Google’s Helpful Content Update

Google announced this week that they are rolling out the “helpful content update” and provided creator guidelines and a public notice to let the Google community know.

Published On: September 6, 20223 min readCategories: Blog, News
Girl looks up at charts and graphs


But seriously, don’t panic. Here’s what you need to know to prepare for this upcoming Google algorithm update:

Google announced this week that they are rolling out the “helpful content update” and provided creator guidelines and a public notice to let the Google community know.

Lovely, one-weeks notice!

They’ve actually tied this directly together with the recent product reviews quality update they rolled out earlier this year.

It’s clear that along with the E.A.T. focus over the past year Google is looking to roll out lasting changes to improve content quality.

This is very likely in response to the wrapped AI copywriting development as well as smarter white-hat in-content optimization tactics that are becoming more mainstream across the industry.

We have our own thoughts on AI-generated content and think it’s here to stay when used correctly, but let’s leave that for another day.

They’ve made it clear that these new standards are here to stay as this update is being rolled out in the form of a new signal that is automated within Google ranking evaluations.

What should brands be doing about this update?

We think the most important takeaway from this is to make sure you critically evaluate the content you currently have on-site, as well as your content creation practices, and adjust as needed.

Do you think your content adds value and is helpful to your audience? Are you creating “genuine” content that is focused on people first as google mentioned?

If you’re not, you need to revamp this content and if you are, then we’d still recommend going back and seeing if there are ways to infuse value and a “people first” focus moving forward.

Helpful tips to manage the new algorithm update

In addition to reviewing your content creation practices here are some helpful tips to manage the new algorithm update:

1. Content Prioritization for Monitoring

Understand what your top ranking content is on page 1 and ensure you have rank tracking and health monitoring rules in place to watch your traffic/rankings throughout the ranking (Before AND After).

2. Audit Top-Performing Content

Perform a content analysis on top ranking pages, focusing in particular on in-page content. Analyze your content from a search intent perspective, and evaluating “helpful content” criteria. Does your top content pass the test?

3. Create an Action-Plan with a clear Improvement Strategy

Look, if you’ve auto-generated your content and it’s mostly fluff content, you might have some serious issues.

Your best course of action would be to identify some real value that you can add to your top-performing content, and create a reasonable action plan to integrate it into all future practices to avoid doubling back.

4. Don’t Overreact 

If you’re confident you built strong content, and you think it is the best content for that specific query and it is ranking as such; DO NOT PANIC and go changing things just for the sake of changing things.

Take a breath ????

Ensure your monitoring tools are set up to catch important variances over time. Sometimes you will see a dip in rankings within an algorithm update since Google is testing something, but if you stand behind your content there’s a good chance that it will bounce back. It’s very important that you avoid potentially damaging something from a knee-jerk reaction.

And hey, if you’re a NAV43 client you’ll have even less to worry about. Drop a comment below if you have any questions and reach out to [email protected] if you are looking to speak to a specialist about your SEO strategy.