Google “Quality Update” Released! Traffic Changes Due to Confirmed Google Update

Google tried to sneak their Quality Update past us!

We at SEO Inc. have seen the “Google Quality Update” on the horizon for a while now. We and the rest of the SEO world thought it would release with more fanfare (or at least with plenty of warning as with Mobilegeddon). But with the primarily silent release of the Google Quality Update on Tuesday, May 19th, Google again proves that it is perfectly comfortable holding us Search Engine Optimization experts at its mercy.

Search Engine Roundtable’s Barry Schwartz saw a lot of buzz earlier in the month from webmasters reporting changes in their traffic. Following up on talk of a possible Panda update, he reached out to Google and got a response: No update, they said.

Schwartz didn’t rule out the possibility that something had changed, suggesting a “bug,” a “limited update,” or even an update that was not “according to Google’s terminology.”

Two weeks later, we found out there was an update. No, it wasn’t a Panda update. But it did release, despite Google’s earlier claims that no update had been released.

A teary-eyed panda and penguin.What Google Quality Update Means

The Google Quality Update, as the folks over at Search Engine Land call it, is confirmed to be a change to Google’s “core ranking algorithm in terms of how it processes quality signals.”

This means that sites that have higher quality, according to Google’s new quality update, will start to show up higher on the SERPs.

Like Mobilegeddon before, the quality update is a small-scale version of a more significant effort to improve Google’s search results and user experience.

Google’s John Mueller explained in a Google+ hangout that these algorithmic updates happen “all the time” in pursuit of the goal “to ensure that the quality of the search results is as high as possible.”

More Quality to Come?

Since many have found their website’s rankings unchanged, and Mueller suggests these are minor updates, can we expect more updates to affect Google search quality? We think the answer is a resounding “yes.”

We suggest all webmasters look for additional quality updates, which may affect your site’s rankings. Some how-to sites have reported lowered orders, such as HubPages, a website that provides thousands of “how-to” guides and blogs.

What’s interesting is the supposed implementation of Knowledge-Based Trust into Google’s algorithms. Content based on verifiable facts could be one factor in the new algorithms contributing to a site’s “quality.” But what to make of HubPages, which has content dedicated to how to, assumedly, answer various issues and questions? There’s just not enough info to know for sure.

Despite this hit to how-to websites, Search Engine Land states that the quality update did not target any specific kind of website. They said, “It was an update to the ranking algorithm itself.”

What to Do if Your Quality is Lacking

If you’ve seen a dip in rankings since earlier this month, it may mean something’s wrong with your website. If you think the Google quality update has hit you, you might want to review our recent SEO tips blog post or contact your SEO service provider.

Or better yet, contact us or give us a call at 877-736-0006. After all, your needs aren’t a one-size-fits-all affair. We can help you find exactly which SEO services you need to ensure your website’s quality increases.

Don’t let your website suffer from poor quality. Let SEO Inc. give your website the boost it needs!

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