Google rolls out algorithm updates multiple times a day. Not all updates will change the SEO landscape, but some can affect your website’s traffic. Hence, aside from enlisting an e-commerce SEO company to optimize your website, you should also stay in the loop regarding Google’s latest algorithm updates.
But since Google can make updates 500 to 600 times a year, learning every update can be counter-productive. You can focus only on the most crucial ones, meaning the updates that may trigger a change in your SEO strategies. So, without further ado, below is the list of the most important upgrades thus far (not in chronological order):
1. Multitask Unified Model (MUM)
If you use Google AdWords or Analytics, you might’ve noticed lately that your search link clicks are declining. You are not alone. According to SimilarWeb, nearly 65% of Google searches were zero-click between January and December 2020. So don’t panic if your search links have been declining since.
However, there might be a reason to be uneasy if you haven’t resolved it yet. No-click or zero-click searches are one of the biggest trends in digital marketing today. The Multitask Unified Model (MUM) started it.
The MUM is a new technology for answering complex questions with no fixed answers. In other words, it answers difficult search queries that no short snippets or blue links can. Google uses various forms of content to answer such queries, including photos and text in multiple languages.
Updating your SEO with MUM in mind is critical if you drive traffic through long-tail keywords. For example, if you sell indoor plants, one long-tail keyword relevant to your business may be: “What’s the difference between a snake plant and aloe vera?” That question may require multiple paragraphs to answer because the user likely seeks a differentiation beyond the plants’ physical characteristics. They may also need to know their general upkeep differences.
With that in mind, optimize your content by posting informative blogs on your website. It will allow Google to index your website and detect your blog posts. As a result, they may use your website’s blog as a snippet when users search using a long-tail keyword. It will encourage users to click on your website’s search engine result (SERP) link to view the rest of the content.
2. Spam Algorithm Update
Google announced in July 2021 that it would start identifying and nullifying spam links. The company warned that any site using such links could see ranking changes, and even sponsored content, guest posts, and affiliate content could be affected.
Spam links or link spams refer to posting out-of-context links. Their purpose is to increase the external links made to a site that a spammer promotes. For instance, if you asked a blogger to write content related to your products and services, and they awkwardly inserted the link’s anchor text in the content, Google may nullify that content, derailing any traffic away from your website.
Another example of spam links is using backlinks associated with disreputable websites, like link farms, pornography, and websites unrelated to your products or services.
You can find other ways to avoid spam links by using SEO tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, etc. Your SEO specialist can also help you.
3. Product Review Update
The product review update affects e-commerce websites that encourage the posting of customer feedback. If your product reviews don’t contain proofs, like videos or photos, Google may flag them as unreliable and affect your website’s SERP ranking.
Google rolled out this update to provide users with product reviews that go up and beyond the templated information you’d usually see. However, they are not downright punishing websites with low-quality reviews. Your customers are still allowed to summarize your product in the feedback form. But of course, it would be more helpful if they could also provide photos, videos, and other information about their experience with your product. Google deems such reviews more valuable than one-liner reviews or those with nothing but ratings.
Top e-commerce platforms like Lazada and Shopee encourages detailed review by incentivizing them. For example, if you post at least three photos of the product, you can get one free coin. BeautyMNL, another popular e-commerce site, also encourages informative reviews by giving out credits you may use to pay for products.
Consider similar incentives for your website to attract high-quality reviews. Remember, customers usually check out reviews before buying a product. So by showing detailed reviews on your product pages, you can expect to increase leads or draw more sales.
Google will keep updating its algorithm, so stay tuned for the next important SEO strategies you’d need to make. Keep optimizing your content to maintain your high SERP ranking.