October was an incredibly busy month for Google’s Webmasters, with a whole host of tweaks being made across the past 4 weeks.
The main highlight of the month is the release of Google BERT update, the major Google update in 5 years. We will explain what is it and how your website will be affected, with a few examples of how Google responded to a user query before and after rolling out BERT. Also, we’ll explain you how to optimise for BERT, introduce you some new Google Search Console video features and present you new great video content from Google Webmaster Central.
7 October – New reports for video results in GSC
Within GSC, a report for “Videos” is available that you can use to check any errors/warnings for implemented markup on your website. You can also check within the performance reports to see video search appearance data, such as clicks and impressions. This is handy for webmasters to see their video performance on the SERP.
11 October – Google confirm there is no such thing as an “EAT score”
Since the introduction of the EAT guidelines, webmasters have been shifting to focus on ensuring the content they write on their websites are thorough, accurate, and matches user’s intent. However, some SEOs have been questioning whether there is a ranking system in terms of how good a website is in terms of its EAT. There isn’t!
25 October – Google release BERT update
The BERT update refers to how natural language is processed and affects about 10% of searches on Google. The aim of BERT is to better understand language in search queries to display more accurate search results.
With BERT, Search is able to grasp more nuances and know common words like “to” matters more than before, so we can provide a much more relevant result for search queries. See below a few examples:
28 October – Google confirm you cannot optimise for BERT
Optimising for BERT isn’t possible, Google claims. Their advice is, and always has been, to write content for users. This statement has now ended the controversy!
29 October – New Google video series Search for Beginners
Google are now releasing beginner-friendly tutorials about search that aim to help give a fundamental understanding to new webmasters. Google identified that short-form videos have racked them the most views, and that they want to see all webmasters succeeding in search.
30 October – Google rejects working on content submissions
Following Bing’s announcement that allows some publishers to submit HTML content to Bing and therefore not needing their content crawled, Google’s John Mueller says there is no cooperation between the Google and Bing team, and that Google are not going to be implementing such a feature.