If you run a website, chances are good that you’ve noticed your traffic dropping in Google. So how do you know if it’s because of the latest update to Google’s algorithm? Well, there are a few things that can be at play here.
If you’re seeing a drop in search engine traffic, it may be because one of your pages doesn’t load very quickly. It could also be due to malware on your site, or even something as simple as not having any links pointing back from other reputable websites (like ours!)
|Stay informed about Google’s algorithm updates.|
|Monitor your website’s traffic and rankings for sudden changes.|
|Assess the impact of algorithm updates on your site’s visibility.|
|Focus on providing valuable and relevant content to improve rankings.|
|Regularly review and update your SEO strategy to adapt to algorithm changes.|
|Utilize tools to analyze your site’s performance and identify areas for improvement.|
|Consider seeking professional help if your site’s rankings are significantly affected.|
|Prioritize user experience and adhere to SEO best practices to mitigate negative effects.|
Check Your Site Speed
Google has made site speed a ranking factor since 2010. This means that if your site loads slowly, you’re at a disadvantage when it comes to SEO. The reason is simple: slow loading time can negatively affect user experience, conversions, bounce rate, and conversion rate.
Google recommends that your pages load in 2 seconds or less. They’ve proven that users will leave your website if it takes longer than 5 seconds to load.
So if you want to keep visitors on your website (and increase their chances of becoming customers), make sure your page speed is optimal!
You can use Pingdom Tools’ free tool for quickly checking how fast your site loads from different locations around the world: https://tools.pingdom.com/fpt/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww..com
Navigating the world of SEO can be daunting, but it’s essential for your online presence. Learn why it’s important to stay informed about the latest updates in Google’s algorithms. Check out our article on why I gave up on SEO to gain insights into adapting your strategies.
Look At Your Mobile Pages
Mobile page speed is another key factor in Google’s new algorithm update. If your website takes too long to load, it will affect your ranking in both desktop and mobile results.
According to Google: “Pages that take longer to load are considered slower by users and result in higher bounce rates for websites.”
You can check the page speed of your site using Google PageSpeed Insights or Pingdom Tools. You’ll also want to make sure your mobile site is malware-free, secure, and responsive by checking for:
- Mobile-friendly content (e.g., text sizes must be large enough to read)
- Mobile-friendly links (e.g., URLs should be short enough so they don’t redirect)
Check Your Site For Malware
Malware, short for malicious software, is any kind of code that intentionally does something harmful to a computer or device.
Malware can be delivered via email attachments (as in the recent WannaCry and Petya ransomware attacks), hacked websites that infect your computer with an active script, or even by running an infected program downloaded from a site like Cnet.com or Download.com.
Some examples of malware are adware and spyware these collect information about you while you’re browsing the web without your knowledge; they may then sell this data to third parties without your consent;
Trojans can open ports on your computer so hackers can gain access to sensitive files; bots steal bandwidth from unsuspecting users; viruses disable antivirus programs.
So they can’t detect them; worms replicate themselves over networks until there’s no room left on any device and finally worms like Conficker keep spreading across networks even after being removed by one machine’s antivirus software due to its resilience against attempts by IT professionals at containing it using traditional measures. (1)
To check if any malicious code is running on your website:
Backlinks play a pivotal role in SEO success. They’re like building blocks that elevate your website’s authority. Dive into the definitive guide to building backlinks to understand how they contribute to your site’s search engine ranking.
Understand The Value Of Your Site
It’s important to understand the value of your site before you can determine if it has been affected by Google’s latest algorithm update.
Understanding your site’s value will help you determine whether or not a problem is causing the change in traffic and rankings, or if a positive change is happening on your site. You can do this by asking yourself questions like: Why was I created?
Who am I trying to reach? What do I want my readers to do (buy something through my blog, subscribe for more content, etc.)? What does my competition look like? How does their website compare with mine?
