Google March 2024 Core Update

blog background earth from space
Google Core Update March 2024

Google’s March 2024 Core Update has set the digital marketing world abuzz, marking a significant shift in the search engine’s approach to ranking websites. They’re doubling down on ditching spam and amplifying useful content, ensuring that your searches are more spot-on than ever. With their latest tweaks, including the integration of their helpful content system into the ranking process, you can wave goodbye to about 40% of those annoying, unhelpful pages.

Understanding the March 2024 Core Update

Staying abreast of Google’s algorithm updates is crucial for anyone keen on maintaining digital relevancy. The March 2024 Core Update by Google is consistent with their ongoing commitment to enhancing the user search experience, ensuring that the results displayed are not just relevant but also of high quality and credibility.

At its core, the March 2024 update is Google’s latest effort to refine its algorithm to better understand and satisfy user queries. Unlike routine updates, this core update is significant, potentially recalibrating the search landscape, affecting site rankings, and influencing traffic flow. It underscores Google’s perpetual quest to optimize search quality, focusing on delivering results that users find genuinely useful and informationally satisfying.

Information Satisfaction: A New Ranking Paradigm

Information Satisfaction (IS) is at the heart of this update. It’s about how effectively a piece of content answers the user’s query—not just skimming the surface, but providing comprehensive, authoritative, and trustworthy information. Google is nudging website owners to focus more on the value their content delivers, encouraging the creation of content that addresses the searcher’s intent in a holistic and nuanced manner.

With the update, Google introduces substantial improvements in search quality, signaling a move towards more nuanced and sophisticated content evaluation mechanisms. These changes underscore the importance of aligning content strategies with user needs and preferences.

Elevating Content Quality and User Experience

The update places a premium on high-quality content that is engaging, well-researched, and deeply informative. Websites that consistently deliver such content are likely to find favor with the updated algorithm. Moreover, the user experience is more crucial than ever, with factors such as page speed, mobile-friendliness, and intuitive navigation becoming critical in the quest for higher rankings. The underlying message is clear: websites should not only aim to attract visitors but also provide a seamless, enriching online experience.

Measuring Information Satisfaction

The mission of both content creators and SEO specialists is to fully meet the users’ needs at every twist and turn of their online journey.

Google continuously crafts new ways to gauge satisfaction, a process shrouded in mystery, but frankly, that’s Google’s business, not ours. We possess the intimate knowledge of our customers, giving us the upper hand in meeting their precise needs. And in the event we hit a roadblock, we know exactly whom to ask – our customers themselves.

Rethink your approach to keyword research with a fresh perspective: every Google search reflects a real-world issue that users encounter along their customer journey. Now, satisfying your user is all about catering to their information needs or aiding them in accomplishing their intended tasks.

The SEO world is no stranger to the concept of query intent, which is a solid start. However, embracing Information Satisfaction (IS) requires digging deeper. Consider how a particular query’s significance might shift depending on where a user stands in their journey. It’s not uncommon for the same search term to pop up at various stages, each time demanding a tailored response.

To effectively measure Information Satisfaction, think beyond the basics. IS isn’t a new concept; it’s backed by extensive research. While the array of methods may be vast, surveys, especially those employing the Likert scale, stand out for their simplicity and effectiveness. This approach mirrors the method used in Google’s own Search Quality Rating Program, providing a clear, structured way to evaluate IS.

Incorporating this method means you’re aligning closely with Google’s perspective, treating it not just as a search engine but as a satisfaction engine. Thus, SEO transcends its traditional boundaries, evolving into what can be aptly described as Satisfaction Engine Optimization. Engaging with this mindset, you’re not just optimizing for search engines, but you’re fine-tuning your content to satisfy your audience’s information needs comprehensively, enhancing their journey at every step.

Technical SEO Adjustments

Diving into the tech side of things, the Google March 2024 Core Update has brought some fresh technical twists to the SEO table. The objective is ensuring your website is in tip-top shape so that Google can easily understand and favour it in search rankings.

To keep your website technically savvy, here are some key optimizations for your consideration:

  • Improve Site Speed. Quick loading times keep both visitors and Google happy. Use tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights to find ways to speed up your site.
  • Make Mobile a Priority. With more people browsing on smartphones, ensure your site is mobile-friendly and looks great on any screen size.
  • Secure with HTTPS. Security is crucial. HTTPS encryption keeps your site’s data safe, boosting user trust and your Google ranking.
  • Clean Up Your Site. Regular maintenance is essential. Check for and fix any broken links, slow-loading pages, or outdated content to keep your site running smoothly.

By focusing on these technical essentials, you’re setting your site up for success, ensuring it’s ready to shine in Google’s eyes and deliver a fantastic user experience.

Helpful content update now a part of core updates

With the latest March 2024 core update, Google won’t be announcing separate helpful content updates anymore because they’ve embedded this feature directly into the core system. The September 2023 update stirred things up for a number of websites. Sites can expect to see changes with this new update, though it’s a bit early to predict exactly what will happen.

What else should I know?

