Video: Search Engines and SEO Panelists Agree Algorithm Updates Should Continue During COVID-19

“I was expecting that people would be more like, ‘No, we don’t want updates,’” said Daniel Waisberg, search advocate at Google, in response to a Twitter poll that Search Engine Land News Editor Barry Schwartz posted asking whether Google should temporarily halt algorithm updates during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Although the sentiment from poll participants was relatively split, Bing’s Frédéric Dubut and Google’s John Mueller have said that their respective companies should continue to improve algorithms to serve users during these times — a perspective that was echoed by all of the SEO panelists during our first Live with Search Engine Land session.

Google’s doing a lot to fight misinformation and that’s just going to continue to happen, I imagine, over the next few months,” said Lily Ray of Path Interactive, adding, “If Google finds ways to improve the quality of the results to reduce misinformation, then they should continue rolling out those updates.”

“If people stopped working, ultimately systems are going to fail at some point and if there is no one there to [make] these improvements, then we’re just going to implode,” said Pedro Dias of APIs3, referencing the misinformation problems Facebook is dealing with as a result of having to send its legion of content reviewers home. “We don’t want to do that; we want to maintain what can be maintained … we should not stop just because other parts cannot move ahead,” Dias said.

Why It's Important

During the pandemic, we've all encountered new ways that nefarious users are promoting bogus cures or simply redoubled phishing efforts

We at High Level Marketing agree that search engines (and social media) should continue to monitor their platforms and deploy improvements. Most updates during the COVID-19 pandemic will most likely be related to these bad actors; HLM will, as always, monitor updates as they come and continue to help our clients - and the industry at large - take digital marketing to the next level. 

Michael Cipielewski