Image of May 4th Algorithm Update Star Wars

A Google core algorithm update happens only a few times per year. This update launched on May 4th and is the second core update of 2020. 

And in case this core update impacts your business, we didn’t want to leave you like Leia in Star Wars saying, “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi. You’re my only hope” after the fact. 

We are going to break this down piece by piece to help you understand how this may impact your business.


Google Core Algorithm 2020 Overview

Google made broad system changes to their search result algorithm. While you may notice changes to your search results at any time, core updates are known for causing significant changes to Google results in a short period of time. 

Google claims it doesn’t target any particular website during an update. However, it does affect how your content is analyzed, making it normal to see a big drop or rise in your rankings. Therefore, if you see a big drop, this does not mean the content is violating their guidelines or has been targeted by Google, it just means their algorithm is grading your content differently.

Image of Star Wars themed analytics


What do we know about this Google Core Update?

This is the first update launched since the general outbreak of COVID-19. During the last update in January, the virus was still confined to parts of China and was not yet considered a global concern. Since then, Google has announced that searches related to COVID-19 have skyrocketed to historic highs of any topic they have ever measured. Since Google does not specify what the core update changes made are, we can only speculate how much of it is related to COVID-19.


How can the May Google update impact you?

In this latest update, Google clarified that pages can drop even if nothing is wrong with them. This is due to the changing priorities and how content is examined. Even though we don’t know the specifics of the update, there are still things you can do if you see a significant drop in your rankings. Google advises on improving your content quality and providing original and substantial information. 

Image of Star Wars themed google update changes

You can see the full list of advice Google gives in its official release here. Due to the volatility in rankings this will cause for the next few weeks, now is the best time to update your SEO for maximum results.


How to monitor for impact?

Expect to see at least some impact due to this update on your website. We recommend keeping a close eye on your page rankings on Google search, as well as traffic and sources on Google analytics for the next few weeks. If you see a sudden drop or rise in the website rankings, then it will also affect the amount of traffic the website receives shortly after. Consider other websites will also be making changes due to the update, so those initial ranking changes might not be as permanent as they first appear. 

Instructions to check the impact on your website traffic –

Go to Google Analytics account. 

  1. Click Acquisition.
  2. Click the date and set May 4th as the starting date.
  3. Click organic search.

Instructions to check google update changes on analytics

In the organic window you can see how much your organic traffic has been affected since the May 4th update!

Instructions to check organic traffic


Not sure where to start? We are here to help!

Do you need an extra hand with your website and digital marketing? We at 15000 Cubits specialize in helping small businesses get up to date with the fast moving online world of marketing. Contact us for an audit today!