12/07/2020: SEO Rewind

Google released December 2020 core update - check if you’ve been impacted. Helpful advice for large sites that worry about their crawl budget, four new features in Google Maps, and more in this week’s SEO Rewind.

12/07/2020: SEO Rewind

Google released a new core update - the December 2020 core update. This seems like the most important news in SEO last week, but so far, I didn’t see any visible impact on sites that I work with.

As with all core updates, there is no specific advice on how to “optimize” for the update - Google’s universal advice on Core Updates still applies.

Google December 2020 Core Update rolling out
After seven months, Google has just released a new core update - the December 2020 core update.

At Sistrix, they took a closer look at winners and losers. According to their analysis, dictionaries and encyclopedias lost some of their visibility. Some online retailers lost visibility as well. You can find more details in their article here (focused mainly on the UK market):

Core Update December 2020 - Google’s Christmas present? - SISTRIX
Nobody expected another Core Update this year, but shortly before the end of the year, Google has conjured up it’s third Core Update of the year. Will it be an early Christmas present? We have the first data. At the beginning of May 2020, almost exactly seven months ago, Google […]

100 trending gifts from Google. Google published a shopping guide covering products that have recently increased in popularity.

The Google Shopping Gift Guide provides a helpful list of products rising in popularity based on Search trends in the US.

Interested to see how COVID-19 has impacted e-commerce and shopping behavior? Take a look at the guide:

Google Shopping Gift Guide
This year’s top 100 trending gifts for everyone on your list

New documentation for large sites & crawl budget. Google recently added new documentation for large sites that want to improve utilization of their crawl budget. This is convenient advice for any sites with approx. 100K+ unique pages.

Large site owner’s guide to managing your crawl budget

Core Web Vitals and Page Experience FAQ from Google. Google recently shared a list of FAQs about Core Web Vitals. This will become increasingly important in 2021 with the updated page experience signals.

This FAQ provides an excellent overview to anyone who wants to get up to speed on this topic:

Core Web Vitals & Page Experience FAQs - Search Console Community

Google combines Hreflang signals from multiple sources. John Mueller clarified that if there are multiple Hreflang signals (for example, Hreflang annotations and directives in your sitemap.xml file), Google will combine these signals.

For more details, head over to SEJ for a full transcript:

Google Combines Hreflang Signals from HTML & Sitemaps
When hreflang directives are implemented in a site’s HTML and sitemap, Google will combine them and use all signals.

Local SEO: New features in Google Maps. Four new features are coming to Google Maps that may have an impact on your local SEO efforts with Google My Business listings:

See you on Monday with the next Rewind!