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June 2021 Google Algorithm Update that Will Probably Hurt a Lot of Public Adjusters

June 2021 Google Algorithm Update that Will Probably Hurt a Lot of Public Adjusters

Google has never… and we mean NEVER… told the public that it will be releasing an algorithm update in advance. 

Google’s algorithm updates normally happen like this:

  • Marketers wake up and find out that their clients’ rankings have fluctuated
  • The marketing community talks and confirms that yes, massive fluctuations to Google’s algorithm happened overnight
  • A couple of days later, Google confirms that it released an update

But not with this June 2020 Page Experience Update. Google told us in advance. And they told us EXACTLY what to do to make sure we’re prepared.

This guide shares what you, as a public adjuster, must do to prepare for the June 2021 Google Page Experience Update.

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What is this Page Experience Update And When Will it Happen?

Again, this time around is nice. Google is telling us everything!

Here’s the exact timeline that Google is giving for the Page Experience Update.

We’ll begin using page experience as part of our ranking systems beginning in mid-June 2021. However, page experience won’t play its full role as part of those systems until the end of August. 

Pretty clear. Starts Mid-June and will be finalized at the end of August.

But what’s going into the Page Experience Update? And how can you plan for it?

Here’s where it gets a little more technical. This is exactly, word for word, what Google says:

PS: before reading this, know that you likely won’t understand what it means! Below this information, we’d described things in more layman terms.

As previously announced, the page experience update will consider several page experience signals, including the three Core Web Vitals metrics: LCP, FID, and CLS (as well as Chrome’s recent fix to CLS). In addition, the Top Stories carousel feature on Google Search will be updated to include all news content, as long as it meets the Google News policies. This means that using the AMP format is no longer required and that any page, irrespective of its Core Web Vitals score or page experience status, will be eligible to appear in the Top Stories carousel.

We’re also bringing similar updates to the Google News app, a key destination for users around the world to get a comprehensive view of the important news of the day. As part of the page experience update, we’re expanding the usage of non-AMP content to power the core experience on news.google.com and in the Google News app.

Additionally, we will no longer show the AMP badge icon to indicate AMP content. You can expect this change to come to our products as the page experience update begins to roll out in mid-June. We’ll continue to test other ways to help identify content with a great page experience, and we’ll keep you updated when there is more to share.

If you’re looking for more details, take a look at the Core Web Vitals & Page Experience FAQs that we published on the Search Central forums recently. If you’re an AMP publisher, the AMP team has built an AMP page experience guide that offers tailored advice on how to make your AMP pages perform at their best.

The 2 Things You Need To “Worry” About During this Page Experience Update as a Public Adjuster

First, you need to worry about Core Web Vitals.The answer is your Google Search Console. Most public adjusters already have this set up.

What are Core Web Vitals?

At the most basic level, the Core Web Vitals are metrics that Google is looking at that impact a user’s experience.

For example, if a website takes 15 seconds to load? That’s a terrible user experience. And Google is going to take that into consideration when choosing which websites to rank (or not rank).

Here’s a visual:

There are three aspects…

  1. LCP
  2. FID
  3. CLS

Yep, you’re right. Those are just random letters. Here’s what they mean.

  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): measures loading performance. To provide a good user experience, LCP should occur within 2.5 seconds of when the page first starts loading.
  • First Input Delay (FID): measures interactivity. To provide a good user experience, pages should have a FID of 100 milliseconds or less.
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): measures visual stability. To provide a good user experience, pages should maintain a CLS of 0.1. or less.

I know what you’re going to ask. How do I know if my Core Web Vitals are in line with what Google wants?

The answer is your Google Search Console. Most public adjusters already have this set up.

If you’re unsure, go to this link: https://search.google.com/search-console/about

Then, click on “Start Now.”

From there, if you have an account, you’ll get to a screen that looks like this.

Look at the left side and you’ll see “Core Web Vitals” – Google has already packaged it up for you!

Within the “Core Web Vitals” section, you’ll see something like this.

Kinda confusing, right? 

The MAIN thing to look for here is that you have 0 “poor URLs.” As you can see from the screenshot above, this particular business has 0 “poor URLs” – they have some URLs that “need improvement,” but none that are “poor.”

Great sign!

Next, you can go to the left side of the screen and click on “Page Experience.” Here’s where it’s at.

Once inside “Page Experience,” you’ll see something like this.

Again, kinda confusing huh?

So what should you look for?

For a novice, ignore the top part about “Good URLs.” Why? Well, data integrity is still a challenge for Google. The data lags. Here’s what Google says:

The source data for the Page Experience report is based on the evaluation of data from several other sources and reports: Core Web Vitals report, Mobile Usability report, and so on. These child evaluations occur on different time schedules, so the live, current state of any given URL might be different than that shown on the report. Because of this, you should look at trends in your data (getting better or not?) and the general evaluation (most of your pages are good or not) rather than using this report as an exact, real-time evaluation of a specific URL.

Basically, you need to understand data trends to know what’s actually going on. The average public adjuster doesn’t know this. And trying to figure it out is just going to give you a headache.

What you should look for then, is to see if anything is “failing.”

Let’s look at this particular website’s data again…

Everything looks green (which = good) besides the Core Web Vitals. We see that there are 139 “Failing URLs” for the Core Web Vitals. Not good!

That needs to be fixed.

Actually Fixing the Issues You Find Within Google Search Console

Priority #1 = understanding IF there are problems.

Priority #2 = fixing the problems that exist.

The challenge with explaining how you should fix the problems?

  1. There are DOZENS of things that can be causing your particular problem. For example, if your site loads slowly, it could be due to “code bloat,” large image files, WordPress plugin issues, and more.
  2. You really need to be a technical specialist to go into the back-end of your website to fix these things. The average public adjuster is not a developer. So, if we WERE to go into the details of how to fix the problems, it would feel like we were speaking a different language.

This Update Isn’t Going Away

Google is only going to continue to refine this. And, if you ignore it now, your site is going to see decreased performance later.