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Google Algorithm Changes Stir Things Up

Remain focused on building great content.

Google is up to its old tricks, unleashing several algorithm changes since the beginning of the year.

One of the most important is also one of the ones we’ve known about the longest: Google’s move to a mobile-first index. Although it’s been talking about this change since 2016, Google only began testing mobile-first indexing on a few, select sites in October.

And then on March 26 Google announced that it was officially moving larger batches of websites to mobile-first indexing. Basically, if there’s a mobile version and a desktop version of a website, Google is going to display the mobile version in its search engine results, which is what people will see whether using their mobile devices or desktop computers. Eventually, Google will have one index that favors mobile-friendly websites.

If you have a well-optimized website that works on mobile devices, you should be in the clear. 

Companies that provide markedly different versions of their websites for mobile and desktop users need to take special care that the mobile version is well optimized and contains all the necessary information, because that will be the version of the site Google will show to users, even if they’re using Google on their PC or laptop.

If you don’t have a website that works well on mobile devices, Google will include your site in its mobile-first indexing, but you can expect your site to slowly fade from the search results as mobile-friendly sites gain dominance.

The other updates are murkier and more difficult to respond to. Google confirmed that in early March it unleased “broad core algorithm updates.” In both cases, Google said the changes would benefit “pages that were previously under-rewarded.”

If you have a well-optimized website but, for whatever reason, were overlooked by Google, you might benefit from this change.

Google insists that if your website is negatively affected by these two latest changes, there’s nothing you can do to fix the situation except “remain focused on building great content. Over time, it may be that your content may rise relative to other pages.”

You may have noticed the phrase “a well-optimized website” a few times in this post – building great content is a crucial part of ensuring your website is optimized well and good, both from Google’s perspective and from the standpoint of site visitors.

If you’re not sure how to build great content, contact us by filling in this short form or calling 877-799-9994, ext. 2102. For more than 20 years, Pilot Fish has helped its clients develop content marketing campaigns that appeal to search engines and drive quality traffic to their websites. We’ll be glad to help you, too.