On September 26, Google finished the rollout of its latest core update. Today, we’ll take a look at what this update includes and how it may affect your website. Without further ado, here’s what you need to know about Google’s September 2022 core update.
What is a core algorithm update?
Google updates small parts of its algorithm daily. These changes aren’t always widely publicised and rarely significantly impact your website’s rankings in the SERP (search engine results page).
Additionally, Google rolls out what they call a core update a few times a year - the September update is the latest one, and the second one in 2022. These core updates are more significant, and Google publishes more information about them.
Google’s overall mission is to provide the most useful content to its users, and core updates are meant to ensure just that.
What changes were made?
This Google algorithm update is a global one, targeting all online content across all regions and languages.
The core update is all about Google improving the way it assesses websites’ overall relevance and value. It’s hard to find information on what changes this core update entails precisely. That being said, it’s safe to say that this update will follow Google’s overall mission to prioritise helpful content created with humans rather than search engines in mind. This means that content that offers a poor user experience or appears plagiarised or written by bots will take a hit.
It’s also worth mentioning that the core update finished on the same day as a product review update.
How will this affect me?
The consensus seems to be that this core update packs less of a punch when compared to previous updates. This means you might not see much of a change, especially if you are keeping on top of your SEO. The update may shift some rankings at least temporarily but isn’t as all-encompassing as some other core updates have been.
On the other hand, your website traffic might drop significantly all of a sudden. If it does this, don’t panic - it’s definitely not something that can’t be salvaged.
If you notice changes that affect most pages on your website rather than individual ones, this shift is likely due to the core update. Changes in traffic to individual pages are likely not due to the core update.
What should I do now?
Now is a good time to take a look through your website analytics to search for significant and sustained changes in your website traffic as a whole.
It’s also a good time to do a content audit of your website if you haven’t done one recently, especially after August’s helpful content update. This could entail content that is out of date or unhelpful to searchers, and updating content that is still relevant but could use a refresh. When refreshing existing content or writing up something new, make sure to follow SEO writing best practices.
That being said, you don’t necessarily need to do much. If your website traffic has taken a hit, it doesn’t necessarily mean there’s anything wrong with your website - Google has said so themselves. This update is simply meant to improve the way Google assesses websites - and this means previously underperforming, yet useful and relevant websites may well be rewarded with higher SERP rankings.
You can read up on Google’s most recent algorithm updates here and find more useful resources on SEO on our blog. And if you’d like some support strengthening your website’s rankings, contact our SEO experts today.