On September 9th, 2022, there were new Google Algorithm changes that were rolled out it stated that — it had finished rolling out its Helpful Content update. This first update was primarily done on websites that target English speakers in their strategy. But, Google has made it clear that they will roll this out in other languages over the next several months. So, focus and stay put!
“Google Search’s helpful content update generates a signal used by our automated ranking systems to better ensure people see original, helpful content written by people, for people, in search results…. Any content—not just unhelpful content — on sites determined to have relatively high amounts of unhelpful content overall is less likely to perform well in Search.
Whilst, assuming there is other content elsewhere from the web that’s better to display. For this reason, removing unhelpful content could help the rankings of your other content”— that’s a statement from a credible Google insider. We, therefore, estimate that if you complete all your objectives your business website could contribute up to $200K more per year!
And now, as you all know, many computer geeks use the term ‘Algorithms’ all the time. But, only a handful of webmasters and users do fully understand what they really mean. How they work or even how they are applied in the real world. Well, on that note, that’s why in this guide, we’ll try and elaborate on their meaning. Perse, in effect to Google algorithm changes.
The Main Algorithms Definitive Role (For Beginner Webmasters)
To enumerate, in computer science, programming, and math, Algorithms are a sequence of instructions where the main goal is to solve a specific problem or perform a certain action, or computation. In some way, an algorithm is a very clear specification for analyzing/processing data, and for doing advanced calculations, among many other computing technology tasks.
In simple terms, an algorithm refers to the sequential steps and processes that should be followed to solve a problem. There can be various kinds of algorithms devised to solve different problems. Although in programming we, specifically, consider them as important toolkits for solving common problems. Below is an overview of the most common types of Algorithms to begin with.
1. Brute Force Algorithm
The simplest possible algorithm that can be devised to solve a problem is called the brute force algorithm. To devise an optimal solution first we need to get a solution at least and then try to optimize it. Every problem can be solved by brute force approach although generally not with appreciable space and time complexity.
2. Greedy Algorithm
In this algorithm, a decision is made that is good at that point without considering the future. This means, that some local best is chosen and it’s considered as the global optimal. There are two properties in this algorithm.
- Greedily choosing the best option
- Optimal substructure property: If an optimal solution can be found by retrieving the optimal solution to its subproblems.
A greedy Algorithm does not always work but when it does, it works like a charm! This algorithm is easy to devise and most of the time the simplest one. But making locally best decisions does not always work as it sounds. So, it is replaced by a reliable solution called the Dynamic Programming approach. So far, a greedy algorithm has numerous methods of application.
Including but not limited to Sorting (Selection Sort, Topological Sort) Algorithms, Prim’s & Kruskal’s Algorithms, Coin Change Problem Algorithms, Fractional Knapsack Problem Algorithms, Job Scheduling Algorithms, and much more…
3. Recursive Algorithm
Among them all, this is one of the simplest to devise algorithms as it does not require specifically thinking about every subproblem. Meaning, that we just need to think about the existing cases and the solution of the simplest subproblem, and all other complexity will be handled by it automatically. In reality, Recursion is a very powerful tool that applies in many ways.
Although we should always take care of memory management here. Obviously, this is because recursion works using a recursive stack — which is called every time the recursion function is invoked. Recursion simply means calling itself to solve subproblems.
4. Backtracking Algorithm
Moving on, we also have got the backtracking algorithm on our bucket list. Technically, it is an improvement to the brute force approach. Here we start with one possible option out of many available and try to solve the problem.
And, if we are able to solve the problem with the selected move then we will print the solution — else we will backtrack. And then, as a result, we’ll be forced to select some other move and try to solve it. In comparison, we can say that it is a form of recursion. Only that it’s just when a given option cannot give a solution, we backtrack to the previous option.
Done manually, this can be quite tedious — using recursion can give us a solution, and proceed with other options. Before we forget, there are a few applications where a backtracking algorithm is used. Such as in terms of Generating all Binary strings, solving the N-Queens problems, working on the Knapsack problems, or even Graph coloring problems, and more…
5. Divide & Conquer Algorithm
Next on the list is the divide-and-conquer algorithm — one of the topmost used algorithms in programming. Suffice it to say, that this algorithm divides the problems into subproblems. And then, thereafter, it solves each of them and then combines them to form the solution to the given problems. But then again, it is not possible to solve all problems using it as you think.
