By Julee Klein, Marketing Consultant and President, JKM
SEO Matters to Small Businesses and There Has Been a Lot to Keep Up With in 2022
A lot of small businesses we know have a website that typically gets updated once a quarter if at all. That's been a big problem for a lot of businesses this year as Google has increased the frequency and severity of their algorythic updates that affect search engine optimization (SEO.) Put more simply, Google has been constantly changing key factors and signals that affect how your website ranks in search results.
Google's 2022 Updates Focus on Rewarding Quality Content and Good User Experiences
What we've learned from those updates that Google did announce is that it's become mission critical to focus on "page experience" otherwise know as User experience. How your website's visitors interact with content on each page of your website matters more than ever. But regarding it's Page Experience Update in February 2022, Google has said, "A good page experience doesn't override having great, relevant content."
Likewise, according to Google, their Product Reviews Update "aims to better reward high quality product reviews, content that provides insightful analysis and original research, and is written by experts or enthusiasts who know the topic well."
Google has also prioritized weeding out unhelpful content in 2022. It's now using machine learning to help identify unhelpful or "thin" content and demote it in search results. Their Help Content Update released in August and updated in December is intended to improve the quality of search results by promoting the most helpful content. For more informtion, check out Google's developer article on What Creators should know about Google's August 2022 helpful content update.
Combatting Spam Content and Links
Google released a Spam Update in October of 2022 that affects al websites in all languages. And agin in December it followed this up with another Link Spam update to address those sites paying for links and otherwise violating Google's terms on link farming and creating spammy experiences for web users.
According to Search Engine Roundtable, with this new Link Spam update, Google "will "neutralize" links that it detects as being spam and thus links that are detected won't be counted and may show a decline in rankings." This is the case accross search results in al languages.
Here's a Visual Breakdown of All of Google's Critcal Updates in 2022
Thank you, Maggie Rousseaux with Oncrawl for putting together this helpful visual that outlines all of the important Google updates in 2022 affecting small businesses. View the original article with a transcription of the infographic here.
Don't Ignore SEO in 2023
With all of these changes to Google's algorythm and the importance they are placing on good, helpful, quality content, please revisit your website. Is it helpful to you customers and web visitors? Does it provide authoritative content? Does it help the visitor learn what they want to know about your bsuiness? Does it answer the most common questins you receive about your business. Is it easy to navigate? Does it render well on a mobile device? Is your website truly accessible to all users - even those with a visual impairment?
If you've answered these questions with anything other than a resounding "YES!", then it is time for an SEO Audit and a website redesign. Have questions? We're here to help.
By Julee Klein, Marketing Consultant & President
Julee Klein is the President of Julee Klein Marketing LLC, a full-service digital marketing agency based in Morgan Hill, California. JKM is focused on serving small business owners in the greater Silicon Valley area. You can get in touch with Julee on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram @JKMktg