Are We Experiencing a Local Algorithm Update?
Google makes small incremental updates regularly to their search algorithms, but periodically they do a more significant update called a “core update”. Here is what Google says about core updates and their purpose in their Webmaster Central Blog:
“Several times a year, we make significant, broad changes to our search algorithms and systems. We refer to these as “core updates.” They’re designed to ensure that overall, we’re delivering on our mission to present relevant and authoritative content to searchers. These core updates may also affect Google Discover.
We confirm broad core updates because they typically produce some widely notable effects. Some sites may note drops or gains during them. We know those with sites that experience drops will be looking for a fix, and we want to ensure they don’t try to fix the wrong things. Moreover, there might not be anything to fix at all.”
Google issued its latest core update on May 4, 2020. Immediately we and other SEO companies began to see larger than normal fluctuations in page rankings for a wide range of businesses including local search results in some cases. However, Google did not make any statements that recent changes would affect local search rankings. So, is this activity a reason for concern?
Algorithm changes do not occur instantaneously — Google estimates the May 2020 core update may take up to two weeks to fully implement. Some variation in search rankings can be expected. DigiSphere Marketing’s position at this time is to take a “wait and see” approach. In the past, rankings have been upset by these changes but tend to settle down over time. Being reactive too soon could negatively impact your search rank long-term. We will continue to monitor Google activity for our clients and advise if any changes are needed.
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