Rebel Insights

A Guide to Google’s Algorithm Updates and Changes in 2024

A Guide to Google’s Algorithm Updates and Changes in 2024

Helpful Links

A Brief Guide to Google’s New E-E-A-T Strategy

What You Need to Know About Google’s Helpful Content Update

A Guide to Google’s Algorithm Updates and Changes in 2023

How to Optimize Your Website for Search

The March 2024 Core Update Is Here

Google has announced the rollout of its first core update of 2024. The March 2024 core update was announced on March 5, 2024, and is expected to take one month to complete. The core update was released alongside a March 2024 spam update that took two weeks to complete.

What We Know About the March 2024 Core Update

Google said in its announcement to expect the March 2024 core update to be more complex than usual because it involves updates to multiple core systems. Google is notoriously vague about the details of its updates, but they did say that the March 2024 core update “marks an evolution” in how they identify the “helpfulness of content.”

💡Reminder: In August 2022, Google rolled out a major algorithm update dubbed the “helpful content update.” The helpful content update uses machine learning to deprioritize content that isn’t, well, helpful. According to Google, that includes content that is unoriginal, is low quality, and was created primarily for search engines — not for the benefit of users. Since its initial rollout, Google will periodically make adjustments to algorithms to continue to prioritize content that is considered helpful to users. Click here to learn more.

Due to the complexity of the March 2024 core update, Google said to expect the rollout to take a month to complete. You can always check the Google Search Status Dashboard to see if a core update has been completed or is still pending.

Google also said in its announcement that there’s nothing content creators need to do to adjust to this core update, except for — of course — to create helpful, reliable content for users. Luckily, with this latest update, Google did publish a new FAQ page about what qualifies as helpful content. Click here to check it out.

Search Engine Roundtable noted that volatility in web traffic several days after the update began its rollout was making some SEO experts and web publishers antsy. Google’s Search Liaison Danny Sullivan replied to one user on X to hang tight and wait before making any major changes to their site.

As always, we will keep you updated as more information becomes available about the March 2024 core update.

March 2024 Spam Update Completed

Also on March 5, 2024, Google rolled out a new spam update that took 14 days to complete. In this update, Google targeted three malicious practices that they’ve seen has become more prevalent across the web:

  1. Expired Domain Abuse: This is when someone uses an expired domain to take advantage of the previous owner’s search visibility to post low-value content. Click here for more information.
  2. Scaled Content Abuse: This type of spam is when someone generates numerous pages of low-value content to manipulate search rankings. The new policy around scaled content abuse in the March 2024 spam update has expanded to include auto-generated content, allowing action against scaled content abuse regardless of whether it's created through automation, human effort, or a combination of the two. Click here for more information.
  3. Site Reputation Abuse: This occurs when a site publishes third-party pages with little oversight from a first party to manipulate search rankings. Often these pages are full of advertising content that serves no value to readers. Google's new policy distinguishes acceptable third-party content, such as native advertising, which doesn't intend to manipulate rankings and serves regular readers, from abusive practices. Click here for more information.

Much like frequent core updates are centered around the continued prioritization of helpful content, Google will also periodically tweak its existing regulations around spam content with updates throughout the year. Click here for even more details from Google about the March 2024 spam update.

Keeping up with Google Search’s updates is a huge undertaking for publishers and content creators that already have a huge task at hand — creating an experience that builds loyal audiences. At RebelMouse, we anticipate these algorithm changes proactively, and continue to update our platform and guide our clients on how to maintain maximum visibility across search no matter what.

If you would like to stay ahead of the search game, let’s connect to figure out how we can work together and grow your business.

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