Google is beefing up its anti-webspam efforts and plans to change its spam algorithm for the fourth time this year. After three spam updates in quick succession in the summer of 2021. The November 2021 Spam Update in the works until November 3 and estimated to take roughly a week to complete. It covers the sorts of spam Google is targeting. And discusses the most recent AI advancements in the fight against spam. And best practices Google recommends for links or sponsored articles.
As part of our regular work to improve results, we’ve released a spam update to our systems. This November 2021 spam update should be fully rolled out within a week. We encourage sites to follow our best practices for Search: https://t.co/jK3ArQmTqT— Google SearchLiaison (@searchliaison) November 3, 2021
In 2021, Google will release the fourth Spam Update.
Google Updates always focused on combating web spam and enhancing search results by better understanding website content and user intentions. This version focuses on blocking away potentially hazardous or suspicious websites. It also seeks to identify and filter out sites that provide no additional value and employ Black Hat SEO tactics. To that goal, Google has spent several years creating artificial intelligence approaches that are now being included in the algorithm via the Google Update, prohibiting damaging websites or pages with no additional worth from being listed in the Google index.
Google already launched four Spam Updates in 2021. Following two related Updates in June, it deployed a link spam update between July and August. Since November 3, 2021, the Google algorithm has included the November 2021 Spam Update.
Is this update intended to combat link spam or content spam?
The Google Spam Algorithm Update, which generated substantial search results and buzz in the SEO industry, was the first Google Algorithm Update for November 2021. At this stage, we can observe that the industries most impacted by the November 3 Algorithm Update were News, Games, Sports, Gaming, and Arts & Entertainment.
Google has not stated if the current change aims at content spam or link spam. As is customary, Google has supplied a link to their Webmaster Guidelines, which define best practices for optimizing a site for search.
It first noticed the changes to Google search ranks on the morning of November 3, with the SEMRUSH sensor confirming a significant upgrade was taking place with an industry-wide fluctuation average of 6.7/10. Given how infrequently Google acknowledges adjustments to its search ranking algorithm, it was unsurprising to see third-party tools validate the swings across various businesses.
In the coming week, we should have a better picture of trends and which the latest update has impacted websites.
If your website has been negatively impacted, we can best advise waiting until the change is completed. Modifications and SERP movement frequently most noticeable in the first few days. Which is why it is critical to wait and see where things end up before making any substantial changes.
If you’ve noticed significant changes in your website traffic, the November 2021 spam upgrade may have had an impact. Spam changes, like always, are intended to screen out low-quality websites that violate Google’s best practices criteria.
I’ve noticed a significant decline in traffic after the change went live. What am I supposed to do?
Could you wait for it to pass? Wait till Google confirms the completion of the November 2021 Spam Update Rollout. Allow your website to settle in for a few days before re-evaluating the outcomes. If you still know you’ve been treated unfairly by this update and that your traffic and rankings aren’t what they were before the upgrade, it’s time to take urgent action and address the issues both visible and unseen. The standard procedure is to do a full website audit, isolate the issues, and work on them one by one. You may monitor the health of your website on Search Console, and if you find it has been reprimanded for not adhering to the guidelines, you can contact us at any moment, and we will take it from there.
The Spam Update in November 2021 will have an impact.
What categories of “spam” does Google’s November Update specifically target? Google hasn’t said which sorts of spam this Update is intended to combat. However, there are a number of theories floating around the internet:
Since this confirmed update, we’ve reported on numerous unconfirmed updates, but the most recent confirmed update was the link spam upgrade, which rolled out between July 26, 2021 and August 24, 2021 – a four-week period when Google indicated it would take two weeks. There was also a July 2021 core update, a Spam part two update, a Spam part one update, a Page experience update, a Predator update, a June 2021 core update, and a products review update prior to that.
It appears that some of the tools were previously aware of the rollout – could it have been anything else? I’m just not sure if a spam update would cause so much volatility. We didn’t observe much talk or signals from the tools that there was an update after the recent spam updates. So it’s difficult to say whether these tools detected this one or not…
Google’s spam-prevention best practises
- Labelling affiliate links: Every affiliate link, whether manually or dynamically made, should be labelled as rel=”sponsored.” Meanwhile, Google assures us that “using affiliate links to monetize a website is allowed in general.”
- When accepting sponsored pieces and guest posts from other websites, Google “highly” advises that the appropriate rel values be applied to these links. According to Google, they’ve seen campaigns of low-quality sponsored and guest posts aimed solely at gaining links.
- Google threatened to take action against websites with an excessive number of purchased links or incorrect labelling: If Google’s algorithms “discover sites publishing or acquiring links with excessive sponsored and guest posts without correct link tags, algorithmic and manual actions, similar to affiliate links, may be taken.”
- Nofollow still allowed: According to Google’s standards, the nofollow property can be used for affiliate links or sponsored posts. “The nofollow tag was formerly recommended for these types of links and is still an appropriate approach to indicate them, though sponsored is preferred,” Google writes in its best practises.
- Defending websites against spamming: Google advises webmasters to take the following steps to improve website security:
- Using Google’s reCAPTCHA or a similar verification mechanism, prevent automatic account creation.