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How SEO Specialists Can Approach Google’s Latest and Upcoming Updates

Written by Magdalena Drzewicka

I am writing this post due to the copious inquiries about the latest and upcoming updates of the Google algorithm.

Every year, I see more and more topics and questions on the above, both from colleagues within the industry and different clients. In my opinion, this is the result of several factors. On one hand, many SEO specialists like to explain (usually incorrectly) the movements of positions in the rankings through changes in the Google algorithm. On the other hand, industry portals are looking to create discussions, and discourse about updating the Google algorithm is catchy and easy. In particular, when there is no other substantial topic, one can always wonder if the recent fluctuations in rankings were the result of the latest algorithm changes, upcoming ones rumoured in the industry, or what someone wrote on social media.

Of course, discussions and this type of information are needed, because through them we learn new things and keep up to date with the latest trends. However, paying too much attention to algorithm changes can sometimes distract us from the essence of the problem and the real reason for changes in rankings. Many inexperienced SEO specialists and clients panic at the news of an upcoming update—unnecessarily!

What are the facts? Estimates say there are up to about 500 changes to Google’s algorithm per year. This means that the algorithm is modified more than once a day! But what does this mean in practice? Most of these changes are very small modifications, and some changes concern only selected markets and often we should not bother with them. We should think of Google as a search engine that is constantly evolving, just as the entire Internet is evolving.

Since the beginning of Google’s existence, we have witnessed only a dozen really serious updates, such as the last spam update or earlier ones that hid under cryptonyms such as Bert, Medic, or the famous Hummingbird and Panda. For the most part, these updates were aimed at quality weaknesses in order to reduce the number of low-quality search results in some areas and thus improve the user experience with Google. Sites of good quality, with good SEO strategies, always came out of these updates having benefited.

In that case, should we worry about Google updates at all? Yes, but sensibly and critically. Personally, I propose the following approach:

  • For large updates advertised on Google Search Central: carefully analyse the potential consequences for each campaign and implement the necessary modifications to your SEO strategy
  • For smaller updates confirmed by Google: read and implement the steps only if the changes concern the niche of your specific campaign
  • For other updates, news, unofficial information, and speculation: ignore and spend the time gained on the data-driven analysis of your SEO campaign

In conclusion, Google’s algorithm is constantly evolving. While we should pay attention to large global changes that are officially announced by Google well in advance, there is no need to panic. With the right SEO strategy in place, we should not be afraid that changes in algorithms will negatively affect the visibility of our website. Instead, we should expect the opposite—increased visibility, because Google always rewards high quality sites with proper search engine optimisation.

If during the holiday period something does not give you peace of mind and you are constantly wondering if the next Google update may affect your website, I suggest contacting MediaGroup for an SEO consultation. All of our SEO campaigns are based on in-depth analysis and a well-thought-out strategy, so that each of Google’s updates can only have a positive impact on the visibility of your website.

Get in touch at [email protected] today and a member of our senior team will be happy to assist you with your enquiries.

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Magdalena Drzewicka

Head of Agency Operations

Magda joined the agency in 2014. She started as PPC & Social Manager, went through all departments, and now oversees all the work smoothly across our various teams.
Magda has worked in Digital Marketing since 2010. Before MediaGroup, she worked with a NY-based advertising agency with offices in Krakow, PL. Magda holds an MA in management and a BA in cultural studies, both from Jagiellonian University.

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