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Google Says Only Update The Date When Making Significant Update To Content

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Google Says Only Update The Date When Making Significant Update To Content

It is that time of year when content creators take their content that has been performing well and updates it from the 2022 edition to the 2023 edition. But updating the references of 2022 to 2023 is not enough, and Google says only do that when you make a significant update to that content.

This topic comes up every year, SEOs who go by some sort of SEO script, by default just do it, they just update the 2022 editions to the 2023 editions with some minor tweaks to the content. But again, Google has been warning against relabling old content as new for years, saying only update the dates when there is a significant change to the content. Google even said that most evergreen content does not require any date changes at all.

So the topic came up again, let’s call it the 2023 edition. John Mueller of Google was asked about it on Twitter and said “Is there significantly new content? Then update the dates. Is there no significantly new content? Then don’t update the dates. We see a lot of spam & low-quality content that just arbitrarily updates dates (“Best fax machine for 2023″), it’s pretty obvious & embarrassing.” He did add “There’s nothing wrong with updating content, and when you make significant changes, updating the date (or using an update-date). Serious sites do that. Just tweaking, and saying “oh, still valid in 2023″ is not a significant update.”

Here are those tweets:

But I am sure you will hear, but it works – sure – it might. But this is a great opportunity to make the 2022 version significantly better – so maybe use that opportunity?

Forum discussion at Twitter.

Source: www.seroundtable.com

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Weekend Google Core Ranking Volatility

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Google Core Update Explode

As I mentioned briefly in my Friday video recap, I was starting to see renewed chatter on Friday morning around more Google search ranking volatility likely related to the ongoing Google March 2024 core update. I spotted some renewed chatter that lead through Friday, into Saturday and today. So I figured I’d cover it and share some of what SEOs are saying over the weekend.

We reported on volatility last Wedneday, on April 10th, and now we are seeing more of it. As a reminder, some sites got hit super hard by this update and no, it is not done yet. We have still not seen any real recoveries for sites hit by the September 2023 helpful content update recovery yet with this core update.

We are now 40 days and almost 40 nights since the update started rolling out and Passover is just around the corner. (sorry, had to…)

Both the Google ranking tracking tools and SEO chatter spiked over the past 48 hours.

SEO Chatter

Here is some of the chatter on social media, WebmasterWorld and comments here on this site over the past couple of days:

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Glenn Gabe has been tracking the movement closely, comparing previously hit sites by previous core and helpful content updates. I find his shares very insightful. Here is his latest post this morning:

He wrote:

Google Morning Google Land! This is the April 14 edition of “Core Update Notes”. I shared yesterday how the tools were all spiking and I picked up serious volatility across several sites I’m helping and tracking. Just wanted to share more about that this morning. Whatever Google updated, it’s definitely having a big effect on some sites. I have several documented that reversed course (and some reversing course for the *second time* during the update). For example, I shared rank tracking yesterday for one of those sites, which is even clearer today (see first screenshot). That site surged with the March core update, then reversed course half way through losing all gains. And it just surged completely back yesterday. The site owner is on a roller coaster. And yep, he’s ready to get off the coaster and hoping this surge sticks. :)

In addition, I’ve included several other screenshots of sites reversing course over the weekend. Remember, Google explained they would be updating several systems with the March core update that would reinforce each other. They also said to expect more volatility with this update. I’m definitely seeing that as I’m tracking many sites over time.

And for those interested in sites impacted heavily by the September HCU(X), I have still not seen any bounce back. 0. I checked the visibility numbers for 373 sites heavily impacted by the Sep HCU(X) this morning and all are down heavily over time (and most more with the March core update). I’ll keep checking… and we’ll see if the old HCU classifier gets dropped at some point while Google’s systems for assessing the helpfulness of content take over. Stay tuned.

He shared some of eye-popping charts, here is one of them:

Chart

Here are more:

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Slowly it’s not fun anymore. Since Friday, Google’s traffic has dropped considerably on my site and all the other sites I monitor. Many keywords have disappeared without a trace, even for the main keyword my site no longer ranks, in first place is now a cleaning company that has nothing to do with the topic, but well, people certainly want a cleaning when they google for the keyword.

