Google announced its second update from 2020 amidst COVID-19. It announced the update as the May 2020 Core Update Form. The rollout will continue for two weeks from the release date.

The pandemic has caused companies to shut operations and has witnessed a huge drop in traffic and sales across industries and businesses.

This post contains information and analysis about this May 2020 core update.

Google’s update seems to be affecting SERPs throughout the world. Volatility across continents simultaneously is indicated.

Let’s get a look at what changed, the impact of the change, and an overview of recent developments in Google’s algorithms.

What has Google changed?

The impact of COVID-19 has affected not only the businesses but also the search patterns and purchase behavior of consumers. The way people search for Google has changed drastically.

Google has made this a core update stating that they are delivering their mission to present relevant and authoritative content to searchers.

Google has made it clear that it wants to focus on improving how its systems assess content on a whole.

Google recently made some new changes with its suggestions on producing quality content and has classified them under questions as content & quality, expertise, presentation & production, and comparative questions.

Impact of the Google May 2020 Core Update

Websites with thin content will start losing their positions and underperforming websites that match the user’s search intent will gain traction for their efforts.

SERP volatility From Semrush sensor

Aggregators and Directories are winning the game with entertainment websites also on a rise. Local search businesses will be impacted negatively by the core update of Google’s algorithms.

Volatility in ranking would mean restructuring and repurposing old website content with new.

The real impact of any typical broad core algorithm update takes time to show the results of its change.

Once all the data centers are rolled out with changes globally, we will know exactly what it might cause for websites to change, apart from personalizing the content.  

Who is Affected By the Google Update?

A data report by SEMrush indicates that travel, real estate, health, pets & animals, and people & society are the industries that have been hit the most. The websites in these sectors had the highest fluctuation in rankings.

SERP Features Occurrence For All Categories

Local search has shown some tremendous fluctuations since last April 2020.

In the wake of COVID-19, Google’s algorithms might have changed a bit towards the way people are intending to see and learn while making a search query. News, Sports, Arts, and Entertainment have been the least affected categories due to the update. 

Overview of Most Recent Google Updates

Google May 2020 Core Update – May 4, 2020

On May 4, 2020, Google announced a rollout for the core update on its algorithms. Google later on May 18, 2020, announced that the rollout was complete.

This is a broad core update made by Google amidst COVID-19 which has diversified and changed the way people search.

Google Update February 2020 – February 7, 2020

There were some updates in Google algorithms which resulted in the traffic fluctuation and ranking performance of websites in February.

There was no official update given by Google on this update. Though there was no clear pattern of the impact on websites, experts out there say that it was the beginning of a big change that came out in May 2020.

Google January 2020 Core Update – January 13, 2020

The first core update by Google was announced on January 13, 2020. Search patterns of users all over the globe changed and so did the need for the algorithms too.

The update revolves around the relevance and usefulness of content to the user, trustworthy information, and backlinking to authoritative sources. 

Google Update – November 2019

Google confirmed some updates in November 2019 but nothing towards an actionable change.

Websters and SEO experts say that it took some massive changes and impacted the affiliate websites primarily in the USA. Travel, Health, and Food sectors were majorly affected. 

Google BERT Update – October 24, 2019

The BERT algorithm (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) is a deep learning algorithm related to natural language processing. It helps Google to understand the contextual meaning of a sentence. 

Google September 2019 Core Update – September 24, 2019

There was no consistent trend in the impact of this core update by Google in September 2019.

Though there were reports of healthcare and finance categories being affected by the SEO professionals. 

Google June 2019 Core Update – June 3, 2019

In order to be more relevant to user searches, Google keeps doing core updates on its algorithms so it better understands the need of the user to precision. Google rolled out a core update on June 3, 2019. 

Google March 2019 Core Update – March 12, 2019

The trackers showed significant volatility in ranking websites. Google confirmed it as a global core update in the search algorithms. The update was rolled out on March 12, 2019.

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