The debut episode of The Help Me Grow My Business Podcast delved into how Google’s Page Experience Update will affect your website rankings.
Now, Head of SEO, Mike Andrew, is back for a part two because there is new controversial info on the Google Core Web Vitals Update and how it could already be affecting your website, but not how originally thought.
Checkout a recap of the episode below or go straight to the source in the latest episode of The Help Me Grow My Business Podcast, available on Spotify.
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Google’s Page Experience Update Has Already Rolled Out
In episode one of the Help Me Grow My Business Podcast, Mike mentioned he had started to see signs of the Page Experience Update already rolling out through changes in multiple website analytics. He was noticing changes to impressions and clicks through to some websites as early as the first week of May.
Now, Google has unofficially confirmed they began rolling out the Page Experience Update from around the 1 May 2021, despite saying the official rollout wouldn’t happen until mid-June. However, Google has now said websites will only need follow one of the three web core vitals (but not confirming which) to not be affected by the update. They have also said mastering all three core web vitals would not better influence your chances of ranking better.
Mike’s expert recommendation is if you only have time to focus on one Core Web Vital is to optimise for first input delay (FID) and cumulative layout shift (CLS) as this is when the user first interacts with the web page. The third core web vital being largest contentful paint (LCP) is also important, but we won’t see the full impacts just yet.
Through implementing his recommendation himself on Australian business web pages, he has already seen an upward shift in impressions, clicks and organic traffic to the websites.
How the Google Page Experience Update Impacts Businesses
1. Drop in rankings means less impressions and less enquiries.
When your website is negatively affected by a Google update, you will begin to drop in rankings. The further you get from the top of page one, the less impressions (views from being on search engine results) you’ll receive, therefore clicks to your website. With less people visiting your website, you’ll start to notice less enquiries.
While the goal of search engine optimisation is not lead generation, it does naturally contribute to it, so it’s crucial to get right.
2. Fixing a drop in rankings is harder than getting the rankings in the first place.
If you only begin search engine optimisation (SEO) when you notice a problem, it’s going to cost you a lot more to fix the problem than if you were to be focusing on on-going SEO improvements. SEO is an on-going activity needing to be done weekly, whether that’s updating and adding content or adjusting a web page itself.
What happens when you drop in rankings is each web page needs to be assessed for problems, and then those faults need to be improved. Depending on the issue, this can need weeks of work and could see months to get you back on track. However, if you’re doing SEO regularly, you notice small changes in your organic traffic easily and can get on top of it before you slip too far in rankings, saving you from the problem above.
3. You may need a new website instead of time spent on SEO.
A big part of SEO involves the part of the website you can’t see, such as the code and platform. Sometimes, it would be more affordable to rebuild your website than try and make improvements to follow Google search engine best practices.
On average, websites need to be rebuilt roughly every 3 years to keep up with changing technology. Platforms are upgraded, new platforms come out and new innovations in design, content and user experience (UX) come to light.
If paying for a full website rebuild isn’t in your budget, investigate a website subscription. This service is similar to a phone plan where you pay a fixed low-cost amount every month and you receive a product in return. In this case, it’s a fixed, low-cost amount every week or month and you receive a website.
How to Prepare Your Website for the Next Update on Google
1. Know the signs your website has been affected by a Google Update.
Signs your website has been affected by a Google update include:
- Decreased organic impressions.
- Decreased organic clicks.
- Loss of rankings.
- Less organic enquiries.
You can watch these website metrics in Google Analytics, Google Search Console or one of the many SEO tools.
2. Audit your website.
If you have noticed one of the signs your website has been affected by the Google Page Experience Update above, then you need a website audit. Whether you are confident enough in your search engine optimisation abilities to do your own or need to hire something, just get one done.
A basic website audit should check for:
- Page speed and stability.
- Content quality and quantity.
- A current HTTPS (SSL certificate).
- Page experience on desktop, mobile and tablet.
- User friendly design and sitemap.
- Use of keywords.
3. Implement changes.
Once you know you have a problem and what’s causing it, you need to fix it. However, how you fix it could be one of hundreds of issues including with your content, page structure, poor loading speeds or site stability, bad use of keywords and more.
If you’re not confident implementing your own search engine optimisation, it is why SEO specialists exist. Contact us now to request a free website audit with Localsearch.