What Can We Learn from the June 2021 Google CORE Update?

Every now and then, Google does a broad Core Update to improve the platform’s efficiency and provide users with the best search results. This has been an ongoing procedure for the last two years. It rolled out the previous Core update in December 2020, and just six months later, it announced that there would be further updates on the search engine.

According to their official tweet on 2nd June 2021, Google informed the public that they’d be releasing a broad core update. It named the new update ‘June 2021 Core Update,’ and it was meant to make a few changes in the algorithm of Google’s platform.

Moreover, Google also mentioned that the broad core algorithm update was rolled out in two concurrent phases within two months. One happened in early June, and the other one is yet to occur on an unknown date in July.

The June 2021 Core Update is different from the expected Page Experience Update that’s yet to come. The latter is meant to focus on the Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) and Core Web Vitals. Google is yet to launch the Page Experience Update, so it is essential to keep in mind that the new Core Web Vitals metrics don’t apply in June 2021.

The June 2021 Core Update was officially wholly rolled out on 12th June 2021. This act put digital marketers and website owners to the test as they constantly prepare to put more effort into optimizing their websites. However, the main challenge has been keeping up with the continuous Google algorithmic changes.

The primary task for these website owners and digital marketers is to ensure they conform to the new changes and immediately seek adaptive measures to overcome the unique challenges to increase traffic. Others come from the point of recovery where previous Core updates hit them hard enough that they recorded massive declines in traffic.

What Does the New Google Core Update Entail?

It is unfortunate that there are usually changes in website rankings on Google after every core update roll-out. This makes it challenging and impossible to isolate what qualifies websites for higher ranking and what Google aims to achieve. In addition, each core update calls for specific changes which can be eligible or drop off websites in top rankings.

The Page Experience Update will precede June 2021 in a couple of days. It will call for drastic changes in the performance and ranking of websites. Therefore, the data presented will be subject to significant changes in a couple of weeks. In addition, Google even declared that some sites might experience a complete reversal in their performance after the core updates between June and July.

So, what changes does the June 2021 Core Update entail, and who are the biggest winners and losers?

An Eye-Opener Tip

Looking at the performances of different websites in different categories can be an eye-opener on what core updates mean to websites and how they affect the ranking. You can realize some existing patterns if you analyze data from different sources that showcase the impact of core updates before and after they were launched.

You can do a proper analysis with the Sistrix Visibility Index score of a specific root domain, displaying the major winners and losers after a Google Core Update roll-out. The score reflects how well a domain ranks in the Sistrix index of a particular number of keywords and a particular region.

You further use Similarweb Categories to collect each domain’s category. The reason for using Similarweb Categories is to observe if changes are caused by a core update affect specific niches or categories more than they affect others.

Our analysis is based on the visibility index scores of about 1900 domains in 31 different categories. It also prioritizes domains with visibility index scores of .25 plus because they have SEO visibility and reliable data.

Biggest Winners

Between 4th and 14th June 2021, multiple domains recorded a total increase and percentage increase in visibility. The data below is in respect to the Sistrix Visibility Index score.

Total Visibility Increase

The domains with the most significant increase in visibility are;

  1. wikipedia.org (87.8)
  2. amazon.com (62.1)
  3. cambridge.org (52.2)
  4. lifewire.com (36.2)
  5. dictionary.com (33.5)
  6. facebook.com (26.7)
  7. collinsdictionary.com (26.7)
  8. thefreedictionary.com (25.3)
  9. imdb.com (25.1)
  10. merriam-webster.com    (21.4)

Percentage Increase in Visibility

The domains with the highest percentage increase in visibility are;

  1. storables.com (843.68%)
  2. mapcarta.com (693.77%)
  3. gadgetreview.com (481.63%)
  4. debt.org (465.84%)
  5. thelendersnetwork.com (429.32%)
  6. whereig.com (416.56%)
  7. dayoftheweek.org (379.18%)
  8. moovitapp.com (372.30%)
  9. listoffreeware.com (367.42%)
  10. photoworkout.com (357.07%)

Biggest Losers

On the other hand, still in the same period, some domains recorded significant drops in both their total and percentage visibility.

Total Visibility Decrease

The ten biggest losers in total visibility are;

  1. tripadvisor.com (-75.6)
  2. wiktionary.org (-63.7)
  3. quora.com (-20.1)
  4. techradar.com (-19.5)
  5. youtube.com (-18.2)
  6. yelp.com (-14.7)
  7. lyrics.com (-11.8)
  8. yourdictionary.com (-11.7)
  9. thebalancecareers.com (-11.4)
  10. metrolyrics.com (-11.3)

Total Decrease in Visibility

The ten domains that recorded the highest percentage decrease in visibility are;

  1. smashingmagazine.com (-59.94%)
  2. belfortfurniture.com (-55.06%)
  3. onlineradiobox.com (-52.71%)
  4. lanefurniture.com (-50.72%)
  5. onlineslangdictionary.com (-48.01%)
  6. theblondeabroad.com (-46.87%)
  7. amoyshare.com (-46.08%)
  8. apkpure.com (-45.89%)
  9. handluggageonly.co.uk (-43.67%)
  10. blinkhealth.com (-43.57%)

From the data above, some of the categories involved include;

  • Reference materials
  • E-commerce & shopping
  • Science & education
  • Computers, electronics, & technology
  • Arts & entertainment
  • Law & government
  • Hobbies & leisure
  • Music
  • Games.

Impact of the June 2021 Core Update

The update aligns with the other previous algorithm updates that caused various organic visibility impacts. However, it emphasized particular categories of domains as it mainly had a disproportionate effect on Your Money, Your Life websites. Some statistical observations of the update’s impact include;

  1. Dictionaries and reference sites have recorded more visibility. Supposedly, Google wants its users to get search results from highly ranked reference websites.
  2. Websites in the travel category have recorded a significant decrease in visibility since Google search results rank travel destinations higher than the agencies.
  3. The finance and business websites had a share of both good and bad news. The websites dealing with financial management and debt solutions had more visibility than websites with multiple financial tips that don’t address a given problem.
  4. The websites with user-generated content recorded a decline in visibility as Google believes they don’t provide reliable data to users.
  5. The affiliate and product review websites got a significant increase in visibility as the customers’ reviews are more reliable than the marketing information by manufacturers.
  6. There were different impacts on the parenting, health, and wellness websites. Most fitness websites had a decrease in visibility, while those for parenting and healthy living recorded positive changes. It all went back to the relevance of the content.
  7. The media, news, and publishing websites also recorded different results. Some particular websites increased while others decreased in visibility. The primary consideration was in the proper selection and use of keywords.

The June 2021 core update is still surfacing in different domains with multiple ongoing changes. However, it’s still at the early stages, and the Page Experience Update is yet to be launched – which will record further changes in the algorithm of search results and website ranking.

Ensure you consider your category and the particular possible impacts if you are to make the most out of these frequent core updates.

Jeannie Brouts

by Jeannie Brouts

Jeannie Brouts is a Marketing Manager at SEO Vendor. She has 10 years of experience in White Label SEO and online marketing. Jeannie loves writing about the latest ways to help businesses market and produce results.


  • Avatar
    Jayce Montes

    March 27, 2022 at 3:04 pm

    Nice breakdown. 2021 is a crazy year for SEO especially with Google’s frequent updates.

  • Avatar
    Dana Rowell

    October 30, 2022 at 9:02 am

    Really useful thanks. This article has helped me cool my worries over the ranking changes and where to improve.

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