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April 2024 SEO Industry Updates

  • Industry News
  • By multiple authors
  • 6 minutes read

Conductor provides updates on changes in the world of search. Our recap includes details on the conclusion of the March 2024 core update, new result types from Google, and more!

Google’s completes the March 2024 core update

By Ryan Maloney

The what:

Google’s first core update of 2024 is now completely rolled out . Running from March 5th until April 19th, The update took 45 days. This made it one of Google’s longest-documented core updates. With multiple changes to its core systems and a spam update rolled out concurrently, this was also one of the more complex core updates we’ve seen from Google. Interestingly enough, Google did not announce the update was over until April 26th, 7 days after the documented completion date.

The why:

With plenty of industry chatter around a decline in the quality of organic results on the SERP, Google has taken action. They updated their March announcement about tackling spammy, low-quality content on search , to call out that users will, “now see 45% less low-quality, unoriginal content in search results”. Google originally estimated they would reduce low-quality, unoriginal content in search results by 40%. This significant update from Google has resulted in major ramifications for websites across various industries. HouseFresh, a product review site, has sounded the alarm about the update’s impact on independent publishers. They recently shared the latest update resulted in a 91% loss of search traffic for their site. In response to a separate claim of traffic loss from an independent publisher, Google Search Liason, Danny Sullivan, provided assurance that they would continue to “take the external feedback, channel that back to various teams and provided advocacy and recommendations in ways that I think would help all around.”

For everyone:

Google does not provide specific advice on steps to take if this update negatively impacts your site performance. However, you can find advice from the Conductor Academy in our guide for responding to and preparing for Google algorithm updates.

For Conductor customers:

Consider creating a workspace that provides a comprehensive overview of your website's organic performance for at least two weeks before and after the update. In addition to monitoring your website's organic performance, consider including an overview of your tracked keyword performance during the same period. Adding widgets from the Keyword Groups & Page Groups sections can help you identify any trends in how your performance changed during the update. For a more comprehensive understanding of your site’s organic keyword rankings, you can review your domain's performance in Explorer to see how your website faired for tracked and untracked keyword searches.

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By Rachel Schardt

The what:

Google announced new carousels displaying lists in carousel format for Local Businesses, Products, and Events. Google uses structured data to understand the type of content on a page and then can display that content in search results in a rich results format. Google has provided documentation on this new result type that you can reference to understand how to optimize your page for the chance to be eligible for this rich result. It’s recommended that you add ItemList structured data paired with at least one of the supported structured data items listed below:

  • LocalBusiness
  • Product
  • Event

This Rich Result Type is currently in beta, meaning you may see changes in the requirements or guidelines necessary to appear for this result type.

The why:

This improves searchers' ability to find the information they need about your business without leaving Google. This could lead to higher conversions from the traffic you do receive. this new structured data presents a valuable opportunity for websites to elevate their content that lists events, restaurants, and more to appear within the result type in search results.

For everyone:

You can provide search engines with a better understanding of your website’s content by defining the content type through Schema.org. Consider updating your schema markup on summary or category pages to include the "ItemList" markup. If you want to make your site eligible for this result type, we recommend reviewing Google’s documentation. You can find details on adding structured data and their guidelines for eligibility for carousel rich results in their search central blog.

For Conductor customers:

Conductor Website Monitoring can help to flag any issues with your schema markup. You can create segmentation and alerts around schema markup on your site to ensure your team stays on top of any potential issues with the implementation and functionality of schema markup on your site. Platform users can investigate and review common schema.org types used by the top-ranking SERP competitors through Content Guidance .

Congress passes a bill to force the sale or ban of TikTok

By Alex Carchietta

The what:

The United States Senate passed a bill in April that will force a sale of TikTok by its parent company or risk getting banned outright . The bill was signed into law by President Joe Biden. TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, was given 9 months to sell the company. With TikTok becoming one of the largest social media platforms over the past few years, many businesses and their social media strategies would be impacted if the app was banned.

The why:

TikTok has directly impacted the organic search landscape in the past few years. SEO teams have learned the platform presents a unique channel to engage with users, especially younger generations. Researching keywords and creating high-quality content are just two areas in which the world of TikTok and SEO overlap. An outright ban on TikTok in the United States would force many SEO & social media teams to reevaluate their efforts on social media and could result in teams reinvesting resources back into other social media channels or more traditional organic search channels like Google.

For everyone:

Until a resolution is reached with the US government and ByteDance, the future of TikTok for business purposes may remain fairly cloudy. In the meantime, TikTok still represents an opportunity to reach younger users and potential customers. Search Engine Land has published a helpful guide for optimizing your brand’s presence on TikTok .

For Conductor customers:

Social media channels like TikTok can give your brand insights into how people interact and engage with your content. You can research this information in Conductor within your topic explorer section . You can find social data like mentions and engagements within Topic Explorer to understand what your customers are searching for and how they’re engaging with different topics.

Stay Tuned

Check out other articles across the Conductor blog & academy for additional insights and news from the world of website optimization! Consider tuning into one of our upcoming events to learn more about our platform from one of our in-house experts or join us at C3 in NYC to learn more about SEO, content, and technical website strategies to overcome uncertainty and deliver reliable success in 2024.

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