What You Need to Know About the Spring 2022 Google Search Ranking Algorithm Update

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What You Need to Know About the Spring 2022 Google Search Ranking Algorithm Update


With over 5 years of experience helping businesses to improve their visibility in the search engines, I am often asked about the latest Google algorithm updates and what they mean for websites.

The ranking algorithm of Google that helps you rank higher on search results is continuously being updated with several fresh updates every year. One thing to note is that these updates occur in different phases starting with the most significant and then followed by minor changes if any. It is notable that such changes help you best to understand how your website is seen by Google, which ultimately helps you to work on your website as Google keeps track of your ranking movements. March 2019, 18 months later, and we have a new update named - the "Spring 2022" update, which is going to hit penguin harder than it has ever been hit before.

A lot of people run away from updates, claiming that they're always harmful. But the truth is quite the opposite. These updates are extremely useful, as they often track changes in search behavior and adjust their algorithm accordingly. Google knows that if it doesn't make necessary changes, it could potentially ruin its own ranking ecosystem. Therefore, it makes a point of regularly tweaking its algorithm to minimize competitive advantages and make sure that rankings are still decided by relevance to users.


The Search Algorithm Change Will Impact The Way Your Site is Ranked in Google's Search Engine

Google has announced yet another algorithm update that will impact the way your site is ranked in their search engine. This update, which will happen in the spring of 2022, is all about mobile-first indexing.

Now, this might sound familiar if you've been keeping up with all the Google updates announced over the past few years. That's because this isn't exactly a new development.

Google first started experimenting with mobile-first indexing back in 2016, and they've been slowly transitioning all websites to be indexed based on the mobile version of their site ever since.

This means that Google's search engine will crawl and rank your site based on its mobile content instead of based on its desktop content, regardless of what device users are searching with.

Google's goal with this update is to highlight sites that deliver “great user experiences” and rank them higher than sites that don't.

What does "great user experience" really mean? According to Google, it means a site that is:

Mobile friendly

Safe (meaning HTTPS)

Fast-loading pages

No intrusive pop-up ads

To get a better idea about how Google evaluates your site for these factors, be sure to run it through the Core Web Vitals Test. If you pass all of the tests, then you're good to go!


This Update Will First be Released in Australia and New Zealand

The next update, however, will be a bit different from the updates we've seen in the past. That's because it'll be released in Australia and New Zealand first.

Google announced this on Twitter, saying that “The next broad core algorithm update, the Spring 2022 Core Algorithm Update, is now scheduled for release in April 2022. Following our usual practice, we’re announcing this about 4 months in advance as it involves an extensive worldwide launch.”

But why Australia and New Zealand? Well, according to Google, it's due to their location relative to the equator. “These two countries are relatively close to each other and close enough to the equator that they share a common seasonal calendar (summer and winter happen at the same time of year). This makes them a useful pair of test markets for algorithm updates intended to launch worldwide.”

It's also worth noting that this is not a testing phase of any kind — it's just a preview of what's coming up with Google Search next year.

Google has been testing this new update with a small group of users in New Zealand since last November. After this initial testing period, Google plans to introduce the changes in Australia and New Zealand in Spring 2022. Then, they plan to roll it out worldwide in 2022.

The update will include some changes to how Google calculates your site's quality score — an important factor that determines your website's ranking on search results pages (SERPs). Google hasn't shared exactly what those changes will be yet.


The New Algorithm is Expected to Impact How Users Experience Search on Mobile Devices

The new update will reward mobile-friendly websites by ranking them higher in search results. It will also penalize websites that are not mobile-friendly.

If you are wondering if your site is mobile-friendly, here’s how you can check:

Enter the URL of your website into Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool

Use Google’s Core Web Vitals Tool to check how your site performs on mobile devices

Websites that aren’t optimized for mobile devices will rank lower in search results and may experience a significant drop in organic traffic.

Optimizing your website for mobile devices is a must. If you need help with this or any other aspect of SEO, contact us today.

The Search Engine Journal featured an interview with Google’s John Mueller, who discussed the implications of the new Spring 2022 search algorithm update. The new algorithm will focus on how users experience search on mobile devices. In particular, the update intends to penalize sites that don’t fit mobile screens properly and frustrate users in other ways.

The new algorithm is set to be released in May 2021 for testing, so site owners have a full year to make improvements before Google begins ranking sites based on their mobile experience. This is good news for businesses because it gives them time to prepare their sites for this policy shift.

This Update Could Result in a Drop in Traffic For Organic Searches Done Via Mobile Devices

This update will focus specifically on mobile search results. It will also be rolled out slowly over a period of two years so that any effects are gradual and minor.

As such, there are still some lingering questions about what exactly this means for different websites and users.

What kinds of websites will it affect?

Google has been very clear that this update will only apply to websites that have been optimized for mobile devices like smartphones or tablets. If your site was built with an older version of HTML that isn't compatible with modern browsers, then it could see a drop-off in traffic after this change goes into effect.

What if my website isn't optimized?

