The much-anticipated December 2020 Google Broad Core Update rolled out on December 3 and SEO specialists from all around the world investigate its effect. This marks the second big core update of the year, following the one that happened in May 2020. While some professionals believed another core update would not happen this year, it turns out it happened.
So far, this is an update that does have a large impact. There are websites that show huge losses or wins. Many webmasters reported changes of over 30 percent even one day after the update happened.
While smaller Google SEO updates happened between May and December, they were minor. This new one is definitely a core update, and we will need to wait for a little longer to figure out exactly what changed.
The Official Roll Out
Google made an official announcement on Twitter that it is going to release the Core Update for December 2020 on December 3. This started at 13:00, and the rollout is expected to last at least 2 weeks.
As a comparison, the last core update started on May fourth, and it ended on May eighteenth. Even so, most people quickly noticed very early impacts.
A Brief History Of Core Updates
Before the already mentioned May 2020 Google Core SEO Updates, the previous one actually was reported to be on January 2020. However, this was contested by many because the update did not influence much of the results. Before that, we had the September 2019 Google core update, and the June 3 core update.
A Weird Launch Date
What is interesting is that SEO specialists have actually expected the December Update since the month of August. The truth is that Google had to deal with several bugs in 2020. Numerous people are surprised that the update was released before the holidays though. At the same time, the core SEO updates happened after the big shopping spree of Cyber Monday and Black Friday. Some think that the release of the update happened during early December simply because everyone working at Google is practically off during late December.
The big problem is that when a business is preparing for the Christmas shopping season, it can be drastically hit by Google Core Updates. Small businesses did report that they were negatively affected, and the timing is definitely really bad for them.
Brett Tabke from WebmasterWorld was just one of the people that criticized the Google update. He declared that Google released the update during a pandemic and during a time when people try to survive. He added that Google only took up more of the SERP share and did not care about the fact that people lose jobs.
While any Google Core SEO update is controversial, this one was not taken well by many because of the horrible 2020 everyone had to deal with. Google pre-announced the core update, and there were fluctuations happening in the 3 days before the official launch. This was when some tests were most likely done, but the timing was quite bad. We will see if SERPs will be highly affected in the following weeks.