Use Tools To Measure Quality
This is an important question and one that we recommend you ask of your site. Let’s start by looking at the latest change to Google’s algorithm.
Google announced a core algorithm update in March 2019, which impacted 1% of English-language queries and 2% globally. This update was named the “March 2019 Core Algorithm Update.”
A website’s quality score is determined by its CTR, bounce rate, and other metrics such as time on site, pages per visit, and user engagement level. If your website has good quality scores then it will show up higher in SERPs (search engine results pages).
If it doesn’t have good quality scores then it won’t rank as well or at all for certain keywords/phrases used by searchers in their queries.
An easy way to see how much traffic your site has lost from this recent core update is by using tools like Mozcast or Searchmetrics which show trends in rankings over time.
Including whether there was any fluctuation in rankings after March 19th when Google released its latest major algorithm update called Panda 4.4.”
Ensure You Have A Secure Site
If you have a secure website, then you’re good to go. If your site is not yet secure, it’s time to make the switch.
To ensure that your site is secure and will remain so in the future:
Use SSL/TLS certificates for encryption. You can get these from a provider such as Let’s Encrypt or Comodo (if you want something easier).
Use HTTPS instead of HTTP on all pages of your website. This means that all URLs for pages must start with “HTTPS://” instead of just “HTTP://” if they are encrypted with SSL/TLS certificates (see above).
Use HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) preload and HSTS preload for subdomains if possible.
This ensures that Google Chrome will always show a lock icon next to any links on your page before clicking them; this makes users more aware that they’re visiting a trusted page when using Chrome on desktop devices or mobile phones running Android 8+.
New to the world of SEO? Don’t worry, you can achieve impressive results with the right approach. Follow the 10 steps to achieve Google Page 1 in our guide for beginners to enhance your website’s visibility.
Check The Quality Of Links Pointing To Your Site
To check your site’s link profile, you can use a free tool like Ahrefs or Moz’s Open Site Explorer.
Check the anchor text of links pointing to your web pages. You can see this information by viewing the “anchor text distribution” report in Ahrefs or looking at the “backlinks” report in Moz’s Open Site Explorer.
You might find that some pages have very little or no incoming links, which could indicate these are low-quality pages on your site rather than high-quality ones.
If this is the case, you may want to remove them from your site and redirect them so they don’t count as 404 errors when someone tries to visit them this will help improve both user experience and SEO performance overall!
A good place to start would be any pages that have no external links at all because chances are there aren’t many readers searching for those topics either (or else why wouldn’t there be more interest?).
Ensure You’ve Done A Proper Site Migration To HTTPS, If Applicable
If you’re not already serving content over HTTPS, Google’s latest algorithm update could cause a drop in your site’s rankings. To ensure that doesn’t happen, check to make sure you’ve migrated your site to HTTPS properly.
Ensure your site is secure: This is one of the most important things when it comes to migrating to HTTPS. If you don’t migrate properly and leave any unsecured pages on your website, Google will penalize them with a lower search ranking.
Ensure your site is fast: You might think that making sure an existing webpage is secure before making it available over HTTPS would be enough but no!
You also need to make sure that the page loads quickly, otherwise users might abandon your website before seeing anything worthwhile (and then never come back).
Ensure good user experience: Users want fast load times and easy navigation; they don’t want sloppy work or broken links throughout the page or else they’ll ditch what could’ve been something amazing!
Check Your Google Search Console Data And Look For Any Sudden Drops In Traffic, Rankings, Or Crawl Rate
You can use the Google Search Console to check your site’s visibility. Search Console is a tool for webmasters to see how Google is interacting with their site.
If you notice any sudden drops in traffic, rankings, or crawl rate after this update, it might be related to Google’s algorithm change.
You can also use Search Console to see if there are any technical issues with your site that could be affecting its performance on the SERPs (search engine result pages).
I recommend checking your metrics regularly so that you have a baseline of what they should look like before any changes occur. If some red flags are showing up here, then it might be worth looking into them more closely and fixing whatever problems you find!
