We regularly read, discuss and share some really exciting and thought-provoking news pieces on all things digital. We decided to share a monthly round-up of articles, guides and opinion pieces from around the web that have got our team talking. This month, we’re focusing on Google and SEO.
Here we go!
Google’s September broad core update
Google announced a broad core update to their algorithm in late September, which rolled out over a series of 3-4 days. As with other broad core updates, it did not focus on one or two particular ranking factors but instead was a more general update to refine the search algorithm. For us, it appears to be yet another update in favour of high-quality web content that serves to answer a user’s questions and offer real value. Here’s a snapshot of the effects that other SEOs are seeing around the web.
Build content for search intent
Google is much more than just a keyword-driven search engine: it’s a question-and-answer machine, often providing users with answers directly in the search results list. How can you create content geared towards search intent – and possibly appear in these rich snippets? By answering your users’ questions, of course.
Google Chrome to block mixed content
Google Chrome has the largest usage share of web browsers, and it’s cracking down on security and privacy. From December 2019, it will begin to block content that is loaded through an insecure (http) protocol.
Heading tags: SEO vs accessibility
Despite the long-standing mandate that every page must have a maximum of one H1 tag, Google’s John Mueller has stated that heading tags can be useful, but are not absolutely critical in helping Google’s search algorithm understand the content of a page.
While John Mueller says heading tags aren’t critical to Google’s search algorithm, they’re still important for accessibility and readability – and we think these factors are just as important. Google’s algorithm updates are continually focussed on optimising towards great user experiences. Anything we can do to make our content more accessible and easily readable is going to have a favourable knock-on effect for SEO, too.
Confused by alt-text?
On a recent web development project, we discussed the benefits of alt-text tags on images and how they might be misused by some web administrators. Ideally, alt-text tags are included on images that add value to a page, or provide more context to written content. This guide from W3 provides a fantastic framework to decide whether an image might need an alt-text tag, or if it might be more suitable to leave blank.
What does E-A-T mean?
You might have seen the acronym EAT in relation to Google’s search algorithm. It stands for Expertise, Authority, and Trust. These are the hallmarks of high-quality content, according to Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines. Moz has a great video short on what these guidelines mean for content publishers.
Let us know what you think!
Have you read anything interesting recently? Have you noticed any movement in your organic traffic following the September broad core update? We’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences.
As always, don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’d like to discuss any of these topics with our SEO specialists – you can call our studio on 08 7127 4881 or get in touch with us via email.
The atomix growth team,
Josh, Sarah, Georgie, Chloe, Liz and Adam