Google has announced that it has started rolling out a Core update in November 2023. It may take a week or two to fully roll out.
It just gets worse and worse for us, too. The “reviews” updates hit us hard, and while we didn’t see any major gains or losses in the most recent Helpful Content Update, the core updates (including this one) have not been kind.
I wouldn’t feel entitled to complain if we were just losing rankings and traffic for random articles or minor subtopics, but it’s galling to see us losing ground for our most popular topic, where we’ve created a body of useful, regularly updated informational content over the last 2+ decades.
I get the feeling that subject expertise and experience (which have seemed to benefit us in the past) are getting less attention in the most recent updates. Contrary to what Google’s guidelines might suggest, the proof of the pudding is no longer in the E-E-A-Ting.
Running some analysis, I see that the bing/yahoo/duckduckgo traffic to my highly buyer-intent articles has skyrocketed % wise…Because Google has been sending fewer and fewer people.
My informative/not as buyer-intent focused articles have been fluctuating around +/- 10% since this particular update started.
Still hit hard after the HCU and October update, but at least November isn’t another -30% or something. The annihilation of buyer-intent articles feels rough, though. On some of them it’s 20-25% coming from other search engines. It used to be like 5%.
If you go by GA4, don’t. It is glitched right now and shows less than actual visits.
Update about my situation:
Main site was in freefall on Saturday and Sunday after reaching very high levels on Friday. It is still at around all time high levels but a lot lower than Friday. Maybe today will be better, but I don’t count on it.
Secondary sites continue to be reliably dead. Although my smallest one did show some improvement on Sunday.
What happened on Saturday/Sunday looks like partial reversal of October Core. Lots of “niche sites” and “made for affiliate” crud showed some vital signs again, unfortunately, as I was hoping those hit will stay hit forever.
There was huge collateral damage to September/October updates, including my own smaller sites, so clearly there is no magic bullet to sort out low value sites. Google is chasing their tail, although they did seem to get something sort-of-right for a fleeting moment.
Some of the replies from BlackHatWorld.
More spam and old Reddit articles are ranking high in my main niche. Curiously enough, a site in the gaming niche that happens to have a random page in the niche I’m in is ranking above mine.
The content on it is absolute garbage, it reads as though it’s been written after a few Jack and cokes.
Lost ~25 to 30% in October, got about half of that back so far. Let’s see how the rest of it goes.
And some of the replies from our own forum.
Google is just punishing niche based sites. They are not targeting any big ones which specializes in nothing but have articles of everything. If you are a site in a niche which you probably are then it’s time to go global field wise. Otherwise, you won’t be able to compete.
Forbes and other big sites. Just have many pages which are one sentence or two sentence article. Yet, they are able to go and win against the most prominent info pages of any specific niche. I remember G said that G don’t value domain but pages. Then how come this is happening?
A friend of mine have a eCommerce site which has many sub-domains. Suddenly, one of them is ranking high. I mean it is at the top now. And the sub-domain is not even completely built it just for support purposes for customers.
I mean seeing Quora and Reddit for queries which aren’t even right for the query in the SERP’s. It’s an absolute mess. G is simply giving wrong answers now.
I can confirm this with our own ecommerce site’s fluctuations. They are not dub-domains, yes not all of them but some.
Google is very selective. It’s like they are giving ranks to the small sites which queries posses no value of money.
This month is supposed to be the earning month. But instead it’s quite the opposite.