And just as the name suggests it has two parts: Divide the problem into subproblems and solve them. Combine the solution of each given problem. For this reason, this algorithm is extensively used in various problems — it is quite stable and optimal for most of the problems asked (like Binary Search, Merge Sort & Quick Sort, Median Finding, and Matrix Multiplication).
6. Randomized Algorithm
Forthwith, a randomized algorithm is an algorithm type that makes its decision on the basis of random numbers i.e. it uses random numbers in its logic. The best example of this is choosing the pivot element in quicksort. This randomness is to reduce time complexity or space complexity although not used regularly. Probability plays the most significant role in this algorithm.
In terms of quicksort, if we fail to choose the correct element we might end up with a running time of O(n^2 ) in the worst case. Although if chosen with proper interpretation it can give the best running time of O(nlogn). Some of its key applications include Randomized Quick Sort, Kager’s Algorithm, etc.
7. Dynamic Algorithm
Last but not least, we have got the dynamic algorithm. And, as for this one, it’s the most sought-after algorithm as it provides the most efficient way of solving a problem. It simply means remembering the past and applying it to future corresponding results and hence this algorithm is quite efficient in terms of time complexity.
Dynamic programming has two properties:
- Optimal Substructure: An optimal solution to a problem contains an optimal solution to its subproblems.
- Overlapping subproblems: A recursive solution contains a small number of distinct subproblems.
The dynamic algorithm has two versions:
- Bottom-Up Approach: Starts solving from the bottom of the problems i.e. solving the last possible subproblems first and using the result of those solving the above subproblems.
- Top-Down Approach: Starts solving the problems from the very beginning to arrive at the required subproblem and solve it using previously solved subproblems.
Some of its main applications include Longest Common Subsequence, Longest Increasing Subsequence, Longest Common substring, etc. As well as the Bellman-Ford algorithm, Chain Matrix multiplication, Subset Sum, Knapsack Problem & many more. And now that you have an idea of what an algorithm entails, let’s learn more from the Google algorithms.
What The New Google Algorithm Changes Really Entails (Summary)
Google Algorithm Changes are not quite new to many professional webmasters. They are a complex system used to retrieve data from its search index and instantly deliver the best possible results for a query. The search engine market uses a combination of algorithms and numerous ranking factors to deliver webpages ranked on its Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) by relevance.
In its early years, Google only made a handful of updates to its algorithms. Now, Google makes thousands of changes every year. Most of these updates are so slight that they go completely unnoticed. However, on occasion, the search engines roll out major algorithmic updates that significantly impact the SERPs at large. Such Google updates are as follows:
With that in mind, in the next section below we’ll offer you a resource link to see Google algorithm changes and critical launches, updates, and refreshes that have rolled out over the years. As well as links to resources for SEO professionals who want to understand each of these changes. So, tighten your safety belts so that you can read and learn more in detail.
Firstly, as an example, let’s consider the very first Google algorithm changes that rolled out back on August 19, 2017 — it was themed Quality Update for that matter. Eventually, most professional webmasters and SEO experts, together with a variety of ranking tools detected some minor volatility on August 19-20, with signs indicating something more than normal.
That this may have been another (unconfirmed) Google quality update. Secondly, among the ranking casualties: are category pages, pages with aggressive advertising, lower-quality/thin content, and other negative user experience elements, according to an analysis by Glenn Gabe, president of GSQi. For your information, below are the resource links to gather more details.
- Google Algorithm & Ranking Update Chatter (Search Engine Roundtable) ⇾
- August 19, 2017, Google Algorithm Update – Analysis and Findings From A Summer-Ending Quality Update (GSQi) ⇾
At some point, there was even some speculation that Google began testing this algorithm much earlier than expected. Specifically, back on August 14, 2017 — because pages that were impacted (either positively or negatively) on this date were further impacted on August 19, 2017. That said, there are other Google algorithm changes to note (follow the links below).
- A Full Google Algorithm Updates List (By Search Engine Land)
- The Full History Of Google Algorithm Updates By Date (By SearchEngineJournal)
There you have it! A link to some of the topmost Google algorithm changes, critical launches, updates, and refreshes that have rolled out over the years. So, which one of them did you think affected you/your website the most? Mind sharing with us and other readers just like yourself in our comments section. We’ll be more than glad and forever grateful to you for that!
