Google has just finished rolling out its latest major update, which they have helpfully called The Healthy Content update. With this update, Google is attempting to filter content that is published on websites into two categories: content that is made for the users and content that is specifically designed to rank highly on Google.
Who/What is Google targeting with this update?
Websites with large amounts of content that is deemed unhelpful, or out-dated ‘SEOed’ text written with the intention of ranking highly on search engines seem to be the main target for this algorithm update. Any website with content that is written with the users’ best interest in mind seems to be largely unaffected by this update. This has made it more important than ever to ensure that the content on your website is high quality and helpful to your audience. If you need help with this, get in touch with us.
Why has Google changed its algorithm?
The ultimate goal of this update is to promote content that is designed to help users above that which Google deems to be less helpful. Google wants well-written and high-quality content to be ranking much higher than it currently is. While content that is specifically written to cater to the old algorithm should now rank below newer high-quality content.
This shift in the content hierarchy will allow Google to showcase content that is unique so that users aren’t reading the same information in every article. Ultimately, Google wants to serve its users in the best way possible, showing them the most relevant and useful content. Flipping the current system upside down.
What this means for you
Following the update, you’ll need to be mindful of what content is going to be affected the most. Although the algorithm is not designed to target a specific niche, Google has stated that certain types of content will be affected more negatively than others. These are:
- Hard selling content
- Tech-related content
- Online educational material
- Advertising entertainment products (e.g films)
All of these types of content are typically created in a way search engine algorithms like; rather than with the target audience in mind.
Rather than being applied in the usual way on a page-by-page basis, this new update will be applied sitewide. This means that Google will assess your site as a whole and determine whether or not your content is written for users or the search engine. If Google decides that your content is split between helpful and unhelpful content, it could flag up your entire website as unhelpful. The amount of unhelpful content that will be allowed on a ‘helpful website’ is still yet to be released by Google. So it’s best practice to keep the amount of unhelpful content on your website very low.
How to keep your site ranking highly with the new Google algorithm
The first step you can take is to remove any content that is unhelpful. This means removing content that:
- Is not created for a specific audience
- Is not trustworthy or credible
- Does not meet the need of the searcher
- Does not feature any expertise
A top tip from us is to make sure that you don’t repeat the same things across your whole website as this will help lower the chances of your website being flagged up by Google’s new algorithm. It will also help to improve your rankings on Google and who doesn’t want that?
If you’re struggling with making sure that your content is helpful and relevant to your audience, get in touch with our team who will be more than happy to create helpful website content for you.
Avoid being unhelpful at all costs!
Although you may think that Google flagging your website as unhelpful doesn’t matter, getting this label from Google could mean that your site gets a very low ranking. Just to add salt to the wound, it could take months to prove to Google that your site can publish content that is designed to help users. What’s more, if your site is labelled unhelpful, every piece of content that you publish will have to go through a rigorous validation process. Which can take weeks, if not months as it is an automated process.
To find out more about the update to the algorithm take a look at Google’s official blog
Here at Seaside Creative, we’re content marketing specialists who can write helpful content for your site. Making sure that your site avoids becoming unhelpful, and ultimately, keeping your business visible in Google’s new algorithm. Give our specialist team a call on 01903 686858 to find out how we can help you stay on top of this big change.