In 2017, Google raked in over $100 billion in sales. This astounding number marked a milestone for the 20-year-old company. Google had never boasted such strong annual sales, and it now joins giants such as Amazon and Apple in the $100 billion club.
So how has Google managed to remain so successful after twenty years? Here’s one ingredient to the company’s success:
A good eye for what makes search engine users happy.
But sometimes Google’s intuition is bad for businesses. The company’s new Medic update is just one example of a user-friendly update that has left several businesses picking up the pieces.
What, is the Medic update? Further still, what’s so important about this update? And how will it affect your business?
Keep reading to find out how to keep your site optimized in the age of the Medic update.
What Is the Medic Update?
Google’s Medic update is just one of its many updates to its search engine algorithm. The update’s purpose is centered around making the company’s search engine more user-friendly. It attempts to do so by tweaking some ranking factors.
After Google rolled out this update, people quickly dubbed it the “Medic update.” This nickname is the result of the fact that many businesses in the health and wellness industries saw their rankings fall afterward.
Many companies in these industries have reported less traffic since the update. Some have even reported a sharp decline in sales.
What Is Google Saying About the Update?
Google made an official statement about its update not too long ago. The statement reads:
Each day, Google usually releases one or more changes designed to improve our results. Some are focused around specific improvements. Some are broad changes. Last week, we released a broad core algorithm update. We do these routinely several times per year…
The search engine’s statement indicates that this update isn’t a personal attack on the affected industries.
According to the Google, the update simply rewards sites which are doing certain things well. Unfortunately, rewarding these sites feels like a punishment to sites that have been hurt by the update.
In what ways, however, have those sites been hurt? Let’s take a look in the next section.
How Might This Update Affect Your Business?
First thing’s first:
Don’t space out here just because your business isn’t in one of the heavily affected industries.
The Medic update has negatively impacted sites in several other niches as well. In fact, about half of the affected sites aren’t in the health and wellness industries.
In any case, the Medic update has caused the following problems for several online vendors:
- drops in search engine rankings
- significant decreases in site traffic
- decreases in sales or client acquisitions
So what can you do to fix these problems? You’ll find our take on things below.
How to Optimize Your Site for the Medic Update
Let’s get one thing clear:
There’s no specific fix to this problem. Even Google has admitted as much. The company simply advised businesses to create great content and optimize their landing pages for users.
Of course, this advice is vague and frustrating. That said, here are a few steps you can take to make sure that the Medic update doesn’t drop your site’s ranking:
1. Optimize Your Content for Expertise, Authority, and Trust (E.A.T)
Expertise, authority, and trust (E.A.T) have always been important components of any well-designed website. Thanks to the Medic update, these things have become even more important.
Well, let’s think about the sites which been most heavily impacted by the update.
Many of these sites are in the health and wellness industries. And when a business solicits medical advice to search engine users, those users’ health is at risk. Google has always been clear on the fact that such advice must meet certain quality standards.
It comes as no surprise, then, that many of the websites which have been affected offer medical advice or services.
In order to overcome this hurdle, these businesses are going to have to prove they have the expertise and authority to offer this advice. This process will involve revamping old content to make it more informative and accurate.
Which leads us to our next point…
2. Up Your Content’s Quality
The quality of your content is about more than your expertise and authority. It’s also about pure professionalism.
Does your copy look professional?
In order to answer this question, ask yourself a few other questions:
- Is it well-written?
- Is the format user-friendly?
- Do you have visual content that makes your web pages more appealing?
3. Improve Significant Consumer Pages
Let’s take a minute to specifically discuss the content on your site’s important consumer pages. These pages are crucial because they often serve as landing pages or give visitors a sense of what your business is all about.
Customers want to know that they can trust you and that you have some authority in your niche. So go over these consumer pages and make sure that they’re telling the fullest, most accurate story about your services or products.
A Friendly Reminder: Be Mindful of User Intent
We have a friendly reminder for you:
Structure your site’s content around user intent.
At the end of the day, people use search engines to find the information they’re looking for. For this reason, Google’s updates will continue to prioritize user intent.
How, however, can you optimize for search engine users’ intent?
First and foremost, structure your content around topics people actually care about. If the topic doesn’t have relevance, your content doesn’t either.
You should also try using natural-sounding keywords that users actually type into the search engine. Users won’t find your content if you don’t speak their language.
Oh, and one more thing:
There’s no way around optimizing for user intent. You can’t rely on black hat SEO techniques such as keyword stuffing in order to see long-term results.
Have You Been Hit by the New Google Update?
If you’ve been hit by Google’s new update, you should immediately start revamping your content. The sooner you start, the better off your site will be in the long run.
But if you’re not sure that you’ve been hit by the Medic update?
Start paying attention to the metrics that matter. Has your site’s traffic significantly decreased? Have your sales numbers taken a dive?
If you’re having trouble ascertaining as much, we’re always willing to help. You can contact us today for a free consultation or read up on how to use SEO and SEM to boost your business.