Earlier this week (Wednesday, June 2), Google rolled out one of the many core updates it implements each year.
What's included in this core update? Google didn't say. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Instead, they pointed to a new blog post that says (essentially), "We do these all the time, and when it's worth noting what's included, we will. Calm down."
In a rare move, they also noted that some of the elements meant to go into this core update were not ready; as a result, there will be a secondary core update some time in July. Again, no specifics about what those elements are were provided.
Core updates refer to "substantial improvements to ... overall ranking processes," making them quite different than updates targeting specific Google products. For example, in May, the Google team improved product review search results, and that's not considered a core update.
In short, a core update is a push of changes in Google's core search engine algorithm that are designed to improve the delivery of relevant search results. Although the team at Google often tries to calm the masses by saying these updates won't create massive ripple effects for website owners, they do note:
"...typically these are more often noticed by people actively running websites or performing search engine optimization (SEO) than ordinary users."
Spoiler alert: Us digital marketers and business website owners practicing content marketing tend to fall into the former category of those who notice.
We also tend to panic...
What you need to know about the Google June 2021 core update
To be honest, we don't know much about what was included in this update. Google says they aren't trying to be mysterious, but rather they only give details on core updates (or any updates, for that matter) when there is something specific a site owner needs to do.
In this case, they consider this update to be run-of-the-mill, with no major news to report. In fact, in tandem with this core update announcement, they published a blog that is clearly designed to calm the nerves of the quaking digital marketing masses with tidbits like:
"Core updates are designed to increase the overall relevancy of our search results. In terms of traffic we send, it’s largely a net exchange. Some content might do less well, but other content gains. In the long term, improving our systems in this way is how we’ve continued to improve Search and send more traffic to sites across the web every year."
The only thing reported thus far is that this update "has no teeth," although it should be noted that this update will take one to two weeks to roll out in full.
I'm simply pointing out that over this month and next, Google is implementing core updates (both standard and page experience-related) that have the potential (for some) to push rankings up and down.
To come out on top search rankings-wise in the long run, that means you need to buckle down in two key areas:
How's your page experience doing, kiddos? Is your site speed lacking? Do you have annoying pop-ups on mobile that destroy the user experience and would make Google angry? Is your site responsive across different devices? Is your content visually stable with stable action responses?