If your website isn't optimized for mobile devices, then you should take steps now.

The "Page Experience" update will incorporate several new factors in how Google ranks web pages and determines which sites appear first in search results. These new factors are intended to give searchers a better experience with the pages they find using Google.

The most important factor: Core Web Vitals, introduced by Google last year, are metrics that measure how quickly (or slowly) a web page loads and responds to user interaction, and how stable its content is as it loads. The Page Experience update will use these metrics to determine the quality of your site's user experience.

How Does Your Site Measure Up?

The easiest way to check for problems with your site's performance and stability is with PageSpeed Insights from Google. This free tool will analyze your page and let you know if it meets Google's standards or not and provide suggestions on how to fix any problems you may have.

Once you know where your site stands now, you'll be able to monitor the changes that need to be implemented.

The Google Speed Test Tool


What Is Mobile-First Indexing?

Mobile-first indexing is when Google crawls and indexes the mobile version of your website first and foremost. Currently, Google crawls and indexes your desktop site first. That means that Google will consider the mobile version of your site to be its primary version going forward.

How Do I Know If My Site Is Currently Mobile-friendly?

According to Google, if you see "Mobile-friendly" under your listing in search engine results pages (SERPs), then your site qualifies as mobile-friendly. You can also use Google's Mobile-Friendly Test tool to see if your site passes muster.

Companies That Have Overlooked The Need To Provide A Great User Experience On Mobile Devices May Find It Harder To Attract Traffic Online This Year

Google is well known for making continuous changes to its algorithms that determine how websites are ranked in the SERPs in order to ensure that its users receive the best possible experience when searching for information online.

This month, Google has announced a new update that is due to be rolled out as part of its Core Algorithm in May 2022. The announcement was made during Google's Search On conference and has caused quite a stir among digital marketing experts and business owners alike.

One of the biggest changes that will be coming with this update is a focus on the user experience provided by websites on mobile devices. As people have shifted towards using their mobile phones more than ever to access information online, Google has been focusing on ensuring that its users are able to find relevant and useful information quickly and easily regardless of which device they choose to use.

As an extension of this, Google has made it clear that websites that provide a poor user experience on mobile devices will be penalized as part of this update. This includes sites that are slow to load, or which display poorly on mobile screens due to not being optimized for


The New Algorithm Change Will Focus on Evaluating How Users Are Engaging With The Content on Each Website

For years, SEO (search engine optimization) has been driven by a single question: how can I make Google happy?

However, in recent months, Google has begun to give a higher priority to user satisfaction. This trend reflects a larger trend of personalization that is occurring in the search industry. The new Google algorithm will be designed to evaluate how users are engaging with the content on each website and use that data to determine which sites are providing the best results for any given search term.

This shift signals a major change in the way that SEO marketers need to approach their jobs. In the past, it was enough to produce lots of content and sprinkle keywords throughout it to make it easier for Google's bots to find your content. Now, you have to focus on creating content that your readers actually want to read.

The first step in making this transition is understanding what kind of content users want and then delivering it consistently. If you do this successfully, you'll begin to see your rankings go up and your traffic increase as more readers discover your content.


This is Good News for Small Businesses

As it means Google is placing more emphasis on content, rather than simply "keywords."

So what does this mean for your business? Here are three key ways to prepare:

Write content that provides a value-add for your customers. If you have a blog on your site, think about writing articles that directly answer questions your customers might have about your product or service. Use social media to promote those articles and encourage your followers to share them.

Focus on longer keyword phrases. Think of the questions people are asking when they're looking for a product or service like yours, and use these as keywords in your posts. As an example, if you sell software online, don't focus solely on the keyword "software" — start thinking about keywords like "top software for creating infographics" or "best


There is No Way to Know Exactly How The New Algorithm Will Impact Your Rankings Until it Goes Live

The good news when it comes to mobile SEO is that the steps you've already taken to improve your site's ranking on desktop browsers should also work for mobile users. The bad news is that it may not be enough to stay on top of the competition.

It's important to note that the algorithm change is still in its testing phase. There is no way to know exactly how the new algorithm will impact your rankings until it goes live later this year, but chances are it will affect the way users experience searching through mobile devices (as opposed to being desktop specific).

What Does This Mean for Mobile SEO?

While Google hasn't released any official details about what specifically will be included in its new algorithm, one thing is clear: It will prioritize sites optimized for mobile devices. This means that if you have a website that isn't responsive or doesn't include a separate version for mobile users, you're going to see a drop in search engine rankings as soon as the new system

Conclusion

We know there are plenty of SEOs out there who are concerned about the impact of these algorithm changes. But we hope that this analysis has helped put your mind at ease—or if not, to raise your concern to slightly less negative levels. As we mentioned earlier, nothing is permanent in search engine ranking and Google will invariably make further changes to its search algorithms. They have done so for a long time and they will continue to do so in the coming months and years. With each update, we learn more about how Google makes their changes to search algorithms and what they value as a leading search engine provider.


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