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Google May 2022 Core Update Complete

Google's core algorithm update that began rolling out on May 25 has officially completed on June 9.

Google May 2022 Core Update Complete

Google confirms the core algorithm update it began rolling out on May 25 is officially complete. Now you can get an accurate assessment of the impact.

The announcement of the completed rollout went out at 3:44 a.m. EST, though it’s possible you’ve noticed effects of the update prior to today.

If that’s the case, and the changes you’re observing continue the same pattern, then it’s likely you were hit by the May 2022 Core Update.

What To Do Next

Are you noticing positive changes? Great! You survived another update (and hopefully are thriving as a result).

Are you noticing negative changes? If so, you must be wondering what to do next.

Google’s advice for recovering from core updates is always the same: improve your content.

John Mueller, Google’s Search Advocate, stated in October:

“With the core updates we don’t focus so much on just individual issues, but rather the relevance of the website overall.

And that can include things like the usability, and the ads on a page, but it’s essentially the website overall.”

When planning how to recover from a core update don’t get bogged down by technical fixes, or making singular improvements like changing title tags.

Take a holistic approach to improving the website overall, starting with content.

That can be a daunting task, and it’s not uncommon these days to enlist the help of AI content generators to get the job done. Though you may want to be cautious before going down that route.

Did Google’s May 2022 Core Update Target AI Generated Content?

Google’s core updates affect all search results to some degree, though the impact can be more noticeable in certain areas than others.

It’s too early to draw any conclusions, but there are signs indicating websites with AI generated content were hit particularly hard.

Here’s one example of a site owner showing a massive drop in traffic for a website that’s written with an AI content generator:

On the opposite end, here’s an SEO showing a spike in traffic following the core update.

He says his site is in a niche that’s “polluted with garbage AI content,” and he finally managed to outrank competitors:

Although there’s evidence of AI content getting hit by the core update, it doesn’t mean AI content is inherently bad.

Here’s what Google has to say about it.

What Does Google Say About AI Generated Content?

Google says AI generated content is against its guidelines only when it’s used with the intention to manipulate search results.

Should there be a noticeable trend in AI generated content getting ranked lower following the May 2022 core update, it’s likely it wasn’t being used in a way that fits Google’s guidelines.

Perhaps Google is getting better at identifying when AI content is being used to manipulate rankings, and when it’s being used to add value.

We recently published the results of an experiment where it was found AI-generated content generally performs best when used to supplement content written by humans.

To that end, it’s recommended not to depend on an AI content generator to such an extent that it replaces human writers.

Additional Resources

For more help with recovering from a Google core update, see:


Featured Image: salarko/Shutterstock

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Matt G. Southern

Senior News Writer at Search Engine Journal

Matt G. Southern, Senior News Writer, has been with Search Engine Journal since 2013. With a bachelor’s degree in communications, ... [Read full bio]

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