Google’s New Update Aims to Provide Users with Better Quality Content
Users’ growing frustration in finding valuable content has prompted Google to introduce a new update called the “Helpful Content Update,” completed on September 9, 2022.
The sitewide signal update allows users to find more “quality content” instead of those created solely to rank high on search engines, and therefore, not necessarily have the information that searchers are looking for.
About Google Helpful Content
Google’s Helpful Content operates by awarding those websites that provide quality content a higher position on the Google search result page. As a result, users will be exposed to more quality pieces, and give customers a better experience.
Google’s Helpful Content takes on a people-first content approach and away from search engine-first content. This, in effect, will encourage creators to generate content with people in mind instead of only targeting Google’s search algorithms, which are deemed low-quality or unhelpful for end users.
What Does This Mean for SEO?
According to Google, the new update will not rule out SEO best practices. It’ll still be relevant to the new algorithm. However, it’ll not be the leading factor. What’s more important will be the quality of the information provided, and SEO tactics will be used to support the creation of people-first content and high-quality sites.
Read more about what Google considers high-quality sites here.
How Does it Work?
Using a machine-learning system and different signals, Google will look into websites and automatically identify the overall quality of content on the site and target them based on the outcome.
The sitewide signal update also means that it’ll affect the whole site, not just a particular page. So, if you have a lot of unhelpful content on your website, the impact won’t be just on a page or section but on your overall site. Therefore, removing as much low-quality content as possible can help improve your rank on Google’s search results.
How To Avoid Getting Impacted by the New Update?
The key step in preventing your site from being targeted is to build your content around Google’s human-first content approach.
Google provides some pointers on how to avoid being targeted by the new Helpful Content Update:
Create valuable content.
If you’ve been generating pieces just to attract traffic to your site, you must make changes. Create different types of content that include information people are looking for. The goal is to prevent visitors from needing to search again for better information.
Show that you’re the expert on the subject you’re presenting.
People come to your site hoping to find answers to their questions. If you say you’re the expert in digital marketing, but your content says otherwise, users will be left disappointed and will most likely never come back. Leave a good impression by backing your information with data and expertise.
Less is more.
It’s better to produce less but helpful content rather than more with nothing to offer. Google will rank content based on its usefulness and root out those strictly overloaded with SEO components.
It’s important to note that if your site got affected by the new update and changes have been made, it can take months until you see the result.
Google’s new update is a significant one and certainly a whole new playing field for those who have been working around SEO. The recent changes can be a breath of fresh air for many, as it can be a momentum to improve your site’s overall rank on search results. So take the opportunity that the new update has given and start providing actual useful content for what matters the most: your customer.
Remember, it’s not the end for SEO, as Google stated. Apply SEO practices to support your content and build a high-quality site, but do so without overwhelming it with just that. If you have any further questions regarding how to create a content strategy according to Google’s new update, reach out to us, and we’ll help you build a solid one!