This May, Google released their latest core update to their SEO algorithm. According to Ben Sellers, Co-Founder and CEO of Starberry, the updates could potentially have an impact on estate agency websites, so it is important that agents are aware of the changes and what they may need to do to ensure their websites are optimised.
He adds that every so often Google releases an official update to their search systems and algorithms, which are what they call ‘core updates’. “These updates bring about significant changes to website SEO rankings, as Google’s primary focus is always to deliver the relevant and authoritative content to users. The latest core update was released on 25 May this year; however, its ripple effects would not have been felt until the first week or two in June. Furthermore, this update is on a global scale, impacting all categories of content,” adds Sellers.
According to Sellers some estate agents may have experienced a drop in rankings as a result of the update. “To be clear, the estate agents that have seen their rankings drop were not subject to direct targeting, nor have any guidelines been violated. The shift is due to the way in which Google now assesses content and brings new websites to the forefront, such as those that may have previously been under-rewarded,” he says. “Similar to Google’s ‘Panda’ update back in 2011, the goal is to push high quality sites by reducing the visibility of low-quality content sites. The game hasn’t changed and websites that consistently assess their web-content will experience optimal results.”
Sellers says that there are a few SEO-friendly questions agents should be asking themselves when assessing whether their website achieve optimal results in the search rankings:
Is your content categorised, and does it provide original information, research, or analysis?
How in-depth and complete is the content you offer on any given topic?
Is the content free from easily verified factual errors?
How is your content displayed across other screen devices?
“It is self-evaluation and questions like these that will keep your estate agency consistently ahead of these system changes, allowing you to adapt and maintain a strong SEO positioning for increased organic traffic,” advises Sellers.
He notes that after this latest update ‘Semrush Sensor’ indicated a 9.1 out of 10 for the real estate industry, which reveals that there is a high level of Search Engine Results Page (SERP) volatility. Consequently, this has led to the SEO rankings of many estate agencies to fluctuate as some lose and some gain position.
“To ensure that our Starberry clients remain within the best possible position when it comes to page rankings, we continuously assess the content delivered across our client’s websites, so they aren’t negatively affected and if anything continue to improve their search engine optimisation and rankings. It is vital to remain ahead of the curve by adapting web development and content creation to ensure that websites fall in line with the latest criteria and continue to perform at an optimal level. Agents who would like assistance in assessing their website should contact us to see how we could possibly help them to increase their Google rankings and generate more leads from their website,” Sellers concludes.