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It has been an eventful July for businesses that depend upon Google to drive customers and clients. Now that we’ve reached the official midpoint of the season it’s time to have a look at the search engine’s recent algorithm updates and how they may have impacted your Google rank. Is your website enjoying a midsummer dream, or nightmare? Let’s review.

Important Google Updates in the Summer of 2021 That Your Business Needs to Know About

Core on Canada Day

We forgive Google, being headquartered south of the border and all, for releasing a core algorithm update on Canada Day 2021. They announced it in the morning as you were enjoying your cup of java:

Google Updates - Summer 2021

Core refreshers are the biggest among Google’s search algorithm updates. They typically have the most notable impact on SMB rank. The update focuses on your website’s content quality, or lack thereof. Let’s have a look at Google’s analogy for what a core update is:

“One way to think of how a core update operates is to imagine you made a list of the top 100 movies in 2015. A few years later […] you refresh the list. It’s going to naturally change. Some new and wonderful movies that never existed before will now be candidates for inclusion. You might also reassess some films and realize they deserved a higher place on the list than they had before.” (Google Search Central)

They make it sounds sweet, but it can be salty for some. If their core update didn’t deem your website deserving of a higher place on their search engine results page (SERP), you’re definitely not feeling the love. Have you noticed a significant drop in Google rank this summer? Follow these steps to reclaim your position.

Google Slams Spam

Google enters the midsummer season by opening a can of whoop-butt on spam, of the link variety in particular. They announced the update on July 26. What is link spam? For business owners, it references scenarios where links from other websites (to yours) are secured for the sole purpose of manipulating Google rank. These are called link schemes, and you may be vulnerable to them if you have ever worked with an online marketing firm (typically overseas) that promised to boost your Google rank by building links for your website. If any of the following activities sounds familiar, you are vulnerable (in varying degrees) to this recent Google update:

  • You have exchanged money for links, or posts that contain links.
  • You have goods or services for links.
  • You have sent someone a “free” product in exchange for them writing it and including a link.
  • You have participated in a link exchange (“Link to me and I’ll link to you”).
  • You have participated in a large-scale article marketing or guest posting campaigns with keyword-rich anchor text links.
  • You have used automated programs or services to create links to your site.
  • You have required a link as part of a Terms of Service, contract, or similar arrangement.
  • You have have purchased advertorials or native advertising where payment was provided for articles that include links.
  • You have purchased links in articles or press releases distributed on other sites (this is a very common one).
  • You have links on low quality business directories.
  • You have widely distributed links in the footers or templates of various sites.
  • There are links to your site on forums that have nothing to do with your business.

That’s a long list, right? If you’ve have ever accepted solicitation from a firm that promised to get you links and/or quickly improve your Google rank, there’s a good chance that you’re at risk. This particular Google update could be the one that penalizes your website into Google Page 2 oblivion. The good news, is that there is a disavow tool that will help get your website out of hot water and back into Google’s good graces. Contact Strategis Group to receive an audit of your link profile, to ensure that you’re safe from this serious threat.

Stay tuned to more as we continue to update you on the moves Google makes each season. And remember, their Page Experience update is rolling out across Canada as we speak. Contact us for your FREE audit right away.