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Helpful Content Update Might Get Stronger? 

Update from the future: The Google Helpful Content Updatefinsihed rolling out on September 9th! Even though not a lot of people reported seeing major fluctuations, the update is still valuable and very important. Read more about it here and find out what to do if you were hit!

No one really understands the fuss Google made about the Helpful Content Update. Until now, no huge ranking changes have been reported and only 20% of SEOs said they noticed some ranking changes. So, for now, the Google Helpful Content Update seems pretty minor. But, that could change with the next algorithm update, Search Engine Journal reports.

The update started rolling out two weeks ago, and last week, Google’s Danny Sullivan assured SEOs that the update is significant, despite all the evidence showing the opposite.

Update isn’t done. It’s also part of a continuing effort, as we’ve explained. We’ll keep refining how it works. Directionally, the guidance we’ve given is what SEOs and creators should be considering. — Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) August 31, 2022

In contrast to recent updates, such as Panda and Penguin, which immediately changed search results, this update is a continuing effort, so its impact will unfold over time. That means we know when the helpful content update could become more visible: with the next core update. This was confirmed by Sullivan, when he responded to feedback again this week, revealing that other algorithm updates could strengthen the helpful content signal.

“Noticeable doesn’t mean every site sees a change and, why would that happen? Are the majority of sites unhelpful?” – he said.

And he has a point actually.

Why are we so concerned the update is not making any changes? Aren’t we supposed to be happy it’s not? After all, it would mean our content is actually helpful and good?! Either that or Google didn’t really do its job all this time.

Thanks for the information, Danny. Quick question about refining the signal. Will we know if you make *significant* changes to the signal over time? If not, sites could see a lot of impact since it’s continually running and potentially be confused about why that’s happening. — Glenn Gabe (@glenngabe) August 31, 2022

Update Not Done Yet

So far, the update seems minor, but it’s also not done rolling out. It should be fully rolled out any day now. Until then, we can continue to read tweets between Danny Sullivan and Glenn Gabe. Just yesterday, Sullivan called the update ‘big’ explaining that “it’s an important guidance people should pay attention to”.

We are now 12 days into the rollout of the Helpful Content Update & it’s still pretty quiet. Yes, some sites are dropping, but they are NOT in the gray area IMO. The ones I have seen drop are BAD from a content standpoint (like AI-generated, scraped listings, etc.) For example: — Glenn Gabe (@glenngabe) September 6, 2022