If you haven't heard, the March Core Google Update is here, and it's making waves in the SEO world. Now, I'm sure you're all dying to know what this means for your business, and of course, how you can use this information to optimize your website. Well, buckle up, because I'm about to take you on a wild ride through the world of Google updates, all while cracking a few jokes along the way. And, as an added bonus, I'll also be promoting my fabulous $25 website audit. But first, let's dive into the nitty-gritty of this update.
Google Algorithm Core Update March 2023 Overview
The release: Google has released its first broad core update of the year.
The rollout: The rollout could take up to two weeks.
The Impact: The full impact on marketers is not yet known, but practitioners should monitor metrics, assess and ensure quality content, and optimize technical SEO.
Google's March 2023 Broad Core Update:
On March 15, Google Search released its first core update of the year, the March 2023 broad core update. The rollout could take up to two weeks to complete, according to Google.
This update targets all content types within all regions and languages to promote or
reward high-quality or high-value web pages. According to Google, nothing within this (or any) core update targets specific pages or sites. Instead, the changes are about improving how their systems assess content overall. These changes may cause some pages that were previously under-rewarded to do better in search results.
Some experts speculate that this update will cause the most considerable upset for the black-hat SEO community, those that use tactics against Google’s guidelines to rank higher in search results.
Google’s Latest Core Update Impacts Marketers:
Not much information is available on this core update. It can take weeks for the full effects to become noticeable, as Google’s crawlers need to index and reassess webpages.
Once implementation is complete (approximately the end of March), Google will update its ranking updates history page with more information.
Some SEO practitioners online have reported concerning changes due to the update, such as declining traffic and drop-offs in keyword positioning. Others have reported an increase in traffic, while still more say it is too soon to tell.
SEO Practitioners: What to Do Now:
Some changes due to this core update may be temporary, rolling back once the update is fully implemented. However, pages experiencing permanent change may require action.
While it’s still too soon to determine the lasting impact of this update, marketers can carefully watch their pages and follow this four-step action plan.
1. Closely Monitor Your Site’s Metrics
Keep an eye on performance. Are you seeing changes in page visitors, sessions, time on page, keyword positioning, etc.?
You’ll want to monitor these numbers closely — especially around the end of March, once the update is complete.
2. Perform a Website or Content Audit
If you see any drops, consider performing a content audit. Look at the pages most impacted and for what types of searches.
Assess against competitor content. For instance, content that ranks higher than yours for the exact search might offer firsthand knowledge on a topic (as opposed to secondhand).
3. Focus on Quality, Valuable Content
It's no secret that Google places a lot of weight on quality content. E-A-T (expertise, authority, and trustworthiness) has played a significant role in how content ranks on Google’s search engine results pages for years.
With this latest core update, Google said pages that see a change have nothing “wrong” to fix. But if there is one place to focus efforts, it's on “ensuring you’re offering the best content you can.”
Google offers resources for creating people-first content, including a list of self-assessment questions like:
Does the content provide original information, reporting, research or analysis?
Does the content provide a substantial, complete or comprehensive description of the topic?
Does the content title avoid exaggerating or being shocking in nature?
Is this the sort of page you’d want to bookmark or share with a friend?
Does the content provide substantial value when compared to other pages in search results?
4. Optimize Technical SEO Google also looks at the technical aspects of your site when ranking, such as site structure, load speed, and mobile optimization.
Now is an ideal time to look at these areas and address where you can prioritize the user experience. Your technical SEO checklist might include to:
Check your website’s loading speed
Identify and fix broken links
Find and fix crawl errors
Ensure your website is mobile-friendly
Find and fix orphaned pages
Add structured data
The March Core Google Update is upon us, and it's time to get serious about your website's performance. Keep an eye on your site's metrics, perform audits where necessary, and focus on providing quality content to your visitors. And don't forget, if you're in need of some expert guidance, my $25 website audit is just a click away. Stay informed, stay ahead of the game, and let's make the most of this Google update together!