  • March 2024 Spam Update. Google has rolled out new spam-fighting tools, dubbed the March 2024 spam update, alongside the big March 2024 core update. They’re introducing fresh rules to keep spam in check and will be enforcing these with both automated systems and hands-on checks starting this week. Plus, watch out for a specific update targeting site reputation abuse, set to kick in two months from now, on May 5.
  • Expired domain abuse is now considered spam. Tucker highlighted that the tactic of acquiring expired domains to boost the search rankings of low-quality content, known as “expired domain abuse,” is now labeled as spam. This strategy can mislead users into thinking the new content belongs to the domain’s previous owner. It’s a clear caution against buying expired domains for the purpose of manipulating Google Search rankings. Google is set to counter this abuse with algorithmic measures and manual checks starting this week.
  • Site reputation abuse (aka parasite SEO) is spam, too. Parasite SEO occurs when someone posts their content on a well-known, authoritative website to take advantage of its established credibility, aiming for faster online visibility. This tactic is commonly seen with large media publishers and news organizations, where third parties hop on their platforms to get a quick boost. Watch out for a specific update targeting site reputation abuse, set to kick in two months from now, on May 5.

What to do if your rankings drop

Google has some straightforward guidance for those who find their rankings affected by a core update: don’t panic if you see a dip, as it doesn’t necessarily mean there’s an issue with your content. Instead, focus on assessing your content’s quality by asking yourself some reflective questions. While you might notice minor improvements over time, the most significant shifts typically happen following subsequent core updates. The essence of their advice? Prioritize crafting content that genuinely helps and engages people, rather than content just designed to rank well in search engines.

Google reassures that if you’ve been dedicated to creating content that genuinely satisfies your audience’s needs, there’s no need for any specific changes in light of this update. However, for those experiencing ranking challenges, Google suggests revisiting their guidance on producing content that’s helpful, reliable, and puts the audience first, as explained by Nelson. The key takeaway here is to stay committed to delivering value-driven, people-first content.

A recent history of Google Updates

NameStartedCompleted
March 2024 Spam Update5 Mar 2024
March 2024 Core Update5 Mar 2024
November 2023 Review Update8 Nov 2023
November 2023 Core Update2 Nov 2023
October 2023 Core Update5 Oct 202319 Oct 2023
October 2023 Spam Update4 Oct 202319 Oct 2023
September 2023 Helpful Content Update14 Sep 202328 Sep 2023
August 2023 Core Update22 Aug 20237 Sep 2023
April 2023 Reviews Update12 Apr 202325 Apr 2023
March 2023 Core Update15 Mar 202328 Mar 2023
February 2023 Product Reviews Update21 Feb 20237 Mar 2023
December 2022 Link Spam Update14 Dec 202212 Jan 2023
December 2022 Helpful Content Update5 Dec 202212 Jan 2023
October 2022 Spam Update19 Oct 202221 Oct 2022
September 2022 Product Reviews Update20 Sep 202226 Sep 2022
September 2022 Core Update12 Sep 202226 Sep 2022
August 2022 Helpful Content Update25 Aug 20229 Sep 2022
July 2022 Product Reviews Update27 Jul 20222 Aug 2022
May 2022 Core Update24 May 20229 Jun 2022
March 2022 Product Reviews Update23 Mar 20226 Apr 2022
Page Experience Update for Desktop22 Feb 20223 Mar 2022

Staying ahead in SEO requires adaptability and foresight. By closely monitoring your site’s performance and aligning with Google’s best practices, you can ensure readiness for future algorithmic changes.

Conclusion

The Google March 2024 Core Update is a call to action for digital marketers to refine their SEO and content strategies. By focusing on information satisfaction, quality content, and a superior user experience, websites can navigate the changes effectively and maintain their competitive edge in search rankings.

authority pilot icon white

Authority Pilot is your go-to destination for turbocharging your online marketing. With a seamless approach to SEO, PPC, link building, and top-notch content creation, we're here to help your website take flight and dominate the competition.

space opera clouds

Frequently asked questions

You're not alone. Marketing is becoming increasingly complex, so it's natural to have questions. Check out our topical FAQ's for understanding and insight. Or visit our FAQ knowedge base via the button below.

FAQ Knowledge Centre

General

The update centers on Information Satisfaction, aiming to improve the relevance and value of search results.

Focus on producing high-quality, informative content that aligns with user intent and provides comprehensive answers.

E-A-T is crucial, as websites demonstrating expertise, authority, and trustworthiness are likely to rank higher.

The update emphasizes the quality of links rather than quantity, advocating for more strategic, value-driven link building.

Absolutely, as the update prioritizes websites offering a stellar user experience, including fast load times and mobile responsiveness.

More blog articles like this

View All Blog Content

Create Your Dashboard Today!

Take charge of your marketing effortlessly by setting up a dashboard account with us. It's easy, and it puts all your essential tools in one convenient place. Dive into a world of insights and make smarter marketing moves today.

Start Your Journey

Need to create your FREE dashboard? Get started here

strategy call smiling support person with headset