If you noticed a spike or drop in your rankings last week, it might be due to the unofficial algorithm update believed to have taken place on May 16. This would be the third unconfirmed update of the month after a seemingly quiet and uneventful week. The update’s harsh effects continued to be felt by the SEO community into the new week, with one commenter saying last Thursday that his “traffic is down by at least 50 percent across all websites” and that he didn’t “know what to do.” But the update didn’t spell trouble for everyone. One site owner shared he saw “huge gains” in keywords for two of his five sites, with one up by 20 percent every day the previous week.

According to Semrush’s SERP volatility index, May 16 saw a rating of 7.7/10 (high range). This is not nearly as bad as the fluctuation level we saw on April 28 (9.2/10), but it was enough to cause a stir on the SERPs. A rating of 7.7 indicates “Position changes for numerous sites! Google results are shaking up. This may be a sign of a possible algorithm change. Check if your site has been affected.”

Meanwhile, the volatility index from Rank Ranger showed a risk level of 65, the highest it has been since the Mother’s Day Weekend algorithm update on May 9. Mozcast’s May 16 report indicated a ranking “weather turbulence” of 95 degrees, following behind the May 9 SERP shake-up.

Search Engine Roundtable’s Barry Schwartz wrote, “We are due, very due, a core update from Google,” with the last one culminating in November 2021. So we should expect more of these minor, unconfirmed updates happening more and more until Google rolls out the next core update. 

 More SEO News You Can Use

Yelp Has a New “Request a Call” Feature: Yelp makes it easier for clients to connect with local service businesses with its new feature called Request a Call. This feature allows users to click on a Request a Call button on your Yelp business page, choose their preferred service from your offerings, add their phone number and specify their desired call time. You will then receive an alert in your inbox asking you to call back a customer at the requested time. You have the option to accept or request a different time. You have the option to confirm the call time, reschedule to a more convenient time for you or ask the customer for any additional details you need before accepting the call time. The new feature, now available to businesses that opted for it, is part of Yelp’s ongoing effort to connect users with the services they need and help businesses convert qualified leads into clients.

TikTok Announces New Ad Product Called “Branded Mission”: On May 18, TikTok announced it’s launching Brandeded Mission that will enable content creators to engage with brands directly and monetize their content without going through an agency. With the new product, brands can develop briefs for their campaigns and release them to the community, and content creators can choose which branded mission they want to participate in. The company shared that the goal of this effort is to “make it easier for brands to tap into the creative power of TikTok communities,” while rewarding more creators and introducing them to better creative and financial opportunities. The product is currently available in its beta-test phase and is open to creators 18 years old or older with over 1,000 followers.

Digital Intelligence Provider Similarweb Acquires Rank Ranger: Tel Aviv-based company Similarweb announced it has acquired Rank Ranger, an SEO tracking company, to supplement its digital intelligence, keyword research and analysis tools with rank tracking. The combined functionality of these companies aims to offer search marketers smarter insights into traffic-driving keywords. It allows them to identify opportunities to drive traffic and increase returns on their marketing investment. North Carolina-based company Rank Ranger provides clients with monitoring, measurement, optimization and reporting capabilities. By integrating it into Similarweb’s tools, search marketers are better equipped to respond to ranking fluctuations caused by shifting trends and competitor strategies. On its site’s homepage, Rank Ranger has updated its logo to say it’s now a Similarweb company.

Search Engine Land Is Hosting SMX Advanced, a Free Training Program: Search Engine Land is coming out with a free, virtual search marketing training event from June 14-15. Attendees will learn expert-level marketing tactics to weather algorithm updates, automation expansion and other industry challenges. The programming team comprises search marketing heavyweights we are no strangers to: Barry Schwartz, Danny Goodwin, Kathy Bushman and Henry Powderly and will feature recommendations from some of the industry’s most accomplished thought leaders. The training will be “safe, reputable and reliable,” and there will be no “get-rich-quick or dodgy tactics.” Registration is 100 percent free and open to everyone. You can register here.

Vimeo Adds Structured Data to All Its Public Videos To Boost SEO: Vimeo has implemented structured data to give video creators more opportunities to rank on Google Search. With added chapters and timestamps to video structured data, Vimeo videos can be promoted in relevant search results. To take advantage of this update, ensure your videos are set to public – the rest will be handled by Vimeo. The video hosting platform makes sure your video can be indexed and has optimized meta data and video chapters that are visible to Google Search for key moments. Although this is sorted out for you by default, Vimeo recommends incorporating the most relevant keywords and choosing the best titles for your videos to further boost your search visibility.

Editor’s Note: “SEO News You Can Use” is a weekly blog post posted every Monday morning only on SEOblog.com, rounding up all the top SEO news from around the world. Our goal is to make SEOblog.com a one-stop-shop for everyone looking for SEO news, education and for hiring an SEO expert with our comprehensive SEO agency directory.