March 2023 Google Core Update What Does it Mean for Your Site?

Laptop showing Google Core Update March 23 search

Google has confirmed that its latest core algorithm update, started rolling out on 15th March 2023, and will take up to two weeks to complete.

They made the announcement on Twitter and also updated their search updates page, stating, “Today we released the March 2023 core update. We'll update our ranking release history page when the rollout is complete.”

But what is a Google Core Update, and what does it mean for your website?

What is a Google Core Update?

Google makes tweaks to its complex algorithms on a daily basis, but around 10 times a year, it makes more significant changes and they are rolled in the form of updates and core updates. The majority of these are standard ‘Updates’, which tend to focus on improving specific areas, such as reviews or aspects of content quality, and 2-3 are what’s known as ‘Core Updates’. Core updates are more significant and make changes to the search algorithms in a much broader way.

Google updates, almost always cause a period of ranking instability and fluctuation for some, or all websites, as the new algorithms roll out and bed in. After around a month or so, their true impact can usually be seen, with some sites seeing improvements in rankings and others seeing drops, depending on what the focus of the update was. So, if you have ever seen a sudden rise or fall in rankings, or a period of fluctuation, when you haven’t made any recent changes to your site, a Google update was most likely the culprit.

Exactly how the updates will impact a site, not even Google completely knows, and there have been problematic updates in the past, which have seemingly been fixed with subsequent updates. Needless to say, Google’s tweets confirming they are rolling out a new update, are guaranteed to give any SEO specialist a sleepless night or ten!

How Will the March 2023 Google Update Affect My Site?

Unfortunately, it’s just too early to tell yet, as Google haven’t given any indication of what the March 2023 Core Update is likely to impact. What we can say however, is that in general, the purpose of any Google update is to improve user experience and the accuracy and quality of the results that users are shown.

In December 2022, Google updated their ‘Quality Rater Guidelines’, which give us a good indication of what the algorithms want to see on a website. The guidelines were previously summed up by the acronym E-A-T, which stands for:

  • Expertise
  • Authoritativeness
  • Trustworthiness

In December, they told us that they were adding an additional E to the guidelines, which are now known as Double E-A-T and stand for:

  • Experience – Does the content creator have first-hand experience of the subject being written about?
  • Expertise – Does the content creator have the necessary knowledge or skills to be writing about the subject?
  • Authoritativeness – Is the site in general, a good source of relevant, accurate information in this field?
  • Trustworthiness – Can this content be trusted? Does the site have good, reliable reviews? Do other sites share links to the site? Is there information on the site that backs up its legitimacy, such as ‘about us’ information?

While we can’t say for certain, exactly how the March 2023 Core Update will impact sites, what we can say, is that it is likely to be quite heavily focussed around these four areas.

So, the bottom line is, if you want to maximise your site’s chances of ranking and coming out of the other side of a Google Update unscathed, you need to ensure that your site can demonstrate Double E-A-T.

If you think you might need some help getting your site to rank better in line with the E-E-A-T guidelines, get in touch today by clicking the button below, to find out how Shouty Parrot can help.

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