Google consistently updates its algorithm to ensure that Google users get the best experience. Ideally, a user gets the answer they are searching for in the first few results. This is why inbound marketers utilize various SEO techniques to ensure that their content is visible to their target users. The Google algorithm update 2022 is just the latest example of this.
However, this means that Google algorithm changes can present challenges for marketers. While some updates are relatively minor, and often go unnoticed, Google does occasionally make wide-scale changes that drastically impact content performance for marketers.
Marketers, and those who use content marketing specifically, need to be adaptable, and always on top of Google’s latest updates.
Recently, Google announced the roll-out of its “helpful content” update. What’s the likely impact? And what does it mean for your marketing?
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Google Now Focus on High Quality Content
As mentioned, Google’s latest algorithm update is being referred to as the “helpful content” update. While it was announced earlier on in 2022, marketers are now beginning to see the impact of the roll-out.
On a fundamental level, this update is about favoring good quality content that is helpful and valuable, over that which is well-optimized. Put simply, Google wants high-quality content not highly optimized content.
Google’s crawling technology has been upgraded with a new feature that allows it to identify unhelpful or low-value content on a website, and rank accordingly. Not only will this impact each specific piece of content, but potentially the website overall. In the past, given the well-known specific SEO rules, many content creators have tended to focus on optimizing content before actually offering solutions. This won’t work anymore.
The latest update aims to help with that. As a search engine, Google has to put the user first. More recent features like “featured snippets” and “Google Shopping” demonstrate just how important the user experience is to Google’s search engine. The priority is to offer answers as quickly and accurately as possible.
All algorithm updates are made in an attempt to ensure users can find the information that they need. Regarding the Google Algorithm Update 2022, Google offers two key pieces of advice:
- “Focus on people-first content”
- “Avoid creating content just for search engines”
While all content marketers should be focusing on their buyers and generating good-quality content, it has been easy to fall into the over-optimization trap. In the world of alt text, H2’s, and meta descriptions, human-first content has fallen by the wayside in the past. The “helpful content” update is Google’s latest attempt at encouraging content writers to make real connections and add value.
Google Update: Mobile First
For a long time, Google has talked about ‘mobile first’ – but the summer 2022 update codifies this. Even if you don’t care about mobile, and none of your users visit your site on mobile, you need to have a mobile-friendly site.
Google will crawl your site on mobile, and if it loads too slowly or isn’t mobile-friendly, you won’t rank. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need a new website, but you might need to make some changes to your current site to be able to rank.
If you’d like to find out if your site is mobile-friendly and technically able to rank, we’re offering free technical SEO audits to help companies out. You can request an audit here.
The Importance of SEO and Inbound
So, why does the Google Algorithm Update 2022 matter? Assuming that you have a website, and post content on that website, then this update will impact your marketing.
SEO and inbound marketing strategies have been the bread and butter of digital marketing since around 2005. Providing good quality content allows you to generate relationships with leads, before they even interact directly with your sales team.
The primary goal of inbound marketing is to position your brand or solution as the thought leader in your industry. Prove that you are a valuable resource, and can help them solve their problems. Content marketing is also a key component of successful inbound marketing.
SEO is critical to inbound marketing. Without effective optimization and search engine ranking, your buyers cannot find your content – no matter how valuable. That’s why monitoring Google algorithm updates is critical to inbound and SEO marketers for maximum performance.
For inbound marketers that have over-optimized in the past, the latest update is likely to impact rankings. In the coming months, repurposing and re-evaluating content isn’t going to be the key to avoiding reduced engagement.
Adapt Your Marketing
The truth is, that the best marketing requires a combination of strategies. Inbound marketing takes time to perform. Not only that, but Google can make algorithm changes that impact your performance at any time, so you cannot rely solely on search engine ranking.
In the wake of the Google Algorithm Update 2022, marketers need to re-evaluate their content, and evolve their marketing strategies to incorporate new approaches.
Content Requires A New Approach
While the latest update will undoubtedly have an impact on many marketers, we aren’t suggesting that content marketing serves no purpose. In fact, content and inbound still remain key cornerstones of any marketer’s strategy and campaigns. However, you will need to adapt in order to remain high in the SERPs.
Your content needs to be human-first more than ever before. For this, you need a clear buyer persona. This is a specific person that you’re targeting with your content, their demographics, psychographics, what their problems are, and how you solve them. With this information, you can write content that truly speaks to them.
Talk to your buyer about the problems they face in the industry, and how you solve them, rather than about your company. This will be the key to ranking in SERPs, and producing content that is truly valuable.
Integrate Affiliate Marketing
It’s still important to remember, however, that inbound marketing is just one element of a fully-fledged marketing strategy. Successful marketers are consistently adapting, and finding new ways to reach their audience.
Affiliate marketing has changed the DTC marketing landscape in recent years. Buyers trust content creators, rather than brands, to recommend the best products for them.
While affiliate marketing is yet to impact B2B marketing in the same way, the strategy has the potential to help marketers reach their audience quickly for quick wins.
By choosing the right affiliates, they can provide you with access to a ready-made audience of your buyers. This can be a great way to test marketing messages, or generate leads quickly. Consider implementing an affiliate marketing program into your marketing strategy, especially as paid ads results continue to dwindle.
Outbound is the Key
In our recent report, we found that outbound marketing has proved the most successful strategy for B2B marketers in 2022.
In such a tough economical climate, and with such strict budget limitations for many companies, outbound marketing has been the best method to reach buyers that aren’t specifically looking for a solution. Few decision-makers are actually looking to make changes or onboard new software in such an uncertain environment. Therefore, inbound hasn’t been able to function as effectively as usual.
Present your understanding of your buyer’s problems, and your solution, using outreach campaigns. This might include email marketing, social media outreach, or direct messaging. It’s also important to continue to add value, and include good quality content where relevant. Build a relationship, before pushing for a sale.
At Nituno, we work with B2B tech companies to build a holistic marketing strategy. Our team of content writers produces quality content for inbound, outbound, and affiliate marketing. Whether you’re curious about the potential of affiliate marketing, or would like to know more about building a full marketing strategy, get in touch today.