HELPFUL CONTENT UPDATE (HCU) – Preliminary Findings and Insights
Lily Ray has conducted an in-depth analysis of the Helpful Content Update (HCU), providing insights into its impact across diverse niches. Key observations include:
- Online tools like calculators and converters are significantly affected.
- “Information” sites, engaged in data scraping and rehashing with poor user experience (UX), have witnessed substantial changes.
- “Lifestyle” sites, encompassing horoscopes, self-improvement, etc., face challenges due to overwhelming ads and thin content.
- Travel sites encounter difficulties owing to the prevalence of duplicate content.
Beyond niche-specific repercussions, the HCU reflects Google’s broader initiative to target sites lacking unique value. The focus is on content lacking depth and not authored by subject experts. While some valuable resources unintentionally suffered, Lily Ray suggests that the majority of affected sites deserved the impact. A comprehensive analysis is forthcoming, with a caution against premature conclusions.
Guidance for Website Owners
During the wait for a detailed analysis, website owners are encouraged to:
- Perform a comprehensive analysis of overall site quality.
- Review and update content, especially older posts, to maintain ongoing relevance and value.
- Consider Marie Haynes’ advice on enhancing content reputation through authentic conversations on relevant topics.
- Emphasize expertise and firsthand experience in content creation.
- Revisit Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines, focusing on E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness).
- Leaked information from a court hearing against Google reveals that clicks are a ranking factor.
- Gary Illyes emphasizes the continuous improvement of websites between update rollouts and hints at an upcoming December update. He confirms that links have not been a top-3 ranking factor for a while.
- Google mistakenly indexed Bard answers on SERPs due to a bug, which is being addressed. Caution is advised against sharing personal data with Bard.
Local SEO Updates
- Google Maps User-Contributed Content Policy has been updated, particularly regarding fake engagement and personal information.
- Personal information can’t be published without consent but can be shared if part of a commonly known business entity or if the individual is a public-facing professional.
Celebrating Google’s 25th Anniversary
In a momentous celebration, Google turned 25. SE Ranking continues to be a dependable partner for maintaining and enhancing your website’s visibility and success in Google’s search rankings.
Cheers to ongoing success and visibility on Google in the years ahead! 🎉🚀 #Google25 #SEORocks