On August 1, Search Engine Roundtable broke the news about a Google algorithm update nicknamed “Medic” that they found was already shaking up search results and core rankings almost overnight.
It’s still a little too early to weigh in strongly on what changed with this update, but we wanted to share everything we’ve been keeping track of over the last week.
The Medic Update
Google was quick to characterize this as a global update. Our team hasn’t personally seen any universal ripples across our client rankings and traffic, but trusted analysts in the market have been vocal about the cross-client impact they’re measuring. What everyone has been able to agree upon to this point is that the impact was felt disproportionately by medical, fitness, and health verticals, hence the name “Medic.”
Early indications from data compiled by SE Roundtable suggest that high domain authority sites received a little extra boost in rankings, at the expense of smaller sites. If that proves true it’s not exactly earth-shattering in terms of implications for online marketers. Rather, it’d mean the big “G” is simply rewarding sites that have been providing content, gathering links, and so forth for a long time, building up a war-chest of DA.
We’ll hold off on the rants about democratizing search results by rewarding quality content and value to users above all else until we’ve got a bit more data.
So What Happened?
Our team is still analyzing data from our extended client portfolio before we share a full evaluation of the Medic update. As with other updates in the recent past, Google will almost certainly be doubling down on their expectation that sites show expertise in subject matter, trustworthiness, and that they create quality content. What specific changes come out of this algorithm update should become more clear in coming weeks, and we’ll update this post accordingly.
Search Engine Land: Google’s Aug. 1 core algorithm update
Marie Hayes Consulting: Google Update Strongly Affected YMYL Sites
Digital Journal: New Google Ads and Algorithm Updates
Reddit: Initial Reactions
Reddit: Ongoing Discussion