Google Search has started to roll out the first broad core update of the 2023 year, and this one is named the March 2023 broad core update. It began on March 15, 2023, at about 10:30 am ET and can take about two weeks to roll out, Google wrote. This update touched down fast and hard – it is a big one…
As a reminder, the Google February 2023 product reviews update finished rolling out on March 7th, 8-days afterward, Google began to roll out this broad core update.
So far, this update seems to have started off with a big bang, and I am seeing a ton of movement based both on the SEO chatter within the SEO community and the tracking tools are showing massive volatility. Honestly, this one seemed to have a more significant impact on more of the black-hat SEO community than the white-hat but that might be too premature to say.
Remember, these updates can take about two weeks to roll out, and sometimes, the changes you see within the first few days are not where things stick. So be patient and wait for the roll-out to complete before panicking.
Either way, this broad core update is starting off very strong, very quickly, and it is less than 24 hours since it started to roll out.
Google March 2023 Core Update
Here are the most important things that we know right now in short form:
- Name: Google March 2023 Broad Core Update
- Launched: March 15, 2023 at around 10:30 am ET
- Rollout: It will take about one to two weeks to roll out 2022
- Targets: It looks at all types of content
- Penalty: It is not a penalty, it promotes or rewards great web pages
- Global: This is a global update impacting all regions, in all languages.
- Impact: Google would not tell me what percentage of queries or searches were impacted by this update but so far, this seems to be a typical core update that reaches wide and the impact is fast.
- Discover: Core updates impact Google Discover and other features, also feature snippets and more.
- Recover: If you were hit by this, then you will need to look at your content and see if you can do better with Google’s core update advice.
- Refreshes: Google will do periodic refreshes to this algorithm but may not communicate those updates in the future. Maybe this is what we saw the past couple of weeks or all those unconfirmed Google updates.
Here is the tweet announcing:
Today we released the March 2023 core update. We’ll update our ranking release history page when the rollout is complete: https://t.co/sQ5COfdNcb
— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) March 15, 2023
Previous Broad Core Updates
This will take a couple of weeks to roll out, and it has been just over six months since the last update, which was last the Septmeber 2022 core update which was on September 12, 2022. Then the May 2022 core update on May 25, 2022. Prior to that was the November 2021 core update on November 17th through November 30th. The previous core updates prior to the November update were the July 2021 and then a month prior to that with the June core update. The one before that was six months before the June update, on December 3, 2020, named the December 2020 core update. Before that was a 7-month gap where on May 4, 2020, the May 2020 core update. The one prior to that was on January 13, 2020, the January 2020 core update and the one before that was on September 24, 2019, the September 2019 core update. Oh, before that was on June 3, 2019, the June 2019 core update and I can go on and on.
SEO Chatter On March 2023 Core Update
There is some chatter at the WebmasterWorld forums, Black Hat World and in the comments here; some of the chatter started a day or so before the update officially rolled out. Here are some quotes from the threads:
I think might be a new update is on its ways.Again, something is brewing right now. I feel google is about to push another update !So far today 90% single page views are direct to selected widget page, country sources as normal.I think these non-stop updates are designed to make us focus on something other than all the ads. To keep us chasing our tails so to speak.
I see no movement and no change in Google’s depressed traffic. And with all the ads, I don’t expect this core update to even be noticeable from our side, regardless of the outcome.
I’m not seeing a big reduction in overall traffic, but big drops to some landing pages with more competitive terms. The one-hit wonder page visits to lower-level single content pages continue, but that kind of traffic rarely converts like the more determined searchers looking through lots of content in one genre.Displeased. Traffic was finally recovering from the last update. I was wondering why we were struggling again today. Our rankings are all over the place.One of my blogs, released like three weeks ago, with original content, plagiarism 0, etc, was penalized by Google today… So yes, good luck making new websites these days.I can confirm something is going on; our site for the main keyword dropped from position 1 to the 3rd page overnight. I hope it’s Google dance and will check later where it stays…My white hat site has moved up above my black hat site.
I know it means nothing right now, but things are shaking up….
My website has just been doing SEO for three months, and the rankings have increased steadily every month, and many of keywords have entered the top 20. However, due to the impact of the update, a large number of my keywords have disappeared. In the next few days, I will Is there any chance of the website being restored?Ugh, one of my sites seems to have gotten hit pretty badly. Any idea what it is about? Can’t find any info in the link you posted; maybe it’s coming.Fish market in Poland today, SERPS are mixed. My one website already dropped from 1st to 2nd page :(Once I woke up this morning, then checked the SERP… It looks like a fish market…It’s not started till now to full shuffle, and my one website already dropped from 2nd to 9th, one website 1 to 4th, marketplace taking over the top position. what will happen, I don’t know hope for the best.Pretty pissed off with this update this morning.
I’ve had a look for some of my keywords and they’ve taken a pounding. Instead, companies that own multiple websites have posted identical listicles (with the same photos) and just a few words changed and they’re sitting in the top spots.
What’s the point in writing quality content when they’re going to be pushing rubbish like that to the top spots?
That’s exactly what’s happening in my niche.
Sites from the same parent company writing the same content, targeting the same keyword, and having the same author, are taking the first page on Google.
More worrying is that these sites are exchanging links very very aggressively. Like they give links to each other with the same anchor text. Saw people are complaining about this on Reddit too.
It’s a real concern and shows how unethical Google is and why it needs to be replaced.
I also asked early this morning what folks are seeing on Twitter, here are some responses, to see them all, click through to my tweet:
One of our clients… it’s still super early but hoping for the best. pic.twitter.com/GbYY1il8fr
— Lily Ray 😏 (@lilyraynyc) March 16, 2023
Still far too early to really comment, and usually these things roll back a little. But for two of my sites the impact is BIG already.
Looking forward to reading the analysis after completion – I wouldn’t want to have to do it.
— Jason (The Affiliate School) (@nichejason) March 16, 2023
We are experiencing big trafic drop on Discover and google news since yesterday night
— Reda El-Fillali (@RedaELFiLLaLi) March 16, 2023
Yup. Big changes for our niche.
— Amro (@DrAmrohamed) March 16, 2023
Hey, great to hear. What does the reporting look like when you isolate Google organic? I think we’ll see a lot more movement in the next day or so.
— Glenn Gabe (@glenngabe) March 16, 2023
My traffic suddenly dropped 50% since yesterday. Google’s at it again. Thanks! 😡
— Joel CZ (@JoelYelapa) March 16, 2023
@rustybrick experiencing huge fluctuations.
— amandeep singh (@Sig02108) March 16, 2023
Search results in Japan also moved dramatically at the moment.
They are back to normal now.
— 塾長@もやしSEO (@jukuchou001) March 16, 2023
One of my sites advanced from 6-7 to 3rd spot for the most popular niche keyword (non-English market).
— Miloš Mileusnić (@mileusna) March 16, 2023
yes. bit unusual to see swings early in rollout, here in croatia.
most notable, lots of content that was ‘quarantined’ during pandemic due to lapses of reason and ethical treason’s is now surfacing. i feel there’s a lesson there, in terms of bias, factual accuracy and whatnot.
— Grabancijaš (@grabancijas) March 16, 2023
Tracking Tools On March 2023 Core Update
Most of the tracking tools are showing massive movement within the Google search results, and they are showing some significant volatility. Not all the tools are updated yet, so I will update the charts below throughout the day. So check back later for updated charts.
Advanced Web Rankings:
Not updated yet – will add chart later…
What have you all noticed so far?
Forum discussion at Twitter, Black Hat World and WebmasterWorld.