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Google Helpful Content Update Rolled Out – All You Need to Knowby@jacelynsia
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Google Helpful Content Update Rolled Out – All You Need to Know

by JacelynsiaAugust 26th, 2022
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After the recent Google’s broad core update May 2022 announced by Google Search’s Public Liaison Danny Sullivan, Google has unveiled a new significant update to its search ranking algorithm, which it has termed the helpful content update. The content that is not useful to users will be the focus of this update, which will begin to rollout this week.

The update on quality content aims to remove articles that have been published solely to boost search engine rankings but do not engage or assist readers. According to Google, this update is going to address the
content which seems to be written particularly for performing well in search engines.

According to Google, the change will "help ensure that obscure, poor-quality content will not really rank prominently in Search." Therefore, if you write articles with the intention of boosting the search exposure, traffic and visitors then this may affect your site.

How does it affect the sites globally?

This is a site-wide algorithm update, so if the machine learning algorithm finds that a large fraction of your content is unsatisfactory or ineffective, your entire site may be affected and penalized by this algorithm.

This helpful content update would be applied to the entire website rather than just certain pages. We've been warned that trying to fool Google by transferring the useless information to a subdirectory or subdomain might not be successful. Instead, you ought to either delete such stuff or drastically improve it.

In its additional statement, Google stated that "Any content, not only unhelpful information, on sites considered to have significantly larger aggregate proportions of useless content becomes less likely to appear well in search."

What are we supposed to do?

People-first content publishers concentrates more on creating valuable content first while still using SEO best practices to provide searchers with more meaningful results. If you said yes to the following queries, your people-first content strategy is certainly on the right track:

  • Do you already have an intended target audience for your company or website that would be interested in your content if they came across to you directly?
  • Does the content strongly indicate the level of expertise and in-depth knowledge (for example, knowledge gained from genuinely employing a service or product or exploring a location)?
  • Does your website have an initial objective or focus?
  • Does a user feel that they've learned enough after reading your post to help them accomplish their goals?
  • Does anyone who reads your article feel satisfied afterwards?
  • Are you implementing both Google's core changes and product review recommendations?

Things to avoid?

Now, how would you prevent prioritizing content solely for search engines? You need to reconsider your website’s content strategy, if your answer to any of the below queries is “Yes”.

  • Was the content developed mostly for search engine users or was it also written for actual people?
  • Do you produce a lot of stuff on a variety of topics with the hope that some of it would perform well in search results?
  • Do you frequently employ automation to produce content on a diverse range of subjects?
  • Do you simply summarize the views of others without truly offering anything of your own?
  • Do you post updates on things you wouldn't usually write about for your present audience just because they seem to be popular?
  • Do readers of your content feel compelled to check other websites for more reliable information?
  • Are you adhering to a precise word count now as you've seen or read that Google has a preferred word limit? (Google doesn't assign it any significance)
  • Did you decide to write about a topic for which you lacked thorough understanding largely for the intention of gaining search traffic?
  • Does your website pretend to provide a response to a query that is actually unexplained? 
  • Like, does your website suggest a publication date for a book, movie, or TV show when it has not been formally announced? 

Implications – Google’s helpful content update

This now concludes that people-first content on websites categorized as having unhelpful content may still perform well on searches, if some other indications signals that people-first content as helpful and suitable to a query.

Additionally, the signal is weighted, so websites with a lot of obsolete content can see a higher impact. In any case, make sure you've eliminated any unhelpful content and are adhering to all of the requirements for the best success.

This change first affects English searches all over the world, and Google has further plans to cover more languages going forward. It will also make more improvements to the classifier's ability to identify useless content over the following months and introduce new initiatives to better recognize content that puts people first.