86% of firms not prepared for new big Google update – report

google update

Search agency Reflect Digital, part of the LAB Group, has launched a new series of reports that expose how unprepared four key UK industries are for the new Google update.

The results from the ecommerce, legal, accountancy and insurance sectors show that 86% of businesses are not ready for the Core Web Vitals update, that is now rolling out, with over 500 top UK businesses failing to reach the ‘good’ score range.

Google update

The white papers, created by Reflect Digital and Authoritas, explore the three different metrics – Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – loading, First Input Delay (FID) – interactivity and Content Layout Shift (CLS) – visual stability, which quantify and measure the page experience of a website. Yeah, we don’t know what that means either!

Apparently, the reports highlight the effect on search visibility and ranking, sharing a breakdown of the three score types with insights on how to improve them.

Brand fails!

The study highlights just how unprepared the majority of websites are, with some of the nation’s household name brands being called out. 

Samsung ranked last place in the ecommerce report, Vitality scored in the bottom 5 in the insurance report and the magic circle firms (the big 5 law firms) all ranked below 64th place in the legal report.

Other key findings from the research include:  

98% of insurance firms need improvement or failed when it comes to LCP and 91% need improvement or failed on FID

Despite seeing some impressive scores for the ecommerce sites tested for LCP, 65% still needed improvement or failed

97% of the accountancy firm sites tested needed improvement or failed in terms of LCP, with 59% of the sites still needing improvement on FID

Only one law firm site scored ‘good’ when it comes to FID – leaving 184 sites in dire need of improvement.

Becky Simms, CEO of Reflect Digital said: “Google is an important source of leads and ultimately revenue for so many businesses and this update happening (21 June) could have huge ramifications. 

“Right now, the impact is unknown, but from our report so many of the UK’s top businesses are not ready based on Google’s new Core Web Vitals metrics.

“The Google algorithm is changing regularly, but this is one of the most notable updates in recent years and the great news is that it is pushing website owners to make their website’s user experience better. 

“At Reflect Digital, we are keen to help raise awareness of the changes to ensure businesses are as prepared as they can be.”

The full research results can be found on the Reflect Digital insights page as a free downloadable report with results revealing that 86% of businesses are not prepared for the next Google update.