ecommerce business, and how you can account for (and benefit) from them!
Let’s get started.
What Are Google Core Updates?
Google Core Updates are rollouts of major changes to the Google search algorithm that can majorly affect search results for online businesses. Google is known to keep the inner workings of its search algorithm a closely guarded secret, but the company at least acknowledges Core Updates. That much can’t be said for every update Google makes to its system.
For example, the “June 2019 Core Update” was announced via Google’s “SearchLiason” Twitter account. This was not the first, nor the last Core Update to be announced, as they happen a few times a year at least.
Google’s “SearchLiason” account described the intention behind these live updates in a past tweet thread that was re-shared following the rollout of the June 2019 update:
“Sometimes, an update may be more noticeable. We aim to confirm those when we feel there is actionable information that content owners might take. For example, when our Speed Update happened, with gave months of advanced notice and advice….”
“We understand those who do less well after a core update change may still feel they need to do something. We suggest focusing on ensuring you’re offering the best content you can. That’s what our algorithms seek to reward….”
Accordingly, it is clear that many significant Google Core Updates are adjusting important Search Engine Optimization (SEO) factors. It is rarely revealed what these changes are to prevent unethical SEO practices and spamming.
How Do Google Core Updates Affect E-commerce Business?
Google Core Updates have effects on E-commerce and other online businesses. Regardless of your industry, product, service, or business strategy, SEO is vital. Therefore, Google Core Updates will have immediate and outsized effects on your numbers if you are selling 100% online.
Let’s examine some of the ways a Google Core Update might affect your eCommerce business:
Decreased Levels of Traffic
If the updates make significant changes to Google’s algorithm or web crawler, you may notice a drop in traffic to your site. This may be apparent on particular pages only, or it could be a site-wide phenomenon. If your site drops down multiple spots on the search results page (we’ll talk about that next) you can expect a subsequent drop in traffic.
68% of clicks on a Google search results page are from the top 5 positions. As you might guess, having subpar SEO after Google Core Updates will harm your online traffic.
Decreased SERP Ranking
The Search Engine Results Page (otherwise known as SERP) is where all the magic happens, assuming your site is optimized to take advantage of Google’s algorithm. When a Core Update makes changes, your eCommerce site could lose its pole position. You can examine your site and page rankings with tools such as the Google Search Console.
Determining the effects of a Core Update on your ranking will require watching your stats over multiple days. This allows you to get a good idea of whether a drop in ranking is just a slow week or a problem that will persist. We recommend determining the results based on a wide range of keywords.
How Can Your Business Account for These Changes?
We get it… You’ve put in blood, sweat, and tears towards perfecting your SEO, just to have a Google Core Update seemingly dismantle all your hard work. We’re here to tell you not to stress! Optimizing your site for good positioning on search results is not a black-and-white discipline. A complete overhaul isn’t necessary—you just need to know where to start.
One of the first things to keep in mind is a transitionary period during the rollout of a Google Core Update. This means that immediate drops in rankings won’t always persist—in other words, let the dust settle before making changes. You might find your traffic returning a week or two later without any changes on your end.
Let’s say that you’ve waited it out, analyzed your ranking, and determined that something needs to change. The next step is to recognize what content is not driving traffic as it should. Then, you can begin to break down how or why this content isn’t deemed “relevant” enough by Google’s search algorithm.
It may be the case that articles and pages on your site aren’t newly up to date enough. That “fresh” factor has an impact on your ranking. Maybe your content is shorter and more surface-level than other long-form pages outranking yours. Take a look at who’s beating you on search results to see what they’re doing better.
Psst… Google has resources for helping you look at your content objectively: Here’s its article on “Creating helpful, reliable, people-first content.”
Enhancing the “authority” of your page will also work wonders. Google has shared some key characteristics of what constitutes authority for a page or website, which you can find here. It’s a lengthy write-up, so here are some quick tips:
- Utilize citations and hyperlinks for information.
- Make sure you are hosting your site on a secure domain.
- Include contact information (preferably on an “About” page).
- Post content with good grammar and factually correct information.
Seeking to establish more authority outside of your web domain can also help. This can range from high-quality sites linking yours to smaller stuff such as social media mentions and contributions to forums and blogs with your brand’s account.
N2Q Can Help You Navigate Google Core Updates
This may seem like a lot to tackle all at once, but it’s certainly possible! Search Engine Optimization is a complex and varied facet of ecommerce business online. A Google Core Update will throw a wrench into the works, but skill and expertise in SEO can not only fix but improve your rankings and the subsequent traffic.
No to The Quo’s team of digital marketing wizards will optimize your website, both the technical side and the content on it, then develop a custom strategy—tailor suited to your industry and position. This will enable you to not only increase in page rank but truly see a return on your investment and increase site traffic for the keywords and phrases that matter most.
E-Commerce No To The Quo