2021 Core Algorithm Update by Google – Google Update

2021 Core Algorithm Update by Google – Google Update

Google has confirmed launching its core algorithm earlier this month, on the 4th of May, 2020. The algorithm update by Google will be officially known as the “May 2020 Core Update”. And as is typical with these updates, it takes about two weeks to completely roll out.

Here is the tweet by Google:

This is the second Core Update of 2020 so far by Google, the earlier one being launched back in January.

What is the Google Core Algorithm Update?

Google keeps making one or more updates to its algorithm on a daily basis so as to improve the search results. Most of these updates aren’t as noticeable and wouldn’t impact many of the websites. On the other hand, some of the algorithm changes have huge impacts, like Penguin, Panda, Pigeon, Fred, and others. This kind of algorithm changes was meant to address some existing faults or issues. For instance,  the Penguin algorithm was meant to fix the link SPAM issue; the Pigeon algorithm to fix the Local SEO spam. They all had a specific purpose, and Google tends to inform us before implementing such algorithms.

The Core Algorithm Updates are different!

A core algorithm update is a tweak or a change to the main search algorithm itself. These are designed to ensure that they are able to cater to the most useful resource as per the search query.  What this means is, this update is going to impact the SERP rankings!

The new update is a broad core algorithm that is intended to bring a list of changes to Google’s search algorithm.

Here is what Google has to say:

Several times a year, we make significant, broad changes to our search algorithms and systems. We refer to these as ‘core updates.’ They’re designed to ensure that overall, we’re delivering on our mission to present relevant and authoritative content to searchers,” Google.

What data companies have to say about The May 2020 Core Update


Here is a tweet by SEMrush post the update:

The SEMrush sensor tool showed a score of 9.4 post the update, way more than what was observed during the Jan update.

SEMRush report - SERP volatility - May 2020 Core algorithm update


Here is a tweet by Dr. Pete Meyers of Moz post the update:

The Mozcast tool that tracks the updates by temperature showed some insane levels of heat post the update.

MozCast - May 2020 Google Algorith Update


Here is what Mordy Oberstein from Rank Ranger tweeted post the update:

The following graph by RankRanger shows the rank movements post the update:

RankRanger - May 2020 Core Algorithm Update

What is the purpose of these Core Updates by Google?

COVID-19 has impacted the way people search in Google, or what people expect out of a search result. Owing to this, there are many things gaining relevancy there weren’t as popular before. The categories that seemed to get a huge volume of traffic seemed to be slowing down. For instance, searches related to travel, tourism, live entertainment, and in-person events are all down.

With the May 2020 Core Update, Google is trying to catch up with the unique challenge of how the world is searching.

What does this Core Algorithm Update by Google impact?

Apart from SERP related changes, this core algorithm update is likely to impact Google Discover. Some sites are expected to see a drop or gain in their rankings after such updates. And there isn’t any hard and fast rule to fix such drops post an impact. It is pretty natural to see post an update.

Here is a partial list of areas that can be impacted by this algorithm change:

  • Local search businesses
  • Health-related websites

These are being updated on daily basis. So there are more to be added to the above list.

May 2020 Core Update – What can you do?

Historically, Google has always said there’s nothing to “fix” if rankings drop post an update, other than making the best content.

Here is what they have to say to site owners:

  • Keep bringing quality content to the sites.
  • The content being published should be original, done with proper research, and analysis, with a comprehensive detailing on the topic.
  • Recommended to have descriptive and sensational Headings

Apart from these, Google has a list of content, quality, expertise, and comparative questions that webmasters and SEO guys should think of, before posting their content.

Content and quality questions

  • Is the content original?
  • How descriptive is the content?
  • Is there insightful analysis or interesting information beyond the obvious?
  • If the content is drawn from other sources, does it simply copy and re-write or provide additional value?
  • How informative is the heading related to the content?
  • Is the heading or the page title shocking in nature?
  • Is the content that you publish, something you would like to bookmark, recommend, or share with a friend?
  • Would other sites or magazines refer to your content?

Expertise questions

  • How trustworthy is your content? Do you provide enough evidence about the research?
  • Do you provide background information about the author or the site that publishes it?
  • Did a subject matter expert write the relevant article?
  • Is the content free of easily-verifiable factual errors?
  • Is the content free from easily-verified factual errors?
  • Would you trust this content with your money?

Presentation and production questions

  • Is the content free of spelling or stylistic issues?
  • Was the content well-produced or was it sloppy and bad in taste?
  • Is already available is plenty of sites to access?
  • Does the page make use of ads? If so, how distractive are they for a reader?
  • Is the page mobile-friendly?

Comparative questions

  • How is your content different from any other source in search results?
  • Is the content catering to the user’s needs? Or is it solely intended to be on the search page, to improve rankings, and to get traffic?


Google is going to keep on releasing such an algorithm update every now and then and it is very little you can do to control it. What you can control, is the quality aspect of your content. Make sure you abide by the Google practices and you should be safe from any adverse impact of it.

Reference – Search Engine Journal

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