OH! A nice way to explain an algorithm is to say that whoever creates that specific algorithm is setting the rules of the game. Actually, algorithms are the things that will define how things work and react to our actions (especially in computer science). Therefore, the person or machine who is designing them is building all the potential reactions that are going to happen.
More so, when we do 1, 2, or 3. For example, let’s take Facebook into consideration so that you get a clear picture. In this case, Facebook decides to show you one thing or another, based on the platform’s algorithms. And this is also based on their relationship with your specific activities. Meaning, that algorithms are in constant relation with other values.
The Main Best Algorithmic Practices For Basic Data Manipulation
In reality, the journey of data manipulation is a step-by-step solution. Not forgetting, each step has clear instructions just like a recipe. A good example is when we use algorithms for adding two-digit numbers. As such, it can be called for using a variety of simple step-by-step methods. First, you’ll need to (1) add the tens, and then (2) add the ones.
Thereafter, (3) add the numbers from steps (1) and (2) respectively. So, in this case, to add 15 and 32 using that algorithm, we can simply state the resultant values as follows. Whereby, you’ll either (1) add 10 and 30 to get 40, and then (2) add 5 and 2 to get 7 for a total value of 47. Or rather, (3) add 40 and 7 to get a total value of 47.
Not only that but the long division method is another example of an algorithm (more on that later). And when you follow these steps you’ll get the answers. That aside, to keep up with the speed of the new Google algorithm changes, there are just a few — but very critical practices — you’ll need to include in your next strategic website design and SEO auditing plan.
Below are a few things to work on:
- Mobile Speed
- Domain Authority (DA)
- HTML Sitemap
- Focus Keywords
- Backlinks Inventory
- SSL Certificate
- Email Deliverability (SPF and DMARC)
Apart from the above few mentions, it’s also good to focus your efforts — to win and overcome the new Google algorithm changes by far —elsewhere. Like making sure that you follow our guide on 13 Simple Steps To Improve Your WordPress Website Performance which has more details. From design layout, outlook development, great User Experience (UX) design tips, etc.
In general, the guideline article (as listed above) provides a broad overview of optimization ways to improve WordPress website performance with specific recommended approaches. However, it’s not a detailed technical explanation of each aspect, but it’s a very great start for all those webmasters who are looking forward to improving their website performance.
The key objectives to achieve for any new Google algorithm changes:
- If your website is slower than average, make sure that you find a way to speed it up
- Always remember if your Moz Domain Authority is lower than 20, it’s a key factor in organic rankings
- Make sure your backlinks are linking to the correct website pages (both internally and externally)
- You haven’t had enough overall traffic yet to reliably calculate your website’s weekly growth rate. Time to get some traffic!
- Understand and increase your Moz Domain Authority. That’s if it is currently way below 20 out of the possible 100.
- Get more organic traffic by focusing on your search terms that rank 4-15 and getting them to a top 3 search position.
- Post more on your social media platforms such as on Facebook — when your followers are the most active.
- Renew your SSL certificate to maintain a secure connection between your website and its visitors.
- If your website does not have a clickable phone number, try to add one, especially, on the contacts, footer, or homepage
- You should also try to optimize several of your internal website pages and posts for more potent keywords
As for the keyword(s) that you are almost ranking in the top 3 for, try to find a way to get to the number 1 position much faster. Chiefly, you may also have one or more bad backlinks linking to your website. Make sure that you scan it now (using tools such as diib as such). The next tool that you can rely on is the Core Web Vitals by PageSpeed Insights.
The PageSpeed Insights
By definition, PageSpeed Insights (PSI) is a toolkit by Google that reports on the user experience of a page on both mobile and desktop devices and provides suggestions on how that page may be improved. PSI provides both lab and field data about a page. Lab data is useful for debugging issues, as it is collected in a controlled environment.
However, it may not capture real-world bottlenecks. Field data is useful for capturing true, real-world user experience – but has a more limited set of metrics. See How To Think About Speed Tools for more information on the two types of data. PSI classifies the quality of user experiences into Core Web Vital’s three buckets: Good, Needs Improvement, or Poor.
PSI uses Lighthouse to analyze the given URL in a simulated environment for the Performance, Accessibility, Best Practices, and SEO categories. At the top of the section are the scores for each category. That’s determined by running Lighthouse to collect and analyze diagnostic information about the page. As well as key recommendation steps to fix some issues.
