Google Launches August 2023 Core Update

Written By
Joe Smith
Published On
August 31, 2023
Read Time
5 minutes read

Google strives to deliver the best search results to its users’ queries. As part of this commitment, it has regularly updated its core algorithm to demotivate spammy websites and those having content that does not provide value to the users. Most recently, Google Launches August 2023 Core Update rolled out the August 2023 core update also known.

This update took 16 days to complete in its entirety.

depth Google's August 2023 core algorithm update

Many people believe that core updates are released to target specific websites, but this is not true. After a core update, such as the Google Algorithm Core Update, some keywords or websites that were previously unranked begin to rank, while others depend on the website’s quality and the content provided on the website.

So let us examine in more depth Google’s August 2023 core algorithm update and its effect on websites:

What Are Google Core Algorithm Updates?

Google’s core algorithm updates are major upgrades or tweaks to Google’s fundamental search ranking algorithm. These changes aim to improve the relevancy, accuracy, and quality of search results delivered to users. While Google makes tiny changes to its algorithm virtually every day, core upgrades are more significant and can have a major effect on website rankings across search results.

Keep these points in mind about Google’s core algorithm updates:

Purpose: Google’s long-term goal is to prioritize high-quality content while demoting any low-grade or irrelevant content, so these improvements have as their primary aim providing users with enhanced and more relevant search results.

Frequency:  Core updates are made multiple times each year, each possibly focusing on different areas of the ranking system.

Impact: Effects of core updates vary. Some websites’ rankings can improve, while others may take a hit. A drop doesn’t always indicate something wrong on a site’s part; sometimes, other websites become more useful or relevant based on new criteria.

Recovery: If a website’s rankings drop following a core change, Google recommends concentrating on Improving your Content and providing a positive user experience. There is no “fix” or “patch” to apply. Website owners must focus on producing unique, valuable, trustworthy, relevant, and timely Content that responds directly to consumers’ search intents.

Communication: Google often makes major upgrades known in advance or upon release, alerting webmasters, SEO specialists, and website owners of expected changes in search rankings.

Notable Updates: Throughout its history, major core updates such as Panda, Penguin, and Medic have taken place, each targeting specific issues such as low-quality content creation or spammy link practices as well as expertise, authority, and trustworthiness (E-A-T).

In addition to the fundamental updates, Google also makes updates and adjustments relevant to specific aspects of the search experience (for instance, local search, image search, etc).

How unstable was Google’s core algorithm update in August 2023?

Before discussing Google’s core algorithm update of August 2023, it is essential to recognize that evaluating its impact is arduous and complex.

There are multiple approaches to measuring the effects of updates; no single statistic can provide enough detail to compare their impacts to one another.

Regardless of the number of measurements taken, updates still create volatility, affecting metrics and obscure data visualizations. Assessing their effects is more complex than many people realize;

Here is our analysis of how this update affects us all.

Ranking Variability Due to Google’s August 2023 core algorithm update

Let’s begin with the most manageable metric – peak rank volatility levels seen during the August 2023 core update relative to the March 2023 core update:

Ranking Variability Due to Google’s August 2023 core algorithm update

The August update shows significantly higher peak volatility levels compared to March. There was no single vertical with peak volatility levels greater than 7.2.

Compare this report with previous releases; all but three verticals had volatility levels of 9 or above, with 7.9 being the minimum peak volatility and 7.2 being its maximum value in March.

That implies that the core upgrade implemented in August 2023 was significantly more potent than its counterpart implemented in March. Wrong.

Context is essential; one cannot evaluate an update based on one statistic alone.

Compare the volatility trends between updates. What have you observed (other than an absence of an August spike and the presence of one in March)?

volatility trends between updates

Volatility levels increased during the August 2023 Core Update.

August 2023 core update's effects on rank volatility

Step two in our quest to understand the August 2023 core update’s effects on rank volatility is to compare its increase relative to levels of rank fluctuations before.

Here’s how rank volatility changes compare between August and March core updates:

Comparing baseline data to fluctuations observed after updates, it appears that March 2023’s core upgrade was more impactful: March saw a 3.3-point gain on Semrush Sensor, while August was associated with only 2.8.

That is all there is to it, except this data is intriguing.

Updates with a more considerable impact tend to be distributed evenly across verticals (with one or two outliers).

Not so in this instance.

Six verticals saw more significant increases in volatility following the August 2023 update than during its March counterpart.

Comparing the March 2023 core update with September’s update, no verticals showed an increased volatility from September.

Even if our initial baseline before an upgrade were “typical,” we wouldn’t have enough data to establish which update had the greatest effect.

Why shouldn’t they?

Because increased overall volatility does not always equate to increased severity.

Recovery Duration after Google’s August 2023 Core Algorithm Update

If the improvements warrant it, pages could take several months to regain ranks lost from a core change.

Google constantly adjusts its algorithms. It may release modest updates between more extensive core updates that benefit pages that have experienced changes.

Final Thoughts:

While businesses and SEO specialists may feel the effects of Google’s core algorithm update in August 2023, businesses should remain patient, improve website quality instead of quick fixes, and avoid quick fixes for SEO purposes.

We need help comprehending the implications of Google’s core algorithm update in August 2023, but we hope you now understand this update better.

Remain aware; Google will continue to release core updates.


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