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HomeMarketingGoogle’s Helpful Content Update: 6 Things to Know

Google’s Helpful Content Update: 6 Things to Know

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Google’s search algorithms and ranking techniques have changed over the years. From search-specific content to search engine optimization and user-first content, Google has refined its search mechanism to connect a user with the right information. Until now, websites and content creators have focused on creating content targeted to rank higher on search engine result pages (SERP). However, the recent update called “Google’s Helpful Content Update’ aims to target websites that provide information-driven content and improve user experience.

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On August 25, 2022, Google started rolling out its new Helpful Content Update. It is an ongoing adaptation of the existing algorithm, and the update will continue to modify Google’s ranking process. The recent update is part of Google’s efforts to ensure that people get the most helpful content intended for people rather than search engine ranking. Let’s discuss the main points of Google’s new Helpful Content Update:

What is Google Helpful Content Update?

In an announcement made just before the update, Google introduced its recent modification in the search algorithm, which focuses on original, human content and aims to discourage AI-based or low-quality content, primarily targeting more search engine traffic. The new search mechanism will now focus on providing a better user experience with quality content that ensures authenticity and usefulness. As a result of this update, websites that regularly publish excessive quantities of low-quality content that offer little or no value to the reader will face a drop in search ranking.

The websites that will suffer the impact of the new update may not return to the top ranking any time soon until they reevaluate and update their content to the standards laid down in the latest update. Whether you’re creating a new website or intend to update your old pages, SEO-marketing companies like Octiv Digital can help you create or update your website’s content according to the latest Helpful Content Update and search engine optimization best practices. They specialize in data-driven SEO to help scale your business through improved visibility in search engines while ensuring precise and authentic content. Octiv Digital is among the few digital marketing and web development companies actively creating high-quality, helpful content that meets Google’s search algorithm standards.

It is pertinent to note that the recent update is not a manual action. The strong artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques behind the new Helpful Content Update enable Google’s search algorithm to focus on human-friendly and people-first content.

Understanding the Concept of People-First Content

The new Helpful Content Update ensures the content is beneficial for the readers instead of fulfilling the technical standards of optimization only. People-first content emphasizes delivering comprehensible content intended for the intended audience. The content you include on your web pages needs to demonstrate expertise in your field and provide in-depth knowledge of a specific topic. Whether it’s a product description, a how-to guide, an opinion, or a suggestion, the content should give the audience what they are precisely looking for. The content must fulfill the purpose and inform its readers. Some of the most common goals of helpful content include sharing general information regarding a product, service, or a topic, giving out personal information or opinion, sharing media or entertaining audiences, or taking user queries and answering them.

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How to Create People-First Content According to Helpful Content Update

How to Create People-First Content According to Helpful Content Update

Whether creating new content or updating the old one, you must follow a few simple techniques to develop people-first content. Here are the six most effective strategies:

1. Analyze Your Intended Audience

The type of product or service you offer defines what your target audience will be. To create people-first content, you need to analyze your target audience thoroughly and what they would look for when they search on Google related to the product or service you offer. The type of content you create for your audience depends heavily on the primary focus of your niche. It’s essential to stay focused on topics that revolve around your industry. Try not to create content that is unhelpful to the audience. Try to stick to your area of expertise. For example, if your website is related to healthcare services, there is no point in choosing marketing or digital transformation topics.

2. Show Expertise

Your content will only be helpful for the readers when it shows a firm grip on the topic. Writing about trending topics but lacking the expertise to deliver in-depth knowledge will result in low-quality content. The main reason is that it would lack industry-specific expertise and fail to serve the people-first purpose. If a topic relates to your niche, but you’re not familiar with its terminologies, it’s better to research the topic and acquire the required level of knowledge before producing the content.

3. Never Make False Claims

Google has penalized websites for misleading readers and making false claims. Describing your services as “the best in town” or saying “we guarantee” can be misleading if it isn’t true. Some digital marketing experts create content focusing on such terminologies to rank at the top. However, the new Helpful Content Update warns against such practices.

4. Focus on Your Areas of Expertise

When it comes to helpful content, you cannot rely on the conventional techniques of stuffing keywords in the web content without justification. With the latest updates, Google depends on content communicating your expertise and precisely delivering what the user wants. Creating mediocre content with unclear intent will push you way down the rankings, and you may require months of rearrangement of your content to get some visibility in search results. Remember, it’s essential to focus more on your niche, dig deeper into the most relevant content and create content that communicates your expertise.

5. Don’t Combine Multiple Areas of Expertise on One Website

Your website must have a primary purpose or area of expertise. A website is intended for a specific purpose and focuses on a selected niche. Websites that take too much onboard confuse the reader and the search engine. The more clarity you have in the intent, the easier it is for Google to understand what you’re trying to deliver. Create your website around a single area of expertise and create your content accordingly.

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6. Make User Experience Your First Priority

While sticking to your niche and showing your expertise is a prerequisite to improving visibility in search results, one of the most important aspects is whether you’re providing a satisfying experience to the reader or not. The latest update focuses on people-first content, which means you can’t just ignore your reader’s overall experience with the content. The content you present to the audience must leave them satisfied. A step-by-step guide, for instance, which does not include visuals, or a guide to different types of facades that lack related images, is incomplete. Similarly, an installation manual that skips relevant screenshots or a product review with no video demonstration are all examples where the content delivers expertise yet fails to satisfy the reader. Remember what the audience would look for while reading through the topic when creating content. Answer all their potential questions and address their concerns.

Final Thoughts

With the new Google Helpful Content Update, websites and social media platforms are expected to face a major overhaul of their content. This update helps your site improve by removing unhelpful content and ensuring that the most relevant pages rank. If the update has affected your content, take it as a challenge to improve. With the above techniques and in-depth understanding, content creators can deliver quality content that satisfies readers and provides them with a great user experience.

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