Google have launched a ‘helpful content update’ which is part of a broader effort to enable people to see original, relevant and helpful content that is written by real people, for real people, in search results. Here we explore Google’s latest update and what impact the changes could have.
What is Google’s latest helpful content update?
Google announced on August 25th that they had launched the helpful content update, which is expected to take 2 weeks to roll out fully.
The latest update – the biggest in years – focuses on ensuring users see unique, relevant and helpful content that is written by real people, as opposed to spammy content that is created for search engine purpose.
The new update will aim to reward content that has a people-first approach and that helps to satisfy and meet visitors’ expectations.
The new update will help to enforce the fact that when it comes to writing content, it’s no longer about producing content that is solely SEO-focused with the main aim of helping to boost a site’s rankings – instead, you should produce content with the end user in mind, providing useful and valued information.
What should I be checking to make sure my content is in line with the new update?
To ensure the content you are producing is on the right track, Google has released some questions that you should keep in mind:
- Do you have an existing or intended audience for your business or site that would find the content useful if they came directly to you?
- Does your content clearly demonstrate first-hand expertise and a depth of knowledge (for example, expertise that comes from having actually used a product or service, or visiting a place)?
- Does your site have a primary purpose or focus?
- After reading your content, will someone leave feeling they’ve learned enough about a topic to help achieve their goal?
- Will someone reading your content leave feeling like they’ve had a satisfying experience?
- Are you keeping in mind our guidance for core updates and for product reviews?
If you are able to answer ‘yes’ to any/all of the above when creating content, you can be confident that you are producing content that has a people-first approach and is informative and relevant.
How could the update impact you?
The update is expected to take 2 weeks to fully roll out, so it could take a little while before we are able to assess the true impacts of the update.
Although black hat SEO tactics are a thing of the past and you are no doubt already writing content with intent and purpose, there’s no better time than the present to carry out a review of the content on your website to ensure that everything is in line with the helpful content update.
Pay particular focus to any content on your website that may have been produced purely for SEO purposes. If you find any examples, this should either be removed or reworked to ensure that it is helpful and user-focused.
Here at Freelance SEO Essex, we always ensure that the content on both our site and our clients’ websites is helpful, informative and useful for the end user – and we’d like to think that this is something all digital marketers aim for!