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Dissecting the Latest Google Broad Core Algorithm Update

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21st August 2018 in

Hailed by many in the industry as the biggest update since Penguin 2012, the latest Google algorithm update has left many website owners reeling.

As is the case with most updates, Google has provided little insight on the algorithm change, which was first felt on the 1st Aug 2018. The only info provided was via an announcement tweet.

Our SEO team in Perth also noticed suspicious fluctations in our SERP tracker around the same time. The yellow bars below highlighting the days with the highest movements.

The wider SEO community, with their extensive SERP tracking, has also weighed in to help decipher exactly what has shifted in Google’s Broad Core update.

Firstly, what is a broad core update?

Courtesy of our friends at Search Engine Journal:

“… a core update is a tweak or change to the main search algorithm itself. You know, the one that has between 200 and 500 ranking factors and signals (depending on which SEO blog you’re reading today).

What a core update means to me is that Google slightly tweaked the importance, order, weights, or values of these signals.”

So obviously everyone is scrambling to work out exactly what factors were impacted. The theories around which factors were adjusted varies depending on who you ask.

According to MozCast’s temperature report, the Health sector was heavily impacted, followed by Vehicles, Personal Care and Hobbies. This has resulted in the algorithm update being named the Google Medic update.

But we know from anecdotal evidence that several sites in sectors that appear towards the bottom of their scale were adversely impacted also.

Search Engine Watch has been monitoring the discussions across the forums, and identified the following factors as being heavily impacted by the update:

Interestingly Google has said openly on Twitter:

“…you should not do anything’ if you have been penalized and ‘there is no quick fix.’”

Needless to say, website owners that have been impacted are unlikely to sit idle, hoping that a future update fixes their issues.

So if you have been negatively impacted by the latest update, we would suggest looking at the factors mentioned above, and if you feel you’re deficient across any of them, make the necessary changes to improve your performance across them.

If you’ve been impacted by the latest update, we’d love to hear how it has impacted your rankings.

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