Google has finally started rolling out its newest entry in core updates on the 17th of November 2021. The update took thirteen days, a rollout time comparable to the previous July one, but what was exciting and shocked quite a few web admins is that its deployment happened concurrently with the busiest time of the year for online stores, namely on Black Friday. The November core update was the third such event of the year, and the changes it brought, according to SEMrush, were felt intensely, albeit for a reasonably short period.
Google implements hundreds of minor tweaks to its algorithms every year that are often not significant enough to require advance notice. However, occasionally the changes to the algorithms are sufficiently far-reaching to need separate, pre-announced posts. The November 2021 core update brought substantial changes in volatility, which were felt by sites differently depending on their area of activity. And the way these sites can react to positions gained or lost in the SERPs may be found in the guidelines released by Google alongside the rollout of the August 2019 core update. What are the key points reported there?
The blog post released alongside the August 2019 core update brings a set of general principles that websites should follow if they want to grow in the SERPs. First and foremost, the blog details the importance of well-researched content, which needs to be original enough to be worth promoting further by other mediums. The blog post also presents the importance of proper titles, which must summarise the information presented in the text in an informative and concise way. Further emphasis must also be placed on the text’s stylistic and grammatical correctness, which must also strictly follow Google’s E-A-T guidelines.
You need to ask yourself if your website brings enough new elements to your field of activity for the content of your texts to be worth promoting on other websites. Promotion on other sites will lead to backlinks, which can be crucial for a better ranking in the SERPs, as can choosing headlines for articles that don’t fall into the trap of sensationalism.
But if your visibility in the search engine pages drops regardless of whether you have followed the general guidelines presented by Google, then you should not panic. A drop in the SERPs with the implementation of a significant update does not necessarily mean that a site has done something wrong but merely that the algorithm changes have favored specific categories over others. Most of the time, the volatility variations brought by these updates are present only for a limited period.
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According to SEMrush, the volatility brought by the November core update was relatively high, registering a maximum score of 9.4, comparable to the previous 2021 core update in June. But the volatility brought by the November core update was mostly short-lived. The most significant changes in volatility were recorded only in the first 24 hours, followed by a general stabilization of the SEO market.
As for percentages, volatility on desktops was 12% higher than in July, and for mobile devices, this increased to 23%. But not every industry was equally affected by the modifications brought by this latest algorithm change. The Healthcare sector was the most affected, followed at some distance by Pets and Animals, Real Estate, and Science. In terms of increase in visibility, Reference materials, a category that generally consists of educational resources such as online dictionaries, saw the most significant improvement. At the same time, Law and Government sites suffered the most considerable losses.
Suppose your website operates in the E-commerce field. In that case, the new core update likely positively affected your SERPs results, with many merchants experiencing a surge in visibility just in time for Black Friday. But other categories have yet to be so lucky. The volatility brought by the new update resulted in an average of 16% new URL arrivals in the top twenty results in the SERPs. The average number of positions gained by sites that registered a spike was 3.34, while the average for sites that reported a loss was 3.19.
This average, however, depended very much on the domain categories of the targeted websites, with significant differences between areas of activity being reported since the update. Sites dealing with Music, Jobs, and Career or those working in the Reference Materials category had a massive average gain in visibility, while others dealing in areas such as the Internet and Telecommunications were clearly disadvantaged. On average, the sites that gained the most positions from the latest 2021 core update moved up an average of 33 positions, while the sites that lost the most in the SERPs dropped an average of 28 places.
The effect of Google’s core updates can be somewhat unpredictable, and you are a busy person who can’t always keep up with the latest algorithm changes in the SEO space. So, for the safety of your business, a good idea might be to hire a reliable SEO company, such as GAMIT to take care of all the aspects that can influence your business’s position in Google’s search results.
What steps should you take so that Google’s algorithm changes do not negatively affect you? Firstly, it has become clear in recent years that most traffic variations come from mobile page management. So, your website must have the same functionality for both mobile and desktop if you want to maintain the same predictable traffic growth in the SERPs.
You should also follow the general information presented by Google in their August 2019 core update post and consider the E-A-T guideline’s importance. SEO is a complex field, and frequent algorithm changes can be a real challenge, but there’s no reason why your business can’t benefit from positive rankings at the end of their implementation. Ultimately, it all comes down to smart and timely decisions that can be performed successfully with the help of a professional SEO company.
Find out more about the experts in our team. You can contact them and request a free website SEO audit report together with our SEO proposal on how to increase your website’s traffic and sales.
Mihai C. Tudorache
I am the president and co-founder of GAMIT. My business administration background is important in understanding our client’s necessities, so my expertise includes building comprehensive and all-inclusive SEO strategies for lead results. Our advanced SEO solutions are developed through extensive analysis and complete SEO improvement audits.