May 2020 Google Webmaster Report

The past thirty-days in the Google organic universe was pretty busy, not just with COVID-19 changes to Google search but well beyond that. We had the May 2020 core update released just a few days ago (it was big), there were unconfirmed updates as well, including in local search. Google Shopping went from a paid model to a free model. LinkedIn had its www pages removed from the index for a short period of time. Gary Illyes from Google also said page speed is a teeny tine ranking signal. Google is now showing more local news in the top stories carousel and if the news is COVID-19 related, it does not have to be AMP compliant. Google said do not depend on the noscript tag going forward. Google Search Console made some changes for COVID-19 and also adjusted some reporting. Google Maps and My Business did many COVID-19 changes ads well. Plus we saw tons of user interface changes, mostly COVID-19 related, plus the Question Hub is more broadly available.The ongoing WebmasterWorld thread is mostly chattering up the May Core update.Here is our summary for the past 30-days or so and here is last month’s recap.Google Algorithms:
Google May 2020 Core Update Is Live – What We See So Far
Sites Impacted By The Google May 2020 Core Update In A Big Way
Reminder: Google Core Updates Impact Google Discover Results
Google Search Ranking Update Flutters April 28th & 29th
Google Search Local Ranking Update – Lots Of Fluctuations

Google SEO:
Google Shopping Is Free – Froogle Is Back, For Real This Time
Free Google Shopping Rolling Out But You Might Not See Free Results Yet
LinkedIn Removed From Google’s Index
Here Is Why LinkedIn Search Results Returned So Quickly In Google
Confirmed: Google Site Speed Is A Teeny-Tiny Ranking Factor
Google Now Displays More Local News In Top Stories Carousel
Google: AMP No Longer Required For COVID-19 News In Top Stories Carousel
Google May One Day Drop Support For NoScript Tag For Images
Asked Google: Does Searcher Behavior Changes Influence Overall Ranking
New Google Government Benefits Schema For COVID-19 Announcements
Google Posts New Guide On How To Use Structured Data With JavaScript
Google May Delay Mobile-First Indexing Switch Over Deadline Due To COVID-19
Google: GoogleBot Would Rarely Ever Submit A Form On Your Website
Google: Have Lots Of Soft 404s In Search Console? Check Your Internal Links.
Google: Limit HREFLANG Implementations To Where You Have Unique Content
Google: Too Many Heading Sections Is A Waste Of SEO Time

Google Search Console:
Google Search Console Is Tracking Fewer Pages For Reporting
Google Search Console Adds Reports & Tools For SpecialAnnouncement
Google Search Console Adds Copy Feature To URLs
Google Discards Duplicated Reconsideration Requests
Google Performance Reports Filter Out Automated Queries
Google Search Console COVID-19 Announcement Beta Tool

Google My Business & Local: 
Google Maps Now Displays Takeout & Delivery Labels
Google My Business Adds Telemedicine Links For Doctor Offices
Google Local Panel Can Show COVID Testing Center Details
New Google My Business COVID-19 Responder Policy For Hotels
Google Adds “Get Online Care” Links To Local Panel
Google Has Free COVID-19 Posters For Your Business
Google Local Services Ads COVID-19 Services Selections

Google User Interface Tests:
Google Tweets Its Search Changes For COVID-19
After Testing; Google Launches Search Tips For Queries That Do Not Return Great Matches
Google Tests Side Bar Filters Design In Search Again
Google Testing More How To Schema Rich Results Interfaces
Google Tests Underlining Searches Related To
Google Tests Black URL Under Snippet Title
Google Tests Moving Review Stars Lower & Changing Colors
Google Tests New How To Recipe Results Interface
Google Continues To Tests Favicons In Search Results After Removing Them

Google Question Hub:
Google Tests Questions Box In Search Results In US For COVID-19 Queries
Google Search Console Inviting Publishers Into Question Hub
Google Question Hub’s “What Is Your Question” Is Wider Than COVID-19 Searches
More Google Question Hub Screen ShotsForum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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