More threads by Colan Nielsen

Important post
Today, I noticed one of our blog articles completely disappeared from Google search results - 25 Stories From 25 Years - Christian Web Trends Blog: Church Websites, Design, SEO It's a post that lists and links to all the posts in a series. I'm thinking maybe it's been penalized or devalued by the Helpful Content Update because of this question Google posed in their announcement about the update, "Are you mainly summarizing what others have to say without adding much value?"

Anyone else notice pages/articles like this experiencing lower rankings or completely removed from search results?

Thoughts on how likely this is due to the Helpful Content Update?

Good catch by @Joey Abna. @PaulSteinbrueck, it looks like that page is no longer indexed.

From what I've read and understand, the Helpful Content Update is not supposed to target individual pages but rather the entire site, according to SEJ: "...if Google determines your site is producing a relatively high amount of unhelpful content, primarily written for ranking in search, then your whole site will be impacted. This will not just impact individual pages or sections of your site, but rather, it will impact the whole site."

So, it doesn't appear it is related to the update as Paul's site has almost 300 other pages still indexed.

Maybe check Google Search Console for any errors and/or submit a re-index request for that page?
 
Today, I noticed one of our blog articles completely disappeared from Google search results - 25 Stories From 25 Years - Christian Web Trends Blog: Church Websites, Design, SEO It's a post that lists and links to all the posts in a series. I'm thinking maybe it's been penalized or devalued by the Helpful Content Update because of this question Google posed in their announcement about the update, "Are you mainly summarizing what others have to say without adding much value?"

Anyone else notice pages/articles like this experiencing lower rankings or completely removed from search results?

Thoughts on how likely this is due to the Helpful Content Update?

This is not the HCU. This is Google not liking the page and removing it from the index. The HCU impacts the entire website and not one individual page.
 
Thank you for the feedback. You all were right, GSC indicates the page is no longer indexed. I requested it be indexed.

I too have read that HCU is a sitewide signal and inferred from that it should not affect individual pages, but who knows, right? If anyone else notices pages being de-indexed, I would love to hear about it, whether you think its related to HCU or not.
 
Google has officially released the Helpful Content Update. We are going to track and share observations about how it's impacting the local algorithm and local businesses here.

Please share your observation below.



@Colan Nielsen
I'm seeing today a bump of +20 suspensions within 1-2 hour on listings that are old, obviously legit, stone and brick pizzerias. If you look closer, you can see that those suspended listings have the same pattern - deleted images by google with a "!" on a triangle sign replacing them (example).
Email notification, as usual says "....listing flagged for suspicious activity....please read the guidelines representing your business on Google ".
Ofcourse will follow up with Google on reinstatement and reverifications, but do you have any thoughts if the newly released HCU is maybe associated with the recent GBP posts content policy update and now with this newest wave of suspensions? Maybe a rollout to enforce the changes/updates?
 
@Colan Nielsen
I'm seeing today a bump of +20 suspensions within 1-2 hour on listings that are old, obviously legit, stone and brick pizzerias. If you look closer, you can see that those suspended listings have the same pattern - deleted images by google with a "!" on a triangle sign replacing them (example).
Email notification, as usual says "....listing flagged for suspicious activity....please read the guidelines representing your business on Google ".
Ofcourse will follow up with Google on reinstatement and reverifications, but do you have any thoughts if the newly released HCU is maybe associated with the recent GBP posts content policy update and now with this newest wave of suspensions? Maybe a rollout to enforce the changes/updates?

This has nothing to do with the helpful content update. The HCU has nothing to do with GBP or suspended business profiles. The HCU is about web pages and rankings. Also, the HCU update appears to be completed and has impacted low-quality content websites.
 
First noticeable shifts have started to appear for us (all positive) over the weekend. Approx 50% of our clients saw no significant impact as a result of the update as we always create content as high a quality as possible within the time/budget available.

The remaining 50% or so which saw shifts were all noticeable upward shifts in rankings, typically of an average sitewide shift of 10 positions, which would seem to imply pages from competitors have been hit by the update. The most noticeable has been within the financial sector with one of our clients seeing a average gain across all tracked keywords of over 30 positions.
 
I'm also seeing changes in ranking in the last few days. Both organic and local pack rankings. Example:

1662983241570.jpg


We also had several people start threads about huge drops in ranking in the local pack for service area businesses. I'm unclear if these are related.
 
I haven't noticed any ranking changes in the local pack, but I don't have any SABs, all of my clients are brick and mortars. Last week we saw a few keywords have massive ranking drops, one keyword dropped 31 on desktop and 26 on mobile. The same location saw a different keyword jump 15 spots on desktop. I am used to keywords going up and down each week, but it's usually a few positions and not as jarring as this.
 
careful with that, it is not exactly how it works, see


Hi Rusty, not disagreeing with you :). I'm not sure if you read the article from SEJ but it likewise includes Danny Sullivan's tweets and covers the potential impact of the combo of the HCU and Core Update. The article goes on to say "Unless Google makes a specific statement that the Helpful Content Update is a major part of this core update, it may be premature to say that it is being amplified in this September Core update."

I placed "amplify" in quotes because the referenced article uses the word "amplify".
 
Had a client plummet in organic, they said they had copied content on the website and all pages were KW stuffed. They are a maid service company.

They were not the victim of the HCU. They are the victim of the Kansas Bug or whatever glitch Google is having with SABs.

Places-Scout (8).jpg


Places-Scout (7).jpg
 
Yeah but Ben said they plummeted in organic, not local pack. I thought the SAB bug was solely impacting GBP/Local Pack rank

That's just it, the Places Scout shows that they didn't plummet in organic rankings. Places Scout shows that they lost map pack rankings. They saw the drop the same day that countless other SAB's lost map pack rankings. I wouldn't see this much red unless they were suspended, which they are not. They have their LSA showing and they are number 1 below the map pack. This is not an HCU causality.

screencapture-google-search-2022-09-15-14_18_48 (1).jpg
 

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