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Google change set to shake up search rankings

Adam Zuchetti
Adam Zuchetti
26 July 2018 1 minute readShare
Google search

Businesses caught unawares of the latest update to Google’s search algorithm could see their search rankings drop markedly, with Google confirming that a major update took place earlier this month.

Google announced that as of 9 July 2018, loading times for all sites – including mobile – will form part of the online search giant’s rankings.

“Although speed has been used in ranking for some time, that signal was focused on desktop searches… starting in July 2018, page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches,” Google said in a statement on its blog.

Those businesses whose sites load quickly are likely to see little benefit. But the slowest loading sites could be punished harshly.

“The ‘Speed Update’, as we’re calling it, will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries. It applies the same standard to all pages, regardless of the technology used to build the page,” Google said.

“The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.”

At the Online Retailer Conference in Sydney this week, a panel of digital marketers and online retailers explored a number of factors that can contribute to slow loading times, as well as other issues that can drive down sales conversions and constrict customer experience.

Davide Defendi of SEO Shark recently revealed nine hacks to boost a Google ranking, noting that less is not always more, particularly when it comes to keywords and the number of words on a given web page.

Google change set to shake up search rankings
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Adam Zuchetti
Adam Zuchetti

Adam Zuchetti is the former editor of MyBusiness and a senior freelance media professional, specialising in the fields of business, personal finance and property. In 2020, he also embarked on his own business journey – inspired in part by the entrepreneurs and founders he had met through his journalistic work – with the launch of customised pet gifting and subscription service Paws N’ All.

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