Everything You Need to Know About Google’s Core Updates in 2021

Everything You Need to Know About Google’s Core Updates in 2021

Last Updated on November 24, 2022 by

In July and November, Google went through two core updates, but how did they affect the platform? What do you need to know as a business?

Firstly, it’s important to point out that you don’t need to know anything. Thankfully, lots of digital marketing agencies exist these days to help in this area. If you would rather forget about core updates and outsource this responsibility, feel free to contact King Kong today. 

For those still interested, one of the biggest problems with core algorithm updates is that Google likes to keep people guessing. In other words, it doesn’t provide a clear list of changes for professionals to digest. Instead, the industry is left guessing and speculating based on what happens after. 

Fortunately, lots of clever people analyze the core updates and infer as much information as possible from them. With Google announcing new spam features earlier in 2021, the July 2021 core update likely included new anti-spam technology. Elsewhere, some experts noticed a drop in performance for Pinterest ccTLDs (something that seemed to perform well during 2020!).

Also, it’s fair to say that those who invest in SEO properly didn’t notice many changes in performance which suggests that good SEO practices are being rewarded once again. If you avoid low-quality links, for example, you shouldn’t notice too many fluctuations for keywords. Meanwhile, those without good SEO practices noticed more of a difference. 

Toward the end of 2021, Google released the product review update, and it was a welcome early Christmas surprise for businesses and marketers alike. While some experts were expecting a small update, early evidence suggested otherwise. Suddenly, Google and SEO commentators were getting their laptops back out of the bag after putting them away for Christmas. 

As the name suggests, this update mainly affected those with product reviews on their website. If you have product reviews on your website, it’s wise to analyze your performance over the last few weeks since December 1st. While some people experienced a jump in rankings, others watched their ranking tumble. 

Ultimately, Google wants to clamp down on poor and misleading review content. Therefore, you’ll want to ensure that your own reviews have lots of detail and are genuine. If your review content looks like the rest of the review content on the internet, you will just blend into the crowd. If you can offer unique content, you’re more likely to be rewarded. 

If you were hit by the December update, Google suggests including links to multiple sellers within review articles. If you have just one link, it suggests that you’re trying to make a profit from the article by steering all readers to this one product – something that Google doesn’t appreciate. By including links to multiple sellers, you’re more likely to offer fair and impartial advice – something that Google does appreciate. 

Furthermore, Google also recommends supporting your opinions with evidence – this can come in the form of links to your personal experience with products, visuals, audios, or another form. Once again, these will make the content more authentic. 

Interestingly, Google also released a core update in November during one of the busiest shopping periods of the year with Cyber Monday and Black Friday. With volatility on mobile and desktop, the hardest-hit industries were health, science, travel, auto and vehicles, and real estate. With lots of volatility, Google’s advice is to consider its standard questions when dealing with a new core update – in many cases, Google says that the problem will correct itself so long as the website follows the best practices.