We all knew it was just around the corner. The virtual community was already abuzz for the last couple of weeks with talks of this year’s first core update being unleashed anytime now. And now it is here. It started rolling out yesterday, 25 May 2022, and will take 1-2 weeks to fully roll out. The same was confirmed by Danny Sullivan, Google’s Public Liaison for Search via tweet and an elaborated blog on Google Developers, which was also penned by him. For the uninitiated, it is important to note that core updates are designed to make search more relevant for the users and not simply to impose penalties upon websites. For the next couple of days, just be on guard for any unusual behaviour in terms of traffic and rankings with regards to your website.
Today, we're releasing a broad core update, as we do several times per year. This update is called the May 2022 core update. Learn more: https://t.co/7kFklwdkAb
— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) May 25, 2022
Last Core Update was released in November 2021
It has been nearly since months since the last core update was rolled out. If you’ve been working hard on improving your website’s overall quality, you may expect to see some improvements in your search rankings as well. However, if your website has been just occupying virtual space without churning out regular content, you may expect to see your competitors, with more relevant content, get ahead of you. That being said, nothing is guaranteed apart from the predictability of the unpredictability of a Google Broad Core Update. Also, if you’ve been noticing any changes in the last couple of days, you can safely rule out May 2022 Core Update as the reason. It is something that has been confirmed by Google Search Advocate John Mueller that a core update starts rolling out just after as soon as it is announced publicly.
What to expect from a Core Update?
As per the new Google Search Central Blog penned by Danny Sullivan,
Core updates are changes we make to improve Search overall and keep pace with the changing nature of the web. While nothing in a core update is specific to any particular site, these updates may produce some noticeable changes to how sites perform, which we’ve noted in previous guidance on what site owners should know about core updates.
We confirm broad core updates because they typically produce some widely notable effects. Some sites may note drops or gains during them. We know those with sites that experience drops will be looking for a fix, and we want to ensure they don’t try to fix the wrong things. Moreover, there might not be anything to fix at all.
There’s nothing wrong with pages that may perform less well in a core update. They haven’t violated our webmaster guidelines nor been subjected to a manual or algorithmic action, as can happen to pages that do violate those guidelines. In fact, there’s nothing in a core update that targets specific pages or sites. Instead, the changes are about improving how our systems assess content overall. These changes may cause some pages that were previously under-rewarded to do better.
What is the next course of action?
Google will update when the rollout is fully complete. And it is then when we shall delve deeper into the topic of recovery after a core update. Till then hold those horses that prompt you to press the panic button. Now is not the time. For now, all you need to do is keep an eye out for fluctuations in traffic and rankings. We will take it further from there after an official confirmation about the completion of May 2022 Core Update.