On one hand, a score of 90 or above is considered good. While, on the other hand, 50 to 89 is a score that needs improvement, and below 50 is considered poor. Each metric is scored and labeled with an icon: Good is indicated with a green circle, Needs Improvement is indicated with an amber informational square, and Poor is indicated by a red warning triangle.
Within each category are audits that provide information on how to improve the page’s user experience (more on that below). Having said that, if you are a webmaster, you can go ahead and check out the release notes for PageSpeed Insights API and PageSpeed Insights UI in detail which can help make your web pages fast on all devices. Or learn more below first.
The Core Web Vitals
So, moving on, it’s important to realize, that Core Web Vitals are now a part of Google’s search algorithm and can positively or negatively impact your keyword rankings. Low Core Vitals scores can also negatively impact your visitors’ overall experience on your website. Google has assigned different weights (i.e. importance) to each Core Vital metric.
Core Web Vitals are the next evolution in Google’s page experience and performance measurement. But, for the first time, they’ll be incorporating data from the actual user experience, as well as lab data, which makes this evolution pretty unique. In nutshell, the Core Web Vitals are a common set of performance signals critical to all web experiences.
The Core Web Vitals metrics are FID, LCP, and CLS, and they may be aggregated at either the page or origin level. For aggregations with sufficient data in all three metrics, the aggregation passes the Core Web Vitals assessment if the 75th percentiles of all three metrics are Good. Otherwise, the aggregation does not pass the assessment.
If the aggregation has insufficient data for FID, then it will pass the assessment if both the 75th percentiles of LCP and CLS are Good. If either LCP or CLS has insufficient data, the page or origin-level aggregation cannot be assessed. So, if you score very badly for any Core Web Vital it is always going to be a top priority to fix even if it isn’t the most important Core Vital.
Surprisingly, there are a few ways and methods that Google, generally, utilizes using its Core Web Vitals algorithm in order to weigh the importance of each main Core Web Vital element. Especially, in regard to any given website data and performance results. Below is a rundown of how these Core Web Vital features work plus their benefits and best usage.
Total Blocking Time (TBT):
It measures the total amount of time that a page is blocked from responding to user input, such as mouse clicks, screen taps, or keyboard presses.
If your TBT is 200 milliseconds or less, it means your website will be considered fast.
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP):
The LCP metric corresponds to the first impression users have of how fast your website loads. It reports the render time of the largest image or text block visible to a visitor, relative to when the page first started loading.
A fast LCP helps let the user know that the page is useful. To provide a good user experience, sites should strive to have the Largest Contentful Paint of 2.5 seconds or less.
Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS):
We’ve all experienced CLS and it can be annoying! Essentially, CLS measures how much things shift around on a website page while it is loading. For example, a visitor might start reading your “About Us” page, right?
And then all of a sudden, a big image loads and it moves the text down and they lose their place. Even worse, a visitor may be about to push a “More Info” button, but it gets pushed down, and instead, they end up clicking a “Buy Now” button.
A low CLS score is important if you want to provide your visitors with a good browsing experience. To provide a good user experience, sites should strive to have a CLS score of 0.1 or less.
First Contentful Paint (FCP):
Forthwith, FCP is a Core Web Vital feature that measures how long it takes a visitor’s browser to render the first image, text or non-white element on your page after they land on it.
This needs to be fast, as it lets a visitor know the page is starting to load. Until FCP, the visitor doesn’t see anything! FCP needs to occur in under 1.8 seconds in order for your website to be considered good!
Speed Index (SI):
By the same token, the Speed Index (SI) feature measures how quickly content is visually displayed to your website users during page load. Basically, a video is taken of your page loading in the browser and then your score is computed.
Especially, based on the speed of visual progression between frames. So, what is a good Speed Index score then? Well, if your Speed Index is 3.4 seconds or less your website is considered to be fast.
Time To Interact (TTI):
Particularly, the Time To Interact (TTI) feature, measures how long it takes a page to become fully interactive for a visitor.
A page is considered fully interactive when:
- The page responds to user interactions within 50 milliseconds
- Event handlers are registered for the most visible page elements
- The page displays useful content, which is measured by the First Contentful Paint
On that note, we’d suggest talking to your webmaster about any Core Web Vitals issues or you can request our Web Tech Experts Taskforce to provide you with a quote for some of our topmost best website design and development solutions and services support — that can greatly help you adapt to the new Google algorithm changes, and increase its performance.