Result since Friday -56 per cent, unfortunately the trend is still downwards. As I am also currently monitoring my friend’s online shop: it’s exactly the same for him, -56 per cent since Friday, we no longer need to talk about sales, although his ranking is stable.

Again, same same since Friday. No let up and remaining sites heading to zero. I thought I had it figured. Not so unfortunately.

Yes, they are rolling out something awful since Friday. Sensors confirm that too.

Traffic totally dead today here in Germany

Here too in Czech

My rankings had a little wobble yesterday. It always tends to happen on the back end of an update.

Traffic and conversions absolutely nonexistent today.

Weekends were the best days of the week. Currently I’m getting like 3-5 Visitors every 30 Min. That’s really a Joke.

Same, and as compared to all the previous weeks ,this one is the WORSE.

I fear it will just keep getting worse and we should get used to this as it will be the norm.

Google Tracking Tools

Many, not all, but many of the tools showed spikes over the past 24 hours or so. These are not insane spikes in volatility, well, Algoroo and Advanced Web Rankings show massive spikes but the others are not as heated.

SimilarWeb:

Similarweb

Semrush:

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Semrush

Advanced Web Rankings:

Advancedwebranking

Mozcast:

Mozcast

SERPmetrics:

Serpmetrics

Accuranker:

Accuranker

Mangools:

Mangools

Wincher:

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Wincher

SERPstat:

Serpstat

Algoroo:

Algoroo

Cognitive SEO:

Cognitiveseo

More Google Update Stories

Here are our previous stories on these updates:

What are you all seeing? Think we are just about done after 40 days of this rolling out?

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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Google Core Update Volatility, Helpful Content Update Gone, Dangerous Google Search Results & Google Ads Confusion

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Google Core Update Volatility, Helpful Content Update Gone, Dangerous Google Search Results & Google Ads Confusion


For the original iTunes version, click here.

This week, we covered that the Google March 2024 core update is still rolling out 38 days later, but we saw more volatility this week. Just a reminder that the Google helpful content update no longer exists. Gary Illyes from Google again says core update and indexing are independent. Google responded to complaints about dangerous and harmful search results. Google says ranking well in other verticals like shopping, images and others, does not negatively impact your web rankings. Google updated its structured data carousels beta documentation. Google says don’t disallow your internal footer links. Google says there are minimal differences between using a 404 and 410 status code. Google is testing short videos in the search bar. Google is not removing the site command. Bing is testing removing the cache link and the estimated number of search results. Google SGE is testing AI overview tabs. Bing is testing sources across the web AI. Google image search now has pixel-level object segmentation. Google Ad strength is not used in the auction, Google says. Google is testing sticky sponsored labels. Google Ads is also testing people also considered labels in the search ads. Google Ads tests “get phone number” buttons instead of the “call” button. Google released its Merchant Center product data specifications for 2024. Google Maps has a new flow for suggest an edit. That was the search news this week at the Search Engine Roundtable.

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Daily Search Forum Recap: April 12, 2024

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Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.


Google says indexing systems and algorithm update systems are independent and don’t impact each other. Google clarified its structured data carousel beta to add feature availability and where the markup goes. Google says ranking well in product results, images, etc does not impact how well you rank in web search. Google is testing mentioned in section within the knowledge panels. Google Maps updated its suggest an edit workflow. We have a recap of the Google Search Central Live event in Romania from Mihai. And I posted the weekly SEO video recap.

Search Engine Roundtable Stories:

Other Great Search Threads:

Search Engine Land Stories:

Other Great Search Stories:

Analytics

Industry & Business

Links & Content Marketing

Local & Maps

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Mobile & Voice

SEO

PPC

Search Features

Feedback:


Have feedback on this daily recap; let me know on Twitter @rustybrick or @seroundtable, on Threads, Mastodon and Bluesky and you can follow us on Facebook and on Google News and make sure to subscribe to the YouTube channel, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts or just contact us the old fashion way.

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