A Look Back on 2019: Core Algorithm Updates That Shook Up Google

Posted - December 31, 2019

Google makes changes to its algorithm almost every day. Some are small changes; others have a major impact on search rankings. As you undertake search engine optimization (SEO) efforts on your site, you can really only do so much to predict where future updates are headed. In fact, businesses usually only discover new algorithm updates when their site dips in search results and leads begin to drop. If you noticed your site’s rankings struggling in 2019, your site may need changes (or perhaps even a complete renovation) to meet Google’s new standards. Here’s a look at some of the biggest 2019 core algorithm updates and what they mean for the success of your website.

March 2919 Core Update

In 2019, the biggest Google algorithm updates were focused on the importance of expertise, authority, and trustworthiness. This push for authenticity among websites all started with the March 12th Core Update. This update essentially focused on website user experience. After the update rolled out, several sites saw their rankings impacted based on:

  • Site speed
  • The number of pop-up ads on the site: the fewer the better for a satisfying UX
  • Overlay size: The bigger the dropdown menu, the worse for the UX
  • Content Quality: Sites with high-quality content that provided useful information to visitors saw increases in ranking
2019 Key Update Focus

June 2019 Core Update

This update saw changes that went beyond site evaluation. With this update, Google continued to target sites with poor content; however, the biggest change we saw in this update was its impact on search engine results pages (SERPs) that pop up when a query is typed in a search engine. This update increased the visibility of video and image carousels in SERPS, creating opportunities for:

  • Higher site visibility
  • Greater CTR
  • increased conversions 
  • More authority with their target audience


Quite possibly the most important update Google threw at us this year was the BERT algorithm. Essentially, BERT gave Google the power of understanding the context of content when determining what was relevant in a search. This update devalues content that’s not user-focused or that is written solely for search engines. Remember, audience trust extends beyond using the right keywords at the right time, and that’s the message the BERT update is trying to get across. To overcome the pitfalls of this update, focus on the quality of your content. Good content that answers any and all reader questions will cement your position as an authority in your industry.

Content and Context

Local Search Update

Although this update is still rolling out  (it was revealed in November), this is one that heavily ties into BERT and local SEO. Through neural matching, Google’s  AI helps deliver relevant local results within queries that use both specific and related keywords. This most recent update continues to put Google one step closer to complete understanding during user searches.

Dallas SEO Dogs Helps Your Website Roll With Google’s Changes in the New Year

Don’t let Google updates be the death of your online success in 2020! The digital marketing gurus at Dallas SEO Dogs can help you recover from drastic ranking shifts when Google standards change. We have helped many businesses from several industries overcome challenges throughout several updates. Let us help you when the next one rolls out! Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our SEO experts.