h/t Pedro Dias
Hi, A couple quick thoughts that are relevant to this Google Algo update:
- I don’t write much
- I hate publicly talking about GOOG updates as they roll out, it’s for the birds.
- I have saved 15k + hospitals tens of millions in capital equipment costs. These hospitals were able to purchase aftermarket med equipment because we were discoverable next to the manufacturer’s sites.
- We provided free training and content that made that education process for the end user second to none.
- Well, today we’re not visible and I am left scratching my head.
- This update has hit numerous sites in my vertical, not just one or two.
- It looks punitive in nature
I have compared notes with colleagues over the last few days to draw a visual map as to what types of sites were hit, which is usually what I do when analyzing any new change.
Pretty quickly, I realized that it appeared this update was directed at sites in the health vertical. This was confirmed just a short while ago by Barry Schwartz at SERoundTable from his survey of over 300 sites. https://www.seroundtable.com/google-medic-update-26177.html
Yes this is one of the very few times Google wrote an update *targeting* a corner of the web like this.
As a practitioner and long term google strategist, I find this is fascinating. Below are some rough traffic stats from multiple web properties I have control of in the medical device and health info space, things are down big time, and the update doesn’t appear to be done.
Medical / Health Niche Google Update Traffic stats! …or not.
Note the purple line below, that is another competitor that got hit, this wasn’t isolated to a few bad penguined sites or a few thin content sites that dropped (panda). It was largely everyone whom was affected.
Thats the traffic bit I can show at the moment, I have others I can update later and show.
So…. why might Google do this to the Health vertical and just the health vertical?
Here are some theories of mine.
- weed out fake experts (see https://www.mariehaynes.com/the-august-1-2018-google-update-strongly-affected-ymyl-sites/#comment-44464) <- I think my business got hit accidentally because of the crossfire that Becky mentions here: https://www.mariehaynes.com/the-august-1-2018-google-update-strongly-affected-ymyl-sites/#comment-44497
- better control information
- cycle competition
- test this in one section of the net before rolling out more broadly
Before I dive into what sorts of things might be at play at an algorithmic level I will give Google the benefit to speak up first.
I am happy to do a full tear down to expose how awful this update truely is for users but lets give Google the benefit first to chime in and set a bit of the storyline with what is going on.
PSA: Don’t kill the niche expert Google!
If GOOG doesn’t revert some things quickly or openly address what webmasters can do to recoup rankings, small businesses will undoubtedly be financially devastated.
Other sources of update material can be found here: