Google May 2022 Core Update Complete

Google confirms that the core algorithm update it started rolling out on May 25 is officially complete. Now you can get an accurate impact assessment.

The announcement of the completed rollout was released at 3:44 a.m. EST, though you may have noticed the effects of the update before today.

If so, and the changes you’re seeing continue the same pattern, chances are you’ve been impacted by the May 2022 Core Update.

What to do next

Do you notice any positive changes? Great! You survived another update (and hopefully thrive as a result).

Do you notice any negative changes? If so, you must be wondering what to do next.

Google’s advice for fetching major updates is always the same: improve your content.

John Mueller, Google’s Search Advocate, said in October:

“With core updates, we don’t focus so much on individual issues, but rather on the relevance of the website as a whole.

And that can include things like usability and ads on a page, but it’s basically the website as a whole.

When planning how to recover from a major update, don’t get bogged down by technical fixes or singular improvements like changing title tags.

Take a holistic approach to improving the website as a whole, starting with the content.

This can be a daunting task, and it’s not uncommon these days to hire AI content generators to do the job. Although you might want to be careful before going down this path.

Did Google’s May 2022 Core Update Target AI-Generated Content?

Major Google updates affect all search results to some degree, although the impact may be more noticeable in some areas than others.

It’s too early to draw conclusions, but there are signs that websites with AI-generated content have been particularly hard hit.

Here’s an example of a site owner showing a massive drop in traffic for a website written with an AI content generator:

In contrast, here’s an SEO showing a spike in traffic following the main update.

He says his site is in a niche “polluted with junk AI content,” and he finally managed to outrank his competitors:

Although there is evidence that AI content is impacted by the main update, it doesn’t mean AI content is inherently bad.

Here’s what Google has to say about it.

What does Google say about AI-generated content?

Google says AI-generated content only violates its guidelines when used with the intent to manipulate search results.

If there was a noticeable trend of AI-generated content ranking lower after the May 2022 main update, it’s likely that it wasn’t being used in a way that meets guidelines. from Google.

Perhaps Google is getting better at identifying when AI content is used to manipulate rankings and when it’s used to add value.

We recently published the results of an experiment where it was found that AI-generated content generally works best when used to complement human-written content.

To this end, it is recommended not to depend on an AI content generator to the point that it replaces human writers.

Additional Resources

For more help recovering from a major Google update, see:

Featured image: salarko/Shutterstock

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