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Now that the Google December 2020 core update is officially done rolling out, I am confident to say that it looks like this site, the Search Engine Roundtable, has recovered after being hit by the May 2020 Google core update. I am seeing upticks in Google organic traffic on days when I do not post stories by over 130 to 150% in organic Google traffic.
Yes, this site was hit hard by the May 2020 core update. I honestly was curious and decided to do nothing, just keep the same day-to-day going, make zero technical or site changes, just keep writing like I do. And the site recovered.
It is hard to measure comparisons on small news sites like this. We get spikes all the time because of news stories. But when you look at the weekends and when I do not post any stories, that normally is a good indicator of organic Google traffic changes. I am seeing 130 to 150% increases in Google organic traffic on the weekends. I am also seeing significant, 50%+ increases and often 120% increases, during the weekdays.
Here are some of my Google Analytics charts, keep in mind, I had numerous articles spiking on December 1st and 2nd and then throughout the month. So the charts can be somewhat misleading for news sites. Which is why I waited a couple of weeks to watch the overall pattern with this update.
Comparison comparing the Google organic traffic past two weeks to the previous two weeks (yes, I know, Thanksgiving):
Just overall Google organic traffic over the past several weeks:
Here is the Google Search Console performance report:
Here are some visibility reports I asked Glenn Gabe to share with me:
So this was not the first time this site got hit by a Google update. Google’s Panda 4.1 hit us back in 2014. This site got hit for selling links back in the day. And the site did recover each time. So here is another battle scar that I seemed to recover from.
What now? I wait for the next Google update to hit this site. But in all seriousness, I think now is the time to revamp this site, redesign it, fix all the technical issues. It is super old and maybe I should consult with an SEO to clean it up and make improvements. Why now and not after the May 2020 core update that hit me? Well, I was curious what would happen if I did nothing. Now that it is over, let’s move onwards.
Forum discussion at Twitter.