A few more things that you should note
- First, all these Core Web Vital features are available through it’s platform known as the PageSpeed Insights toolkit — where you can measure your website performance results in real-time (for both mobile and desktop versions) — so as to make your web pages fast on all devices. What’s more, the results are all in form of percentage (%) data.
- Secondly, if you look good on Core Web Vitals, you don’t need to do anything else! That said, we’ll recommend that even if all looks good, you should continue to monitor these features for your website or that of your customers — utilize the right tools so as to get new update alerts if anything changes.
Realistically, v4 of the PI API was released in January 2018. It adds a speed score based on the Chrome User Experience Report and it refines the original PSI score as a new optimization score that mainly focuses on the relative headroom to improve.
We’d suggest talking to your webmaster about any Core Web Vitals issues or you can view the real-time solutions (PageSpeed Insights) to get started head-on — that’s if you’ve got all that webmaster technicality and experience. But, besides putting all your focus on your Core Web Vitals, there are a few more algorithmic aspects that you’ll need to learn.
What Does The Code With Google Offer?
According to Code with Google, every student deserves the chance to explore, advance, and succeed in computer science. More than 65% of young people will work in jobs that don’t currently exist. Learning computer science skills helps students thrive in a rapidly changing world. Yet, research by Gallup shows that many students aren’t getting the CS education they need.
And that teachers don’t have sufficient resources to provide it. In such cases, Code with Google greatly helps to ensure that every student has access to unlimited computing resources. From the collaborative, coding, and technical skills that unlock opportunities in the classroom and beyond – no matter what their future goals may be.
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In simple terms, what you can do with Code with Google is quite amazing as a student. For example, it helps educators give their students confidence in CS, advance their skills, and prepare them for the future. While keeping in mind, computer science opens up possibilities for every student. There’s CS that’s a free computer science curriculum that anyone can teach.
It’s designed for students ages 9-14 of all interests and experience levels, students learn collaboration and core computer science concepts as they create their own projects. Educators lead the way with easy-to-use lesson plans, tutorials, activities, and resources. The step-by-step videos allow all students to experience success, teachers don’t need to be proficient in coding.
How To Explore Code With Google Programs
And in as little as 5 minutes a day, students can easily complete fun lessons. As they visual puzzles on their phone to build their coding skills. According to Ismael, one of the many Grasshopper users, “Grasshopper showed me that no matter what, or who, or how I look, anyone can learn how to code. It opens up a whole new world for me.” You can learn more in detail.
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In addition to that, you or even your learner can nurture their passions in technology too. Whereby, there’s a three-week Computer Science Summer Intensive (CSSI) introduction to computer science (CS). Especially for graduating high school seniors seeking to inspire the innovators of tomorrow.
As well as those from historically underrepresented groups in the field. It’s an intensive, interactive, hands-on, and fun program to dig into. Not to mention, it supports the study of CS, software engineering, and other closely-related subjects. You can learn more about it and how to join.
According to the site WhatIs.com, algorithms such as those Google rolls out now and then are a procedure or formula for solving a problem — based on conducting a sequence of specified actions. And on that note, a computer program can be viewed as an elaborate algorithm. In mathematics and computer science, an algorithm usually means just a small procedure.
But, although it may seem small, it’s a procedure that solves a recurrent problem. That’s if we can analyze everything we just mentioned, and take into consideration how transcendental 21st-century skills are for our children. By so doing, we can conclude that understanding how algorithms work will greatly help our children strengthen their problem-solving abilities.
And that will drastically increase their opportunities to succeed in the workforce of tomorrow. So, with that being said, what are your general thoughts about algorithms? In particular, regarding how Google algorithm changes impact webmasters, web-based business owners, and their websites. Why are they so important? Kindly share your inputs with us down below.
Useful Resource References:
- Other Performance Best Practices
- Analyze With PageSpeed Insights For Free
- Speed Up With The PageSpeed Modules
- Speed Up Your Browsing With Google Public DNS
- Tools To Offload Popular Open-Source Libraries
- The Latest Protocols And Web Design Standards
Ultimately, the good news is that Google algorithm changes are something that you can quickly and easily adapt to — given that Google is constantly reviewing and updating the way its Search works. If your website was affected and if you take steps to address any existing content issues now there is a high likelihood of recovery (though it might take several months).