2023 is a big year for search, with both Bing and Google introducing AI chatbots and preparing for a full revamp of their search results.
However, behind the scenes, Google has been making non-AI-related moves that will have a big impact on search and the day-to-day life of an SEO.
We’ve collected some key highlights from July and summarised them below, to get help get you up to speed quickly!
We know that the world of SEO can be a pretty hectic one at times and while you’re busy running a business, knowing which update affects what can be tricky. Thankfully, here at Embryo, we have a team of search engine optimisers who spend their time optimising and fine-tuning websites to rank well.
So, if you’d rather focus on results and let our team look after the nitty gritty, why not get in touch with us today? Call us on 0161 327 2635 or email [email protected].
July’s SEO News: Google’s Continuous Testing
- Rest in peace Universal Analytics. The countdown for Google’s full transition to GA4 hit 0 and Universal Analytics profiles started getting shut down from the start of the month. The closure of UA accounts is happening periodically, but soon enough our only choice will be GA4. With more insightful data, could GA4 spark an increase in the quality of SEO & PPC campaigns?
- Google’s going to remove the related search operator. In what seems like a pre-emptive change before Bard is released to the masses, Google will be removing the ability to find related websites to a specific URL using their ‘related:’ search operator. This could be the start of Google releasing the operators that could get the same result as a prompt for Bard, encouraging more people to use the latter.
- Are big ranking fluctuations around the corner? There has been a lot of volatility in SERPs through July, leading to a lot of speculation about unconfirmed algorithm updates. John Mueller has told us to keep our eyes out for a core algorithm update in August or September, without giving any concrete details. It’s probably safe to assume that this update will be around E-E-A-T and making sure the algorithm is ready for the AI SERPs.
- Google improves clarity on what we need to do to build trust signals. By updating its Misrepresentation policy, Google has given us better guidance on how to create a trustworthy brand (in the eyes of their algorithm). While not entirely focused on SEO, it feels like Google has done this to help SEOs improve their trust signals as each passing algorithm update continues to focus on the importance of E-E-A-T.
- Google Business Profiles see a few updates. First, users can now auto-generate FAQs with answers for their business profiles. Google is using the data on the rest of the profile to create these questions and answers – using AI in a way that a lot of SEOs are currently getting criticised for. Secondly, the messaging service on profiles saw a nice update that shows when the profile owner is ‘online’ – we can presume in an effort to increase user engagement with this service.
- Bing’s chatbot is going to remain free. Yep, we couldn’t resist including a story about Bing’s chatbot – but it’s for a good reason. After announcing a paid enterprise version of Bing’s AI-integrated SERPs many thought this would mean that the chatbot would only be accessible behind a paywall for the everyday user. This would have dramatically slowed down the AI SERP race and impacted any upcoming updates. However, after confirming that the current version of Bing’s AI chat will remain free, this means both Bing and Google will be full steam ahead with the race to create the best AI SERPs – ensuring a long period of uncertainty for organic marketers.
Want to Work with a Team in the Know? Get in Touch
That concludes the most important topics discussed this month. At Embryo, we use news like this to improve the accuracy and quality of our SEO strategies and theorise about the future of search – making sure we’re always working towards organic growth. For more information or assistance from our experts, contact us at 0161 327 2635 or email [email protected].