Every year, Google secretly releases a truckload of algorithm updates. Those in the SEO industry, especially Shopify marketing specialists, will only notice a fist full of them if they’re lucky (or unlucky). Or if the update is big enough to be picked up by our SEO tools.
However, Google is sometimes benevolent enough to let us know about their plans and how they will affect the SEO or the eCommerce world in 2022 and beyond.
Last year, Google released five updates that have the potential of changing the way online businesses promote their products or optimize their websites for increased traffic and conversions.
Let’s take a look at them:
Link Spam Update
It is Google’s latest effort to fight spam online. This update is a way for Google to enforce its Webmaster Guidelines in terms of link building. For years, the Big Tech Giant has been warning users that any effort to manipulate rankings via link acquisition would carry a penalty. Not that it has made any difference as we know that the practice is very common among marketers and SEO professionals.
Google´s manual review process meant that rules were applied unevenly across the spectrum. They heavily penalized some websites that were using spam links, while others remained unscathed. These occurrences enraged many marketers and even fueled a war of attrition between the search engine and spammers. Many would hopelessly see how competitors often got away with not-so-white-hat link-building strategies, while they had to go through a tortuous link disavow process to clean their names.
Well, apparently, this Link Spam Update will reassess link structures built around websites to ensure they are following best practices both for inbound and outgoing links automatically. So far, it has worked as promised, potentially rendering the disavow tool kind of redundant.
Summer Broad Core Update
This update was slowly rolled out between June and July, and there were some noticeable changes. Many reported an increase in People Also Ask results when performing informative queries, which is positive since it means Google is prioritizing informative content over commercial intent.
However, eCommerce websites that benefited from informational queries experienced heavy fluctuations, some positive, others not so much. Google was quick to note that the sites hit by the update could experience a quick recovery if they focused on, drumroll, crafting quality content.
Product Reviews Update
Google has always emphasized the importance of product descriptions and reviews as they help other users get a better idea of what a product does or if it´s the best option for their particular problem. User-created content is extremely valuable for Shopify marketing purposes, especially when it offers detailed descriptions and experiences with the product and service.
This update will boost reviewers who leave an in-depth description of the product that others can benefit from. They will see that their content takes more prominence, potentially providing an extra incentive to leave more reviews.
This will definitely help companies who depend on user-generated content, as it will be more important than ever to entice customers to leave high-quality reviews as part of their SEO campaigns.
After its announcement and showcase, it was clear that Google was steering marketing into a brand new direction. Their Multitask Unified Model is an AI-based engine that actually understands text and images in their contextual form. Google plans to train it to recognize voice and video as well, making it thousand times more powerful than its predecessor BERT. MUM is expected to radically change the behavior of search results to a point where meta descriptions will be rendered redundant as Google will autonomously select text from a website if it finds it useful for users.
But MUM goes even further than just understanding conversational queries. It can also generate language and content for its meta titles and meta descriptions. Users will no longer need to enter a page to find out if it really contains the information they are looking for. Google will understand the purpose of the query and generate answers right on the results page.
This would remove agency away from website owners as, in theory, they will no longer be in control of what Google displays on search results. It’s like if newspapers decided what the ads for your products should contain. However, this will force clever Shopify marketing specialists to fine-tune their content to make sure Google understands what part of your content is relevant for those performing queries.
Page Experience Report
This update was revealed one year ago and finished last November. It is a very powerful tool in Google Search Console that will score websites on a series of factors that impact Page Experience. In other words, Shopify marketing specialists will be able to better ascertain if their websites offer a positive user experience based on different metrics like core web vitals, mobile usability, security issues, HTTPS usage, ad experience, and other factors. Many hope that these metrics will help them create more robust Shopify stores and increase their conversion rates without any of the guesswork we are now used to.
How To Market Your Shopify Store In 2022?
2022 promises to bring many changes with it, especially for those working in the digital marketing industry. Some people might hate Google’s policy of steamrolling everything and everyone in its path. However, companies like Genius eCommerce welcome these changes as they constantly test the ability and adaptive capabilities of our SEO specialists.
If you feel you need more flexibility to adapt to these changes, or are working with a company with outdated protocols that hurt your ability to catch up with the new ways of online marketing, you need to talk to Genius eCommerce today.