How to Track Google Algorithm Updates
Google changes its search algorithm about 500 to 600 times a year with about nine major updates in the past two years. Those in the SEO world are probably familiar with two of the most recent algorithm updates: Possum and Penguin 4.0, both of which were rolled out in September. As Ryan Shelly stated earlier this year, there are three things to remember when an update happens: (1) don’t panic, (2) wait to react, and (3) read credible sources and make adjustments where necessary.
The important thing to remember is while staying on top of algorithm updates is important, there are always other best practices to consider alongside these new updates.
Why You Should Care
Google algorithm updates are increasingly important to consider in the SEO world. While you do not need to pay attention to every little update that Google has (which quite frankly would be overwhelming and verging on impossible, especially for small business marketers), it is important to keep tabs on the top sites and most important updates. In reality, the most important updates are what impact businesses the most. Keeping on top of algorithm updates can help you address flaws and discover adjustments you might need to make to your digital marketing strategy. Many digital marketers start out by reading every little update and trying to recognize the impact, but the key is really knowing what is most important and seeking out guidance for how it might impact your business in consideration of the whole of Google Search engine impact.
BUT…Algorithm Updates Aren’t Everything
That being said, algorithm updates are not the end-all, be-all of SEO for company websites. It is important to remember that when you see a significant change in traffic, you need to consider all possibilities. Have you changed your normal behavior with content in some way (frequency of blogging, etc.)? Are you having issues with your mobile site or load times on your site because of new content you have added? While you absolutely want to consider how new algorithm updates might impact your business, you also want to make sure you don’t use them as a scapegoat for other flaws in your digital marketing strategy.
Do you want to see how these Google algorithm updates directly impact your own organic traffic? The Panguin tool is free and allows you to look at these updates in relation to your own traffic through Google Analytics. If there have been any penalties to your traffic because of conflicts with new updates, you will easily be able to see them here! This tool is very user-friendly and gets you a report within seconds as well, so it has always been a personal favorite.