Did the most recent Google update affect your website’s rankings?

Whether they did or not, now is an excellent time to learn how to protect your website from Google’s Medic update and any future algorithm updates.

Before I tell you how to keep your rankings, let me explain what happened with Google’s Medic update and why it matters for your site.

What Was The Medic Update For August 1st, 2018?

Google changed the importance of its algorithm’s core ranking factors with the Medic update. It is the overall framework for ranking your content in search results. If you want to know if the Medic update affected you, look at any changes in your rankings and compare them to their positions before August 1st. Notably, pages from various websites were affected, and no specific niches were targeted directly. The “MEDIC” update was not intended to target health sites, but it earned that moniker due to many sites in that category that experienced significant ranking changes.

Factors Based on Data to Improve for the Medic Update

Google takes into account over 200 search ranking factors. Your long-term goal should be to improve on them to increase your brand’s equity. To determine what you should do to avoid being negatively impacted by the Medic update, we examined data from various sources, including SEO experts, software companies, and publishers.

The SEO community has noticed similarities between sites that experienced ranking changes due to the Medic update.

Additional Considerations for the Medic Update

While the E-A-T and YMYL guidelines can help you meet Google’s standards, they are influenced by various factors.

Given that Google’s long-term goal for its algorithm is to provide a great user experience, it’s not surprising that the factors associated with ranking changes are ones that directly affect UX.

Here are some additional factors to consider and optimize if necessary:

The Data’s Content-Length

CanIRank’s study of 100 Medic-impacted sites found a strong correlation between content length and other related ranking content, including:

Length of Content: What to Do

Make your content short and simple if the ranking content provides a short and simple answer, such as “When is the next eclipse?” If the content ranking is in-depth, make your content in-depth as well.

In other words, match the search query’s intent regarding what and how much information users seek. 

Quality of Content:

Content quality can be somewhat subjective and has sub-factors such as relevance, writing quality, meeting search intent, and visually presenting the content well.

According to Charles Floate, poor content quality on a site, such as “small” or low-quality pieces, was a significant factor in overall site quality (and thus UX).


Anyone who wants their site to rank should understand why rankings change when Google performs an algorithm update (and what to do to ensure they do).

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