If You See A Drop, Try To Immediately Find Out What’s Causing It
You’ll want to check your Google Search Console data for any sudden drops in traffic or rankings.
Look at the number of URLs and pages crawled each day, as well as how much of your site’s content has been indexed by Google. Also, examine the Quality Raters’ Guidelines (QRG) ratings for all elements on each page that contribute to its overall quality score.
If you see a drop, it helps to know what caused it so you can make changes accordingly. If there’s no obvious reason why this happened (i.e., weather conditions).
Then perhaps something else is going on with your site that isn’t immediately apparent but could have a lasting effect on its performance.
Link building remains a critical aspect of SEO, especially in Google’s ever-evolving landscape. Explore our 11 tips for link building in Google’s new era to ensure your website’s success in a dynamic online environment.
Analyze All The Elements On Your Page That Contribute To Its Quality Score
Your first step is to look at the quality of your site itself. Check that your pages are fast, mobile-friendly, and have no malware or other issues. Make sure you have good value for your site and a high number of links pointing to it from other sites.
Check Google Search Console data for any sudden drops in traffic, rankings or crawl rate since May 2019 – this could be an indicator that there is something wrong with your site which needs fixing.
Give Backlinks A Thorough Quality Check
You can use a site like Ahrefs or Majestic to check the quality of your backlinks. The search engines are looking at these links too, so they’re important.
For example, if you’ve been linking out to sites that have nothing to do with your industry or ones that have a poor reputation and/or content quality (for example, adult sites), this might hurt you more than help you.
You can also give backlinks a thorough quality check by going through them manually and removing any irrelevant ones or those that don’t fit into the niche of your site.
Make Sure You Aren’t Suffering From Technical Issues That Could Be Making Your Pages Difficult For Google To Access Properly
You can check for 404 (page not found) errors by going to Google Search Console and looking at the Crawl > Crawl Errors report.
From there, you’ll be able to see how many pages Google is having trouble accessing due to technical issues like broken links or server errors. This will give you a better idea of what your site’s problems are and what needs fixing.
To check for crawl errors, head on over to Search Console again and look at the Crawl > Fetch as Google report under “Crawling” (this is where all the info from above comes from).
Again, this will tell you whether or not there are any issues with our site’s structure that might be making it difficult for Googlebot to access certain pages properly.
If you’re starting from scratch or looking to refine your SEO strategy, our complete beginner’s guide to search engine optimization is your roadmap. Understanding the fundamentals is key to thriving amidst Google’s algorithmic changes.
In case you still can’t find a solution and are getting frustrated, don’t fret. We’ve got your back! We’ll help you find the right fixes for your site and get you back on track so that Google can start showing your pages to the right people again. Reach out to us today, we’re here to help!
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How often does Google update its algorithm?
Google updates its algorithm regularly, with minor updates occurring almost daily and major updates a few times a year. These updates are aimed at improving search results and user experience.
Can algorithm updates impact my website’s ranking?
Yes, algorithm updates can significantly impact your website’s ranking. Depending on the nature of the update, your site’s position in search results may improve or decline.
How can I recover from a drop in rankings after an algorithm update?
To recover from a drop in rankings, review your website’s content, technical aspects, and backlink profile. Make necessary improvements based on the latest SEO best practices.
Are there specific signs that my website has been affected by an algorithm update?
Signs of being affected by an algorithm update include sudden drops or spikes in organic traffic, changes in keyword rankings, and fluctuations in search engine visibility.
Should I adjust my SEO strategy after every algorithm update?
While not necessary after every update, it’s important to stay informed about algorithm changes and adapt your strategy accordingly. Focus on providing high-quality content and a positive user experience.
Costantine Edward is a digital marketing expert, freelance writer, and entrepreneur who helps people attain financial freedom. I’ve been working in marketing since I was 18 years old and have managed to build a successful career doing what I love.