The Google Helpful Content Update (HCU) rollout is still underway. However, as we reach the halfway mark of the proposed two-week timeframe, it seems that not much difference has been experienced as of yet.
Although search engine optimization (SEO) experts have reported minor volatility so far, Google responded by saying that the rollout is still a work in process. Danny Sullivan of Google Search responded to tweets saying it’s important to remember that if your website contains high-quality, useful content, you may not experience much of a shift.
John Mueller of Google reiterated this sentiment, responding to a query on how to analyze the Helpful Content Update saying that more time is needed.
The algorithm update aims to refine the signal over time, meaning it will most likely be tweaked every few months. Sullivan went on to say that updates also don’t necessarily mean that a substantial negative impact is imminent/looming. However, content creators and SEO professionals are still strongly advised to ensure that SEO best practices and Helpful Content guidelines are met to avoid a significant impact.
Sullivan added that if some volatility is experienced even though the rollout isn’t completed, it may be a sign to revise the content on your or your clients’ sites and rework or remove any content that doesn’t meet the HCU or SEO guidelines.
Although hyped to be as significant as major updates like Panda or Penguin, it is essential to remember that these updates were not announced. And because of the sudden negative impacts experienced, we’d more likely remember that chaos. In comparison, as Search Engine Land points out, other announced updates like Google’s Mobile Friendly Update, dubbed “mobilegeddon” by Chuck Price, and the Page Experience Update, received much less of an impact than originally expected.
For now, all we can do is keep monitoring the data and reviewing and aligning content with HCU guidelines as the update continues to roll out. The Google Search Ranking Updates page will be updated once the rollout is complete.
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