What Happened to Google in April 2019?

Digital Marketing Strategy

With so much Internet traffic going through Google, our digital marketing strategies depend on its stability. Typically, this is never a problem — Google is one of the most prominent organizations in the world that keeps all of its processes under firm control. But occasionally, a bug or human error can cause chaos.

Something of the sort happened in April 2019, where there was a widespread and long-lasting indexing problem. Let’s have a closer look at what happened, how it affected different websites and impacted their digital marketing:

The April 2019 Index Outage

Even though the situation seems to be fixed now, it wasn’t the case in April. According to multiple reports, Google’s index had experienced an issue. The issue caused Google to de-index a multitude of web pages, and it persisted for a while.

All data that was supposed to be indexed between April 9 and April 25 was altogether missing from their Search Console. As Google later reported, they fixed the issue on April 26, but haven’t managed to recover the data. That caused a long period affected by bad data in the Search Console.

Connected to March Updates?

Some speculations that have surfaced in the meantime seem to connect these index issues to Google’s March 2019 infrastructure updates. The Broad Core Algorithm update was announced for March 12th, but it appears that there was another significant change to the algorithm near the end of March as well.

For some websites, those significant fluctuations that appeared during March 2019 took their toll, despite the subsequent fixing. While the update would have naturally caused a shift in rankings and traffic as websites fell out of algorithm favour, it’s unclear how much of it was natural.

Impact on Digital Marketing

While the harmful effects of Google’s issues during March and April was noticeable, it wasn’t too severe. However, if we imagine a more severe problem connected with Google search or indexing, it could mean a significant impact on many businesses relying on digital marketing.

A loss of traffic and rankings could mean a significant adverse change in a business’ bottom line. Unfortunately, there is no better way to counter this than closely following Google changes.

For a digital marketing agency, it’s inevitable to rely on the stability of Google, as well as their rules for SEO optimization and ad platform. However, as we could see, that has its downsides if Google experiences issues. It is why it’s crucial to stay informed to be able to react to any changes.

Depending on which digital marketing strategy you choose and how you implement it, will take some time to reach its full potential. If you wish to start enjoying good results for your business faster, don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d love to discuss your marketing strategy and help in any way I can.

Rob Dunford is a Marketing Consultant in the Great Toronto Area with over 20 years of experience in implementing marketing plans for small businesses.

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