Google’s Core Algorithm Update in May 2021
It’s the most wonderful time of the year – when Google updates its algorithm for the one-thousandth time and sends digital marketers scrambling to double-check if their client’s sites are in top-notch condition before Google hits “go.”
This time, automotive SEO providers are slightly at the mercy of our neighbors – the automotive website provider. Why is this, you ask? Well, let me fill you in.
By now, most digitally-savvy dealers know that their website needs to EAT. Your site needs to contain trustworthy and relevant information specific to the products and services that your dealership will be providing. Sorry, recipes for Sunday dinner need not apply.
Google is about to take EAT up one more notch.
For this Spring’s Google Core Algorithm update – not only does your website need to have content that is custom and specific to your industry, but now your user’s Page Experience will play a part in your website’s rankability.
Search Engine Watch describes Page Experience as “all aspects of how users interact with a web page and how good or painful it is for them.” This is also where Google’s Web Vitals will also be necessary to website owners, web developers, and SEO strategists alike.
I’m sure most of you have heard of Page Speed Insights. This Google Product allows you to check out the health of your mobile and desktop functionality and gives you a score, including areas for improvement to increase your speed.
I’ve used both, and I have to say – I’m a Web Vitals fan. This report is infinitely more comprehensive than Page Speed Insights and includes not only your performance score, like Page Speed Insights, but it also provides Accessibility, Best Practices, and SEO.
If you want to know how your website measures up right now
Now I’m sure you’re thinking, “This is all great to know, but what does this have to do with UX or the algorithm update.” Here’s how.
A Custom SEO Strategy + a Solid Page Experience = Quality Results
A customized search engine optimization strategy that includes quality content and industry-related links is a significant part of how you EAT and rank on page one. This custom content needs to be applied to pages that are easy for your customer to navigate hence the importance of working with an automotive website provider that can prove the accessibility and useability (or UX) of their site design before you sign on the dotted line.
If you are considering changing website providers, check out our three easy steps to transition from one platform to another.
Enter our friend User Experience (UX).
According to the Interaction Design Foundation, UX “involves the design of the entire process of acquiring and regarding the product, including aspects of branding, design, usability, and function.” So, let’s talk about usability and function for a moment.
Do you know how your website functions? Specifically, do you know what your customer experiences when using your website? It’s time to test it.
Is it easy to find all the information the customer needs on a car? Where are your financing options? Are you hitting them with pop-ups at every click? Can they quickly ask a question?
These are all questions that you should be asking yourself and your prospective provider when switching to a new website platform, and each of these questions applies directly to UX design.
Now that Google will be paying particular attention to websites’ Page Experience, the UX of the platform you choose needs just as much attention as your digital marketing provider’s SEO strategy. The two go hand-in-hand.
Don’t forget about Mobile
Mobile functionality and page load times have been on Google’s mind for a while, but now it cannot be ignored. Guess what – if your website’s functionality on mobile isn’t up to snuff after you check your Web Vitals, it may be time to consider a switch to a new provider.
According to Cox Automotive’s Digitation of End-to-End Retailing Report released in January of this year, “64% of shoppers want more of the purchasing process to happen online.” It isn’t just Google that needs your site to have a better mobile experience and functionality – your customer wants it too.
Here is a quick list of things to consider when reviewing your website’s mobile performance:
- Mobile Page Load Times
- Overall site design and graphic elements are optimized for mobile
- Calls to action and buttons are still easy to find and utilize
Don’t be overwhelmed – we can help!
If you find that your website isn’t providing the customer experience that your dealership strives to have, and you aren’t sure how your site performs overall, reach out to us.
We can look behind the scenes and let you know what is working and where there is room for improvement and show you how an SEO strategy from Dealer Authority can help improve your website’s rankings and kick your car sales into high gear.