Businesses, website owners, and SMEs could risk fluctuating search engine rankings over the next two weeks. This is because Google has just started rolling out its May 2022 Core Update which historically changes the search landscape.
Last night, 25th May 2022, Google announced its May 2022 Core Update would be rolling out over the next one to two weeks. This is the first broad core update of 2022 with the previous update in November. They’re a global update, not specific to any particular regions, languages, or website category. The updates are designed to make Google continuously more intelligent as a search engine.
What does this mean for businesses and websites?
The update may (or may not) affect your website’s SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) as Google assesses your relevance in the search results compared with similar websites. Usually, the exact factors that decide this aren’t clear or disclosed, especially at such an early stage in the update’s life.
This can be frustrating if the update lowers your rankings in the search engines as this will reduce your visibility, and you can’t find out why. In many cases, there isn’t even anything you’ve done explicitly wrong or any glaring errors, just a subtle change that has inadvertently affected you. It’s nothing personal.
So, what should we do if we see drops in rankings and traffic?
It’s actually common to see significant fluctuations in the two-week period before an update fully drops. You might see a serious drop one day, and the next it’s completely back to normal. That’s why the best thing to do is wait. Only once Google announces its finished should you try to determine whether or not you have been impacted and by how much.
If you discover your website has become significantly less visible after the update, your next step should be to try and determine why.
Core updates are designed to reward quality. Rather than getting into the mindset that your website is being punished and you’ve done something wrong, remember that it’s more about others being rewarded. And the good news? You know who to learn from.
With search competitor research, find out who has benefited from the update and try to determine why their pages satisfy particular search queries better than yours. Maybe it’s down to the overall quality of the website or how thorough and accurate the content is on particular topics. For e-commerce websites, it could also be that the website has a more extensive range of product options on a page that better satisfies more generic searches.
Whatever it is, that’s your answer as to what to focus on next.