Nozak Consulting

What Are Broad Core Algorithm Updates?

Scott Emigh

Every now and then, Google makes changes to its Algorithm. To be precise, this usually occurs several times a year. The most recent broad core algorithm updates were rolled by Google on June 3rd, 2019, and by June 8th, the roll-out was competed.

What exactly is a broad core update from Google?

When Google undertakes broad core updates for its algorithm, it enforces a change in the order, values or importance of its ranking signals. While each update is usually minor, they will always have a specific intended purpose.
In layman’s terms, it affects how the organic search results look and also the order in which websites rank.

What happens when Google has an update?

When Googles announces broad core algorithm updates, it’s usually major news. While it doesn’t happen very often, when it does, it certainly makes an impact. The most recent update has shockwaves through the SEO community, leaving many agencies, digital marketing professionals, and website owners a little confused about what exactly had changed, and what they needed to do in order to restore their rankings.

In contrast to a post made in October of last year, where Google clearly stated that when these broad changes are made, there is nothing in particular to put right or ‘fix’; When the latest update had completed its work, there were a number of sites which had been drastically impacted by this change.

They (Google) state, the route to all success on Google is to create content that truly benefits the visitor, and that if you answer and address your customer’s needs comprehensively and in a way that makes it easy for them to use your site and find the information they need; this change shouldn’t have really made a major impact on your site.

What Google says about its updates

Because broad core algorithm updates address a number of factors, and because they do not hone—in on anything specific, Google concludes that it is often challenging to know exactly what to tell people to fix.

In a recent Google Hangout, John Mueller of Google went on the record to state, that in some cases, not all, the web simply evolves; and just like how the expectations of users can evolve, so does Google. – As cryptic a quote as this may seem, it is actually the most that anyone from Google has actually gone on record to say about their Broad Core Algorithm Updates.

On the same Google Hangout, John references a list of questions you should be asking yourself in order to confirm whether or not your website is geared up for your prospects and potential visitors. We cover these and more in another article on our site that discusses SEO tactics to help with Authority.

As you can see, Google isn’t giving too much away about what has changed, and for those who might have been impacted by one of these changes, many have been left wondering exactly what it is they need to do in order to restore their previous positions.

What can you do if you lose traffic after a broad core Algorithm update?

While Google might say that there is nothing to fix; there are always measures you can take to improve your website. As many of you who are reading this will know, a website’s work is never done.

Google recently adjusted their search Quality Rater Guidelines and placed a greater focus on ranking quality websites within a search; so, it is widely expected that the latest broad core algorithm update is acting like a ‘quality patch’ for the search results. When we speak of low-quality content, it is usually a reference to a type of spam. However, in order to show relevant results on a search engine, the search engines need to get better at understanding the content and its relevance to the search query.

The most important thing you can do to ensure your site remains in a healthy position following a broad core algorithm update is to focus on your content.

When any search is made, one website is directly weighted against another.

In actual fact, your site could have lost position not because it is being penalized in any way, but simply because another site was rewarded more for doing something or displaying content in a more relevant way. Finding out exactly what it was the has impact your results will usually require the services of dedicated SEO consultant.

Here are a number of actionable steps you can take to help your site recover after broad core algorithm Updates update in 2019:

  • Make sure you have zero duplicate content on your site
  • Add Author Bylines to your Blog Posts
  • Make sure your website is secured by SSL/TLS
  • Review your page loading speeds
  • Remove unwanted or intrusive adverts
  • Always think of the relevance of your content to the user – does it create a positive user experience?
  • Is your site easy to navigate? Are you internally linking your pages together?

While the above steps might seem elementary, you need to make sure each of these is addressed comprehensively. If you have an SEO professional working for you, have them perform some analysis to help you understand where you can enrich the content on your website so that it performs better. In a previous post, we wrote about improving your website’s authority; we outline the key steps you can take to improve this if your site has been impacted by the latest Google update, then it’s worth taking a quick look to confirm your site complies with all the points raised.

While the effects of the June 2019 Core Update are still unfolding, if you lose traffic following a Google Update, one of the most effective ways to know what to do to restore your former rankings is to simply look at the content on some of the sites that are now ranking higher. It’s always a good idea to keep track of the competition, and you might find that performing a detailed analysis of your competitor’s websites, or at least, those who are now ranking higher than you; deliver some opportunities for improvements on your own website.

The Purpose and Intent Behind Google’s Many Updates

Whenever Google makes a change of any kind to its search algorithm, it’s big news, and it often has consequences that impact websites across the globe. While there are some which given their own names, such as Penguin, Panda, Pigeon, and Fred; others are simply labelled as core updates or broad core updates.
Usually, the named updates are designed to address specific issues or faults that exist within their search algorithm.

For instance, with Pigeon, this focused on problems with local SEO spam, and with Penguin, this was designed to address generic problems with spam. These Google updates each had a designated and targeted purpose, and with all of them, Google did release information into the public realms which enabled website owners and webmaster to be able to correct the issues and move forward.

However, broad core algorithm updates are different because it is a change or minor alteration to the core search algorithm itself. And, without actually revealing the inner workings of their search engine, they are often unable to provide any valuable insights or details into the tweaks they have made. Essentially, they are playing around with the order of importance of specific factors that impact the search results that people see.

In Conclusion

Because Google’s broad core algorithm updates are non-specific tweaks to their core search signal values, and they do not publicly release the details, knowing what to do after your website is impacted by a change like this isn’t always instantly visible.

Focus your efforts on having a clean architecture, quality content, making sure your site adheres to Google’s guidelines, and keeping your users intent firmly in mind.