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Google September 2023 helpful content is now done rolling out

Google has confirmed that the September 2023 helpful content update is now finished rolling out. The update took 14 days to roll out, starting on September 14, 2023 and ending on September 28, 2022. Google has posted it completed today, September 28.

Google wrote, “The rollout was complete as of September 28, 2023.”

What we saw. We will do our deep dive on this update in the coming days, after we process the data given to us from the data providers.

Do keep in mind the data providers saw unprecedented low volatility over the past couple of weeks, especially for a Google update. This is while the SEO community has seen significant changes to their client and their own rankings since this update started to roll out.

Stay tuned for our story on the impact of this update.

What’s new. As we covered in our what’s new with the helpful content update story, we documented these changes to Google’s own help documentation.

  • An improved classifier
  • Google wants to go after hosted third-party content, but that is not in this current update
  • Content removed content “written by people” in their language
  • Google says to self-assess your content
  • Your content should be reviewed by experts
  • Don’t change dates of your content without the content being significantly updated
  • Don’t blindly add or remove content
  • and more…

More on the helpful content update. Google’s helpful content system specifically targets “content that seems to have been primarily created for ranking well in search engines rather than to help or inform people.”

This algorithm update aims to help searchers find “high-quality content,” Google told us. Google wants to reward better and more useful content that was written for humans and to help users.

Searchers get frustrated when they land on unhelpful webpages that rank well in search because they were written for the purpose of ranking in search engines. This is the type of content you might call “search engine-first content” or “SEO content.”

Google’s helpful content algorithm aims to downgrade those types of websites while promoting more helpful websites, designed for humans, above search engines.

Google said this is an “ongoing effort to reduce low-quality content and make it easier to find content that feels authentic and useful in search.”

What to do if you are hit. Google has provided a list of questions you can ask yourself about your content. Read through those questions as we posted over here, and in an unbiased manner, ask yourself if your content is in sync with this update.

Please note if this update has hit you, it can take several months to recover if you do everything right and make changes to your content over time.

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