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What Google’s March 2019 algorithm update means for retailers

If you noticed an unusual drop in your search rankings and traffic this month, here’s why it happened and what you can do about it.

You’ve got to love the Internet; just when you thought you’ve found a steady rhythm to the growth of traffic to your online content, Google goes and pulls the rug from under you, changing the goal posts once again.

Earlier this month, Google confirmed the roll out of a broad search ranking algorithm update. This has had a significant impact on many sites, some of which have seen their traffic plummeting as they dropped down the search ranking.

This latest update, called March 2019 Core Update, has had a global impact. The previous update, known as the Medic Update was in August last year and was named this way because it significantly impacted content in the health and medical space.

HOW HAS THE ALGORITHM CHANGED?

While it’s too soon to tell what the lasting impact of this latest update will be, Google has offered an explanation to shed some light saying; “As with any update, some sites may note drops or gains. There’s nothing wrong with pages that may now perform less well. Instead, it’s that changes to our systems are benefiting pages that were previously under-rewarded.”

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO REGAIN YOUR TRAFFIC?

Google has Tweeted that there is “no fix” for pages that aren’t performing, other than to remain focused on building great content. It seems that Google’s main goal with changes to algorithms is to create better experiences for users online by encouraging content creators to improve quality and value, most often determined by article length and content volume within the site.

Original, long-form articles (think 600 words+) have been proven to perform better online, generally showing higher search ranking stats than shorter pieces. For content marketers in the retail space, this means a greater focus on creating balance between product and category pages (which tend to be shorter in word length) and lifestyle content that adds value and speaks to the broader needs of your audience, while offering a longer read.

TPP has over 20 years of producing quality content across platforms. We are experts at long-form content and use qualified journalists to write stories of the highest standard that resonate with your particular audience.