Google’s algorithm update appears to have impacted health & medical websites
News Courtesy of Seroundtable.com:
A week ago today, we were the first to report on the big core Google algorithm update – in fact, we covered it several hours before Google confirmed the update. Since then, I posted the day after reaction to the update and covered that the update was winding down. I have also been collecting a lot of survey data around sites that were impacted by this update and I have some news to share.
I reviewed over 300 sites, sites that said they were impacted by this update. The first bit of data that sorely stood out around this was that a huge percentage of the sites impacted were specifically in the medical, health, fitness, healthy lifestyle space. In fact, over 42% of the sites submitted were.
It happens several times a year. Google tweaks their algorithm and SEOs freak out (or celebrate) the impact it has on their client’s website rankings. The broadcore update which began August 1st, has been described as a tweak to Google’s main ranking factors. For the most part, websites with good content should largely be unaffected. However, there has been some interesting data reported that shows increases and decreases for certain niches in organic traffic and keyword rankings.
One such niche is the health and medical industry. For this reason the update has been coined the medic update. While there is no conclusive evidence as to why such a large portion of health/medical websites were affected, there is a theory that it has to do with E-A-T. Expertise, authoritativeness and trust refers to how much clout a particular website has. So if a little-known health website is giving advice on how to treat an infection, the keyword rankings might drop from this update. Contrast that to a reputable website like WebMD that has backlinks, social signals, and other factors from prominent industry peers and those rankings might increase.
Google’s official statement on this matter is that there is nothing to fix. That’s a little disheartening to those webmasters who have seen a decline in rankings and traffic. It’s advised that if you did suffer a drop in rankings, go through all of your pages and make sure everything is accurate and of high quality. Of course, you should be doing this anyway from time to time!